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Driver's Education in Indiana

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


  • Indiana residents under the age of 16 must hold a driver education learner's permit for a minimum of twelve months, and also complete a State-approved driver's education program before applying for a new license.
  • Indiana residents 16 and older who have never held a license from Indiana, or any other US state or foreign country, must hold a learner's permit for a minimum of 60 days and complete a State-approved driver's education program before applying for a new license.


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


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 Indiana Bureau 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.


In addition to the core requirements of a driver's education course, many driving schools in Indiana 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 Indiana driving schools for more information.


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