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The car driving course “Road Safety Education Program” (RSEP) is mandatory in Quebec since 2010 to obtain a Class 5 – Passenger Vehicle driver’s licence.

Road Safety Education Program (RSEP) specificities

The RSEP comprises a total of 39 hours of teaching spread out into four phases, that is 24 hours of theory taught in-class and 15 in-car sessions. As the SAAQ requires that the first phase (theory) lasts at least one month and that the three other phases (theory and in-car sessions) be spread over at least 12 months, you must allow a minimum of 13 months to complete the training and obtain a probationary driver’s licence.

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Here is the detailed pathway to obtain the Class 5 driver’s licence:

This phase starts when you register for the course and make your first payment. During that phase, you will learn about the vehicle, being a driver, the driving environment and at-risk behaviours. We will familiarize you with safe, cooperative and responsible driving behaviours.
The program, the course material, the SAAQ website and the pathway or “Teaching Aid” will be explained to you and you will go through the first 5 2-hour Modules (theory):
Module Description Lenght
1 Theory Module focused on the vehicle  2 h
2 Theory Module focused on the driver  2 h
3 Theory Module focused on the environment  2 h
4 Theory Module focused on at-risk behaviours  2 h
5 Revision of the first four modules and written evaluation.  2 h
The written evaluation itself is free of charge but you must pay to obtain your learner’s licence at the SAAQ. We have created a special page to help you plan your budget where all fees and costs are detailed.
Once the written evaluation of Module 5 is corrected and is a pass, we give you a Knowledge test certificate.

Please note: If the test is a fail, you must plan for a delay before you can try again so that you have time to review your learnings, do or redo the exercises suggested online, or review one or more modules. You cannot get to Phase 2 before graduating Phase 1 et obtaining your learner’s licence.

To obtain your learner’s licence, you must go to an SAAQ outlet with the following documents:
1. Your Knowledge test certificate (proves you passed)
2. Two IDs, ideally one with your picture
3. If you are a minor, you need the Consent of Person Having Parental Authority form, filled-out and signed
4. Money to pay for the learner’s licence at the SAAQ (cost of the licence includes cost of the picture; click here to access current costs table)
5. Something to fix your hair: they WILL take your picture! 🙂
Now you can move on to Phase 2.
Once you have your learner’s licence, you enter into Phase 2 of your training, which is the beginning of the 15 hours of practical in-car sessions you must do to obtain your probatory driver’s licence.
In Phase 2, you wil learn basic manoeuvers in easy driving environments. We will teach you safe, cooperative and responsible driving behaviours. This phase comprises two theory Modules and four in-car sessions, as follows:
Module Description Theory  Practice***
6 Accompanied driving* 2 h 2 x 55 min.
7 OEA Strategy (Observe, Evaluate, Act)** 2 h 2 x 55 min.
* From the moment you obtain your learner’s licence, through to the end of the 24 months after you obtain your probatory driver’s licence, you must at all times have a person accompanying you when you drive. The person who is most likely to accompany you during those three years is invited to attend the two theory courses in Module 6, because they are focused on accompanied driving. There are no fees charged to that person.
** The two practical in-car sessions of Module 7 can be taken together, but not those of Module 6.
*** The practical in-car sessions last  55 minutes, which includes the introduction at the beginning and the feedback at the end.
Phase 3, which is called “Semi-Guided Driving”, comprises three theory Modules and six in-car sessions, as follows:
Module Description Theory  Practice
8 Module focused on the notion of speed 2 h 2 x 55 min.
9 Module focused on sharing the road 2 h 2 x 55 min.
10 Module focused on impaired driving (drugs and alcohol) 2 h 2 x 55 min.
In Phase 3, there are two mini-tests given by your monitor. At the end of Phase 3, you will be encouraged to spend more time on the road with your accompanying person, and even to push back the beginning of Phase 4 a bit so that you drive more with your accompanying person.
Phase 4, called “Semi-Guided to Independant Driving”, comprises two theory Modules and five in-car sessions. It is the last phase of your training.
Module Description Theory  Practice*
11 Fatigue and Distractions* 2 h 2 x 55 min.
12  Eco-Driving 2 h 2 x 55 min.
In-Car Session Summary** 1 x 55 min.
During that phase, you will be allowed to take the second knowledge test, the one given by the SAAQQ, if at least 10 months have elapsed since you have obtained your learner’s licence. It is recommanded that you wait until you have finished all your theory classes before you attempt the SAAQ knowledge test. Once you have passed that second knowledge test, you have to wait two more months before you can plan your final on-road examination.
* Observation in-car session. The two first in-car sessions of Phase 4 must be paired, because during one of those hours you will be observing, and during the other hour, you will be observed. In other words, there will be two students in the car and each will in turn drive and observe.

** The In-Car Summary Session is an evaluation done on the road by the driving school. It is practically the same as the SAAQ examination, but it aims at deciding if you have acquired the skills required to pass the SAAQ examination and succeed.

Once you have completed the whole theory program ad the 15 in-car sessions with success, we will issue you a certificate with the mention “Pass”. That certificate is mandatory – you must have it – to be admitted to the final on-road exam by the SAAQ.

The complete process of learning to drive will therefore last a minimum of 13 months.