Dual Controlled Car
Matthew always teaches in an up-to-date automatic car with dual controls and is proficient at keeping the student and car under control in all circumstances.
Matthew has always been a motoring enthusiast and is keen to impart much of this knowledge and enthusiasm for driving on to his students. He has been a qualified driving instructor since 2010 but prior to that Matthew worked as a sales representative and a truck driver so has had many years being a professional driver. This gives him a very broad knowledge of the road network and how to drive safely. Since becoming a qualified instructor in 2010, Matthew has upgraded his skills to become an authorised examiner for CBT&A in 2012 and currently sits on the board of directors for the Professional Driver Trainers Association of South Australia (PDTASA).
Patient & Friendly Instructor
Matthew Woodman understands that every student learns at a different pace and he is able to deliver lessons that are appropriate for each individual student. We all have our own individual strengths and weaknesses; some people can kick a football with remarkable skill and ease right from the start, while others practice it for years, and still only get to a basic level. The same applies with driving. The real skill of an experienced driving instructor like Matthew is his ability to see specifically what is going wrong and how to help the student to correct their technique or method. Matthew will patiently explain this to each student and allow them the time to repeat it as many times as necessary until they have mastered each task.
There is an ancient Chinese proverb that says ‘when the student is ready, the teacher will present itself’.
How to get the most out of your professional lessons.
Practice. Most people have heard of the saying ‘practice makes perfect’, but the reality is that only PERFECT practice makes perfect. So if you have a professional driving lesson, but then your practice doesn’t reflect what you learnt in the lesson you can unwittingly undermine your professional lessons. For example: if during a driving lesson, your instructor explains that your left turns at T junctions need to be done in a specific way with the car in a specific position on the road, then you should practice implementing that technique on as many different left turns as possible.
Example 2: if your driving instructor explains that you need to check your centre mirror when approaching traffic lights and then check left and right just before driving through each and every traffic light then you should practice doing that on every traffic light. These seemingly minor details that are explained in your lessons are absolutely crucial, and they are sometimes the things that hold a student back from progressing faster.
Practice the difficult things. Professional driving instructors obviously know what they are doing, and can show you how to do all of the most difficult tasks like turning on to busy roads in heavy traffic and how to do reverse parallel parking and 90° angle parking etc. If you can spend the time practising this with your qualified supervising driver (parent, friend, relative, partner etc) in your own time, you will progress faster in your lessons.
What to expect
Expect that when you book a lesson with U Learn Driving School we will show up and you will get the time that you have paid for. Occasionally your instructor may be running a few minutes late but will usually let you know if it’s going to be more than five minutes late. We always teach in our car which will be an automatic with dual controls. Normally your lesson will start and finish at your home, but if you need to start and/or finish at a different location, this can be done but only if it has been pre-arranged. Your instructor will be an accredited examiner, and so will be able to sign off tasks in the CBT&A section of your logbook if and when you demonstrate competence in them.
Your first few lessons will begin with the basics of how to check your mirror, and when to signal, and where to position the car on the road. While all this is going on, we are also helping you to use all of the vehicle controls, steer correctly and maintain situational awareness. Even if you have already done many hours of practice before your first professional lesson, we will still insure that you are doing the basics correctly. As you demonstrate that you can do each task to the required standard, you will move on to the next task. In every case, your instructor will explain clearly what is required and will demonstrate it for you if necessary. If you have chosen to use the CBT&A method, these tasks will be signed in your logbook on the spot. There are 30 tasks to complete in the logbook, and you may be able to complete several tasks in a lesson, but only if you are complying with the requirements as they are written in the logbook. If you are having difficulty with particular tasks, this is completely normal. Your accredited instructor knows how to help you.
If you have chosen to use the VORT (Vehicle On Road Test) method, then we will be training you to pass the test. If you don’t know which method is best, remember our instructions are very experienced and can advise you.
CBT&A stands for Competency Based Training and Assessment and is commonly called the logbook method. This is where your instructor is also your examiner. It is considered to be a more thorough and in depth method, and generally produces better drivers. U Learn Driving School is a specialist in CBT&A. Basically you will be trained in every competency that is printed in your Driver’s Handbook (logbook), and it will be signed as you complete each competency. It is such a thorough method, and the tasks are so in-depth, covering everything related to driving that once all of the tasks have been signed by an Authorised Examiner, there is no need to do a test. On completion of your final lesson your instructor who is an Authorised Examiner will issue you with a certificate of competency which is what you need to get your license. Many driving instructors in South Australia are not qualified to sign the tasks in your logbook as they are not authorised examiners. One of the reasons to choose U Learn Driving School is because we have authorised examiners, making the entire process simple.
VORT stands for Vehicle On Road Test. This is where you learn to drive and then you go for a practical driving test which you either pass or fail. Statistically, as much as 50% of tests conducted in South Australia each day end in a fail, which means that the applicant was either unaware of the standard required or was not at the required standard. Professional lessons can give you a huge advantage when you are preparing for the VORT.
Tips when practicing with a friend or relative.
Learning to drive well and getting your license will take many hours of practice and a great deal of concentration. The more hours you spend with a professional driving instructor, the faster you will progress towards your goal, but we understand that most of your driving hours will probably be with somebody other than a driving instructor. Somebody who has had an unrestricted license for a minimum of two years can be your qualified supervising driver and sit next to you in the car while you are learning to drive. In many cases, this qualified supervising driver may have already been driving for 20 years or more, but they still may not know the most efficient way to train you. When you are driving, before changing your speed or direction always have a look in the mirror to see what the traffic around you is doing. You may need to modify your plan slightly because of traffic. We want you to learn a structured and systematic approach to driving and learn a simple system that you will automatically apply every time you drive. We call this the system of car control, and in its most basic form, it is as follows:
For example, if you are approaching a corner, you should check your mirror (usually centre mirror but sometimes a side mirror as well), then signal which direction you intend to turn, and then, if necessary, brake. You need to practice this system so many times that it becomes an automatic thing to do. Of course, this is just the very basics, but it is an important basic step to get right.
If you are going for a practice drive with a friend parent or relative. You should practice turning onto and off busy roads as this will improve your judgement in traffic as well as the shape of your turns. There are many other things you can do to improve your skills and to make the most of your practice time, but of course a professional driving instructor can really help you. A driving instructor who is also an authorised examiner won’t just teach you, but they will also sign these tasks in your logbook which become stepping stones to getting your license.
International License Conversion
If you currently have a valid drivers license from a another country and wish to convert it to a South Australian license, U Learn Driving School can help you. You have two options in which to obtain a South Australian license, and these are basically the same as the options for Learner drivers except that international license holders do not need to record 75 hours of driving. U Learn Driving School has taught many people with an overseas driver’s license and successfully converted them to South Australian licenses. Please contact us and we can give you further advice on this.
We specialise in driving lessons in all these suburbs are working almost every day of the year, so call now and get started on your journey.