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

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#1. A regulation sign telling you to keep right has normally what shape?

Vertical rectangles, including square signs, are generally used for regulatory signs. They give instructions or tell you the rules of the road. Some warning signs may also have this shape. In the horizontal position, the signs generally give directions or information.

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#2. If an intersection is blocked and you cannot drive through without stopping in the intersection:

Remember, do not enter the intersection if you will block traffic. Green means go, but only if the intersection is clear. Cautiously enter the intersection. Look both ways for oncoming traffic that may run the red light.

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#3. To back your vehicle safely:

When you back up, do not just use vehicle mirrors or sensors. Blind spots may hide people or objects behind the vehicle. You should turn your head and look out the window before you start to back up.

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#4. 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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#5. What should you do when you see this sign?

Cross Road. A road crosses the main highway ahead. Look in all directions for other traffic.

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#6. During a traffic stop by a law enforcement officer, you may cause unnecessary anxiety for the officer if you:

Do not make any sudden movements or gestures that could seem threatening. Examples of this could be reaching under the seats or into unlit areas of the vehicle. Make sure your passengers do not do this either.

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#7. Whenever you need stop on the shoulder because of vehicle problems, it is a good idea to:

To indicate vehicle problems, tie a white cloth to your antenna or door handle (use a red cloth when it is snowing). Raise your vehicle’s hood.

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#8. When entering paved thoroughfare from a private driveway:

When entering a paved thoroughfare from a private road, a driveway, or an unpaved road, you must stop. You must then give the right-of-way to pedestrians, bicyclists, or vehicles on the road you are entering.

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#9. When driving on a slippery surface such as snow or ice, you should:

Driving in winter is difficult and dangerous for new and experienced drivers. Motor vehicles run very differently on ice and snow than on warm, dry pavement.

  • Lower your speed.
  • Drive carefully.
  • Accelerate slowly.
  • Brake early and gently.
  • Make turns at low speed.
  • Make more space between your vehicle and others.
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#10. Where can you expect to see this sign?

The pass-with-care sign indicates the end of the no-passing zone. When you have passed this sign, you are again allowed to pass other vehicles with care.

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#11. Parking violations are civil motor vehicle infractions:

Parking violations are not CMVIs. They are handled by the city or town that issued the citations or tickets. If you do not pay the violation, you will not be able to renew your driver’s license or vehicle registration.

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#12. You are driving in the left-hand lane and approach this sign. What should you do?

Left lane ends, merge right.

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#13. A child must be secured in an appropriate child-restraint system when:

Infants and small children must sit in federally approved child passenger restraints until they are at least eight years old or at least fifty-seven inches tall. Children at least eight years old or at least fifty-seven inches tall must wear safety belts. The safety belts must be used correctly. You can be fined $25 for breaking this law.

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#14. If you want to avoid hydroplaning when driving in rain, the most important thing to check is your:

Hydroplaning is caused by road conditions, water, and speed. It happens when your tires are riding on water and have no contact with the road. If your vehicle starts to hydroplane, you are driving too fast. Slowly step off the gas pedal. Never hit the brakes or turn suddenly. You may lose control and skid.

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#15. Why is it important to know what kind of braking system your vehicle has?

How brakes can best be used depends on whether a vehicle has anti-lock brakes (ABS) or conventional brakes. Knowing how to correctly apply your brakes in an emergency situation may save your life. You can determine what type of brakes you have by checking the indicator on your dashboard or checking your vehicle’s user manual.

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#16. Always allow extra room in front of your vehicle when following:

Leave extra space between your vehicle and a motorcycle in front of you. Use a four-second following distance (compared to a two-second for other motor vehicles).

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#17. Which pavement marking separates traffic traveling in opposite directions?

Yellow lane lines mark the center of a road and separate lanes of traffic moving in opposite directions. Single yellow lines may also mark the left edge of the pavement on divided highways and one-way streets. Solid yellow lines prohibit vehicles from crossing to pass another vehicle. Broken yellow lines indicate that passing is permitted.

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#18. If your vehicle stalls in the path of an oncoming train, why should you stay clear of the tracks and run towards the train?

If your car stalls on the tracks and a train is approaching, do not hesitate. Get out of the car right away and run diagonally away from the tracks in the direction of the oncoming train. You must run in the direction of the oncoming train to avoid being struck by the debris from the accident.

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#19. Which car or cars are NOT driving in the truck driver's typical blind spots?

Car B is not in a typical blind spot. Marked areas are the driver’s blind spots. Study the illustration in Driver’s Manual.

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#20. A lane with this pavement marking is reserved for bicyclists:

Shared Lane Markings (also known as Sharrows) help bicyclists position themselves in the right location and in the right direction in a lane that is shared with motor vehicles. By following these markings, bicyclists can avoid being hit by the open door of a parked vehicle or getting squeezed next to a motor vehicle in a narrow lane. When you see a Shared Lane Marking, you must look out for the presence of bicyclists and make sure that you leave them enough space when passing. Shared Lane Markings are not the same as the bicycle symbols that are used to mark bicycle lanes.

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#21. Passing another vehicle on the right by driving onto a paved shoulder is:

Never use a breakdown lane, the shoulder of a road, or a sidewalk for passing another vehicle.

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#22. Parking on a crosswalk in the middle of a block is:

Parking on a crosswalk is never allowed.

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#23. Whenever you drive, you should adjust your speed based on:

Posted speed limits do not tell you at what speed to drive. 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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#24. When driving in foggy conditions, high beams will:

In fog, use your low beam headlights to reduce glare. Light from high beams will reflect back, causing glare and making it more difficult to see ahead.

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#25. True or false? If you agree to become an organ donor and have a fatal accident, your family will be charged for any costs arising from an organ or tissue donation.

Organ and tissue donation is completely free. A donor’s family is not charged

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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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