Title: Evaluation of a Young Driver Education Programme

Organisation: RoSPA & Derby and Derbyshire Road Safety Partnership
Date uploaded: 3rd February 2016
Date published/launched: December 1999

This report describes the results of an evaluation conducted by RoSPA on behalf of Derby and Derbyshire Road Safety Partnership. RoSPA acted as an independent evaluation consultancy to assess the effectiveness of a young driver education programme, designed and delivered by Derby and Derbyshire Road Safety Partnership.

The programme comprises a series of three one-hour road safety workshops delivered to 16 and 17-year-old students at schools across Derbyshire by Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, Derbyshire Constabulary and Derbyshire County Council.

Topics covered in the workshops include: drink and drug driving; strategies for staying safe as a passenger; the risks posed by speeding, using a mobile while driving and failing to wear a seatbelt; and the dangers of becoming distracted while driving.

Participants answer evaluation questionnaires before, immediately after and 12 months after the workshops.

Results from the evaluation indicated that the majority of students had relatively positive safety attitudes and behaviours, even before taking part in the workshops. However, for those who attended the workshop attitudes showed a 5% improvement afterwards, which was sustained for 12 months. Additionally, students also described some changes in their behaviour. For example, before the workshop students would not use their mobile phone to call or text, but they would use it as a music player. Afterwards, however, they would not change songs whilst driving, when using a mobile device as a music player in their car.

Results from those who did not attend the workshops could not be used as a comparison measurement, as the number taking part in this group was too small. Additionally, the numbers of those reporting collisions and motoring convictions, for both attendees and non-attendees, were too small to draw any conclusions from.

As a result of the evaluation a series of recommendations have been made to further refine the workshops, including:
Continue areas of good practice such as discussing scenarios where students may find it difficult to act in a safe way, and avoiding the use of shock tactics.
Review learning outcomes and objectives to aid in the prioritisation of content, especially when sessions are shorter than an hour.
Incorporate interactive tasks into the workshops where appropriate and in-line with the learning outcomes and objectives.
Plan how to recruit more presenters in talks lead by the emergency services.
Set up presenter observation procedures to ensure consistency when different presenters lead on the same workshop.
Encourage schools and colleges to organise workshops effectively as this enables students to start the session focused and the session time to be used efficiently.

For more information contact:
Christina Brown (RoSPA)
T: 0121 248 2149

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