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Become a Driving Instructor

Kick-Start Your New Career with ISM

Getting Started

Do you want to meet new people each day and work in a comfortable, interactive environment, with professional support and guidance in your career? ISM ADI Qualified Driving Instructors enjoy all these benefits and many more.

Benefiting from our experience as being the Market Leading Driving School for the past 49 years (established 1961), ISM ADI Driving Instructors come from a wide variety of different career backgrounds. Seeking a new career direction, our Driving Instructor Trainees include former school teachers, factory workers, taxi drivers, construction workers, tradesmen, legal staff and lecturers.

Most people are simply looking for a fresh challenge and an interesting new career direction with real potential, with the freedom to be your own boss, work your own hours and get out on the road meeting new people. As an ISM ADI Qualified Driving Instructor, you will have the reward of excellent earning potential, flexible working hours, allowing you to spend more time with your family as needed, and the invaluable feeling of job satisfaction every time one of your students passes their driving test.Whether you’re new to the Driving Instruction Industry or you’ve already had some prior training, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting professional expert tuition and great value for money. If you are thinking of training to be a Driving Instructor, start by checking the requirements to make sure you are eligible Before You Train. Then, be assured that the ISM Instructor Training College will train you to the highest standard to get you prepared for the RSA ADI Exams. Approximately 85% of all Ireland’s Driving Instructors have trained through the ISM Instructor Training College.

We’re even proud to have trained most of our competitors!

Be aware of some Driving Schools charging for assessments. Reputable Instructor Training Organisations consider this bad industry practice. Instructor Trainees are also to be advised to exercise extreme caution with day-by-day payment plans, where you are not told how much and how long the Instructor Training will take.

Offering both Full and Part-Time Training Courses, as Ireland’s leading Driving Instructor Training College, we want you to qualify as an ADI first time. Expert training is vital to beginning your new career as a Driving Instructor. It has emerged that almost everyone who attempts the ADI Examinations without professional training, does not pass. ISM have dedicated Train the ADI Trainer Tutors who specialize in guiding Instructor Trainees to successfully pass the three modules in the least amount of time possible.

  • ISM Driving Instructor Training Module 1: Theoretical
  • ISM Driving Instructor Training Module 2: Driving Ability
  • ISM Driving Instructor Training Module 3: Instructional Ability

Before You Train

Whether you’re new to the Driving Tuition Industry or you’ve already had some prior training, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting professional expert tuition and great value for money. If you are thinking of training to be a Driving Instructor, start by checking the requirements to make sure you are eligible before you train. Then, be assured that the ISM Instructor Training College will train you to the highest standard to get you prepared for the RSA ADI Exams. Approximately 85% of all Ireland’s Driving Instructors have trained through the ISM Instructor Training College.

However, before you contact us please make sure you can meet the minimum requirements as set out by the RSA, which state that you must satisfy the Registrar that you are a person of good character and be able to obtain a tax clearance certificate.

Also, you must have held a full EU Driving Licence for at least two years before you start training and be able to pass the Garda vetting process. This provides an extra layer of protection for young learner-drivers.

If you have any doubts about meeting these minimum requirements you can contact us at 01 864 1790 or the Road Safety Authority on 096 25000 for further advice.

ISM Instructor Training College

The ISM ADI Instructor Training Course provides everything you need to become a first class ADI Driving Instructor. Approved and recommended by the Road Safety Authority (RSA) to conduct ADI Training, and as Ireland’s longest established Driver Training Organisation, getting you through the RSA ADI three stages first time at the best possible price is what we’re here for.

The ISM Instructor Training College is the only choice – we operate Ireland’s only dedicated Instructor Training programme and as market leaders, virtually everyone trains through ISM to become an ADI Driving Instructor. We are now operating professional ADI Training in Dublin, Cork and Limerick and upon passing your three stage examination, you will have the choice in setting up your own Driving School or coming on board as an agent for ISM (pending successful interview). It’s your future career so it’s only natural that you would want to train with the best.

Whether you intend setting up your own driving school or becoming an agent for ISM, the ISM Instructor Training College offers the most prestigious and respected Approved Driving Instructor Training Programme in Ireland at the most affordable price.

“The Instructor Training College is fully Approved and recommended by the Road Safety Authority (RSA).I recently passed my ADI tests thanks to Eric. I found him very knowledgeable and up to date with the regulations and recent changes in the driving laws. He provided a very enjoyable and relaxed atmosphere, which made learning a pleasure. Eric was very professional throughout and covered everything I needed to know in order to pass my ADI tests. I would have no hesitation in recommending ISM to anybody interested in becoming an ADI”

John Kirwan, Cork. ADI No. 37903

“I recently completed the ADI course with ISM and had Eric as my instructor. He provided me with all the relevant notes and also gave me extra tips on different sites that were very useful. Any questions I had Eric was able to answer them and he was correct and to the point. Both his practical and theory parts of the course were very helpful, essential and well prepared. Overall I was happy and confident going into sit my tests as i felt Eric had given me the best advice and training. Thanks Eric!”

Tracy Conway

Stage 1 - Theory
Stage 1 of the ISM Driving Instructor Training Programme focuses on theoretical aspects of driving, including theory, rules of the road, rules and regulations, ricability, pedagogic, customer focus etc, and is conducted on a 1:1 basis. Prior to this training course, you will have received your Home Study pack which should be studied thoroughly beforehand.

This Classroom Training day is usually scheduled a few weeks before your Stage 1 exam, after your home study is completed. We also provide Stage 1 Training Manuals to you which your Tutor will work through during your Theory Training day. We will provide you with Mock-Exams to ensure you have full knowledge of each section that you’ll be expected to know in your Stage 1 exam.


ISM currently provide this specialized training in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford.

About the Course

Stage 1 of your training will teach you about the theory and hazard perception elements of the course. You’ll be helped to get to grips with these subjects by our advanced learning materials and expert tuition from your ISM trainer. We also provide all the training materials that you need, including the latest books, DVDs and CD-ROM-based learning aids. The learning materials include mock tests and other exercises to prepare you for the Stage 1 exam, so that there are no surprises on the day. We make sure that classroom training has a practical focus to complement the on-road training and during the day you’ll be able to discuss any issues that arise out of your training and ask questions.

Topics covered include an in-depth analysis of the Rules of the Road, including:

  • Explanation on and illustration of each manoeuvre required on the driving test.
  • Full details of all legal requirements in the area of provisional licence classes, test applications and procedures.


ADI Driver Theory Stage 1 Exam

Your first exam is a multiple-choice theory test. It contains one hundred questions on all aspects of driving and the rules of the road. You need to gain an overall pass mark, answering 85 of 100 questions correctly, but as a potential instructor you will be expected to achieve a much higher standard!

Stage 2 - Advanced Driver Training
Now that the majority of the classroom work has been successfully completed, this part of the course is for the most part, on road in an ISM training vehicle.


ISM currently provide this specialized training in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford.

About the Course

The second Stage of the ISM Driving Instructor Training Programme concentrates on developing your driving ability to make sure you meet the high standards required to be a Driving Instructor and assesses your practical driving ability and knowledge.

You will be expected to complete all manoeuvres that learner drivers must complete on their test. You will also be required to drive in a variety of environments, including urban and rural roads, motorways and dual carriageways. This module will help you remove any bad habits from your own driving and assist you in spotting any faults that you may have missed in your own driving – enabling you to assist your students more effectively. In essence, “if you cannot drive properly, you cannot teach properly”!

ADI Driving Instructor Training – Stage 2 Exam

Your first exam is a multiple-choice theory test. It contains one hundred questions on all aspects of driving and the rules of the road. You need to gain an overall pass mark, answering 85 of 100 questions correctly, but as a potential instructor you will be expected to achieve a much higher standard!

Stage 3 - Instructional Training
Now that you have passed Stage 1 and Stage 2, it’s now time to demonstrate that you can impart this knowledge professionally and adequately to your future pupils. The final stage of your training to become an ADI Driving Instructor focuses on developing your ability to teach learner drivers.

And when you train with ISM, we’ll also make sure you’re well prepared for taking out a learner driver. It takes you through everything you’ll need to do to pass the Part 3 exam. You will also be taught how to use the dual controls effectively to control the car and keep it safe, while allowing your students to find their feet. You will be taught how to put “lesson plans” together using various role-play skills. You will also receive the ISM Teaching Manual and taught how to teach your future students using this very comprehensive colour manual.

ADI Driving Instructor Training Module 3 Exam

This is a practical assessment of your teaching ability that consists of two role playing exercises.
For the first of these exercises, an assessor will take the wheel and play the role of a learner with no experience. For the second, the assessor will play the role of an intermediate driver, and you will be required to correct his/her errors.

These role playing exercises are designed to test your presentation, your mastery of instructional techniques and your ability to assess a learner driver’s skills and weaknesses correctly.

Why Choose ISM

At the present time ISM is expanding its operations with the recent new partnership announcement with Ireland’s Largest Motor Insurer – AXA Insurance. Two amazing offers (for Learner Permit and Full Licence holders) have recently been launched and are substantially increasing business for ISM Instructors all over Ireland. Also with the success of our on-line Booking System, over 35% of our national bookings are coming in on-line and we see this substantially growing over the coming months and years. And whats more – ISM are the only Driving School offering On-Line Booking to it’s customers.

Whether you are an existing ADI who wants to increase local business or new to the industry, contact Steve Murray, Karl Walsh or David Fay at 01 8641790. Please note that ISM restricts the amount of Instructors in all areas throughout Ireland.


The Road Safety Authority (RSA) is the regulatory body for driving instruction in Ireland. Driving instructors who meet the standard set by the RSA will become approved driving instructors (ADI).

An ADI Registrar based in the RSA heads up the unit responsible for the registration process. The objective of regulating the industry is to standardise instruction and give the ADI instructor a leading role in developing better drivers.

To become a Driving Instructor, whether it’s for cars, motorbikes, trucks or buses, you must qualify as an Approved Driving Instructor (ADI). The ADI qualifying examination is in three stages:

To receive the ADI Permit Application Form & Information Pack, please contact the ADI Unit at 096 25007 or email:

Tel: 096 25007 | Fax: 096 25252 | Email:

RSA ADI Unit Contact Details are as follows:

ADI Unit
The Road Safety Authority
Moy Business Park
Primrose Hill
Dublin Road
Co Mayo

Stage 1 - Theory
The theory test is made up of two stages; the multiple choice part and the hazard perception part.

The multiple choice part is delivered using a touch screen computer and mouse and the hazard perception part records your responses through your mouse click. You must pass both parts to pass the theory test. If you pass one part and fail the other you will fail the whole test, and subsequently will have to take both parts again.

The hazard perception test is the same for each vehicle category, however the pass mark will be different depending on which vehicle category test you are doing.

Multiple Choice

In this part of the test you will be asked 100 questions split into four bands. For every question there will be four possible answers. You answer the questions by touching the computer screen to select the answer from the selection shown. To pass the test you must answer at least 85 questions correctly with a minimum of 20 correct answers in each band. This part of the test will last one and a half hours. You will have the option to work through a practice session lasting 15 minutes to help you get used to the system before you start the actual test.

After the Test

You must pass both parts of the test at the same time. You will be given your result once you have completed both parts and have returned to the waiting room. RSA will be advised of the result of your test and you may apply either for your Stage 1 again (if you have not been successful) or your Stage 2 (if you have been successful). You will be given the appropriate form when you receive your result at the theory test centre. Only 3 attempts at the Stage 1 are permitted within a two year period from the date of the first test.


The theory test calls for a higher standard of knowledge than for a learner driver. The questions are based on all or any of the following:

  • Principles of road safety generally and their application in particular circumstances.
  • Techniques of driving a car correctly, courteously and safely including control of the vehicle, road procedure, recognising hazards and taking proper action, dealing properly with pedestrians and other road users, the use of safety equipment.
  • The theory and practice of learning, teaching and assessment.
  • Tuition required to instruct a pupil in driving a car, including the items set out above, the correction of pupils errors, the manner of the instructor, the relationship between instructor and pupil, and simple vehicle adaptations for disabled drivers.
  • The HMSO booklet “The Highway Code” which you can get from most bookshops.
  • The DSA publication “The Official Driving Test”.
  • Interpretation of reasons for failure given in Form DL9A Driving Test Report.
  • Knowledge, adequate for the needs of driving instruction, of the mechanism and design of a car.
  • The official DSA publication “Driving the essential skills” published by HMSO, which you can get or order from most bookshops.

ISM will provide you with all the above publications and more to enable you to complete your home study properly.

Test Overview

The practical test of driving ability consists of tests of both eyesight and driving technique. The test lasts for about 1 hour. You must pass both parts of the test at the same time.

Driver Eyesight Testing

You must be able to read in good daylight with the aid of glasses or contact lenses if worn, a motor vehicle registration mark containing letters and figures:

79 millimetres in height and 50 millimetres wide at a distance of 26.5 metres OR 79 millimetres in height and 57 millimetres wide at a distance of 27.5 metres.

Stage 2 - Advanced Training
This test is not just a slightly more difficult ‘lL’ test. It is of an advanced nature and a very high standard of competence is required.

You must show that you have a thorough knowledge of the principles of good driving and road safety and that you can apply them in practice. In particular, you must satisfy the ADI Examiner on all of the following subjects:

  • Expert handling of the controls.
  • Use of correct road procedure.
  • Anticipation of the actions of other road users and the taking of appropriate action.
  • Sound judgment of distance, speed and timing.
  • Consideration for the convenience and safety of other road users.
Test Routes Used
The routes used for the test will include roads which may carry heavy traffic or fast moving traffic, for example motorways or fast dual carriageways. The routes will be both inside and outside built-up areas.
You will also have to demonstrate your ability to perform on 5 occasions a check on the condition and safety of one component of the vehicle. Checks will be chosen from a list of the components, e.g. tyres, steering, etc. Failure to answer questions correctly will accrue driving faults.
Occasionally the Examiner’s Supervisor may wish to come along as well. Don’t worry, they will not be concerned with your performance but with the examiner’s and will take no part in the conduct of the test.

You must drive in a brisk business-like way. You should aim to drive as you normally do and not try to put on an act for the Examiner. You must drive safely and within the legal limits. You must show the ability to perform any or all of the following manoeuvres:

  • Move away straight ahead or at an angle.
  • Overtake, meet or cross the path of other vehicles and take an appropriate course without undue hesitancy.
  • Turn left-hand and right-hand corners correctly without undue hesitancy.
  • Stop the vehicle as in an emergency.
  • Drive the vehicle in reverse gear and whilst doing so enter a limited opening to the right and to the left.
  • Turn the vehicle to face in the opposite direction by the use of forward and reverse gears.
  • Park close to the kerb, using forward and reverse gears.
  • Park in a parking bay, using forward and reverse gears.


Causes of failure

Some common causes for failure include:

  • Lack of progress (particularly on dual-carriageways and motorways).
  • Failure to avoid or correct skidding in the emergency stop exercise.
  • Failure to use observation correctly or to get the timing right in the turn round or reversing exercise.
  • Inconveniencing other road users.
  • Using signals which are excessive, unnecessary or misleading.
  • Lack of effective observation at junctions, including those controlled by traffic lights.
  • Lack of observation during manoeuvres.
  • These are only a small selection of faults. There are many more reasons for failing the test but these are the most common.


Vehicle Requirements

You must provide a car for the test and prove that it is properly taxed, insured and NCT’d if necessary.
The car must comply with the following vehicle requirements:

  • It must be a saloon or estate car in proper working condition.
  • It must be capable of the normal performance of vehicles of its type with manual transmission, right hand steering and a readily adjustable driving seat and seat for a forward-facing front passenger.
  • The car should be free from advertisements and signs which could cause other road users to give it special consideration.
  • If the vehicle does not meet these requirements the test will not proceed. The car may be going onto a motorway or fast dual carriageway, so make sure that any roof signs are removed.
  • Cars must be fitted with an appropriate head restraint for the front passenger seat.
  • A seat belt for the front and rear passenger seats in working order.
  • A rear view mirror, for use by the Examiner from the front passenger seat.


Marking a result notification

All driving faults relating to a particular marking item will be recorded. More than 6 driving faults recorded during a test will cause the candidate to fail the test. One or more serious or dangerous faults will also result in a failed test. The Examiner will give his decision and provide written confirmation at the end of the test.

Stage 3 - Instructional Ability
The object of the test is to assess the value of the instruction you give and your ability to pass your knowledge on to pupils. The test is in 2 parts, each of which lasts about half an hour. You must pass both parts on the same test. You will be asked to show your knowledge and ability by giving practical driving instruction to the Examiner who will first take on the role of a pupil who is a beginner, or a learner driver with limited knowledge, and then a pupil who is at about test standard.


The Examiner will explain everything to you in full at the time. For each of the two roles the Examiner will choose one of the exercises given below as the basis of the instruction:

  • Safety precautions on entering the car and explanation of the controls.
  • Moving off and making normal stops.
  • Reversing and while doing so entering limited openings to the right or left.
  • Turning the vehicle round in the road to face the opposite direction, using forward and reverse gears.
  • Parking close to the kerb, using forward and reverse gears.
  • Explaining how to make an emergency stop and practical instruction in the use of mirrors.
  • Approaching and turning corners.
  • Judgment of speed, making progress and general road positioning.
  • Dealing with road junctions.
  • Dealing with crossroads.
  • Dealing with pedestrian crossings and giving correct signals in a clear and unmistakable manner.
  • Overtaking, meeting, crossing the path of and allowing adequate clearance for other road users.

Understanding what’s required

It is essential that you understand what is required in this test. You should listen very carefully when the Examiner explains what is required for each part. If you don’t understand, say so and the Examiner will repeat his explanation. Remember during the exercises the Examiner is role-playing the part of a pupil. You need to forget that he is really an experienced driver.

Once the test starts the examiner will remain in character in order to maintain, as far as possible, an air of reality. This is to help you forget he is an examiner. However, there may be times that s/he has to come out of role to clarify instructions or for road safety reason.
The instruction you give should be tailored to the time available. (ie about 30 minutes for each part) and to the standard of the pupil being role-played by the Examiner. You will probably find it helpful to establish the depth of the pupil’s knowledge in each phase, by asking questions and observing the pupil’s performance as you would with a real pupil you had not taught before. You should remember that asking how many lessons a pupil has had previously does not establish their ability.

You are allowed to use lesson plans and training aids and you may refer to brief notes or subject headings. You should not read at length, word for word from notes or books. The ‘pupil’ must be given a chance to demonstrate what has been taught, and any faults must be corrected. You should note that because there is only a short time for each part, you should limit the amount of stationary instruction and pre-briefing. You should also be prepared for the ‘pupil’ to ask questions.


In assessing your performance, the Examiner will take into account:

  • The method, clarity, adequacy and correctness of instruction given.
  • The observation, analysis and correction of faults committed by the ‘pupil’.
  • Your general manner.
  • On the day of the test you will need to bring your appointment letter and driving licence and photo identification if your licence does not have a photograph.
  • Sometimes the examiner’s supervisor will come on the test as well as a matter of routine to ensure quality.

Causes of failure

Among the many reasons for failure, the most common are:

  • Too long a briefing or one which is muddled or repetitive.
  • Expecting too high a standard from the ‘pupil’ in the beginner or part-trained stage.
  • Not instructing at a level appropriate to your pupils needs (over or under instructing).
  • Inability to recommence instruction at a different point or to go back and explain again.
  • Failure to detect faults.
  • Treating a ‘pupil’ as a novice in the trained stage.
  • Inability to adjust the content level of the lesson to match the ‘pupils’ knowledge.
  • Demoralizing the ‘pupil’, e.g., “The Examiner will fail you if you do that on a test”.


Result notification

A letter will be sent within five days of the test to inform you of the result.

Vehicle requirement

You must provide a car and proof that it is properly taxed, MOT’d, (if necessary) and insured including any liability of the Examiner as a driver or person in charge of the vehicle (see below).

  • It must be a saloon or estate car in proper condition.
  • It should have a manual transmission, right hand drive, a readily adjustable driving seat and a seat for a forward facing front passenger.
  • Cars must be fitted with an appropriate head restraint for the front driver’s seat, and seat belts for front and rear seats in working order.
  • You must also provide ‘L’ plates visible to the front and to the rear of the vehicle from a reasonable distance.


Insurance requirements

Your insurance must cover, for the time the Examiner is driving, any liability which the Examiner may have for all third party and damage risks, and for liability to any passenger, including an official passenger. You will not be able to obtain the name of your Supervising Examiner because we cannot guarantee that a particular Examiner will conduct the test. You can however advise your insurers that all examiners are over 21 years and that they are trained to a very high standard.

Saying all that, it is better to hire an ISM car for your Stage 3. Insurance will be provided in the cost. Please contact Karl at 01 864 1790 for a competitive price.

Costs - Step by Step

In order for you to understand the process in detail, the following is a step-by-step guide for you to become an RSA Approved Driving Instructor (ADI). Below we have detailed the prices of each exam and training module with an attractive payment plan to suit your requirements. We realise that it’s important that you know exactly how much the whole process will cost, from start to finish. On this note, beware of training companies that do not provide transparent information and/or prices. The ISM Instructor Training Programme represents unrivaled value for money and is guaranteed as the most competitively priced training available in Ireland.

The Instructor Training College will prepare you for your RSA ADI Exams in three stages. Your ADI Training Days will be conveniently scheduled for you prior to your three exam dates. In order for you to receive the best possible tutoring, all ISM ADI Training is Approved by the ADI Section of the RSA and is conducted on a 1:1 basis.


STAGE 1    €150.00
STAGE 2    €200.00
STAGE 3    €200.00
REGISTRATION FEE (upon successful completion)  €250.00


The full Three-Stage Modular ADI Training Course costs €1750.00. Included in this price, ISM provides all Home Study publications, including Theory Training Manuals and also the Stage 3 ADI Teaching Manual. Please note that Home Study is required and we will advise you about the best way to proceed with this study.

STAGE 1: Home Study + Revision Session (1 x half day session; 4 hours) of Classroom Based Theory Training (all material included).
STAGE 2: On-Road Advanced Training (3 x half day sessions; 12 hours). ISM will provide the training vehicle.
STAGE 3: Combined On-Road & Classroom Training (4 x half day sessions; 16 hours) of Instructional Ability Training (including ADI Teaching Manual).

Classrooms are provided for the relevant theory sessions and new fully-insured dual-controlled specialised Training Vehicles are used for the On-Road Training.
We now have introduced a new “three part easy-pay plan” where you can pay the course fee in three stages (€583.00 x 3). This fee includes all the necessary Training Material which is worth over €160.00.

Payment is accepted by Credit Card, Laser Card, Cheque or Cash.  For more information about this, phone Karl or Steve at ISM Head Office at 01 864 1790.

Step by Step Guide

  1. Download the RSA ADI application form . If you prefer, you can contact the RSA at 096 25007 and request an ADI Information Pack which contains the application forms. All three RSA ADI Exams will cost you €550.00 but you can pay for each stage separately if it suits you better. The breakdown of these RSA fees are: Stage 1: €150.00 / Stage 2: €200.00 / Stage 3: €200.00.
  2. Post your fee and completed application form to the RSA ADI Unit in Ballina, Co Mayo, who will contact you to arrange your Stage 1 exam date.
  3. Now contact The Instructor Training College at 1850 530 430 or send us your details via email, and an ADI expert will contact you. We will advise you about the best publications to read and we’ll post you home study material so you can gain the basic knowledge in advance of your Stage 1 Training date (these are recommended by the RSA). We will require your first deposit payment of €583.00 at this stage. Then, when you receive your Stage 1 ADI Exam date, call us and book your Stage 1 Theory Training Session.
  4. When the RSA are notified of your successful Stage 1 pass result, after applying, you should expect your Stage 2 exam date within approximately another four weeks. Once you have received this date, call us and schedule your three half day sessions of Stage 2 Advanced Driver Training. We will now require your second deposit payment of €583.00.
  5. Now when the RSA are notified of your successful completion of Stage 2, you should expect your Stage 3 exam date, again within approximately another four weeks. Once you have received this date, call us once again and schedule your four half day sessions of Stage 3 Instructional Ability Training prior to your exam date. Now you can pay your third and final training fee of €583.00.

For further email information about becoming an ADI Driving Instructor, please click here.

Alternatively, please contact Karl Walsh at 01 864 1790 / 087 2533365 if you have any questions or if you wish to get started.