Driving instructors sometimes hesitate to use a simulator when training drivers. Some students prefer to drive a real car for their initial training, while others see a simulator more as a game. A research driving simulator is not a game, but it can help you to learn the skills needed to drive safely.
A simulator that is well designed and functional will focus on traffic rules, traffic participation and managing traffic in realistic situations. These skills are what are most difficult to master in a learner-car. The following are some of the properties of a driving simulator.
* Skills are taught in such a manner that there is no mental overload. The training focuses on the automation of driving tasks like gear changing, turning lanes, steering techniques, scanning for intersections, negotiating roundabouts and entering highways.
* Simulators allow trainees to experience a wide range of traffic situations within a short amount of time. You can learn specific skills in a simulator. A simulator allows the trainee to drive in a virtual environment for an hour and see more intersections than when they are driving in the real world. Visual scanning, indication and gear use, speed control, priority rules and speed control can all be practiced and evaluated as you approach each intersection. Driver safety is a major determinant in driver training.
* Instructive traffic situations can occur more often than not during lessons in a learner-car. Lessons in a simulator result in instructive situations that are well-timed and have a high training value. All trainees benefit from a simulator lesson’s guaranteed effectiveness.
* A simulator that is good has a “virtual instructor”, which continuously assesses the trainee’s behavior. It immediately provides feedback when the trainee makes an error. This provides faster feedback and allows for quicker learning.
* The simulator allows students to learn how to drive in a controlled environment that is free from stress. In the real world, errors are less serious than in simulators. Most people learn faster and more efficiently when they feel safe.