Career Development

16 Driving Instructor Skills for Your Career and Resume

Learn about the most important Driving Instructor skills, how you can utilize them in the workplace, and what to list on your resume.

Driving instructors provide an important service to new and inexperienced drivers. They help these drivers learn the skills and knowledge necessary to operate a vehicle safely. If you’re interested in becoming a driving instructor, it’s important to understand the skills that are necessary for the job.


Organization is the ability to keep track of various tasks and responsibilities. As a driving instructor, you may have several students at different levels in your class. You also need to be able to manage lesson plans, student files and other paperwork related to your job. Having strong organizational skills can help you stay on top of all your duties as an instructor.

Accident Avoidance

Accident avoidance is the ability to recognize potential hazards and take action to avoid them. For example, if a student driver is driving too fast or tailgating another vehicle, you can use your accident-avoidance skills to instruct them on how to drive more safely. This may involve explaining why certain actions are unsafe and providing examples of what they should do instead.

Route Planning

Route planning is the ability to create a route that allows you to teach your students how to drive safely. This includes knowing where to park, which streets have traffic and what areas are best for different driving exercises. You can plan routes ahead of time or make them up as you go along. Knowing how to navigate through an area can help you find parking spots and safe places to practice.


Leadership skills are important for driving instructors because they help you to motivate your students and encourage them to learn. You can use leadership skills in the classroom by explaining how certain actions will benefit your students, such as encouraging them to practice their driving skills regularly so that they can pass a driving test. You can also use leadership skills when instructing your students by providing clear instructions and maintaining a calm demeanor even if a student makes a mistake.

Emergency Procedures

Emergency procedures are the actions you take in response to an emergency situation. For example, if a student has a medical emergency while driving, you need to know how to handle it and what steps to take. You also need to be familiar with any safety protocols your employer may have for emergencies. This includes knowing where fire extinguishers are located and how to use them.


Instructing is the ability to provide guidance and direction. Driving instructors use instructing skills when teaching students how to drive. They explain driving techniques, answer questions and give feedback on student performance. Instructing can help a driving instructor communicate clearly with their students so they can learn effectively.


Patience is a skill that can help you as a driving instructor because it allows you to remain calm and composed when students make mistakes. You may also need patience when working with students who have learning disabilities or other conditions that affect their ability to drive safely. Patience can allow you to explain concepts in ways that are easier for your students to understand, which can help them learn more quickly and reduce the amount of time they spend practicing.

Customer Service

Customer service skills are important for driving instructors because they help you provide a positive experience to your students. You can use customer service skills when interacting with students, such as by being friendly and welcoming them into your classroom. You may also need customer service skills when scheduling lessons or answering questions about the program.


Orienteering is the ability to navigate through unfamiliar territory. Driving instructors who have strong orienteering skills can help their students learn how to read maps and use GPS systems, which are important tools for safe driving. They also know how to get from one place to another using public transportation or by foot. This skill set allows them to demonstrate how to drive in different conditions and situations so that their students can be prepared when they take their road tests.

Defensive Driving

Defensive driving is the ability to drive in a way that minimizes risk. This includes following speed limits, staying aware of your surroundings and knowing how to react when another driver makes a mistake. Driving instructors can use defensive driving skills to help their students become safe drivers themselves. For example, if you notice one of your students tends to speed, you might ask them to try slowing down for a week to see if it improves their driving.


Communication is the ability to convey information clearly. As a driving instructor, you may need to communicate with students and parents about scheduling, fees or other topics related to your business. You also need to be able to explain complex concepts like defensive driving techniques and traffic laws in an easy-to-understand way.

Communication skills can help you build rapport with students and encourage them to ask questions and seek guidance when they need it.

Map Reading

Map reading is the ability to interpret and understand a map. As a driving instructor, you may need to read maps to help your students find their way around town or on long road trips. You can also use this skill when planning routes for lessons so that you know how to get from one place to another.


Observation is the ability to notice details about a person or situation. As a driving instructor, you can use observation skills when observing your students’ driving habits and noticing their strengths and weaknesses behind the wheel. You may also observe your students’ body language and facial expressions to determine if they are feeling anxious or comfortable during a lesson.

Traffic Laws

Traffic laws are the rules that govern how drivers should operate their vehicles. Driving instructors who have a thorough understanding of traffic laws can help students learn to drive safely and avoid accidents. For example, driving instructors may explain which actions are legal at different types of intersections or what speed limits apply in certain areas.

People Skills

People skills are the ability to interact with others in a positive and professional manner. As a driving instructor, you may work with students of all ages and backgrounds. Having people skills can help you build rapport with your students and encourage them to learn more about driving safely. You can also use your people skills when interacting with parents or other instructors at conferences or meetings.

Vehicle Maintenance

A driving instructor should have a strong understanding of vehicle maintenance, including how to perform basic tasks like changing the oil and checking tire pressure. This ensures that you can keep your own car in good condition so you can drive students safely and responsibly. It’s also important for you to know what types of vehicles are best suited for instructing students, as some cars may be easier to control than others.

How Can I Learn These Driving Instructor Skills?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to learn the skills necessary to be a successful driving instructor will vary depending on the individual. However, some ways to learn these skills include taking a driving instructor training course, observing experienced driving instructors, and practicing driving and teaching others.


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