1 Out of 2 Fails the Test
The passing rate in Indiana is just around 50%. It makes the BMV Test in Indiana one of the toughest in the country.
Therefore, you need to prepare well if you want to pass the first time.
Getting the most up-to-date version of the Indiana Driver’s Manual is a must. You can get a hard copy from your nearest BMV location or driving school. You can also download a PDF-version online at MyBMV.com.
Remember, you can find answers to all test questions in this manual.
Since the manual is full of detail, you should start by previewing and understanding the content in general. Then, move from general to detail – one chapter at the time.
Road Sign Recognition
Road signs are an important part of your Indiana BMV Test. BMV will ask you to identify 16 signs by color, shape and/or symbols. You can only miss 2 of these signs.
It gives you a very small margin for mistakes.
As an example, you must be able to tell the difference between Divided Highway Begins and Divided Highway Ends.
These two signs are not shown side-by-side in the Indiana Driver’s Manual, which is why many test takers miss the important difference between the two.
Look at the illustration above and note where the divider is placed on the two signs.
How well do you think you know your Indiana road signs? Take an Indiana Road Sign Recognition Test here:
Road Rules and Traffic Laws
The second part of the Indiana license examination has 34 multiple-choice questions about important road rules and safe driving techniques. The margin for errors on this part is slightly better. You can miss six questions out of the 34 questions.
Besides asking what traffic signals and pavement markings mean, the Indiana BMV test focus on defensive driving and how you can avoid accidents. BMV wants to make sure that you know enough to be a safe driver. This includes awareness of the effects of alcohol and drugs on your driving.
Indiana Graduated License System
Like all states in United States, Indiana has a Graduated Driver’s Licensing System. Such a system help new drivers build up driving experience and skills gradually over time and in a safe environment.
The first step in this program includes a learner’s permit. With a driver education you can get your Indiana learner’s permit when you are 15 years old. Without driver education, you must wait until you turn 16.
Your learner’s permit is usually valid for two years. You must hold the permit for 180 days and complete 50 hours of supervised driving practice (of which 10 hours must be at night) before you can move on to the next step.
After the permit phase, BMV issues a Probationary License. With driver education, you must be 16 years 90 days old to get the Probationary License. Without driver education, you must be 16 years 270 days old.
Probationary License and Restrictions
The Probationary License comes some important restrictions.
For the first 180 days, you may not, with some exceptions, drive between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.
During this period, there are also passenger restrictions. You may not drive unsupervised with any passengers, unless passengers fall in a category of close relatives.
Probationary Driver’s License holders are also prohibited from using any form of telecommunications device while driving, unless the device is being used to make a 911 emergency call.
You should pay close attention to all restrictions.
You have a Probationary Driver’s License until you are 21 years old.
The last step is a full, unrestricted Driver’s License which BMV may issue after your 21th birthday. Since your Probationary Driver’s License expires 30 days after your 21th birthday, you must renew to get your regular license.
Who Must Take the Indiana Knowledge Test?
You must pass a written knowledge test if you:
- Apply for a learner’s permit
- Become a new Indiana resident and hold an out-of-country driver’s license
- Let your Indiana driver’s license expire for more than 180 days
- Have six or more active points on an Indiana driving record and want to renew your driver’s license
As of July 2019, Indiana waive the knowledge test for new residents 18 years or older who hold an out-of-state driver’s license.
If You are Adult
In Indiana, all residents who apply for a driver’s license the first time must start with a learner’s permit, regardless of age. They must hold the permit for at least 180 days before BMV can issue an unrestricted driver’s license.
During the permit phase, applicants must log at least 50 hours (10 hours at night) of supervised driving.
After 180 days, applicants must pass a vision test and driving skills test. With completed driver’s education at an authorized driving school, the driving test is waived if you have passed the test at the driving school.