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Driving Test Prep Yields to App Craze

The Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles and other states are finding that teens want an app rather than a paper booklet to help them pass their driver’s test.

by / November 10, 2011

Delaware drivers preparing for their driver’s test at the Division of Motor Vehicles can now get some extra practice beforehand with a new app that quizzes a user on the state’s driving rules.

DE Driver Test, available for the iPhone, iPad and the Android, was released last month as part of Gov. Jack Markell’s effort to provide more efficient and effective government, according to a state announcement.

“We are continuously looking for ways to improve our services, and mobile apps can be relatively inexpensive and convenient,” Markell said in a statement.

Delaware DMV Director Jennifer Cohan said the app was released in response to feedback from teen drivers about wanting an alternative method for DMV information.

“We had a teen driver task force and one of the things that our teen focus groups made very loud and clear is that we were not keeping up with technology and we were not making it convenient for them,” Cohan said.

The free app prompts a user to a screen with an image of a spiral notebook. Once clicking the “Begin the Exam” icon, the user can start the practice test consisting of 20 questions.

For each question, the user can choose from three possible answers. For some questions, images are provided along with the question for a visual representation of a driving scenario. Once the test is completed, the app will tally the user’s score and show which questions were marked correct and incorrect.

Cohan said each time the user takes the test, a new set of questions is generated.

For those who don’t have a mobile device that supports the app, the DMV has provided an online version of the practice test. On the site, the user can choose to take the “General Driver Knowledge” quiz or the “Traffic Sign Identification” quiz — each consisting of 10 questions.

Cohan said the app has already been disseminated to driver’s education teachers statewide within public and private high schools as well as driver’s education classes not affiliated with high schools.

“It’s almost kind of an ‘It’s about time’ mentality from them, so they were pretty excited,” Cohan said.

Drivers who have already passed their driver’s test but would like to refresh their knowledge of driving rules also will find the app useful, Cohan said.

The app was produced by the DMV, the Government Information Center and Delaware Interactive — a division of e-government provider NIC USA. According to the DMV, the app is slated to be supported on the Windows 7 platform within the coming weeks.

Some other state motor vehicle departments already have launched similar mobile apps. Last year, the California DMV launched DMV Now, a multifunction app that that allows users to take driver’s prep tests and see wait times for lines in field offices; the app also utilizes the phone’s GPS functionality to help users find field offices.

Earlier this year, Nevada released a similar app on the iPhone and iPad called “DMV Mobile,” according to The Ely Times.

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Sarah Rich

In 2008, Sarah Rich graduated from California State University, Chico, where she majored in news-editorial journalism and minored in sociology. She wrote for for Government Technology magazine from 2010 through 2013.

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