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Was the teaching style suited to the pupil’s learning style and current ability?

Learning Strategies

  What Does The ADI 1 Say

“The PDI should take into account all that they understand about the pupil. They should recognise that different pupils will have different preferred approaches to learning, although these may only emerge fully over a number of lessons. Some pupils may be very willing to learn actively and others may want opportunities to reflect before they make the next step in their learning. The PDI should at least be able to give evidence of their sensitivity to these issues. In a one-off session, this will probably be best demonstrated by offering a range of options. The PDI should be able to adjust their approach if evidence emerges of a different preferred style.

It is impossible to force learning on a pupil. Progress is always determined by what the pupil is comfortable with. The skill is recognising when the pupil stops learning. The pace of a session should be set by the pupil. On the other hand, a pupil should not be talked out of experimenting, if this is within safe bounds.

When coaching, the PDI should ensure that the tools used are suitable. If a question and answer technique is used this should match the pupil’s level of ability and encourage them to use a higher level of thinking to give a response. Asking closed questions of a pupil who is demonstrating a high level of ability, unless this is to check knowledge, is of little use. Asking open questions to a pupil of limited ability who is finding it difficult to achieve the task they have set for themselves may be very confusing. These are not hard and fast rules. The effectiveness of any question has to be assessed given the circumstances at the time.”

Positives the examiner is looking for in this competency.


Actively working to understand how they can best support the pupil’s learning process.  (Offer up a range of options from your toolbox, for example, would a demo work better or diagram or maybe a video.)

Modifying teaching style when or if they realise there is a need to do so. (Notice when learning/progress stops and check to see if a different approach is needed.)

Providing accurate and technically correct demonstration, instruction or information. (Any help given must be correct, learn Driving the Essential Skills)

Giving technically incorrect instruction or information is an automatic fail if that input might lead to a safety critical situation.

Using practical examples and other similar tools to provide different ways of looking at a particular subject. (Have a range of options to help pupils. Videos, diagrams, stopping near a junction to look at it, setting scenarios with “what if” questions, ect.)

Linking learning in theory to learning in practice. (Find the right balance for your pupil between theory and practice.)

Encouraging and helping the pupil to take ownership of the learning process. (If the learner is responsible for the learning, they buy into more and learning will be deeper and retention will be greater.)

Responding to faults in a timely manner. (Waiting too long before discussing a fault will mean the learner may not remember what happened or how they were feeling, also in the time between the fault and discussion other faults may have built up making it hard to focus on one thing.)

Providing enough uninterrupted time to practice new skills. (All talk and no action! Too much theory is not only hard for a learner to take in in one go but also leaves little time to practice what was learnt. After all, driving is a practical skill.)

Providing the pupil with clear guidance about how they might practice outside the session. (How can your lessons link to private practice or what research the learner may want to do in between lessons.)

What to avoid

Adopting a teaching style clearly at odds with the pupil’s learning style. (This often comes from being scripted or over prepared and ignoring what’s happening in the moment. Not noticing that what your doing isn’t working.)

Failing to check with the pupil whether the approach they are taking is acceptable. (The best way to avoid this is to involve the learner in the decision making, even if you offer an option ask the pupil if it’s helpful. For example, “what would work best for you here?” or “Would it be helpful if we looked at a diagram?” or “Is this working for or would like to try a different approach?”

Failing to explore other ways of addressing a particular learning point. (If something isn’t working or the pupil doesn’t seem to be understanding what’s going on, then you need to find different ways and explaining. Remember if a pupil doesn’t understand or can’t do something the way we normally do it that is not their fault that’s our job to find a way that works for them.)

Concentrating on delivering teaching tools rather than looking for learning outcomes. (Don’t use teaching tools for sake of using them. Make sure there’s a reason for them. For example, scaling for sake of scaling isn’t helpful, it’s the analysis behind the numbers that is important. )

Ignoring safety issues

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