5 Steps to Getting Your Drivers Permit

With all of the information you need right here, we make it easy to figure out how to get your permit! First, are you 15½ or older? Then just follow the 5 easy steps to getting your permit, and get on the road!

  1. Complete the Stanford Driving School Driver's Education Course.
  2. Enroll in Behind-The-Wheel Training.
  3. Pass DMV Permit Exam.
  4. Complete Behind-The-Wheel Training.
  5. Pass DMV Road Test.
Stanford Driving School, Driver's Education, Learner's Permit Online, Online Driving School, Behind The Wheel Training, Freeway Training, DMV Test, Palo Alto, Bay Area, Classroom Driver’s Education

Step 1 Complete the Driver's Education Course

Register for either the Classroom Education or Online Driver's Education Course. Our classroom education goes for four days from 9:00-4:30 with an hour for lunch. Students can attend class in any order but must attend all four days. Students are much more prepared for driving lessons when they come to our class for driver's education. The student will receive the Certificate of Education at the end of their fourth day. Too busy to attend class? We also offer an online course that is available to all California residents. You can take our course at your own pace, your own time, and in the comfort of your own home. After the completion of the Online Driver's Education course the Certificate of Education will be mailed to your home or you can pick it up at our office in Palo Alto.

Stanford Driving School, Driver's Education, Learner's Permit Online, Online Driving School, Behind The Wheel Training, Freeway Training, DMV Test, Palo Alto, Bay Area, Classroom Driver’s Education

Step 2 Enroll in Behind-The-Wheel Training

IMPORTANT! Don't forget to enroll for Behind-The-Wheel training, this can be done before or after you get your permit. When you enroll for driving lessons, we will schedule your first lesson. Plan Ahead.

Stanford Driving School, Driver's Education, Learner's Permit Online, Online Driving School, Behind The Wheel Training, Freeway Training, DMV Test, Palo Alto, Bay Area, Classroom Driver’s Education

Step 3 Pass the DMV Permit Exam

You will need to study for the DMV written permit test by reading through the DMV California Driver Handbook. It will benefit you if you take your time and study the handbook so you are comfortable with the information that will be on the test.

Make an appointment at the DMV to take the written exam. It is important that you call ahead of time and schedule an appointment at the local DMV so you can go in and take the written test. Make sure that you are well prepared for your appointment. Most DMV's are open Mondays through Fridays until 5pm. Call ahead of time and see which date and times are best for you. The last DMV walkin test of the day is given at 4:30 PM.

What you need at the DMV office:

  • DL44 application for driver's permit (requires both parents' signatures and social security number)
  • Bring your driver's education certificate (blue or pink)
  • Bring your original birth certificate or passport
  • Once you obtain your permit you are ready for your first lesson with Stanford Driving School.

All DMV paperwork is available at Stanford Driving School.

More about DMV permit requirements...
California Driver's Handbook

Stanford Driving School, Driver's Education, Learner's Permit Online, Online Driving School, Behind The Wheel Training, Freeway Training, DMV Test, Palo Alto, Bay Area, Classroom Driver’s Education

Step 4 Complete Behind-The-Wheel Training

Once you pass the DMV written exam:

  • You are required to take your first two hours of behind the wheel training with a professional driving instructor before driving with anyone else.
  • You must further complete four (4) more hours of driving school instruction.
  • Complete fifty (50) additional hours of behind the wheel training with a parent/guardian or any other adult who is 25 years old or older. The adult must have a valid California driver license and certify that you've had the 50 hours of practice. It is required that 10 of the 50 hours of training is done in the evening.
Stanford Driving School, Driver's Education, Learner's Permit Online, Online Driving School, Behind The Wheel Training, Freeway Training, DMV Test, Palo Alto, Bay Area, Classroom Driver’s Education

Step 5 Pass the Road Test

To be eligible to take your driving test you must:

  • Be 16 years old AND
  • Have had your permit for a minimum of six months AND
  • Have completed a driver's education course AND
  • Have completed 6 hours of professional driver training AND
  • Have completed 50 hours of practice with an adult who is 25 years or older. The adult must have a valid California driver license and certify to the 50 hours of practice. At least 10 of the 50 hours must have been done at night.
  • You will also need to show registration and proof of insurance for the vehicle you are using for the road test. Check all lights, horn and brakes on vehicle; if any of these are not working they will not do the road test.
  • If you fail your drive test, you must wait two weeks before you can take the test again. You have three chances to pass. Retest fee is $6.00. After you pass the road test an interim license is issued and is valid for 60 days until you receive your new photo license in the mail. Double check your address before you leave DMV and tell the DMV representative if your address is incorrect. If you have not received your license after 60 days, call 800-777-0133 and they can check on the status for you. Have your interim license with you to provide information when requested.

    Your license will have the following restrictions for the next year:

  • During the first 12 months you are licensed to drive you must be accompanied by a driver 25 years of age or older if you drive between the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. or if you have passengers under the age of 20 in the car at any time.
  • Persons under 18 may not be employed to drive a motor vehicle. When you become 18, the provisional part of your license ends.
  • You may continue to drive as an adult using your photo license, which will expire on your 5th birthday after the date you applied.
  • No cell phone (including hands free) until 18 years old.

More info about the Driving Test...