Members’ Next Choices

What are the next choices for an advanced driver?

Often after passing the IAM Advanced Course, Members are keen to improve their driving, knowledge and experience even further. There are several options which can be taken at the member’s own pace and competence.

  1. Become an Observer

Many wise men have concluded that the best way to gain a deeper and wider knowledge of a subject is to teach it. The volunteers who sit beside you in your car and help you to improve your driving skills are known as Observers. All our Observers are examined by a process accredited by the IMI (Institute of the Motor Industry).

To qualify as an Observer a candidate would first become a Trainee Observer; after a period which depends on the pace at which the Trainee Observer progresses they would be assessed by a Local Observer Assessor from TVGAM, the local group. On passing this test the Trainee becomes a Local Observer.

After a suitable period of experience, the Local Observer can request coaching to become a National Observer. The examination is conducted by IAM RoadSmart Examiners. After qualification, the National Observer can operate in another Group should the Observer move to another area of the country or to assist another group. After another suitable period, the National Observer can apply to be coached to Local Observer Assessor level, at the discretion of the Group Chief Observer and help Trainee Observers become Local Observers.

Many observers find great satisfaction in seeing newer observers progress through the various stages and they also find that their own standard of driving is enhanced.

  1. Become a Fellow

Our Fellow members have committed to keeping their advanced skills current and refreshed by retesting every three years. In return we offer additional insurance benefits from IAM Surety and other priority offers from time to time. You could join them. The benefits of Fellowship and how to achieve it are described by IAM RoadSmart on the Fellows page

  1. Take the Test again with the aim of achieving a F1RST

Retake the Advanced Driving Test with some extra coaching to try to achieve a F1RST pass. Our IAM RoadSmart F1RST Register recognises excellence during our advanced driver or rider tests.  F1RST membership is attained by taking the advanced test for car, motorcycle or commercial vehicle and achieving a score of 1 in nearly every category.

Existing IAM members may take a Member's Assessment in order to try and achieve the necessary score.

Drivers and riders who hold the equivalent of a police advanced qualification may join the IAM and will be awarded F1RST status

Members will receive a special certificate complete with the F1RST logo. Their names are also entered into the F1RST register.

Full details can be found on the F1RST page.

  1. Take the Masters test

Open to all current IAM members, our Masters programme provides true one-to-one mentoring support and guidance that will help you to attain the highest standard of civilian driving or riding ability in the country. There are no exemption qualifications to our Masters standard.

Building on your skills as an existing advanced road user, the Masters programme will help to enhance and develop your ability even further in the following areas:

  • Applying cornering principles
  • Assessing, planning and executing safe overtaking manoeuvres
  • Recognising opportunities to make safe progress (within the speed limits)
  • Improving observation, anticipation and awareness consistent with vehicle speed
  • Applying sound judgement of speed and distance
  • Delivering a fluent, relevant and continuous commentary

Once you and your mentor feel that you are ready, we will offer you a ninety-minute test that includes both a theory session and an extended drive or ride. To challenge you the Masters test will be conducted on roads unfamiliar to you and may therefore involve travelling a fair distance from where you live. You will be scored on a series of criteria and able to achieve either a Pass or a Distinction award.

Full details are available on the Masters page

  1. Take up a voluntary position in the Group

From time to time we have opportunities for those who are interested and have time to help the Group in a variety of ways. This does not mean becoming a Committee member or spending a lot of time. It is surprising how helpful just a few hours can be. If you might be interested click here.