Iowa Driver License Test and Permit Practice – Unlimited

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This is not a passing score on the Iowa knowledge test. Do you want to try again?

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#1. At night, your low-beam headlights will normally let you see about:

The distance illuminated by low beam headlights is about 160 feet (see illustration in driver’s manual).

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#2. What does this sign mean?

Cross road. A road crosses the main highway ahead. Look to the left and right for other traffic.

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#3. When driving behind another vehicle on an entrance to a freeway, you should:

Be prepared for vehicles in front of you on the ramp to slow down.

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#4. Children must ride rear-facing until they reach both:

Infants should ride rear-facing until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by the car seat. At a minimum, children should ride rear-facing until they have reached at least 1 year of age and weigh at least 20 pounds.

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#5. If you cannot get in the clear on the other side of a railroad crossing, you should:

It is important to note that you should not enter a railroad crossing until the vehicle ahead has moved far enough ahead that you can clear the tracks. Never stop your vehicle on the railroad tracks.

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#6. When approaching a sharp curve, you should:

It is easy to go too fast in a curve. If you go too fast, then the tires will not be able to grip the road and the vehicle will skid. Always slow down before you enter the curve, so you do not have to brake in the curve. Braking in a curve can cause the vehicle to skid.

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#7. After stopping, a left turn against a red arrow is:

Idaho does not allow turning against a red arrow. Drivers turning must stop and wait.

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#8. What does this sign mean?

Divided highway ahead (divided highway begins).

The highway ahead is divided into two one-way roadways. Keep to the right.

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#9. Parking lights must be used:

Whenever lights are necessary, use your headlights, not your parking lights. Parking lights are for parked cars only.

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#10. When two vehicles from different directions arrive at the same time at an intersection where there are no signs or signals, which one should yield?

When two cars enter an open intersection (without traffic control signs or signals) at the same time, the driver on the left must yield to the driver on the right.

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#11. The basic speed rule allows you to drive over the speed limit when it is reasonable and prudent:

Posted speed limits do not tell you at what speed to drive. They only tell you what the maximum legal speed is under ideal conditions. By law, you have to go slower if conditions make the posted speed limit unsafe.

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#12. Driving skills are often impaired by:

Alcohol, prescription drugs and emotions can all impair concentration, judgment, and the sensory and perceptual skills needed for careful driving

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#13. The shape of a do not enter sign is:

A square sign with a white horizontal line inside a red circle means you cannot enter. You will see this sign at roadway openings you are not to enter and when traffic is one way against you. You will see them at exit ramps, in crossovers on divided roadways, and at numerous locations on one-way roads.

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#14. Lanes marked on both sides by double-broken yellow lines are known as:

Reversible lanes.

Some travel lanes are designed to carry traffic in one direction at certain times and in the opposite direction at other times. These lanes are usually marked by double-dashed yellow lines.

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#15. When an emergency vehicle using flashing lights approaches you from behind, you must:

Pull over to the right edge of the road, or as near to the right as possible, when you see or hear an emergency vehicle approaching from any direction.

If you are in an intersection, drive through the intersection before you pull over.

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#16. This is the shape and color of a:

Stop signs are always octagonal (8-sided). A stop sign means that you must bring your vehicle to a complete halt at the marked stop line. If there is no marked stop line, stop before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection. If there is no crosswalk, stop at a point nearest the intersecting roadway where you have a clear view of approaching traffic on the intersecting roadway before entering the intersection.

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#17. What classified driver's license permits a person to drive a motorcycle?

A class M driver’s license permits a person to drive a motorcycle. To get motorcycle added to your current license, you must pass a written test and a motorcycle skills test.

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#18. If your vehicle has conventional disc or drum brakes (not anti-lock brakes) and you need to stop quickly:

You should pump the brakes gently unless your vehicle is equipped with anti-lock brakes, in which case you should apply steady pressure.

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#19. Your lane ends ahead and there is a large truck in the lane beside you. What is the best thing to do?

Slow down and merge behind the truck. Never cut off a truck in traffic or on the highway.

A loaded truck with good tires and properly adjusted brakes, traveling at 55 mph on a clear, dry roadway, requires a minimum of 290 feet to come to a complete stop. It is essential therefore to not enter a roadway in front of a large vehicle. It is also important to avoid changing lanes in front of a large vehicle if you are turning off the roadway.

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#20. When approaching a stopped school bus with flashing red lights traveling in the opposite direction on a four-lane roadway with a center turning lane, you should:

If the red lights are flashing or if the stop arm is out, you must come to a complete stop at least 15 feet from the bus. You must remain stopped as long as the red lights flash or the stop arm is out.

The only exception to this is where you are approaching the bus from the opposite direction on a road with at least two lanes in each direction.

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#21. When you park and leave your car:

Whenever you park and leave your vehicle, you must turn off the engine and set the parking (emergency) brake. Lock your vehicle and take your keys. Never leave the ignition keys in a parked car.

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#22. This sign (a flashing yellow X) means:

A green arrow means you can use the lane beneath it.

A red X means you may not.

A flashing yellow X means the lane is only for turning.

A steady yellow X means that the use of the lane is changing, and you should move out of it as soon as it is safe to do so.

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#23. You should adjust your seat, rearview mirror, and side mirror:

You should always check your seat and mirrors before you start to drive. Make any adjustments to the seat and mirrors before you drive off.

You should be able to see out the back window with the rearview mirror and to the sides with the side mirrors. A good adjustment for the side mirrors is to set them so that when you lean forward slightly, you can see just the side of your vehicle.

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#24. You are driving on a one-way street. You may turn left onto another one-way street only if:

You may turn left into a left-moving, one-way street if there is no sign to prohibit the turn.

Remember, do not turn against traffic.

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#25. A good advice to avoid last minute moves when driving is to:

Try to avoid panic stops by watching for things well ahead of you. By slowing down or changing lanes, you may not have to stop at all. If you do have to stop, it can be a more gradual and safer stop.

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The Iowa MVD Knowledge Examination

Quick facts about the Iowa MVD written test for the Instruction Permit or adult Driver’s License:

  Number of Questions: 35
  Correct answers needed: 28
  Passing score: 80 percent
  Time limit: N/A
  Earliest retest upon failure: 1 day

Understand the Practice Test

This practice test will provide you with random questions from real Iowa examinations and questions based on the information in the official driver’s manual.

With questions from a large bank of exam questions you can expect each practice test to be slightly different until you have covered all the important items in the manual.

The practice test is created to give you a general understanding of the principles of safe and lawful operation of a motor vehicle in Iowa. However, it is NOT intended to serve as a cheat sheet with precise answers to be memorized for the knowledge examination.

Think of the practice test as a learning tool and a complement to the driver’s manual.

  More study tips .

How Many Questions are on the Iowa MVD Test?

The knowledge test for an Iowa instruction permit has 35 question. You need 28 correct answers to pass. That is a passing score of 80%.

The test is a closed-book test given on a computer with a touch screen. You cannot bring books, papers, or any other material into the testing area. All use of cell phones, tablets, and other wireless devices is prohibited.

The test is available in a few other languages in select branches. If you don’t speak English, call ahead to verify that the test is available in your language. For hours and locations, please visit Iowadot.gov.

Get Ready for Your Iowa MVD Written Examination

You will not pass the written examination without a good understanding of traffic laws described in the driver’s manual. Start by getting a copy from a MVD service center, driving school, or online .

Read through the manual. Everything you must know to pass the test is found in this manual and questions can be drawn from all chapters.

Practice Makes Perfect

Research says that test takers who use practice tests before the examination stands a much better chance of passing the first time.

Used wisely, you will also learn facts much faster than just by reading the manual.

Practice tests also give you a good idea of the kind of questions MVD will ask on the test.

When you easily reach a score of 100% on the practice tests, you are probably ready for the real examination.

Who Must Pass the Iowa Written Knowledge Test?

You must take the MVD knowledge test, when you:

  Apply for a permit or driver’s license and haven’t been licensed before.
  Move to Iowa and hold a foreign license from another country than Canada or Germany.
  Move to Iowa and hold an out-of-state license that is invalid or expired more than one year.
  Had your driver’s license revoked by Iowa or another state.

Holders of an out-out-state license are normally exempt from taking the knowledge test, but if the license is invalid or has expired for more than one year you must pass the full examination as a first-time applicant. The same applies if you had your driver’s license revoked in this or another state. With a revoked license, you must apply for a new one. This includes passing all tests again.



Where Can I take the Iowa Knowledge Exam?

  If you are under 18 years, you can now take the knowledge test from the comfort of your own home. You don’t need to visit a branch office for just the test.

This is what you need:

  Be 14 years and under 18 years.
  Have a reliable internet connection and a desktop or laptop (not a cell phone or tablet).
  Approval and application submitted by a parent or legal guardian.

A parent or legal guardian must complete and submit the Application to Proctor Knowledge Exam form. The same parent/legal guardian must also administer the test and make sure you follow the rules.

Once the application is approved an email will be sent with instructions for taking and administering the test. It takes up to two weeks before the application is approved and until you get the email. Use this time to study the manual and take practice tests.

After you have completed the home test, you will get an email with test results and further instructions. You will need to visit a service center to be issued your permit.

An email will also be sent with the test results and instructions after the test is completed.

  Students enrolled with a participating school or agency can take the knowledge test in school or at an approved agency.

  If you are 18 years or older or cannot take an online test from home, in school, or at a test participating agency, you must make an appointment and visit a MVD service center.

Schedule an appointment

What Happens if I fail the Iowa knowledge examination?

You must wait at least one day before you can take the test again.

Should you fail the written knowledge exam at the service center, you must schedule a new appointment.

Who Needs an Iowa License?

Anyone who operates a motor vehicle or motorcycle or moped on public streets and roads in Iowa is required to have a license. For purposes of driver licensing you are considered an Iowa resident f if you have:

  • registered to vote in this state;
  • enrolled your children in public school;
  • accepted a permanent job in the state; or
  • lived in Iowa continuously for 30 days.

You do not need an Iowa driver’s license if you:

  • are driving a military motor vehicle while on duty with the U.S. Armed Forces;
  • are driving farm equipment between the home farm and any nearby (not more than two miles) farmland or farm operation; or
  • are a student or visitor and have a current license from your home state or country.

What is the Iowa Graduated Driver Licensing System?

The purpose of the Iowa Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) system is to gradually let drivers under 18 years accumulate driving skills and demonstrate responsible driving practices.

The program includes different steps that allow for increased driving privileges over time. The three different steps are: the instruction permit, the intermediate driver license, and the full driver license.

You can apply for your first instruction permit when you are 14 years old.

The Iowa Instruction Permit

You must be at least 14 years old and have approval from a parent or legal guardian if you are under 18 years before MVD issues the permit. You must pass a vision screening the written knowledge test.

When you have your permit, you can practice driving with a supervising adult. Supervised drivers include a parent, guardian, custodian, an immediate family member at least 21 years of age, a driver education instructor, or a person at least 25 years with written permission from your parent, guardian, or custodian.

During the permit phase, you must log at least 20 (2 at night) hours of parental/guardian certified driving hours.

Before you can move on to the next step, the intermediate license, you must hold the permit for a minimum of 12 months.

You must also complete an approved driver education course. The course must include thirty hours of classroom training and six hours laboratory. Driver education is required for all license applicants under 18 years.

Immediately before applying for an intermediate license, you must also have driven accident- and violation-free for six consecutive months.



The Iowa Intermediate License

When turning 16, you can apply for the intermediate driver’s license. You must have held a permit for at least 12 months, have completed driver education, and have passed the appropriate vision screening, knowledge test, and a road skills test.

With an intermediate driver license, you cannot drive between 12:30 a.m. and 5 a.m. unless you are supervised by an adult driver (see above).

For the first six months, you cannot drive with more than one unrelated passenger under 18 years, unless approved by a parent or guardian.

During this phase, you must also accumulate an additional 10 (2 at night) hours of parental/guardian supervised driving.

Iowa Driver License Test

Summary of Age and Test Requirements

License Minimum age Required tests
Class C – Operator (most common license) 16 Knowledge, vision, road skills
Class C Instruction Permit 14 Knowledge, vision
Class C – Minor’s School License 14.5 Knowledge, vision, road skills
Class C – Minor’s Restricted License 16 Knowledge, vision, road skills
Class D – Chauffeur 18 See CDL Manual
Class D – Chauffeur’s Instruction Permit 18 Knowledge, vision
Upgrade from operator license to chauffer or commercial license 18 Knowledge, vision, road skills

Frequently asked Questions

The knowledge test for an Iowa instruction permit has a passing score of 80%.  You need to correctly answer 28 of 35 questions.

The three different steps are: the instruction permit, the intermediate driver license, and the full driver license. You can apply for your first instruction permit when you are 14 years old.

The purpose of the Iowa Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) system is to gradually let drivers under 18 years accumulate driving skills and demonstrate responsible driving practices.

You must be at least 14 years old to apply for your first Iowa instruction permit.

Yes, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic applicants under 18 years can take the knowledge test online from their home. The application for a home test must be submitted by a parent or legal guardian.

The tests are based on the same questions, but each test is random and will be different each time you take the test.

When you have passed all tests and MVD has issued the permit, you can practice driving with a supervising adult. Supervised drivers include a parent, guardian, custodian, an immediate family member at least 21 years of age, a driver education instructor, or a person at least 25 years with written permission from your parent, guardian, or custodian.

No. A holder of an Iowa instruction permit can only drive with a parent, guardian, custodian, an immediate family member at least 21 years of age, a driver education instructor, or a person at least 25 years with written permission from your parent, guardian, or custodian.

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