The “Show Me / Tell Me” portion of the driving test was introduced in 2003 & then updated in 2008. This has not been added to catch you out & simply involves correctly answering two questions regarding vehicle safety checks.

The UK driving test is full of different components, from the hazard perception test as part of the overall theory test, to the practical driving test itself. As a result, it can be a confusing thing to get your head around.

To add another dimension, the driving test also includes of a short section known as ‘show me, tell me’, taking place before you get behind the wheel for your practical test. These are questions asked by the examiner and are based around simple vehicle safety checks.

What are the ‘show me, tell me’ questions?

The examiner will ask the candidate two questions. The ‘show me’ question, as the title suggests, involves asking the candidate driver to show them how and where on the car they would carry out a particular safety check.

Following this, as you can probably guess, the ‘tell me’ questions consist of explaining to the examiner how you would carry out the safety check. Some of the questions contain both show me and tell me elements but they all follow the same theme.

If one or both of these questions are answered incorrectly, a driving fault will be marked against the candidate in the same way as in the practical test itself.

Show me, tell me questions: examples

1. Show me how you would check that the direction indicators are working.

Applying the indicators or hazard warning switch and check functioning of all indicators. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine)

2. Tell me how you would check that the brakes are working before starting a journey.

Brakes should not feel spongy or slack. Brakes should be tested as you set off. Vehicle should not pull to one side. 

3. Show me how you would check that the brake lights are working on this car. (I can assist you, if you need to switch the ignition on, please don’t start the engine)

Operate brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows, garage doors, etc, or ask someone to help. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine)

4. Identify where the windscreen washer reservoir is and tell me how you would check the windscreen washer level.

Identify reservoir and explain how to check level.

5. Show me / explain how you would check that the power assisted steering is working before starting a journey.

If the steering becomes heavy the system may not be working properly. Before starting a journey two simple checks can be made. Gentle pressure on the steering wheel, maintained while the engine is started, should result in a slight but noticeable movement as the system begins to operate. Alternatively turning the steering wheel just after moving off will give an immediate indication that the power assistance is functioning.

6. Tell me where you would find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this car and how tyre pressures should be checked.

Manufacturer’s guide, use a reliable pressure gauge, check and adjust pressures when tyres are cold, don’t forget spare tyre, remember to refit valve caps.

Auto Express offered 5 helpful tips to help you prepare for this portion of your test.

Five top tips for driving test ‘show me, tell me’ questions

  1. ‘Show me’ questions will require you to physically demonstrate to the examiner how to carry out a particular vehicle safety check.
  2. ‘Tell me’ questions are ones where you must explain what you would do, NOT to act it out as in the ‘show me’ questions.
  3. Some questions can be similarly worded – make sure you revise the questions and answers – there are 19 of them.
  4. Be as detailed as you can when responding to a ‘tell me’ question – it shows the examiner you know what you are talking about.
  5. Talk the examiner through what you are doing when responding to a ‘show me’ question – it shows you are confident in what you are doing, and might even help you remember.

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