Most new drivers in North Carolina are required to successfully complete a State-approved driver's education program in order to obtain a North Carolina 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
- North Carolina residents under the age of 18 must hold a learner's permit for a minimum of six months, and also complete a State-approved driver's education program before applying for a new license.
- North Carolina residents 18 and older who have never held a license from North Carolina, or any other US state or foreign country, must hold a learner's permit for a minimum of 30 days, and 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 North Carolina Department of Transportation. Driving schools, licensed by the Division of Motor Vehicles, 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 periods 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 North Carolina Division 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.