What is the Ohio 4 Hour Abbreviated Driving Course?

If you waited until you were 18 years or older to take your Ohio Drivers License Exam and you failed a portion of the driving test you are required by the state to take this course before you can re-take the exam. So you either failed the driving skills or the maneuverability portion and the state is making you brush up on your laws and skills before you can test again. If you had taken this as a drivers Ed credit in school the class time is 24 hours so you can see why the 4 hour course is call “abbreviated”.

The 4 Hour Abbreviated Driving course class time covers the most important laws and road skills that every driver should know and practice.
The Course covers the following topics:

  • Basic Driving Control
  • Traffic Control Device Knowledge
  • Driving & Control Strategies for Different Environments
  • Operating a Vehicle in Adverse Conditions
  • Driver Fitness
  • Responsibilities of Ownership and Maintenance of a Car.

That covers the classroom portion of the course but is only part of what you are responsible for. Because you failed a driving part of the exam you need to practice your driving skills.

Behind the wheel training

For the behind the wheel part of the course you have two choices how you can accomplish this. You can sign up with a licensed, professional driving instructor for a 4 hour session. That will cost you between $200 – $400. Or, the more common way, is to get a friend or family member that is over the age of 21 who will sit with you for 24 hours while you practice your driving skills. If you choose this you need to be aware that you can only drive 4 hours each day. That means you’re going to need at least 6 days to complete your driving.

For the standard driving you need to practice the following:

  • Stop and Start
  • Turn Around and Back Up
  • Perform turns
  • Use vehicle turn signals
  • Drive in the correct lane
  • Maintain a safe following distance
  • Proper lane change and merge.

While completing the driving portion of your practice keep in mind you’re going to need to practice the maneuverability part of the test. You’re going to need some kind of markers to do this. In most places you can find a parking lot that the local drivers ed schools use for their practice that is already marked. All you need from there is some kind of markers.

In doing some research I found a pretty simple solution. One of the ways I’ve seen on the Internet is to use boots and brooms or mops for your markers. Just set the boot on the spot and put the broom or mop handle-first down in the boot. It is good enough to get the job done. Others have made elaborate pole stands out of PVC that work great. But make sure you practice the maneuverability several times so that it is like second nature.

Don’t Think You’ve Mastered it Yet…

Mastering these skills will make you a competent driver. Frequently people get lazy and ignore the basic skills you learn while going through courses. Today we have a huge problem with people driving and texting. Being a new driver you have not acquired the skills to be distracted like that. You may think you do, but in reality, you don’t. It takes years of driving before you are really good at it. It just seems like you are good because most of the time nothing happens so driving is pretty benign and not much happens. No texting, no talking on the phone. For the first couple of years your driving should be completely focused. After that time you will have seen enough on the road paying close attention that you can predict what many drivers will do.


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