DAS (Direct Access Scheme)
The Direct Access Scheme (DAS) allows riders aged 24 and over to take a test on a large motorcycle (600cc), allowing them upon passing the test to ride any motorcycle without restrictions.
You must complete CBT (which you can do as part of an intensive course) and a motorcycle theory before taking this test.
Note: DAS is only available for people aged 24 and over, unless you have already held an A2 motorcycle licence for at least 2 years and are following the progressive access route, which allows people who have held their existing A2 bike licence for 2 years to upgrade their licence to a full unrestricted licence by simply re-taking their practical test on a larger unrestricted motorcycle.
Our Direct Access motorcycle courses are based in London and are tailored to each individual. For the majority of people, it would be their first time on such a big motorbike, yet at the same time, we also recognise that some people may have been riding big motorbikes for years (e.g maybe in a foreign country, or off road).
For this reason, we assess each pupil’s needs on an individual basis. We do not dictate that every person who wants to do Direct Access will need a 4 or 5 day DAS course as we know other training schools do. In fact, we do quite the opposite. We advise you on what our various DAS Courses involve, and then let you decide which course is best suited to your experience level. We ask you some critical key questions to get an understanding of your experience, which helps us give you an opinion on which course is best suited to you, however the final choice is up to you. Please bear in mind though, that if you claim to have more experience than you actually do, and opt to do a shorter course to save time and money, there is every chance you will not be in a position to pass your test first time, and may well end up spending more time and money on resits. For those pupils who are still unsure which course is best for them, we urge those pupils to come into our offices and speak to an instructor face-to-face, and even try sitting on, and riding the bikes to help both you and us make a correct and viable decision.
Our Direct Access (DAS) Motorcycle training courses in London are typically run over 3 days. This allows us sufficient time to train you to pass both the Module 1 & Module 2 practical tests. A typical 3 day course would envolve the following:
Day 1: This session consists of Module 1 training from 8am to 4pm. We will you to our extensive Module 1 training site which is large enough for us to be able to replicate all of the Module 1 exercises. Your instructor will then talk you through each exercise, and give you tips on how to make each exercise much easier. Our Module 1 training site is exclusive for our Pupils, and is a key contributing factor to our 95% first time pass rate.
Day 2: This session consists of Module 1 training from 8am to 2pm. You will have a recap on your Module 1 exercises before heading up to the DSA test centre for a test between 2-4pm. We aim to get you to the test centre about half an hour before your test so that we can hopefully watch and talk you through a ‘live’ module 1 test being conducted. After you have completed your Module 1 test you will be escorted to our base by your instructor.
Day 3: This session consists of Module 2 training from 8am to 3pm, before heading up to the DSA test centre for a test between 2-4pm. Module 2 training consist of taking your around the most popular test route roads, and highlighting common places where people often make errors so that you hopefully don’t! You will hear on many of previous pupils testimonials about how the routes we teach are quite often the exact same roads that they were taken on for their Module 2 test. It also involves us recapping both the safety/pillion passenger questions before you taking your Module 2 test.
We do also offer a 2 day course which involves the same ‘Day 1‘ training as our 3 day course mentioned above, which is then followed by the second day, which involves the same ‘Day 2‘ training. The risk you take with this course is that you do not receive as much Module 1 training on the second day due to the fact that both Module 1 and Module 2 are just one day. There is also the financial risk that if you fail Module 1, you will not be unable to take your Module 2 test, and will also lose the associated test fee. You will then be faced with having the cost of a Module 1 resit, plus the cost of replacing your Module 2 test, which when compounded, the financial cost is more expensive than our 3 day course, where the Module 1 & Module 2 tests are on seperate days to avoid that situation from happening, plus the benefit of additional Module 1 and 2 training which can only increase your chances of passing your test first time. For this reason, 95% of our courses are 3 day courses.
We can offer Module 1 & Module 2 tests on the same, but do not recommend this as although it is more convenient for training schools to take this approach (as we only have to spend 1 day at the test centre), it is not the best option for the pupil, as you are the ultimately the one taking the unecessary risk, and placing additional pressure on yourself to pass your Module 1 test.
INEXPERIENCED RIDERS: For those people who are inexperienced, or have little or no experience riding manual bikes or big bikes, we strongly recommend doing a Gear Conversion Course with one of our instructors. This 4 hours session is aimed soley at getting you up to a standard good enough to attend our standard 3 Day Course. For some people, this session will include teaching them how to ride a manual bike, and then converting those skills onto a larger bike, whilst for others it may be purely a confidence boosting session to enable them to get used to riding a larger bike without the pressure of another student being present. Whatever your standard of riding, our instructors objective is to have you ready for a 3 day DAS course at the end of your session.
The New 2 Parts Motorcycle Test (Module 1 & 2)
The new motorcycle test aims to improve the standard of road safety for motorcycle and moped riders. This user group has been identified as having a high risk of injury or death, this is particularly the case for young and inexperienced riders.
The new test will be completed in two modules. The specified manoeuvres conducted at specific speeds will be tested in Module 1 on safe off-road sites and take on average 22 minutes.
The Practical Test (Module 1)
- Based at DSA regional test centres
- Large off road tarmac area
These specified manoeuvres are:
- wheeling the moped or motorcycle and using the stand
- riding a slalom and figure of 8
- a slow ride
- a U-turn
- cornering and controlled stop
- cornering and the emergency stop
- cornering and hazard avoidance
There is a minimum speed for the hazard avoidance and emergency stop exercises:
- for mopeds this is around 19mph
- for motorcycles this is around 31mph
On the day of the Module 1 test, candidates will be asked by the examiner to demonstrate their riding ability on either the left-hand or right-hand circuit. Please note that the standard off-road layout may change due to local conditions on the casual sites.
Those candidates who have demonstrated riding skills of a dangerously incompetent level during Module 1 will not be permitted to take Module 2.
Those candidates who have passed Module 1 will receive a Test Pass Certificate which they must bring with them when they take Module 2.
What happens if I fail Module 1?
You have to leave a gap of three clear working days in order for you to take more training so you can pass on the next attempt.
You can’t progress to module 2 until you have passed module 1. If you have booked the modules to be on consecutive days or you are unable to give Alpha Motorcycle Training 5 clear working days notice of cancellation then unfortunately you won’t be able to sit the module 2 and you will have lost your DSA fee! Also if you have booked a lesson with an instructor to take you to test then this still needs to go ahead as just a training lesson without the test.
We recommend leaving a 5 working day gap between your module 1 and 2 tests, so should you need to re-sit then there is no problem with rescheduling. It’s ok to book consecutively if this is what you really want. We just want riders to know the implications of not passing module 1 with a module 2 booked within the cancellation period.
The Practical Test (Module 2)
The practical motorcycle test will be about 57 minutes in length and will consist of an eyesight test, vehicle safety questions, a test of driving ability, a test of specific manoeuvres and a question about riding with a passenger.
At the test centre you must present a valid certificate DL196 (CBT Certificate) unless the test is being conducted on one of the exempted islands, a valid Motorcycle Theory Test Certificate and a valid Module 1 Test Certificate. A rider who is upgrading a full moped licence obtained by passing a two part test since December 1990 is exempt.
Vehicle safety check questions and eyesight test
After the usual pre-test preliminaries e.g. licence and identification check the examiner will help the candidate with the fitting of the radio and earpiece. While accompanying the candidate to the machine the examiner will explain how the test will be conducted and how the radio equipment works. The law requires anyone riding a motorcycle, scooter or moped, with or without sidecar, to wear protective headgear securely fastened. The test cannot therefore be conducted unless the candidate is wearing properly secured protective headgear.
Note: An exemption to this requirement exists for followers of the Sikh religion, if they are wearing a turban.
Before you actually start your practical riding test you will be asked to read a number plate to prove you can meet the eyesight requirements. You will also be asked two machine safety check questions and a question on ‘balance when carrying a passenger’ before moving away.
At the end of the test when the practical test is over, the examiner will tell you whether you passed or failed. You can request feedback on your test from the examiner, who will then go through your performance during the test.
If you pass and have a photocard driving licence issued after 1 March, 2004 the examiner will ask you if you want your full driving licence issued to you automatically. If you want to use this service, the examiner will take your old licence off you, scan the details and send them electronically to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). You will then be given a pass certificate to prove you passed your test. DVLA will then send you your new full licence by post within three weeks of you passing your practical test. If you pass your test but do not want to use this automatic service, or have a licence issued before 1 March 2004, you will be given a pass certificate by the examiner. On the back of the pass certificate it tells you what you need to do next. This involves sending your licence to DVLA who will then check your application and issue you with a new full licence.
If you fail…
If you fail the test you should ask the examiner for some feedback to help prepare yourself for your next test. Your driving report form will also show you where you made any mistakes. You must wait 10 clear working days after your practical test before you can book another one.
You can see a series of DSA videos of Modules 1 and 2 HERE
The practical moped riding test
The practical moped riding test (which does not include the high-speed requirements) will also be carried out in two modules. The obstacle avoidance and emergency braking exercises will be carried out in Module 1 at 30 km/h (approx. 19 mph). A test for the drivers of motorcycle and side car combination is also under development.