4 Survival Tips for the First Week of Trucking School


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trucking school classroomWe’ve heard from C1 Directors about what the first week of class is like, but what about the experience from students’ perspective? The first week of class is crucial to eventually getting a Class A CDL, so it’s important to really utilize the time spent with the classroom instructor and your peers. Here are 4 survival tips to help you get through the first week of trucking school.

1. Pay Attention in Class – Remember You’re Here To Learn

“Pay attention in class, listen carefully and study what they tell you. It’s a short time and a lot of information to take in but it is possible if you are serious.” –Shesha Ragan

“Listen and pay attention to the instructors, they will get you through the whole course!” –Bryan Heath

One of the biggest keys to success during truck driver training is paying attention to what instructors are teaching. Trucking school instructors have been through all of this before, both as a student and a professional driver, so you can trust that they know what they’re talking about.

2. Practice Good Study Habits Outside of Class

“Take your studying seriously. Use the information on the internet to your advantage…even YouTube. Learn your pre-trip and 4-point brake check. You will not be able to practice the range if you don’t pass your pre-trip.” –Kia

“Take and retake all practice tests. If the questions aren’t exactly the same, they’re darn close. Make note of the ones you miss, and you won’t miss them next time. Take and retake all tests until you’re getting them right.” –Jesse Gooden

“Study, study, and take every endorsement sub test. The general knowledge is long, but easy. The Hazmat section has a few tricky questions, so read the questions thoroughly!” –William Wolf

It’s important to recognize that you’ll have to put some time into studying outside of class time in order to make the most of your time at school. Remember, school is only about three weeks long, so it’s important to learn and retain as much information as possible. Students are at school to learn, and as such, should utilize the extra time available to prepare for the CDL permit test and pre-trip inspection.

3. Partner Up!

“Listen and pay attention. Don’t let anything or anybody disturb you from learning your CDL booklet and partner up on your pre-trip inspection.” –Dee Muldrow

A good way to study for the permit and pre-trip inspection tests is by partnering or grouping up with other students in the class. This makes it easy to review material and help each other out. Quizzing each other is a great way to practice and learn the information you’ll need to know to get your Class A CDL.

4. Calm Down & Think Things Through When Taking the CDL Permit Test

“If all else fails, skip the question if you are not sure that you know the answer. Remember that when you get the percentage of questions right your test is done and you may not have to answer the question you didn’t know.” –Ray Teigen

“Don’t overthink the question, usually the first answer that you pick is the right one.” –Val Barrera

Taking the CDL permit test can be a bit of a nerve-wracking experience. There’s so much riding on it — advancing to the next part of training, being able to actually get into a truck, and getting your actual license. Many people get flustered and start second guessing themselves when taking the permit test. But if you do the above 3 things — listen to instructors, study the material, and partner up — your chances of passing the CDL permit test are high.

What are your tips and recommendations on passing that first week of trucking school? Share with us in the comments below.