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2021 Iowa MVD Test & Permit Practice – 100% Free

This Iowa Practice Test
  Number of questions on each practice test: 25
  Question pool: 750+
  The Iowa practice test is random



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#1. When you see a motorcycle's turn signal flashing:

Often turn signals do not automatically shut off on a motorcycle and riders occasionally forget to cancel them after a turn is completed. Make sure you know what the rider is going to do before you move into the path of the motorcycle.


#2. Which of the following equipment is not allowed on your car?

Cut-outs, bypasses, or similar devices are not allowed.


#3. If you are involved in a traffic accident where someone is injured, you must always:

If anyone is hurt in the accident, you must help get medical attention if the injured person asks for assistance. If anyone is seriously hurt and cannot ask for help, be sure to summon an ambulance or medical assistance immediately. When someone is hurt or killed in an accident you must also immediately report that accident to the nearest law enforcement agency.


#4. What should you do at the first sign of rain?

Turn on your headlights to increase your visibility. Rain cuts the distance you can see. Having good wiper blades is important to safe driving and good car maintenance.

When you turn on your wipers, turn on your headlights.

Remember to slow down at the first sign of rain, snow, or sleet. These all make the roadway slippery.


#5. Any time you cannot see beyond 500 feet, you must:

Iowa law requires you to use your headlights from sunset to sunrise or whenever visibility is 500 feet or less.

It is a good idea to turn on headlights whenever the windshield wipers are in use.


#6. If you see this sign beside the road, you should:

Traffic signal ahead. This sign warns of traffic signals at the intersection ahead. Slow down. Poor visibility is likely.


#7. Under the point system for habitual offenders, how many points will be assessed for failure to stop and render aid at an accident site?

Failure to stop and leave information or render aid at an accident site will result in five points.


#8. A three-point turn should only be used:

This is the most difficult and dangerous way to turn around. Use it only when the road or street is too narrow to make a U-turn and you cannot go around the block.


#9. When is it safe to pass a vehicle stopped at a crosswalk?

Never pass when a vehicle in front of you has stopped at an intersection to allow a pedestrian to cross.


#10. After passing this sign you reach an intersection without signs or signals. You must:

T-Intersection Ahead. The road you are on does not go straight ahead. Prepare to turn right or left.


#11. What does this sign mean?

Road curves gradually to the right. Be prepared for the change in direction.


#12. The do not enter sign is an example of a regulatory sign and it is:

A square sign with a white horizontal line inside a red circle means you cannot enter. You will see this sign at roadway openings you are not to enter and when traffic is one way against you. You will see them at exit ramps, in crossovers on divided roadways, and at numerous locations on one-way roads.


#13. Which of the following vehicles must always stop before crossing railroad tracks?

Watch for vehicles that must stop at railroad crossings. All school buses and vehicles carrying passengers for hire, and all vehicles required to be placarded for hazardous materials, must stop within 15 to 50 feet of railroad tracks before crossing.

Remember, if you are following this type of vehicle you should slow down and be prepared to stop. It is against the law to pass any vehicle within 100 feet of a railroad crossing.


#14. When your car has an enabled front passenger air bag, a rear-facing infant seat must:

If a vehicle is equipped with a passenger-side air bag, under no circumstances should an infant in a rear-facing safety seat be placed in the front passenger seat.


#15. If your vehicle starts to skid or hydroplane, you should:

If you begin to skid, take your foot off the accelerator, and turn your steering wheel in the direction of the skid.


#16. If you park facing uphill on a street with a curb and turn the front wheels to the left:

Headed uphill, turn your front wheels away from the curb and let your vehicle roll back a few inches. The curb will stop the car from rolling anywhere.


#17. When a traffic signal is showing a flashing red light, you must:

A flashing red signal light means stop. Treat it the same as a stop sign.

After stopping, you may proceed when it is safe. Observe the right-of-way rules.


#18. It is against the law to cross a double solid yellow center line:

Double yellow lines on two-way roads indicate no-passing zones.

Markings do not prohibit a driver from crossing the marking if turning to the left at an intersection or into or out of a driveway or private road or making a permitted U-turn (Section 21460 ).

This question asked when you are not allowed to cross solid yellow lines.


#19. How many hours of supervised driving must an applicant log while holding an intermediate license?

With an intermediate license, you must log 10 hours of supervised driving. Minimum of two hours must be between sunset and sunrise.


#20. What is the only medically proven method to remove alcohol or other drug combinations from your system?

Only time will get it out of your system. Cold showers, fresh air, vitamins, black coffee, and exercise will do nothing to sober you up. Once in the body, alcohol must be chemically broken down and oxidized by the liver. This is a slow process.


#21. When driving inside a roundabout, do not:

Do not pass or drive beside trucks or buses.

This question asked what you should not do.


#22. On which side should you pass a barricade with this panel?

Slanting stripes on a panel or barricade tell you on which side to pass.

Stripes sloping downward to the left means the driver should bear to the left. Stripes sloping downward to the right means the driver should bear to the right.


#23. Which lane should you use for a left turn?

A green arrow means you can use the lane beneath it.

A red X means you may not.

A flashing yellow X means the lane is only for turning.

A steady yellow X means that the use of the lane is changing, and you should move out of it as soon as it is safe to do so.


#24. Keeping a safe following distance using a two-second rule means:

The safest and easiest way to judge a safe following distance is to use the two-second rule. This will keep the vehicles in front of you far enough ahead that you will be able to stop within the assured clear distance ahead.

Remember, the two-second rule does not mean that you are able to stop within two seconds.


#25. When are you allowed to drive faster than a maximum speed limit?

The speed you can drive your vehicle depends on the posted speed limit, the road conditions, and the weather. The posted speed limit is the fastest speed you can legally drive under ideal driving conditions.

By law, you must drive at a careful and prudent speed not greater than nor less than is reasonable and proper, having due regard to the traffic, surface, and width of the highway and of any other conditions. This is known as the basic speed rule.

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Facts about the Iowa MVD Knowledge Examination

MVD Knowledge Test for Permit and Driver’s License
  Number of questions on the permit exam: 35
  Passing score: 80 percent
  Correct answers to pass: 28
  Allotted time to complete test: No limit (but must start 30 minutes before closing)
  Wait time before retest: 1 day [761-604.20]

Practice Tests for Your Iowa Instruction Permit and Driver’s License

Studying for your driver’s license or instruction permit just got a lot easier with more sample questions and answers based on the official driver’s manual and real examinations from the Iowa Motor Vehicle Division (MVD). With these practice tests you can pass the Iowa knowledge exam the first time.

Each practice test has 25 random questions from a large bank of verified questions and answers. After each test question, you will get instant feedback including a short explanation if your answer is incorrect. This will help you learn the Iowa rules of the road a lot faster.

Remember, don’t try to just memorize questions and answers. You will be a lot better off if you also understand why an answer is correct or not. Check information in the driver’s manual when you aren’t sure about the facts.

Read more: Risky Study Tactics .

Iowa driver's manual

1   Start by Getting the Driver’s Manual

You will not pass the test without a good overview of the contents in the official Driver’s Manual.

Start by getting the latest version of the manual. You can get it online or from any MVD service center.

Read it a couple of times over a period of a few days or 1 – 2 weeks, depending on how much you already know.

2   Use Practice Tests Wisely

When you’ve read the manual, you should use these practice tests to check your progress and see if you are ready for the real examination or not.

But use the practice tests wisely.

Besides from giving you an idea of the questions asked on the real examination, they are a learning tool. They should not be used as a cheat sheet instead of reading the manual.

Questions will challenge your understanding of Iowa traffic laws and the highway signs that regulate, warn, and direct traffic.

On the real knowledge exam you must reach a passing score of 80%, but on practice tests you should always aim for 100%. You will probably miss questions about details that seem unimportant for safe driving or miss questions because you didn’t read them carefully enough. Those are common mistakes on the real examination as well.

Remember, everything in the manual is there for a reason. Questions may be drawn from all parts of the manual.

3   Active Learning

Active learning can take many forms, but are generally centered around writing, talking, problem solving, or reflecting.

Studies show that the more you engage in an active learning process, the faster you will learn and the better your new knowledge will stick.

Think beyond the knowledge test and focus on understanding how you can be a safe driver. Discuss traffic rules with friends and family, make your own quizzes, etc. Give yourself plenty of time to learn. It will pay off.

3   Testing Strategy

Your best strategy for taking the real is examination is to be fully rested. Don’t try to cram as much as possible the night before the test.

If you take your test at a MVD location, arrive there in good time for your scheduled appointment.

If you take the test at home, steer away from all distractions. Turn off your phone and make sure you have plenty of time to finish the test without rushing through questions.

After reading a question, try to answer it on your own before you look at the choices. Then read the possible choices and look for the correct one.

Always make sure that your answer choice makes sense.

Permit Test - Touch Screen

Who Must Pass the Iowa Written Knowledge Test?

You must take the MVD knowledge test:

  As a first-time applicant

If you haven’t had a learner’s permit or full driver’s license before, you must pass all tests.

Applicants under 18 years will follow Iowa’s graduated driver’s license (GDL) program. The program includes three steps that allow for increased driving privilege as the driver accumulates.
more skill and demonstrates responsible driving practices.

  If you hold a foreign driver’s license

If you move to Iowa and hold a foreign license, you must transfer to an Iowa license. If you hold a license from a country other than Germany or Canada, you must pass all tests.

  If you hold an out-of-state driver’s license that has expired

Holders of an out-out-state license are normally exempt from taking the knowledge test, but if the license is invalid or has expired for more than one year you must pass the full examination as a first-time applicant.

  If you want to replace a revoke license

If the state revoked your license, you must apply for a new one. This includes passing all tests again.

The same applies if your license was revoked by another state.

To apply for a new Iowa license, you must wait until the revocation period has passed.

Moving to Iowa

Remember, when you move to Iowa and wish to drive, you must apply for an Iowa license.

If you have an out-of-state license valid for the same driving privilege you are applying for in Iowa, the knowledge and driving tests are usually waived.

You are considered an Iowa resident for purposes of driver licensing if you have:

  • Registered to vote in this state.
  • Enrolled your children in public school.
  • Accepted a permanent job in the state.
  • Lived in Iowa continuously for 30 days.

You do not need an Iowa driver’s license if you are:

  • Driving a military motor vehicle while on duty with the U.S. Armed Forces.
  • Driving farm equipment between the home farm and any nearby (not more than two miles) farmland or farm operation.
  • A student or visitor and have a current license from your home state or country.

The Purpose of the Written Test

The official knowledge exam will determine how well you know and understand highway signs and Iowa traffic laws.

Iowa DOT offers computer-based tests for both permits and driver’s licenses. A traditional written test on paper may still be available in some locations.

While the number of questions on Iowa tests may vary, the test for a new learner’s permit has 35 questions. 20 questions address traffic laws and safe driving techniques. Remaining 15 questions are about signs, signals, and markings.

Our practice tests mix questions, corresponding to a 25-question test. There may be fewer questions about road signs than on the official permit exam – but all road signs from the driver’s manual are covered in our tests. It is similar to the practice test you will find on MVD’s website, but with more questions.

Don’t waste time - Pass the Iowa MVD on your first try

Take the Written Knowledge Test at Home

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, minors up to 18 years can take the knowledge test for an Iowa learner permit in the comfort of their own home.

This is what you need:

    You need to be at least 14 years old and under 18 years.

    An internet connection and a computer (not a phone or tablet).

    An application submitted by a parent.

A parent must complete and submit the Application to Proctor Knowledge Exam form. The parent must also administer the test and make sure you follow the rules.

Once the application is approved an email will be sent with instructions for taking and administering the test. It takes about 7-14 days before you get the email.

An email will also be sent with the test results and instructions after the test is completed.

The option to take the knowledge test at home is not available if you are 18 years or older.

Knowledge Test at MVD

If you are 18 years or older, you must make an appointment and take the test at a service center. Make an appointment .

Remember that you can do business at any available location, not just the one nearest you.

Iowa First-Time Instruction Permit Requirements

This is a short summary of the requirements for first step in the Iowa GDL program:

    You must be at least 14 years old to apply for an Instruction Permit.
    The permit requires written approval of parent/legal guardian.
    You must pass vision screening and a knowledge test.

Iowa First-Time Instruction Permit Restrictions

This is a short summary of the permit restrictions and the requirements for the next step in the Iowa GDL program:

    You must hold the permit for a minimum of 12 months.
    All driving must be supervised.
    Number of passengers limited to the number of seat belts in the vehicle. All passengers must be buckled up.
    You must log 20 hours of supervised driving, of which two hours must be between sunset and sunrise.
    You must complete an approved driver education course. The course must include thirty hours of classroom training and six hours laboratory.
    You must drive accident- and violation-free for six consecutive months immediately before applying for an intermediate license.

Remember, under no circumstances can you practice driving alone. You must always be accompanied by a supervising driver. The driver must sit in a front seat beside you.

You can drive with a parent or legal guardian, any family member over 21 years, a licensed driver education teacher, or any licensed driver who is at least 25 years old and has a written permission of your parent or legal guardian.

When you practice driving you must always have your instruction permit with you.

Frequently Asked Questions

You must correctly answer at least 28 of 35 questions (80%) to pass the Iowa MVD permit examination.

The Iowa instruction permit is available when you are 14 years old.

If you fail the Iowa permit knowledge test, you must wait at least one day before you can take the test again.

Iowa MVD has a online testing program you can take from home if you are under 18 years. If you are 18 years or older, you must visit a MVD office to take your knowledge test.

The difficulty level on Iowa knowledge test for a permit is rated moderate. It is estimated that one-third of all first-time test takers fail the exam.

If you don't practice driving with a parent or legal guardian, a family member over 21 years, or a licensed driver education teacher, the supervising driver must be at least 25 years old. The driver must be licensed and have a written permission from a parent/legal guardian to supervise you.

Under the Iowa Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) program, you must log at least 20 hours of supervised driving while you hold the instruction permit. A minimum of two hours must be between sunset and sunrise.

COVID-19 Alerts

COVID-19 Alerts from Iowa MVD

You can take your knowledge test at home if you are under 18 years. If you are older, you must take the test at a service center.

You must wear a face mask during visits to the service centers. A health screening may also be necessary.

Read more .

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