The Alabama Department of Public Safety has established a graduated driver license program for all teens wanting to get an Alabama license. While the GDL program does not require a teen to complete a driver education course, taking drivers ed can help first-time drivers greatly with the knowledge and skills that they need to be safe, responsible and confident when they get behind the wheel.

Qualifying for Alabama Driving School

The requirements of the Alabama GDL program will apply to you unless:

  • You are over 18 years of age
  • You are 16 or older, married or the head of your household
  • You are 17 and have held a drivers license for at least six months

If you are under the age of 18, you will need to fulfill the following requirements to get an Alabama driver license:

  • Obtain an Alabama learner permit
  • Complete at least 30 hours of supervised practice driving with a licensed adult 21 or older OR complete an approved Alabama drivers ed course

Among other requirements, getting an Alabama learner permit means passing a written knowledge test at the DPS. While all the information can be found in the Alabama driver handbook, perhaps the simplest way to pass the test would be to know the answers before you got there. This can be accomplished easily with an Alabama permit practice test. These tests are built from questions taken from real permit tests, so you will know everything you need to know before you arrive.

How Drivers Ed Alabama Works

There’s a good chance you can complete your Alabama drivers ed course at your high school or through an AL DPS approved driver training company.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Although there are many online providers of Alabama driver education, none of them are recognized by the Alabama GDL program. However, if you are considering not taking drivers ed, taking one of these online courses may be very helpful to prepare you for the other requirements of the GDL program.

In your Alabama driving school course, you will spend time learning both in a classroom and behind the wheel. The 30 hours of classroom training will cover topics like:

  • Alabama driving law
  • Techniques for driving in hazardous situations
  • Road signs, signals and markings
  • Handling emergency situations
  • Your responsibilities as a driver

Out of Alabama Drivers Ed and Out Onto the Road

When you turn 16, having your Alabama learner permit and your completed drivers education course makes you eligible to apply for your Alabama driver license. The Alabama license for 16-year-olds is a provisional license that comes with the following restrictions:

  • You may not drive between midnight and 6 AM unless accompanied by your parent, guardian or other adult approved by them. You may also drive during these restricted hours if you’re going to school, work, church or because of an emergency.
  • You may carry only one passenger in your car other than immediate family members.
  • You may not use a cell phone or any other handheld device while driving.

At 17, you may apply for your Stage III unrestricted drivers license if you have held your restricted license for at least six months.