The SE’s Job
Take a few minutes to think about the skills that are important to you for delivering a good driving lesson, which, by the way, are exactly the same skills you need for Part 3 . . .
You need to give good route directions in good time, you need to actively look to spot the faults, you need to analyse the faults and give the correct Remedial Action. You also need to use good Communication Techniques to get your message across, and you need to ensure that your learner actually learns something. You do all this, and much, much more . . .
Wow. Part 3 seems fairly complicated. Well, no, not at all actually . . . in reality, Part 3 is quite straightforward. It’s just a driving lesson. The job you want to do every day.
On the day of your Part 3, you’ll more than likely have nothing else to concentrate on that day. No other pupils, no other issues to distract you.
But let’s turn the tables a little.
Imagine now, that you’re the SE. Really think about this . . .
The next Part 3 test may be the second or third person on test that day. You’re getting a bit tired and wished that you’d had time for a sandwich at lunch. You’ve still got quite a bit of paperwork and reports to write later in the afternoon, so you’ll have to make time for those.
For now though, you need to go out on a Part 3 test. You go to the waiting room and meet the candidate. Must be formal, but quite friendly. They’re going to be very nervous, but their livelihood depends upon this test, so it has to be professional, yet you try to relax the candidate a little.
The formalities are over with, and you go outside to the car. After the checks, it’s in the car and the test is underway.
Now, you have to role play any one of a number of different characters. You have to stay in that role for the next half an hour, so you have to concentrate on being really consistent. You have to drive like a novice learner driver, emulating all the faults that they commonly display, giving route directions to your instructor, and all the time listening intently to what the candidate is telling you.
You are assessing their every word, interpreting what they mean, yet still trying hard to emulate realistic fault situations. You have to decide about the Level Of Instruction you’re getting, how the trainee communicates, how they deal with faults.
You have to constantly assess your own performance . . . have you displayed any faults for the candidate to pick up on? Are you recreating realistic faults? Are you responding well to their instruction?
If you haven’t given the candidate the chance to display their skills, you have to create the circumstances in which they can. The SE will often throw life lines if they think that the trainee needs ‘prompting’ in the right direction.
The SE’s job is to create the circumstances in which you can pass this test. All the help you need to pass Part 3 is sitting right next to you.
All the time, you have to remember the most important points of the lesson . . . no time to make notes like there is on a normal driving test.
If you think about it carefully, the SE will be working just as hard on Part 3 as you will.
The only difference is that the SE will have no nerves or worries about the outcome of the test!
For you, the day of your Part 3 test will be one of the biggest days of your life. The very same day will just be a day at work for the SE, but he or she will have to work hard to ensure that you have the opportunity to pass.