Driver Education SOLs

(Teachers will begin implementing the 2022 Driver Education Standards of Learning, listed below, during the 2022-2023 school year).

These are the 2015 Driver Education Standards of Learning current taught in Virginia Public Schools.  

DE.1      The student will demonstrate an understanding of Virginia traffic laws, licensing procedures, and other responsibilities associated with the driving privilege. Key concepts include
a) graduated driver licensing requirements and types of licenses;
b) traffic safety information in the Virginia Driver’s Manual;
c) the motor vehicle section of the Code of Virginia;
d) the organ- and tissue-donation designation process;
e) interaction with law enforcement; and
f) responsibilities at a crash scene.

DE.2      The student will demonstrate an understanding of basic vehicle operating procedures. Key concepts/skills include
a) pre-driving procedures;
b) starting procedures for automatic and manual transmissions;
c) vehicle information, warning, and control devices;
d) efficient accelerating, braking, and steering techniques; and
e) vehicle securing procedures.

DE.3      The student will use vehicle reference points to establish vehicle position and execute basic driving maneuvers. Key concepts/skills include
a) parking;
b) turning;
c) establishing lane position; and
d) backing.

DE. 4     The student will recognize the effects of momentum, gravity, and inertia on vehicle control and balance, and the relationship between kinetic energy and force of impact. Key concepts/skills include
a) sitting and hand position;
b) steering, braking, and accelerating;
c) compensating for shifts in vehicle load (from side to side, front to rear, and rear to front) that affect vehicle performance;
d) managing front tire traction loss (understeer) and rear tire traction loss (oversteer); and
e) analyzing the cause and severity of types of collisions — head-on, near-frontal, broadside, rear-end, rollover, sideswipe.

DE.5      The student will demonstrate the ability to manage visibility, time, and space to avoid collisions and reduce driving risks. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating targeting and tracking skills;
b) synthesizing information visually from the driving environment using the SEEiT (Search, Evaluate and Execute in Time) space-management systematic decision-making process;
c) applying following-distance time and space concepts;
d) selecting appropriate speed, maintaining adequate gap, and judging distance;
e) estimating time and space needs for passing; and
f) identifying and responding to open and closed spaces and changes to line-of-sight or path-of-travel.

DE.6      The student will demonstrate appropriate adjustments when approaching controlled and uncontrolled intersections, curves, work zones, railroad crossings, and hills with line-of-sight or path-of-travel limitations. Key concepts/skills include
a) right-of-way rules;
b) roadway signs, signals, and markings;
c) slope/grade of terrain; and
d) vehicle position and speed control.

DE.7      The student will identify the characteristics of an expressway and apply risk-reducing expressway driving strategies. Key concepts/skills include
a) managing interchanges;
b) entering, merging, and exiting from traffic flow;
c) selecting vehicle position and changing lanes; and
d) managing toll facilities.

DE.8      The student will demonstrate the ability to communicate presence and intentions to other highway transportation users. Key concepts/skills include
a) vehicle position and driver action;
b) vehicle communication devices; and
c) hand signals for slow/stop, right turn and left turn.

DE.9      The student will analyze and describe the physiological, psychological, and cognitive effects of alcohol and other drugs and their impact on a driver’s awareness of risks and involvement in collisions. Key concepts include
a) prescription and nonprescription medications;
b) illegal drugs;
c) effects of alcohol and other drugs on vision and space management;
d) synergistic effects of drugs; and
e) ways alcohol and other drugs are eliminated from the body.

DE.10    The student will identify and analyze the legal, health, and economic consequences associated with alcohol and other drug use and driving. Key concepts/skills include
a) positive and negative peer pressure;
b) refusal and peer-intervention skills;
c) Implied Consent, Zero Tolerance, and Use and Lose laws;
d) Administrative License Revocation, loss of license, ignition interlock, and other licensing restrictions; and
e) court costs, insurance requirements, Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program referral, and other costs.

DE.11    The student will recognize the consequences of aggressive driving and the influence of emotions on driving behaviors. Key concepts include
a) stress and anxiety;
b) anger management; and
c) the relationship between aggressive driving and road rage.

DE.12    The student will analyze the effects of fatigue and other physical conditions on driver performance. Key concepts include
a) circadian rhythms;
b) sleep deprivation;
c) short- and long-term physical and mental disabilities; and
d) chronic health conditions.

DE.13    The student will identify distractions that contribute to driver error. Key concepts include
a) driver behaviors (e.g., eating, smoking, personal grooming);
b) cell phones and other portable technology devices;
c) passengers;
d) vehicle accessories; and
e) insects and pets.

DE.14    The student will identify changes in the environment that affect visibility and traction and demonstrate an understanding of appropriate driver reaction to these risks. Key concepts/skills include
a) driving at night;
b) smoke- and weather-related conditions;
c) road construction and other adverse road conditions; and
d) vehicle stability and traction control systems.

DE.15    The student will demonstrate an understanding of the proper use of vehicle occupant-protection features and analyze how they can reduce injury severity and increase collision survival. Key concepts/skills include
a) active restraint systems;
b) passive restraint systems;
c) child restraint systems; and
d) other vehicle safety design features.

DE.16    The student will analyze how technological advancements in intelligent handling and stability control systems affect driving practices.  Key concepts/skills include
a) electronic stability control systems;
b) occupant protection systems to include thorax, curtain, knee and other airbags;
c) seatbelt technologies and intelligent head restraints systems;
d) adaptive cruise control and automatic emergency braking systems;
e) lane-keeping assist and blind spot warning systems;
f) reversing and other cameras; and
g) adaptive front lighting.

DE 17    The student will identify and evaluate emergency-response strategies to avoid or reduce the severity of a collision in high-risk driving situations. Key concepts/skills include
a) understanding and managing front and rear traction control;
b) identifying open space;
c) recognizing how decisions are influenced and limited by the environment, the vehicle, driver error, and driver capabilities;
d) demonstrating evasive maneuvers, using braking and steering combinations; and
e) managing off-road recovery.

DE.18    The student will identify and describe the performance characteristics of other road users and apply problem-solving skills to minimize risks when sharing the roadway with
a) pedestrians and animals;
b) bicycles, scooters, mopeds, and motorcycles;
c) tractor-trailers, trucks, and construction vehicles;
d) sport utility vehicles, recreation vehicles, and trailers;
e) emergency vehicles;
f) funeral processions;
g) passenger and school buses; and
h) farm machinery and horse-drawn vehicles.

DE.19    The student will compare vehicle braking systems and explain and demonstrate proper braking techniques for various weather and roadway conditions. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating proper use of conventional brake systems;
b) demonstrating and evaluating controlled braking, trail braking, and threshold braking;
c) engaging antilock brake systems (ABS) and steering toward a target; and
d) analyzing how preventive maintenance reduces the possibility of brake failure and enhances safety.

DE.20    The student will analyze how regular preventive maintenance reduces the possibility of vehicle failures and recognize the warning signs that indicate the need for maintenance, repair, or replacement. Key concepts/skills include
a) vehicle warning devices;
b) lights and signals;
c) steering and suspension systems;
d) tires and braking systems;
e) cooling system and belts; and
f) fuel system and ignition electronics.

DE.21    The student will identify and describe the legal aspects of and identify the financial responsibilities associated with purchasing, operating, maintaining, and insuring a motor vehicle. Key concepts include
a) the Financial Responsibility Law;
b) required and optional insurance coverage;
c) title and vehicle registration;
d) vehicle inspection;
e) fuel, fluids, tires, and other maintenance costs; and
f) collision involvement.

DE.22    The student will demonstrate competency in map-reading and trip-planning skills. Key concepts/skills include
a) route planning;
b) map-reading and trip-planning technologies; and
c) calculating the cost of a trip.

DE.23    The student will research and evaluate personal transportation needs and their impact on the environment and demonstrate skills necessary to be an informed consumer. Key concepts/skills include
a) printed and Internet resources;
b) community resources;
c) vehicle pollution, including carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, ozone-causing gases, and acids;
d) appropriate disposal of batteries, fluids, tires, and other environmentally hazardous materials; and
e) energy conservation, alternative or renewable sources of energy, and conservation of natural resources.

 

Teachers will begin implementing the https://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/driver_education/index.shtml 2022 Driver Education Standards of Learning during the 2022-2023 school year.

2022 Driver Education Standards of Learning

DE.1 The student will demonstrate an understanding of Virginia traffic laws, licensing procedures, and other responsibilities associated with the driving privilege. Key concepts include
a) demonstrating an understanding of graduated driver licensing requirements, types of licenses, and required identification documentation;
b) analyzing traffic safety information in the Virginia Driver’s Manual;
c) comparing the Virginia Driver’s Manual information with the motor vehicle section of the Code of Virginia; and
d) investigating the social implications and understanding the civic responsibility of the organ- and tissue- donation designation process.

DE.2 The student will demonstrate an understanding of basic vehicle operating procedures. Key concepts/skills include
a) understanding and sequentially demonstrating pre-driving procedures;
b) comparing starting procedures for automatic and manual transmissions;
c) interpreting and accurately responding to vehicle information, warning, and control devices;
d) applying efficient accelerating, braking, and steering techniques; and
e) demonstrating vehicle securing procedures.

DE. 3 The student will demonstrate the ability to use vehicle reference points and explain how visual referencing skills aid in judging vehicle position and distance when executing basic driving maneuvers for
a) parking;
b) turning;
c) establishing lane position; and
d) backing.

DE. 4 The student will identify how laws of physics (i.e., momentum, gravity, inertia) effect force of impact. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing how sitting and hand position affect ergonomics and vehicle control;
b) evaluating how steering, braking, and accelerating positively and negatively impact vehicle control and balance;
c) identifying and accurately compensating for shifts in vehicle load (from side to side, front to rear, and rear to front) that affect vehicle performance;
d) demonstrating how to prevent and correctly manage front tire traction loss (understeer) and rear tire traction loss (oversteer); and
e) analyzing the cause and severity of types of collisions, (i.e., head-on, near-frontal, broadside, rear-end, rollover, sideswipe).

DE.5 The student will demonstrate the ability to manage visibility, time, and space to reduce driving risks and avoid collisions. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating targeting and tracking skills;
b) synthesizing information visually from the driving environment using the Search, Evaluate and Execute in Time (SEEiT) space-management decision-making process;
c) applying following distance, time and other space management concepts;
d) selecting appropriate speed, maintaining adequate space, and skillfully judging time and distance to safely execute basic driving maneuvers;
e) estimating time and space needs for passing; and
f) identifying and adeptly responding to open and closed spaces and changes to line-of-sight and path-of-travel.

DE.6 The student will demonstrate skills to make appropriate adjustments when approaching controlled and uncontrolled intersections, curves, work zones, railroad crossings, and hills with line-of-sight and path-of-travel limitations. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing and applying right-of-way rules and demonstrating appropriate communication skills;
b) displaying responsible actions and safe response to roadway signs, signals, and markings;
c) assessing and managing slope/grade of terrain; and
d) modifying vehicle position and speed to manage the effects on momentum, balance, and control.

DE.7 The student will identify the unique characteristics of an expressway and apply risk management driving strategies. Key concepts/skills include
a) managing different types of interchanges (e.g., diamond, trumpet, cloverleaf);
b) entering, merging, and exiting without interrupting traffic flow, preparing for variable and higher speeds and managing toll facilities;
c) selecting appropriate speed, correct lane, lane position, changing lanes on multi-lane roadways, and detecting and avoiding highway hypnosis; and
d) demonstrating an understanding of the integrated numbering system for highways within the nationwide grid in the contiguous United States.

DE.8 The student will demonstrate the ability tocommunicate presence and intentions to other highway transportation users. Key concepts/skills include
a) interpreting vehicle position and driver action;
b) utilizing vehicle communication devices; and
c) demonstrating hand signals for slow/stop, right turn and left turn.

DE.9 The student will analyze and describe the physiological, psychological, and cognitive effects of alcohol, marijuana and other drugs and their impact on a driver’s awareness of risks, and involvement in collisions. Key concepts/skills include
a) evaluating the impact of prescription and nonprescription medications on mood, personality, risk taking, coordination, judgment, reaction time, and driver performance;
b) demonstrating an understanding that driving while impaired by any substance (legal or illegal drugs) places the driver and others in harm’s way;
c) researching the effects of alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs on vision and space management;
d) analyzing how the synergistic effects of using two or more drugs at the same time can amplify the impairing effects of each drug; and
e) examining physiological and biological factors that influence how alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs are absorbed, metabolized, and eliminated from the body.

DE. 10 The student will identify and analyze the legal and economic consequences associated with alcohol, marijuana, and other drug use while driving. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing the impact of positive and negative peer pressure;
b) describing the mediating influence of refusal and peer-intervention skills on preventing alcohol, marijuana, and other drug misuse;
c) comparing Implied Consent, Zero Tolerance and Use and Lose laws and demonstrating an understanding of why driving while impaired is illegal;
d) researching Administrative License Revocation, loss of license, ignition interlock and other licensing restrictions,
e) analyzing court costs, insurance requirements, Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program referral, and other penalties associated with impaired driving; and
f) evaluating the effectiveness of alternative safe transportation programs as countermeasures for reducing impaired driving.

DE.11 The student will recognize the consequences of aggressive driving and the influence of emotions on driving behaviors. Key concepts/skills include
a) evaluating how stress and anxiety affect driver fitness and mental preparedness;
b) identifying how anger management strategies reduce hostility and frustration;
c) analyzing how aggressive driving and road rage pose a threat to the health and safety of everyone on the road; and
d) quantifying the legal and financial consequences of reckless driving and road rage.

DE.12 The student will analyze the effects of fatigue and other conditions that impact driver performance. Key concepts include
a) identifying fatigue warning signs and countermeasures;
b) analyzing the relationship between circadian rhythms and sleep deprivation;
c) comparing the effect of short- and long-term physical and cognitive disorders on the driving tasks; and
d) evaluating how chronic health conditions may affect driver performance.

DE.13 The student will identify visual, auditory, manual, and cognitive distractions that divert attention from the driving task and analyze how divided visual and mental attention contribute to driver error. Key concepts/skills include
a) researching and evaluating the most dangerous distracted driving behaviors (e.g., texting, setting navigation systems, reading emails, adjusting radio and other controls, eating, drinking, smoking, personal grooming);
b) gathering and analyzing strategies to prevent distractions that take the driver’s eyes off the road and hands off the wheel;
c) identifying interior distractions (e.g., interactive technologies, passengers, pets, insects);
d) evaluating the impact of exterior distractions ( e.g., looking at crash scenes, places of interest, billboards, emergency vehicles); and
e) demonstrating an understanding of distracted driving laws and analyzing the cost of distracted driving.

DE.14 The student will identify changes in the environment that affect visibility and traction and evaluate appropriate communication, speed, and lane position adjustment to reduce risks. Key concepts/skills include
a) mitigating limitations (e.g., nighttime visibility, overdriving headlights, curve-adaptive headlights) when driving at night;
b) evaluating multiple solutions for smoke- and weather-related conditions that reduce visibility;
c) demonstrating an understanding and responding appropriately to road construction and other adverse road conditions; and
d) examining the difference between electronic vehicle stability control and traction control systems.

DE.15 The student will demonstrate an understanding of the proper use of vehicle occupant-protection features and analyze how they can reduce injury severity and increase collision survival. Key concepts/skills include
a) investigating the efficacy of active restraint systems (e.g., seat belts, head restraints, child safety seats);
b) analyzing the effect of seating and steering wheel position on injury severity;
c) investigating legal obligation, ethical decision making, and the importance of advocating for proper use of vehicle occupant-protection devices;
d) researching Virginia’s occupant protection laws and understanding the dangers of riding in the bed of a truck; and
e) analyzing automotive safety and highway transportation system career options based on personal interests, abilities, achievements, and goals.

DE.16 The student will analyze how technological innovations affect driving practices and reduce human error. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating an understanding of advanced safety features (e.g., electronic stability control systems, blind spot detection, forward collision warning, lane departure warning);
b) comparing efficacy of passive occupant protection systems to include thorax, curtain, knee and other airbags and adaptive cervical head restraint systems;
c) demonstrating an understanding of advanced driver assist features (e.g., rearview video systems, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian automatic emergency braking, rear automatic emergency braking, lane centering assist);
d) researching partially automated safety features (e.g., lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, traffic jam assist, self-park);
e) analyzing the impact of fully autonomous safety features (e.g., autopilot self-driving vehicles that will integrate onto roadways by progressing through six levels of driver assistance technology advancements in coming years); and
f) analyzing the transformative potential of new mobility options and employment opportunities that automated vehicles may provide for millions of people with disabilities.

DE.17 The student will identify and evaluate emergency-response strategies to avoid or reduce the severity of a collision. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing and demonstrating evasive maneuvers, using braking and steering combinations while maintaining front and rear traction control;
b) identifying open space as an emergency escape route;
c) recognizing how decisions are influenced and limited by the environment, the vehicle, driver error, and driver capabilities; and
d) demonstrating a gradual stepwise approach to safe off-road recovery.

DE.18 The student will identify and describe the performance characteristics of other road users and apply problem-solving skills to minimize risks when sharing the roadway. Key concepts/skills include investigating the unique characteristics and vulnerabilities of
a) pedestrians and animals;
b) bicycles, scooters, mopeds, and motorcycles;
c) tractor-trailers, trucks, and construction vehicles;
d) sport utility vehicles, recreation vehicles, and trailers;
e) emergency vehicles;
f) funeral processions;
g) passenger and school buses;
h) farm machinery and horse-drawn vehicles; and
i) highway workers.

DE.19 The student will compare vehicle braking systems and explain proper braking techniques for various conditions. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating proper use of conventional hydraulic brake systems and understanding of new technologies such as regenerative braking;
b) demonstrating and evaluating appropriate use of controlled braking, trail braking, and threshold braking;
c) engaging antilock brake systems (ABS) and steering toward a target; and
d) analyzing how preventive maintenance and the annual state safety inspection reduces the possibility of brake failure and enhances safety.

DE.20 The student will analyze how regular preventive maintenance reduces the possibility of vehicle failures and recognize the warning signs that indicate the need for maintenance, repair, or replacement. Key concepts/skills include demonstrating an understanding of
a) vehicle warning devices;
b) lights and signals;
c) steering and suspension systems;
d) tires and braking systems;
e) fluids, cooling systems, and belts; and
f) fuel system and ignition electronics.

DE.21 The student will investigate vehicle ownership responsibilities including the processes and legal responsibilities for purchasing or leasing a vehicle as well as the operating and maintenance costs. Key concepts/skills include
a) demonstrating an understanding of the Financial Responsibility Law (Code of Virginia § 46.2-706);
b) differentiating between required and optional insurance coverage;
c) demonstrating an understanding of title and vehicle and registration requirements;
d) analyzing vehicle inspection and emissions requirements; 
e) evaluating the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing or leasing an all-electric, hybrid electric, hydrogen fuel cell, ethanol, biodiesel, natural gas or traditional gas-powered vehicle; and
f) calculating depreciation and estimating a budget for routine maintenance and repair costs for new and older vehicles.

DE.22 The student will demonstrate competent map-reading and road-trip-planning skills by utilizing available resources. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing reliable trip-planning resources;
b) creating an itinerary, calculating total trip time, investigating alternative routes, traffic, rest stops, and other options;
c) calculating the cost of a trip to include fuel, tolls, daily and total mileage, fuel efficiency, food, hotels, and other variables; and
d) demonstrating an understanding of safe and legal practices for using navigation tools while driving.

DE. 23 The student will research and evaluate the environmental impact of transportation options and how to choose fuel-efficient vehicles. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing how all-electric, hybrid electric, hydrogen fuel cell, ethanol, biodiesel, and natural gas-powered vehicles conserve fuel and lower vehicle emissions;
b) comparing and evaluating the environmental impact of using public transportation, walking, cycling, ridesharing, and carpooling;
c) examining the health risks of air pollution and how some passenger vehicles produce significant amounts of nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and other pollution;
d) investigating appropriate disposal of batteries, fluids, tires, and other environmentally hazardous materials; and
e) demonstrating an understanding of energy conservation, alternative or renewable sources of energy, conservation of natural resources, and green driving practices (e.g., smooth acceleration, idle reduction, properly inflated tires, eliminating excess weight, anticipating stops).

DE.24 The student will demonstrate an understanding of safe interaction with law enforcement and the steps to take if involved in or a witness to a crash. Key concepts/skills include
a) analyzing factors that may enhance safe interaction with law enforcement at the roadside (e.g., don’t panic, slow down, signal and locate a safe location, pull over, turn engine and radio off, keep hands on steering wheel, show respect, provide registration, driver’s license, and proof of insurance when asked);
b) investigating the consequences of moving violations and demerit points; and
c) examining the driver’s legal responsibilities at a crash scene (Code of Virginia § 46.2-896).