Raising standards
2nd October 2022
How likely is it that your pupil will pass their driving test?
4th October 2022

The key to discovering effective learning

The induction training that we provide to all newcomers sets the way for future driving training on BIG TOM courses. We strongly believe that it is possible to not only make the learning experience more efficient by using research-proven teaching techniques, but we like to explain aspects of our job to new instructors in a clear, and meaningful way that can then be relayed to BIG TOM customers. 


Take the subject of how pupils assess risk while driving. Rather than adopting fixed, standardised techniques where each pupil is treated the same, we ask our franchisees to adopt a more practical dialogue that personalises the experience for the pupil. If a pupil is repeatedly arriving at potential hazards too quickly, then there needs to be a conversation that takes place where the instructor attempts to facilitate permanent learning in the pupil.  


Does the pupil make a connection between the approaching speed and increased risk? It certainly is not a given. How can we expect a pupil to manage a risky situation if they do not acknowledge a risk in the first place? 


How does the speed element adversely affect a pupil’s ability to: 

  • See/observe (the eyes cannot keep up and see detail) 
  • Assess (the brain cannot process the circumstances in time) 
  • React (the eyes/hands/feet do not have time to respond) 


You will like our induction training: it helps you to think about what you do, and remember how to do it [email BIG TOM: recruit@bigtom.org.uk]


Once a pupil begins to raise their awareness of the consequences of the approaching speed, then they may start to pay attention to it. But even then, it is not a given that the speed element will be resolved, because there are many factors that affect a pupil’s driving behaviours. We would very much like to expand on this idea with you.  


Being hyper-critical of a pupil who is not listening to you, ignoring your advice, or deliberately being reckless is not the action of a professional driving instructor who creates effective working relationships with pupils. Our pupils are unique in that they are investing in advance to a set of driving training hours (sometimes 45+) – they want to have the confidence in knowing that they are entering a learning environment that is built on trust, openness, and respect.  


This means that we must behave in a manner that you or I would like to be treated ourselves. This is not a fanciful idea, with vague, meaningless objectives. Quite the opposite. The time our pupils spend interacting with BIG TOM (throughout the entire experience) is critical to outcomes; we simply do not have the luxury of wasting hours of working time on ineffective driving practice. Therefore, we spend time investing in your skills; it sets you apart from many driving instructors who can only ask customers to pay for an hour or two per week.