Select Your Free 2021 IA Practice Permit Test to Get Started

Select Your <strong>Free 2021 IA Practice Permit Test</strong> to Get Started
The ‘Hawkeye’ state is known for its landscape of rolling plains and cornfields.  With the iconic gold-domed State Capitol Building to the Des Moines Art Center, Iowa has numerous points of interest and landmarks to explore.  However, before you can get behind the wheel you will need to pass the DMV written test. Whether you need to get your learners permit or drivers license, all applicants in the state of Iowa need to first pass the state’s written knowledge test.  Start preparing for your DMV test now our free test prep resources. With questions designed to simulate the real exam, our practice tests are an invaluable resource when preparing for the test. Start your journey towards becoming a licensed driver here. To help you successfully begin preparing for your permit test, we’ve put together a collection of essential study material on this page.  Here you’ll find top-notch study resources including our free Iowa practice permit test. You’ll also find the official driving manual for Iowa for easy reference. Stop wishing you had your learner’s permit and let our study material help you begin preparing for success.  Take advantage of the study tools now and before you know it, you’ll be enjoying the freedom of the open road.

Permit Practice Tests (158 questions)

  • Questions 1-42
    Practice Test 1

    A great introduction on what to expect on the real exam, this Iowa Practice Permit Test features 40 multiple-choice questions on the rules of the road.

  • Questions 43-84
    Practice Test 2

    Designed to be both straightforward and intuitive, Iowa Practice Permit Test 2 features even more questions for those that understand the value of practice.

  • Questions 85-126
    Practice Test 3

    The third in our series of practice tests, Iowa Practice Permit Test 3 offers even more practice. Use this expert written practice test to ensure you pass.

  • Questions 127-168
    Practice Test 4

    Learn even more about the rules of the road withIA DOT Practice Permit Test 4. Test your knowledge on some of the very same topics as the real exam. Don’t skip this test.

  • Questions 169-218
    Road Signs Test

    To earn a great score on your written permit test, you need to know IA road signs. Take our practice test to check – and improve – your road sign knowledge.

  • 50 random questions
    DOT Test Simulator

    Get a feel for the real exam before you visit your local DOT office. Designed to simulate the real test with randomized questions, no explanations, and new questions every time.

  • All 158 questions
    Endurance Test

    With 150 questions and no explanations, this practice test will truly test your knowledge in all areas of safe driving. Make this test an essential part of your study plan.

Motorcycle Practice Tests (100 questions)

  • Questions 1-25
    Motorcycle Test 1

    Before you take the Iowa motorcycle written test, take our IA Motorcycle Practice Test 1 to see how much you really know. Get started now.

  • Questions 26-50
    Motorcycle Test 2

    Don’t bother with inferior practice tests, take our IA Motorcycle Practice Test 2 and see how much you really know. Take it now.

  • Questions 51-75
    Motorcycle Test 3

    Continue your preparation for Iowa’s written motorcycle test with our IA Motorcycle Practice Test 3. The third test in our series is a challenging one! Get started.

  • Questions 76-100
    Motorcycle Test 4

    Taking the IA Motorcycle Practice Test 4 is the next step to passing the Iowa motorcycle written test on the first attempt. Take it now to test your knowledge.

  • All 100 questions
    Motorcycle Endurance Test

    Prepare for the Iowa motorcycle permit test with this comprehensive practice test featuring the largest number of questions we have for Iowa. Test your knowledge and endurance now!

  • Iowa DOT Handbook 2021

    The Iowa Drivers Handbook is a powerful study tool to help you begin preparing for the Iowa permit or license test. Get your FREE copy here!

  • Iowa DOT Motorcycle Handbook 2021

    The Iowa Motorcycle Manual is a powerful study aid to help you begin preparing for the Iowa motorcycle license test. Get your free copy here!

Iowa Learner's Permit FAQ

Applying for Your IA License

What are the age requirements for getting started?

Iowa has instituted a Graduated Driver’s License Program for first time drivers. Here are the stages and age requirements:

  • 14 years old – Learner’s Permit
  • 14 ½ years old – Minor School License
  • 16 years old – Provisional License
  • 17 years old – Full Driver’s License

What documents am I required to bring with me when applying for a license in Iowa?

You will need:

  • Written consent from a parent or legal guardian
  • Proof of identity (example: birth certificate or passport)
  • Proof of residency
  • Social Security Number, such as your Social Security Card
  • $6 for fee payment

Here is more information on acceptable proof.

Where do I file my IA driver’s license application?

At the local Iowa Department of Transportation office.

How can I contact my local office?

Call (800) 532-1121, (515) 244-8725 or (515) 244-8725. You can also visit https://iowadot.gov/mvd/iowa-dot-locations.

Do I have to take a Driver’s Ed Course?

Yes, Iowa requires completion of driver’s education as part of its Graduated Driver’s License Program.

What if I am new to Iowa?

To transfer your out-of-state Learner’s Permit, Intermediate Driver’s License or Full Driver’s License to an Iowa Learner’s Permit or Driver’s License, you need to be at least 16 years old, have held your out-of-state permit or license for 12 months, have completed driver’s ed, have at least 20 hours of driving practice and not have had any accidents or moving violations in the last six months.

What subjects are commonly covered on the written test?

The Iowa permit test covers road signs, traffic laws and other rules of the road covered in the Iowa Driver’s Handbook. Here are two examples of content from the driver’s manual that could be covered on the test:

  • When starting to parallel park, you should signal and stop with the rear bumper of your vehicle even with the rear bumper of the vehicle in front of the place you want to park.
  • Accelerate gradually and smoothly. Trying to start too fast can cause the drive wheels to spin, particularly on slippery surfaces, and cause the vehicle to slide.

How is the test formatted?

It is multiple choice.

Are there a lot of “trick” questions on the written test?

No, there are no trick questions on the test. All questions are drawn from the driver’s manual – so you should be careful to study it page by page.

How many questions are on the test and how many do I need to answer correctly to pass?

There are 35 questions on Iowa written test and you need to answer at least 28 of them correctly to pass.

What are the best ways to prepare for the written test?

It is best to take a two-pronged attack: 1) study the Iowa Driver’s Manual thoroughly and 2) take practice tests online to gauge your progress and direct your studies. Take a practice test now.

Where can I get a free Iowa Driver’s Manual to study?

We offer the handbook for free on this website.

How can I improve my odds for passing the first time I take the test?

Study the state driver’s manual carefully from cover to cover and also take online practice tests, which can help you identify problem areas and ensure you focus more of your studies on the content you need to know. To assess your current knowledge of Iowa’s driving rules, take a practice test.

What should I do the night before the test?

You should review the driver’s manual and take another practice test so that you are confident you know the material. You should also plan on getting plenty of rest so that you are energetic and thinking clearly the next day. One more thing: be sure to allow yourself plenty of time to get to the test so you are not feeling rushed and stressed when you sit down to take it.

Do I need to make an appointment to take the written test?

If is recommended that you make an appointment, if possible.

Where do I take the written test?

You will take the test at a local Iowa DOT office.

What do I need to bring when I sit for the written test?

  • Written consent from a parent or legal guardian
  • Proof of identity (example: birth certificate or passport)
  • Proof of residency
  • Social Security Number, such as your Social Security Card
  • $6 for fee payment

Here is more information on acceptable proof.

Who should accompany me to the written test?

You should be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Do I need to pay a fee to take the written test?

Yes, you will need to pay a $6 fee.

What should I expect when I sit for the written test?

The test will contain 35 questions covering traffic laws, road signs and general safe driving techniques. You will need to answer at least 28 of the questions correctly to pass. You cannot refer to the driver’s manual or any notes while taking the test. You can complete the test on your schedule – there is no time limit. Take a practice test formatted like the real thing.

What happens after I pass the written test?

You will receive your Learner’s Permit and can begin your behind-the-wheel driving practice. You need to log 50 total hours of practice driving, with 10 of those hours coming at night.

What happens if I fail the written test?

You can retake the test.

How soon can I retake the written test?

You can retake it as soon as the next business day.

I’ve passed the written permit test, what are the next steps?

Now you can begin your driving practice with a licensed driver who is a parent or legal guardian, an immediate family member age 21 or older, a driver’s ed teacher or a licensed adult age 25 or older.

You need to log 20 hours of driving practice, with two of those hours at night.

You will also need to complete driver’s education.

This course will include 30 hours of classroom instruction, 20 minutes on railroad crossing safety and organ donation and six hours of laboratory instruction.

How long after getting my Learner’s Permit can I apply for a license?

To apply for a provisional license you:

  • Need to be at least 16 years old
  • Must have held your Learner’s Permit for at least 1 year and have no traffic violations
  • Need to have completed 20 hours of driving practice, with two hours at night

Can I drive anywhere in Iowa with my Learner’s Permit?

Yes, as long as you are accompanied by a qualified driving supervisor.

Should I practice driving solely during the day?

No, you must also complete at least 2 hours of driving at night.

Does anyone have to be in the car with me when I’m driving with my Learner’s Permit?

Yes, you must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, an immediate family member age 21 or older, a driver’s ed teacher or a licensed adult age 25 or older.

What should I do if I have a lost Iowa Learner’s Permit?

You can replace a lost Learner’s Permit by visiting a local Iowa driver license office. You will need to present identification like when you applied for your permit.

How can I be sure I’m prepared to ace the driving test?

Be sure to practice driving as much as possible and also be sure to pay attention during your driver’s ed course. You should also study your Iowa Driver’s Manual and apply the tips and concepts revealed in the book to your driving efforts. Finally, don’t forget to listen to your driving supervisors and be sure to implement their tips and critiques.

Are there particular driving maneuvers I should practice?

You should practice turns, parking, changing lanes, braking, accelerating, checking your mirrors, following at a safe distance and other common driving maneuvers.

How can I simulate the driving test?

Ask people who have taken the test to describe what they had to do and practice those maneuvers, such as parking and turning. Your driver’s ed teacher should also have insight into what you will be tested on during the driving test. Finally, if possible drive the roads that are included on the test to better familiarize yourself with them.

How do I schedule my driving test?

Contact your local driver’s license office.

Where do I take the driving test?

The test will be administered at a driver’s license office near you.

What should I bring to the driving test?

Be sure to bring the following with you to the DOT office:

  • Learner’s Permit
  • Parent or guardian or completed consent form (Form 430018).
  • $8 payment for provisional license

You will also need to bring:

  • A properly functioning vehicle
  • Vehicle registration
  • Proof of insurance

Who should bring me to the driving test?

A licensed parent or legal guardian should bring you.

What will I be asked to do on the driving test?

During the driving test you will be asked to display competency at both making common driving maneuvers on a course and driving on the road in actual traffic. Some of the maneuvers you may have to perform include parking, turns, stopping, accelerating and more. When driving in traffic you will need to display a good understanding of defensive driving techniques..

What are the most common reasons new drivers fail the driving test?

Reasons for failure can range from nerves to failing to signal to not checking mirrors to improper hand position on the wheel, speeding and more. When taking the test remember to stay calm and focused on the task at hand.

What are five mistakes I should be sure to avoid when taking the driving test?

  • Not paying attention to speed and going over the limit
  • Failing to come to a complete stop
  • Not checking mirrors when changing lanes
  • Overcorrecting during a turn
  • Not driving according to road conditions

What happens if I fail the driving test?

You can retake the test as soon as you like.

Will I need to pay a fee to retake the test?

No, there is not fee to take the retest.

I’ve passed the road test, now what?

You will receive your provisional license.

What restrictions come with an Iowa license?

Restrictions include:

  • You can drive without supervision from 5 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.
  • You can drive with the supervision of a parent or guardian, immediate family member age 21 or older or designated adult 25 or older during the hours of 12:30 a.m. and 5 a.m.

What are the insurance requirements for drivers in IA?

Iowa requires all drivers to carry auto insurance. The state’s minimum requirements are:

  • $20,000 bodily injury per person per accident
  • $40,000 bodily injury for all persons per accident
  • $20,000/$40,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage

What if I need to renew my license or replace a lost/stolen license?

You can renew your Iowa driver’s license up to 30 days before the expiration. The Iowa DOT is currently transitioning from a license validity period of 5 years to 8 years and during that period you will be assigned a random expiration date anywhere between 5 and 8 years.

If your license is lost or stolen, you can get a duplicate license for a $10 fee at your local DOT office. You will need to bring identification documents.

Where can I renew my Iowa driver’s license?

You can renew your Iowa license online or in person at the local driver’s license office.

Will I be required to take a vision test when renewing my license?

If required to renew in person, the answer to this question is yes.

The state of Iowa considers good vision to be essential for safe driving in the state and requires license holders to have a minimum of 20/40 vision in at least one eye, with or without corrective lenses.

How to Get Your Iowa Learner’s Permit in 2021

Need to pass the Iowa permit test but don’t know where to start?  In this step-by-step guide, we will walk you through the steps required to pass the Iowa permit test, get your permit, and finally go on to earn your unrestricted driving privileges.

Iowa uses a Graduated License Program (GDL), which is designed to help you earn your permit and finally your license over an extended period of time  You will need to pass the permit test as well as gain driving experience under the supervision of a licensed driver before you go on to drive on your own.

In Iowa, the GDL process has three steps:

  • Instruction Permit.
  • Intermediate License.
  • Full License.

Instruction Permit

When you are 14 years old, you can apply for your Instruction Permit (or learner’s permit) in the state of Iowa. While holding this permit, you can practice your driving skills as long as you have a licensed driver age 21 or above in the passenger seat.

Before you can get your permit, you’ll need to pass a written knowledge test (also known as the permit test). During this test, you will demonstrate your knowledge of traffic laws, signals and signs.

The Iowa DOT Test — What You Need to Know

It’s such a great feeling to get your permit as it represents the first time you can really experience the freedom that comes with being a legal driver. And before you know it, you’ll have your driver’s license allowing you go where you want, when you want.

But before the state can issue you a learner’s permit, Iowa’s DOT requires you to first pass the Iowa permit test. This written exam is designed to test your understanding of the rules of the road, traffic and road signs, safety rules, and Iowa traffic laws.

Study Hard to do Well

If you want to do well on the exam, you must prepare ahead of time. We provide a free copy of the Iowa Driver’s Handbook for your use, and you can pick up a physical copy by contacting the Iowa Department of Transportation Motor Vehicles Division (MVD).

Make Sure You’re Ready With IA Practice Permit Tests

Did you know that statistics tell us that a large percentage of first-time test-takers fail the exam?  Why are there so many test failures? Is it lack of preparation or failure to practice? The answer is both.  Practice exams are a surefire way to increase your odds of doing well on the permit test. Our Iowa practice permit test will teach you everything you need to know to pass.

Visit Your Local MVD Facility and Do Your Testing

Before you leave to take your test, make sure you bring:

  • Your parent or guardian. If he or she can’t be present, you must bring a signed copy of the Parent’s/Guardian’s Written Consent Form (Form 430018).
  • Proof of identity (such as a birth certificate or passport).
  • Proof of Social Security number.
  • Proof of residency (such as a school enrollment card).
  • $6 for testing and permit fees.

You’ve studied hard, and now your work is going to pay off. After you pass the permit test, you will also be given a vision test. If you want to drive safely, you must make sure you can see well enough.

Begin Your Driving Practice

Now that you have your permit, you can begin to practice. To move on to the next phase in the GDL process, you must complete 18 hours of supervised daytime practice driving and two hours of night practice. You are also required to sign up for a state-approved driver’s education course and complete 30 hours of classroom training and six hours of behind-the-wheel training with your instructor.

Note: In the state of Iowa, drivers who carry the Instruction Permit have the option of applying for a Minor School License (MSL) when they are 14 and a half years old. This license will allow you to drive without supervision as long as you are going to or from a school-related activity between the hours of 5 a.m. and 10 p.m. You must live within one mile of your school, have completed driver’s education, have held your permit for at least six months without any violations and have permission from your parent or guardian to apply for the MSL.

Intermediate License

When you are at least 16 years old, you have held your permit for at least one year without any violations and you have completed all your required training, you can apply for your Intermediate License.

When you are ready, visit your local MVD facility and bring along:

  • Your Instruction Permit.
  • Your parent or guardian and a signed copy of the Parent’s/Guardian’s Written Consent Form (Form 430018).
  • A certificate of completion for your driver’s education course.
  • Proof of identity.
  • Your Social Security number.
  • Proof of residency.
  • $6 for testing and license fees.

At this point, you will be required to take a behind-the-wheel test to show that you know what you’re doing on the road.

The Iowa Intermediate License comes with a few rules:

  • You may not drive between the hours of 12:30 a.m. and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by a licensed family member age 21 or older or a designated driver age 25 or older. There is an exception for driving to and from work or school.
  • You must log an additional 10 hours of practice driving, with two of those hours taking place at night. You must be supervised by a parent or guardian age 21 or older while doing this practice.
  • You may not use a cell phone while driving except to dial 911 in an emergency situation.

Driver’s License

When you are 17 years old, you can get your full license as long as you don’t have any traffic violations. You first must have completed all your practice driving. When you have, simply visit your local MVD facility with $4 in license fees, and trade your Intermediate License in for a full license.

Congratulations! You are now an unrestricted driver.

Additional Information

The state of Iowa prohibits all drivers from sending text messages or checking the Internet while driving.