The Module 2 Test: What To Expect
If you’ve made it through Compulsory Basic Training and the Theory and Module 1 Tests, the good news is the hard bit is over, and there’s just one itty-bitty assessment left standing between you and a full motorcycle licence. Although lots of people will tell you that Module 2 is easier than Module 1, it’s still a nerve-wracking experience for many, and knowing it’s the final test often adds even more pressure. However, there’s no need to freak out just yet! Knowing what to expect is half the battle, so today I’d thought I’d walk you through what should happen during your Module 2 test, plus a few tips and tricks to help you pass first time.
Prior to test day, your instructor should have familiarised you with the roads around the test centre and some potential routes that the examiner might ask you to take during your test. If for any reason they haven’t, I highly recommend you take it upon yourself to do this. It should help you feel more at ease when you set off and put you in the right mindset for the rest of the test. Plus, many test centres are on industrial estates where there are strict 5 or 20mph speed limits (which you must obey during your test) so it’s a good idea to know where these are beforehand. Trust me, there’d be nothing worse than screwing up your test just as you enter or leave the test centre, so do your homework on this one.
At the start of the test, the examiner will ask you a couple of bike related questions (known as ‘show me, tell me’ questions) before heading out on the road. These questions cover topics like checking oil levels and tyre conditions or carrying a pillion passenger. Prior to test day, you should do some revision and ensure you know how to answer these. There are twelve potential ‘show me, tell me’ questions you could be asked, however the examiner will only ask you to answer two of them.
Luckily, the questions and answers are made available on the gov.uk website (plus there’s a bunch of articles and videos online covering these) so all you have to do is memorise the correct answers. As per the name, some answers will involve an explanation (tell me), and some will involve a demonstration (show me). I’ll pop some links to these down below.
A few final tips:
Get a good night's sleep (avoid caffeine and alcohol the night before test day)
Make sure to eat/drink something before you leave, even if you feel sick!
Remember the important documents (Licence, CBT/Theory/Module 1 Test Certificates)
Relax and remember to breathe - you've got this!
Once you’ve arrived at the test centre and provided staff with all of your necessary documents, you’ll be advised to wait outside for the examiner. The examiner will then greet you and provide you with a radio and earpiece which you’ll need to wear throughout the test, so they can guide you through the route they want you to take once on the road. By the way, you’ll be able to hear the examiner, but they won’t be able to hear you, so you can talk/sing/shout/swear to yourself as much as you like once you’re moving.
The examiner will then ask you to stand in a marked spot and read a number plate from a distance of 20 metres. Fail this and unfortunately you've flunked your entire test (plus you should probably get your eyes tested… 👀)
After the eyesight test you’ll be directed towards a parked bike and asked the ‘show me, tell me’ questions. Once the examiner is satisfied that you’ve answered those correctly, it’s time to head out on the road. Now remember, as soon as you sit on the bike you’re under test conditions, so don’t forget all of those shoulder checks etc. before you set off (just like Module 1).
The on-the-road portion of the test lasts between 35 to 45 mins and is split into two sections. For the first 15 to 20 mins, you’ll be directed by the examiner. Think of this as kind of like listening to a sat-nav. They’ll be feeding you clear, concise instructions via the earpiece and all you need to do is follow the route they’re giving you. Obviously, you’ll need to obey the highway code and carefully follow any road signs and directions etc. but this is by no means meant to trip you up or trick you. Ride safely, pay attention and don’t do anything illegal and you’ll be fine.
During the test, you’ll be asked to complete a number of different manoeuvres, such as a hill-start and setting off from behind a parked car. You’ll also be asked to pull over in a safe spot a few times. There’s nothing to worry about here, these stops are part of the test and if there are any issues the examiner will let you know. Throughout the test you should ride as if you’re on your own, even though the examiner will be following you. If the lights change and you lose them for a while that’s totally normal, they’ll probably just ask you to pull over again so they can catch up.
After 15 to 20 mins, you’ll move on to the independent ride. This lasts for around 10 minutes and is designed to test your decision making skills. During this part of the test the examiner won’t be telling you exactly where they want you go to (turn left, turn right etc.) Instead, they’ll ask you to follow road signs for a particular destination (e.g. follow the signs for the town centre).
The good news is, you can’t fail your test for going the wrong way (even during the part of the test where the examiner is giving you directions). However, you must stay safe, and you can and will fail your test if (for example) you realise you’re going the wrong way and then switch lanes on a roundabout to try and correct the error. If at any time during the test you realise you’re in the wrong lane or going the wrong way, keep going! Seriously, just go the wrong way. The examiner will direct you back to the correct route when possible, so as long as you continue to ride safely and legally they won’t mark you down for this.
Once you’re done with the independent ride, the examiner will let you know and start directing you back to the test centre. Although you may breathe a sigh of relief at the thought of the test being over, remember that you’re still under test conditions, so keep paying attention until you’ve parked up and stepped off the bike. Now you can take a deep breath, you’ve just completed Mod 2!
The examiner will ask you to wait momentarily whilst they finish grading you and will tell you on the spot if you’ve been successful or not. You'll pass Module 2 if you make no serious or dangerous faults (majors) and no more than 10 riding faults (minors). If you’ve passed, you’ll get your certificate right away and can officially ride any motorcycle you want (woop woop!)
If you haven’t been successful, please don’t let it upset you too much. There’s a lot that can go wrong with Module 2, and you never know what might happen on the day. Speak to your instructor about how best to move forward, and get that re-test booked in! You’ve already come so far, don’t go giving up at the last hurdle.
Remember that the examiner (and everyone else) wants you to succeed. The examiner isn’t trying to trick you, and they won’t ask you to do anything you haven’t done before. At some point during the test, you’ll probably think you’ve screwed up and done something that could be considered a major fault. But whatever happens, keep going and don’t let it get to you. If you really have done something terrible and unsafe, the examiner will tell you and may even terminate the test altogether. So, if you think you’ve messed up, just keep going and try not to fixate on it. Nine times out of ten, it’ll be a minor fault.
Finally, even though this is a test, try to enjoy the experience! After all, you get to ride a motorcycle which is like… the most fun thing ever?
Right girls, that’s the final blog post of 2021! Good luck if you’ve got your Module 2 test coming up, please feel free to get in touch with me if you have any questions or need any more advice.
As always, any comments or suggestions I would love to hear so please pop them below. Stay safe and happy riding!