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Driver's Education in Maryland

Most new drivers in Maryland are required to successfully complete a State-approved driver's education program in order to obtain a Maryland driver's license. In fact, for many applicants, the driver's education certificate of completion is part of the actual driver's license application.

WHO MUST TAKE DRIVER'S EDUCATION

  • Maryland residents under the age of 17 years and 9 months must hold a learner's permit for a minimum of nine months, and also complete a State-approved driver's education program before applying for a new license.
  • Maryland residents aged 17 years and 9 months and older who have never held a license from Maryland or any other US state or foreign country must complete a State-approved driver's education program before applying for a new license.

WHERE TO TAKE DRIVER'S EDUCATION

Driver's education courses are offered through both public and private school programs, all of which must be approved by the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration. Driving schools, licensed by the Motor Vehicle Administration, cover the same course content.

WHAT'S COVERED IN A DRIVER'S EDUCATION COURSE

While driver's education courses vary from one school to another, all licensed programs must include the following components:
  • Thirty hours of classroom periods, focusing on issues including alcohol safety and drug abuse awareness, defensive driving, motorcycle awareness and organ and tissue donation.
  • In-car instruction sessions, divided into six hours of actual driving and periods of observation time.
After the successful completion of the driver's education course, your driving school will a send a copy of the completion certificate to the Maryland Department of Motor Vehicles, after which you may be issued a permanent driver's license. Drivers under the age of 18 must have their certificate signed and authorized by a parent or legal guardian, who must certify that the student has had at least 60 hours of driving practice, including at least 10 evening or nighttime hours.

OPTIONAL PROGRAMS

In addition to the core requirements of a driver's education course, many driving schools in Maryland offer optional programs that focus on particular aspects of driver education. Specialized courses include Auto Insurance Discount Courses or Defensive Driving courses, either of which may qualify students for a discount on auto insurance. These and other courses may also enable students to reduce points on their license, and/or get their license back sooner after a suspension. See our section on Maryland driving schools for more information.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

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