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You’ve dreamed about cruising in your whip for months, and the day has finally come. You can call yourself a driver.

You grab the keys and head out the door into your ride, and that’s when you realize; you’re terrified! Knowing when to stop, who has the right of way? Why won’t this large semi-truck let me merge? It’s all too much!

A defense driving program may be what you need.

If you’re a resident of Texas looking to find a TEA-approved driving safety course to become a more confident driver, read this guide on everything you need to know.

What’s TEA defense driving?

No, TEA doesn’t mean that you learn how to drive while holding a cup of tea angrily. It’s the opposite.

The Texas Education Agency(TEA) defensive driving courses are classes designed to provide a stronger foundation on driving fundamentals by teaching how to identify potential motorist hazards.

In return, you get the chance to improve your driving skills and relationship with driving.

People may opt to take a course to improve their skills and feel more confident behind the wheel.

Alternatively, the court may require them to take this course for an array of reasons. Let’s face it. Technology has eliminated the need for a lot of in-person social interaction. Whether or not you yearn for the way things used to be, online courses are a viable option. These classes allow you to take the Texas defensive driving course on your own time.

What’s included in the TEA-approved driving safety course?

The course curriculum varies state by state, school by school. But in the general scope of things, the requirements are as follows:

State traffic laws

This section covers the local state traffic laws as a refresher for all students. Some people may have forgotten state laws(it can be hard to remember to buckle your seatbelt while distracted), while others are repeat offenders who need a reminder of the rules of the road.

Whatever the reason, the refresh is there to make everyone a good defense driver.

Traffic crashes

Now for something that’s not exactly the most lighthearted topic; in fact, many see it as ‘the wake-up call,’ but this section covers the reality of getting into collisions while driving. In the state of Texas, more than 1,400 people were killed this year alone on roadways from factors like speeding, seat belts, and impairment.

This section will give you all the tools you need to know what not to do behind the wheel and offer reasons WHY you should think twice before consuming that 3rd beer at a friend’s house.

Crash prevention

How do you prevent a crash? This section covers it all.

You’ll learn the hazards that lead to a crash, ways to prevent it, and other essential road tips. Some examples of crash prevention techniques are:

  • Scanning surroundings
  • Knowing the vehicle stop distance
  • Vehicle emergencies
  • Right of way
  • All of these things are taught in Drivers Ed, but with the excitement of getting your license, it’s okay if you don’t remember.

    Psychological effects

    Driving is a mind game and puts your mindset through constant tests when handling situations like merging into a busy traffic lane with cars honking impatiently behind you. Not only must you worry about your own set of anxieties, but you also need to be aware of those around you.

    This section will focus on overcoming those negative feelings towards driving and combat the road rage of others who share the road. This class will make you such a confident driver; you won’t bat an eye the next time a racer Bob honks to intimidate you.

    Human factors

    If you love science, then you’ll love this topic. This section covers the effects of the influence of drugs and how it impairs you when driving. There are different stages of impairment depending on the drug and level of alcohol consumption.

    Every state has its own regulation on blood-alcohol levels as well as the consequences of being found guilty of driving under the influence. This topic will go over that and show you the signs to look out for when drivers around you appear intoxicated.

    The benefits of defense courses

    If you’ve seen any stereotypical movie, students are bored senseless while the driving teacher drawls on and on about different street signs. Because of this image, many people have a warped perception of driving school. Many might have come to dread the experience, fearing it could be too dull, difficult, or unnecessary.

    In reality, a good defensive driving course can be fun, engaging, and provide you with the driving skills to keep you and your loved ones out of harm’s way. Not to mention, avoid any future legal entanglements.

    Confidence

    With all the skills you’ve learned and relearned, you’ll feel more comfortable getting behind the wheel. You’ll know exactly what to do if a car breaks suddenly for a turtle crossing the road, or even in the more likely scenario should your tire pops on your way home from work.

    This assurance of road safety will flow into more than one aspect of your life and lead you down a path of positive behavior. If you think about it, it’s a cheaper version of therapy.

    Cheaper car insurance

    Did you know that taking a defensive course could lower your car insurance rate? Depending on the state and the company that insures you, you can knock as much as 15% off the price.

    On a case-by-case basis, they evaluate your driving record and go over the initial policy. If everything checks out, all you’ll need to provide is proof of certification once you have completed the course, making that dream road trip much more affordable.

    Point elimination

    For those that believe in a no-cops-no-stops mantra, Texas defensive driving courses offer the chance to reduce points off your driving record, which accrue from past tickets and moving violations.

    Specific requirements need to be fulfilled before this happens, and not every traffic-based violation qualify for removal. Once removed, you’ll get a second chance to use your newfound knowledge to be a responsible fellow motorist for not just yourself but others around you.

    After the course

    Once you’ve completed the course, you will receive a certificate of proof that you completed the course affiliated with an accredited driving school. If you’re a citizen of Texas and you’ve taken the course previously, retaking it may be slightly different this time around. All driving courses are now under the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, TDLR.

    But not to worry! Your TEA certification is still valid, and you will be able to use it until the date of expiration.

    Learn to drive confidently today!

    Being a new driver is scary, and if left unchecked, it’s a fear that can rule over the way you travel and your life. Don’t leave fate up to chance. Be proactive and take a TEA-approved driving safety course.

    The right driving school will want you to have the knowledge to drive safely without all the added pressure. Find a fun, interactive way to get your defensive driving certification both online and in person.

    Register here to get started today!