Research & reports

Title: Development of a discussion based intervention for learner drivers

Organisation: TRL
Date uploaded: 8th October 2010
Date published/launched: September 2010

This report describes the development of a two-hour facilitated discussion group aimed to help learner drivers develop safe driving-related attitudes, increase awareness of the risks novice drivers face and equip them with risk mitigation strategies.

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The review of the literature on attitude formation and change, good practice examples of existing discussion groups, and input from an expert panel informed the development of content and materials. This took place in collaboration with one of the authors who is an educationalist at RoSPA with expertise in safety and risk education for young adults.

Pilots of the intervention were run with four mixed (education level, age, gender and likely risk propensity) groups of learner drivers.

A questionnaire predominantly comprising Theory of Planned Behaviour items was administered before and immediately after participation in the discussion group to test for short term changes in participant attitudes.

Additional qualitative measures included process observation by an independent TRL researcher and a feedback round with participants after each pilot as well as an in-depth interview with the group facilitator after each pilot.

The majority of participants found the intervention useful and enjoyable. Significant short term changes towards safer attitudes were observed for some driving-related attitudes, subjective norms and behavioural intentions.

Participantsí self-efficacy ratings did, however, not change significantly. Findings from the piloting are merely indicative and some suggestions for steps towards a more comprehensive evaluation of the intervention are discussed in the report.

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