Can you pass Ariz. driver's license written test? Most can't

Posted: Updated:
By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

PHOENIX – With more and more people who apply for an Arizona driver's license failing the multiple-choice test, the Motor Vehicle Division is offering would-be drivers some help.

The MVD, which falls under the Arizona Department of Transportation, has posted free practice tests on its website.

The 10-question practice tests feature sample questions similar to those asked on the real thing. All of the information on both tests – practice and real – comes directly from the Arizona Driver License Manual.

The practice tests are designed to give those applying for a license an idea of how they will do on the actual exam. The idea is to encourage people to actually read the Arizona Driver License Manual by showing them how poorly they might do on the test.

The actual multiple-choice test is comprised of 30 questions. In order to pass, test-takers must answer at least 25 of those questions correctly. That’s a score of 83 percent. According to the MVD, only about 40 percent of applicants do that on the first try right now. That means 60 percent fail.

According to a GMAC Insurance survey, nationwide numbers show that nearly one in four licensed drivers -- almost 25 percent -- would fail a multiple-choice test if they had to take it today.

That same survey showed that 77 percent of Arizona’s licensed drivers passed the state test. That puts Arizona at No. 28 when compared to all of the other states. GMAC came up with its number by having more than 5,000 licensed drivers throughout the country take a multiple-choice test online.

Researchers say those who failed the test should not be driving.

Arizona does not require drivers to renew their licenses every few years. Every other state in the U.S. does. A written test, however, is not always required. That depends on the state and the individual driver’s record.

In Arizona, drivers have to update their photos every 12 years, but that does not involve any kind of exam. A driver who is a U.S. citizen and has a clean driving record does not need to renew his or her license until his or her 65th birthday.

>>> Take a practice test and tell us how you did