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Breaking Down Driver’s Ed

Hannah Walls, Staff Writer

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One of the milestones in most people’s lives is finally learning how to drive, but determining which method of driver’s ed is right for each person depends on schedule and price range. Finding the right program can be tough with so many options out there that vary by cost, hours, and environment.

Ideal for busy schedules, many students opt for online or parent-taught driver’s ed. There are many apps and sites available for this method. One popular option is www.teentexasdriving.com. Prices for this course start at $129.99, and special certification processing and mailing options are offered for students with a 3.0 GPA or higher. The course uses videos and animations to make the rules of the road more interesting. After completing the final exam, students must have 34 hours of supervised driving, with at least 10 hours at night, before they are eligible for their license.

“It takes six hours total to finish all of the instructional videos, plus the driving hours,” senior Walker Otte said. “The online course made it really easy for me to procrastinate; not having the personal connection with an actual teacher really affects the learning.”

The other online option available to new drivers is the broad selection of driver’s ed apps. One of the most popular and best-rated apps out there is Aceable, which senior Sam Sink used as his learning aide. Aceable promises on their website that you will get the best product for the best price. Costs for the “parent taught” course start at $100, but special discounts are available during certain holidays.

“Aceable is really easy to use, and it’s good for busy schedules,” Sink said. “It takes a long time to finish because if you only have an app, which you can use whenever you want or have time, it’s very easy to get off track.”

Another viable option for driver’s ed is the opportunity to sign up for an actual class. One option is Texas Driving School, which teaches in many locations, including Round Rock, Cedar Park, Pflugerville, and Austin. Texas Driving School requires two hours of class each scheduled day and promises a permit after just three sessions. Courses cost $370 for the full class, $230 for classroom only, and $305 for behind the wheel instruction only.

“The class is definitely time-consuming, but just like school, you’re forced to pay attention because you can’t slack off with a teacher,” senior Jon-Michael Beard said. “The course is definitely focused on the classroom; there wasn’t as much behind the wheel time as I would’ve wanted.”

With so many options, students should make sure to carefully research and weigh each option to fit their price range, schedule, and personal learning preferences. While online may be better for busy students, being in class gives the teacher-student connection. However, in-person classes may not give students as much behind the wheel time as they may need. The most important thing is finding the right method for you.

 

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Breaking Down Driver’s Ed