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TTA Assessor/ Trainers, Sharron Sugden and Julie Ann Kirkham pass part one of the DSA Instructor’s Register

TTA is delighted to announce that two of its Trainers, Sharron Sugden and Julie Anne Kirkham have successfully completed and passed part One of the DSA Instructor’s Register. What’s more, they both passed with flying colours. We’d like to congratulate both of them, and will bring you more news on their progress as they complete the final 2 modules of the course. What was it like learning again? Well, better than expected is the short answer. Here’s what Sharron thought of the experience.

What exactly did the DSA Instructor’s Theory Test involve?

“Well, it’s the same really as a normal LGV theory test. The only difference is, as instructors, our questions are different. We get given the same amount of time for our exam as the standard exams – that’s 75 minutes, and during that time we were expected to answer 100 questions on everything from truck safety to different types of instructing techniques. The questions also covered communication with learners and how you would improve communication if learners weren’t progressing at the rate you’d expect. I suppose the breakdown of the exam was roughly 40 per cent about instructing and 60 per cent about truck safety and breaking distances – that type of thing.”

How did you find the Test?

“Having never taken a theory test before, as my learner driving experience was gained prior to the theory test coming in, I was surprised to discover that I found the training really engaging. Because I already deliver the apprenticeships and know about what’s involved in the theory and hazard perception tests the students take, I found it interesting coming at things from a different angle. I suppose seeing things from this different perspective helped to motivate me.”

“I’d finished the paper in about 25 minutes, so spent the rest of the time going over what I’d done. I was absolutely made up when I got the results back and I’d scored 100 per cent. Julie also did fantastically well and scored 98 per cent, so she was made up too.”

So it was enjoyable then?

“I loved it and was very glad I’d done it. But I have to say I’m not really looking forward to the next bit – the LGV Driving Test.”

What does that involve?

“Well, we have to take the full LGV Driving Test and C+E again under test conditions.”

When will the test take place?

“Well, I haven’t booked mine yet as I want to get in the vehicle first and get a bit of practice in. Julie’s test is booked in for the 27th May, but as she only gave up driving a couple of years ago, I don’t think she’ll experience any problems there.”

What comes after that?

“Once we’ve managed to pass that part of the Register, we then have to progress to the final stage of the qualification, where we take an examiner out and instruct as if they are the pupil. The examiner will then grade you on how well you manage to communicate and instruct him as a learner and how flexible and effective your communication skills are for getting the best out of learners.”

How long does the whole process take?

“Having completed the theory section of the course, we now have a year to complete the other two parts, so we both need to crack on.”

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