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Truck driving programs in Portland give you the hands-on training and education to receive your commercial driver’s license, or CDL. When you begin looking for CDL training programs, it is important to do plenty of research. Your research will inform you of a program’s drive time, equipment updates, and instructor-to-student ratio, which are all very important. Continue reading to learn more.

Truck driving schools are not created equal.

It is very important to do your research when choosing a truck driving program. Do not pick a truck driving school based solely on its tuition cost or location. These factors are important, but they are not representations of what skills you will learn and how you will learn them. Look for a school with truck driving courses that offer the most drive time and complete education to help you qualify for your CDL.

Instructed drive time is very important.

While dedicated classwork is important to learn the foundations of truck driving, drive time is the only way you will truly learn how to drive a large vehicle. Choosing a truck driving program that offers a large amount of instructor-monitored drive time is going to make or break your truck driving school experience. Look for a program that offers several hours of drive time, both one-on-one with your instructor and as an observer of your fellow students.

Instructor-to-student ratio is a key factor.

Your driving program should have small class sizes or multiple instructors for large classes. Most quality programs offer an instructor-to-student ratio of 1:4, which is the ideal number. This low ratio will help your instructor to give you dedicated attention and allow you to learn as much information as possible.

Updated equipment can improve a program.

Look for driving programs that offer you updated technology and information to learn from. Vehicles—especially large trucks—are constantly being updated for greater efficiency. It is important to learn on all types of vehicles, but learning about the updated trucks you will likely drive will better prepare you for future truck driver jobs.