Do I have to take drivers education to get a permit?

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It depends on where you live; check your state in the grid below.

The numbers of states that do and do not require drivers education before obtaining a permit are nearly even. Be sure to pay attention to any additional rules, too. For example, your state might allow you to bypass taking drivers ed before applying for your permit if you wait until a certain age.

Whether it’s before issuing a permit or before issuing a drivers license, most states require drivers education at some point. Before you enroll in a class, make sure you obtain a list of state-approved courses. You might even find that your state allows applicants to take driver ed online, and who couldn’t use that extra convenience?

NOTE: This grid deals with the first learners permit a state requires. Some states require additional permits (such as a provisional permit or license) between the first permit and the actual drivers license. If your state has more than one permit and doesn’t require you to take drivers ed before obtaining the first permit, it might require you to take the class before obtaining the next permit.

Yes No
Alabama
x
Alaska
x
Arizona
x
Arkansas
x
California
x
Colorado
x
Connecticut
x
Delaware
x
Florida
x
Georgia
x
Hawaii
x
Idaho
x
Illinois
x
Indiana
x
Iowa
x
Kansas
x
Kentucky
x
Louisiana
x
Maine
x
Maryland
x
Massachusetts
x
Michigan
x
Minnesota
x
Mississippi
x
Missouri
x
Montana
x
Only if you want your permit before you turn 16.
Nebraska
x
Nevada
x
New Hampshire
x
New Jersey
x
Your student learner permit isn't validated until you complete driver education.
New Mexico
x
New York
x
North Carolina
x
North Dakota
x
Ohio
x
Oklahoma
x
x
Yes if you want to apply at 15 years and 6 months old; no if you want to apply at 16.
Oregon
x
Pennsylvania
x
Rhode Island
x
x
Yes if you're applying for the limited permit (younger than 18); no if you're applying for the regular permit (older than 18).
South Carolina
x
South Dakota
x
Tennessee
x
Texas
x
Utah
x
Vermont
x
Virginia
x
Washington
x
West Virginia
x
Wisconsin
x
Wyoming
x
Washington DC
x

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