Massachusetts Learner’s Permit & Junior Operator License – Test Practice

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#1. You must use extra caution when approaching a pedestrian using a white cane because:

A white cane is used by many people who are blind or visually impaired, both as a mobility tool and as a courtesy to others. Pedestrians using a guide dog or other service animal or carrying a white cane must always be given the right-of-way. The White Cane Law states that a driver must come to a complete stop when a blind pedestrian is crossing a street. You must remain stopped until the person has safely crossed. Do not use your horn as it could confuse or frighten the pedestrian or the service animal.

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#2. This is the shape and background color of:

This is an example of an Interstate route sign. The shape and color of route number signs indicate the type of roadway: interstate, U.S., state, city, or county road. When planning a trip, use a road map to determine your route. During the trip, follow the route signs to prevent you from getting lost.

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#3. If you have been drinking alcohol, what will help you to sober up?

Only time will rid you of the effects of alcohol. Only time will sober you up. There is no quick way to sober up or to get the alcohol out of your body. Drinking black coffee, taking a cold shower, exercising, or eating might make you feel more alert after drinking alcohol. However, none of these actions affect how quickly alcohol leaves your body.

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#4. Three major moving violations within a five-year period, will result in:

A total of three major moving violations or any combination of twelve major or minor moving violations within a five-year period will result in a suspension of your license for four years.

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#5. When is it important to turn on your headlights?

In Massachusetts, headlights must be used when the vehicle’s windshield wipers are needed.

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#6. A road sign with a vertical rectangular shape is generally used for:

Vertical rectangles, including square signs, are generally used for regulatory signs. They give instructions or tell you the rules of the road. In the horizontal position, the signs generally give directions or information.

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#7. When passing a motorcycle driving ahead of you in your lane, you must:

When passing a motorcycle, allow a full lane to the motorcycle. Never crowd into the same lane as the motorcycle. Returning to the original lane too soon can force a rider to swerve to the right into traffic or off the road.

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#8. When are you required to stop at a railroad crossing?

A railroad crossing may have red flashing lights, a bell, and a red-and-white striped gate that lowers across the roadway when a train is passing. If the lights begin to flash, you must stop at least 15 feet before the light post or gate. You must then remain stopped until the gate raises and the lights stop flashing. Failure to stop is a violation that has a heavy fine. Even if you do not see a train coming, never drive around a lowered gate or ignore the flashing lights.

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#9. If you are traveling on a road with solid white lines between lanes of traffic, you should:

A solid white line marks the right edge of the roadway or separates lanes of traffic going the same direction. You can go in the same direction on both sides of this line, but you should not cross it unless you need to avoid danger.

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#10. You approach an intersection in a left turn lane. A traffic light with a green arrow indicates that:

A green arrow means you can make a protected turn in the direction of the arrow. When a green arrow displays for your turn, pedestrians and oncoming vehicles should be stopped for red lights. Look for signs saying the lane is only for turns in the direction of the arrow. The green arrow does not mean that ALL other traffic is stopped by a red light.

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#11. This sign tells you:

Reduction of lanes. There will be fewer lanes ahead. Traffic must merge left. Drivers in the left lane should allow others to merge smoothly. Right lane ends.

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#12. Which is true about bicycle lanes?

Bicycle lanes are portions of the roadway that are intended for use by bicyclists. Motor vehicles may only drive in these lanes when turning on or off the road. Before crossing a bicycle lane, you must look carefully for bicyclists, and you must cross with care.

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#13. If your vehicle breaks down on a highway, you should:

If your vehicle breaks down on a highway, make sure that other drivers can see it. Never park on a hill or a curve where others cannot see you.

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#14. When you park and leave your car, you must:

When you leave your vehicle by itself, state law requires you to stop the motor, set the brake, make sure the ignition is locked, remove your key, and lock the door.

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#15. If bad weather makes it hard for you to see, you should:

Make more space between your vehicle and others. You need more space to stop safely on slippery surfaces.

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#16. Does a posted speed limit of 65 mph mean that you may drive 65 mph on that highway under all conditions?

Remember, speed limits are posted for ideal conditions. You must never travel so fast that it is not safe. That is the fundamental speed law. Even if the speed limit is higher, your speed must be based on the following:

  • Traffic conditions – the number of vehicles on the road and their speed
  • Road conditions – is the road surface rough or smooth, how much water, ice, or snow is on the road surface, and how wide is the roadway
  • Weather conditions and visibility – situations that make it hard to see, including rain, snow, ice, dust, and wind
  • Pedestrians or bicyclists – people who are traveling along or across the road

You must lower your speed if there are poor driving conditions or hazards.

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#17. What does a blue sign with a large white 'H' mean?

Hospital is a word message sign or an H symbol sign. General service signs like this are accompanied with a directional message if used at intersections.

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#18. The most effective means of reducing serious injuries in a traffic crash is:

When used with lap and shoulder safety belts, air bags are very good at saving adult lives. Safety belts stop you from being thrown around or out of your vehicle in a crash. When worn correctly, safety belts lower the chance of death or serious injury in a crash by about 50 percent.

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#19. To prepare for hazards on the road ahead, you should:

Keep good vision in front and around your vehicle. Always look ahead of and around you, and check your mirrors often. Stay alert and prepared for the unexpected. Be aware of road conditions and possible hazards in front, to the sides, and behind you. Look far ahead so you have enough time to brake and stop safely.

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#20. When approaching a stationary emergency vehicle with flashing lights on an interstate, you must:

On a highway with at least at least two lanes in the same direction you are heading, yield the right-of way by safely moving over to a lane that is not next to the lane the emergency vehicle is in. In other words, leave an open lane between your vehicle and the stopped emergency vehicle. If changing lanes is not possible, you must be cautious and reduce your speed to a reasonable and safe speed.

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#21. What is the first thing you should do if your gas pedal sticks?

If your gas pedal sticks:

  • Put your car in neutral and press the brake pedal to slow down.
  • Try to free the gas pedal with your foot.
  • If the gas pedal does not release, reapply the brakes.
  • Keep your eyes on the road.
  • When safe, pull your vehicle to the side of the road and bring it to a stop.

Never turn your vehicle’s ignition to the lock position while it is still in motion. This will cause the steering to lock if you try to turn the steering wheel, and you will lose control of your vehicle.

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#22. This sign means:

Added lane sign. Two roadways come together, but you are not required to merge. An additional lane begins. Watch for traffic in the new lane.

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#23. When holding a Junior Operator License, a first violation of the passenger restriction or the night restriction will result in a license suspension of:

If you hold a Junior Operator License and violate the passenger restriction or the night restriction, you will be subject to a license suspension of 60 days for a first offense, 180 days for a second offense, and one year for subsequent offenses. This suspension is in addition to any other penalty, fine, suspension, or revocation.

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#24. If you are involved in a crash, you must always:

When you are involved in a crash, even a small one, you must stop your vehicle. Never leave the scene of a crash. It is against the law. You could be charged with a hit and run violation.

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#25. Why should you check over your shoulder after passing a bicyclist and before moving back to normal position?

Watch for bicycles on your right. Check your mirror and your blind spot.

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RMV Test Practice

Take a test practice with 25 random questions covering the most important areas of your knowledge exam.

The Best Way to Study for Your RMV Knowledge Exam

Start by getting the RMV driver’s manual. You need the latest version, which is available online .

Under normal circumstances, the manual is also available for purchase at a RMV Service Center for $5.

After studying the manual, you are ready for some practice tests. You can take them as often as you like. Each test pulls random questions from a larger set. They cover all important parts of the manual.

If you are smart, you aim for a full score on each test. It gives you a good safety margin for the real test.

Massachusetts Graduated License Law – What You Need to Know

Graduated license laws have been introduced in most states in U.S. They let new, young drivers practice driving with a supervising adult and impose restrictions to help new drivers minimize the risk of accidents.

Restrictions are removed as young drivers advance from learner’s permits to provisional licenses and finally into unrestricted driver’s licenses.

In Massachusetts, this law is known as the Junior Operator License (JOL) Law. A young driver starts with a learner’s permit and moves through a junior operator license phase before earning a full operator license.



Apply for a Massachusetts Learner’s Permit

All new drivers who haven’t been licensed before must start with a learner’s permit, regardless of age.

You must be at least 16 years old to get a learner’s permit.

To get your learner’s permit, you must complete an application, present ID documents that show your full name, birth date, Social Security Number, and Massachusetts address , and pay the $50.00 fee. Non-citizens must also prove their lawful presence.

Currently, you must start your application online and make an appointment to visit a Service Center to provide required identification documentation.

Once your application and documents have been processed and verified at a Service Center, you will take a vision test and get login instructions and credentials to complete your knowledge test online at home.

The knowledge test has 25 questions, and you need at least 18 correct answers to pass the test.

With some solid test practice on this website, you will probably pass without any problems.

After you have passed the written knowledge test, RMV issues your learner’s permit

Woman taking the knowledge test

Knowledge Test Summary

    Number of questions on the test: 25
    Number of correct answers to pass: 18
    Passing score: 72%
    Allotted test time: 25 minutes
    Waiting time before you can take the test again: n/a
    Available languages: 26 (4 on the home test)

The passing score is among the lowest in United States , but it doesn’t make the Massachusetts knowledge test the easiest. The failure rate is estimated to 25%.

You have 25 minutes to complete the test, which is usually more than enough.

Should you fail your knowledge exam, there is no official waiting time to try again. If you have the online test at home, you will get instructions at the end of the test on how to pay for and take a new one.

A re-test at a service center does, however, depend on availability. You may have to wait a few days to take the exam again.

Can I take the Massachusetts online permit test in another language?

The online version of the learner’s permit exam is currently (November 2020) available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Mandarin.

The following languages are available at automated testing station (ATS) at your RMV service center: Arabic, Armenian, Burmese, Cambodian (Khmer), Chinese (simplified), Farsi, French, German, Greek, Gujarati, Haitian/Creole, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean Laotian, Polish, Russian, Serbo-Croatian (Latin), Somali, Tagalog/Filipino, Thai, Urdu, and Vietnamese.

With a Learner’s Permit You Can Practice Driving

With your learner’s permit you can start driving, but you must, regardless of age, always be accompanied by a licensed driver who is at least 21 years of age. The person must also have at least one year of driving experience and occupy the seat beside you.

If you are under 18 years, you may not drive between 12:00 a.m. (midnight) and 5:00 a.m. unless the supervising driver beside you is your parent or legal guardian.

When you practice driving you must always carry your learner’s permit with you.

Teenager behind the wheel practice

Massachusetts Junior Operator License (JOL)

A Junior Operator License is the second step in Massachusetts Graduated Licensing program. It is an intermediate or provisional license that comes with certain restrictions.

If you are between ages 16 1/2 and 18, you must comply with these requirements to obtain a JOL.

  • Complete an approved driver education and training program with
    • 30 hours of classroom instruction
    • 12 hours of behind-the-wheel training
    • 6 hours of in-car experience observing other student drivers.
  • Hold learner’s permit and maintain a clean driving record for at least six consecutive months before taking the road test.
  • Complete at least 40 hours of supervised, behind-the-wheel driving (30 hours if you completed a driver skills development program).
  • A parent or guardian must participate in two hours of instruction on the driver’s education curriculum.
  • Pass a final exam to have a driver’s education certificate electronically filed with RMV.

JOL License Passenger Restriction

Within the first six months after receiving your JOL, you cannot drive with any passenger under 18 years is in the vehicle.

This restriction doesn’t apply if the passenger is an immediate family member.

You may also carry passengers under 18 if you are accompanied by a person who is at least 21 years old, has at least one year of driving experience, holds a valid driver’s license from Massachusetts or another state, and is occupying a seat beside you.

The passenger restriction is lifted once you complete the six-month period or you reach age 18, whichever comes first.

JOL License Night Driving Restriction

As the holder of a junior operator license, you are not allowed to drive a motor vehicle between 12:30 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. (see details in the Massachusetts Driver’s Manual ).

The restriction doesn’t apply if you are accompanied by one of your parents or your legal guardian.

If you violate of this curfew, you may be charged with operating a motor vehicle without being licensed, which is a criminal violation.

Cell Phones and Electronic Devices

You may not use any mobile electronic device for any reason while operating a motor vehicle. The only exception is for reporting an emergency.

Violating Junior Operator License Restrictions

judge with gavel

If you violate the passenger restriction or the night restriction, you will be subject to a license suspension of 60 days for a first offense, 180 days for a second offense, and one year for subsequent offenses. Note that this is an administrative suspension. It comes in addition to any penalties imposed by a court.

For a second or subsequent offense, you will also be required to complete a Driver Attitudinal Retraining course.

The Road Test

Taking a road test

For a Class D license, including a JOL, you need a sponsor for your road test. When you arrive at the test location, you must be accompanied by a licensed operator who meets the same requirements as the supervising driver.

If you are not accompanied by a sponsor, you will not be given the Class D road test.



Under normal circumstances, the vehicle you use for your Class D road test must be safe and in good working order. You must show your vehicle registration to the examiner and the vehicle must be inspected. If your vehicle is registered out of state, you must show proof of insurance coverage equal to Massachusetts minimum limits.

During the 2020-2021 pandemic state of emergency, however, road test vehicles are provided by the RMV.

If you are under age 18, you must maintain a clean driving record for the six consecutive months immediately preceding the date you apply for the test. If you had any at-fault crashes, moving violations, or drug or alcohol related violations, you will not be given the road test.


Photo credits: stokkete, lopolo, Warren Goldswain, and Burmakin Andrey



COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 Information

No visits on walk-in basis are currently accepted.

If you cannot complete a transaction online and need to visit a service location, you must make an appointment.

Appointment reservations can only be made online . Time slots are available on a rolling basis up to 14 business days in advance.

You will get a confirmation email that you must show on arrival at your Service Center.

Remember to wear a mask or face covering in public to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help keep MA headed in the right direction.

Other State Tests

Remember, test practice is your key to success.

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