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Parental Perceptions of the Learner Driver Log Book System in Two Australian States

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Version 2 2015-02-25, 22:18
Version 1 2014-11-17, 00:00
journal contribution
posted on 2015-02-25, 22:18 authored by Lyndel Bates, Barry Watson, Mark Johann King

Objective: Though many jurisdictions internationally now require learner drivers to complete a specified number of hours of supervised driving practice before being able to drive unaccompanied, very few require learner drivers to complete a log book to record this practice and then present it to the licensing authority. Learner drivers in most Australian jurisdictions must complete a log book that records their practice, thereby confirming to the licensing authority that they have met the mandated hours of practice requirement. These log books facilitate the management and enforcement of minimum supervised hours of driving requirements.

Method: Parents of learner drivers in 2 Australian states, Queensland and New South Wales, completed an online survey assessing a range of factors, including their perceptions of the accuracy of their child's learner log book and the effectiveness of the log book system.

Results: The study indicates that the large majority of parents believe that their child's learner log book is accurate. However, they generally report that the log book system is only moderately effective as a system to measure the number of hours of supervised practice a learner driver has completed.

Conclusions: The results of this study suggest the presence of a paradox, with many parents possibly believing that others are not as diligent in the use of log books as they are or that the system is too open to misuse. Given that many parents report that their child's log book is accurate, this study has important implications for the development and ongoing monitoring of hours of practice requirements in graduated driver licensing systems.