How many teens take online driver's education every year?
Hi, and thanks for the question about the number of teenagers who take drivers education course online each year. My research was able to find that approximately 6% of teens in the US take an online drivers ed course. Because most Wonder requests are limited to a specific region based on the parameters of the question, I used the US as the country of reference. Because not all states report the number of drivers ed students annually, we were unable to determine the average number of students that this percentage represents.
While researching, I found that there is no pre-compiled data that would give you an accurate number of teens who take the test online. Only 31 US states have a drivers education requirement for teenagers to receive a license, so the information on the web is limited. Additionally, only 15 US states offer the option of taking a drivers education course online. I did find the reported data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration from several states on how many teens aged 15-18 are licensed each year, but found that several states do not publicly report this information. I also used the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety to determine the states that offer online drivers ed classes.
The most recent reported data for the number of online drivers ed students in comparison to classroom students was published in 2011 by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety (See "Percentages of Students Taking Online Drivers Ed Classes by State"). This report listed the following details:
California - 33-55% online
Colorado - 17.5% online
Florida - 183,000 online students
Georgia - 40% online
Idaho - 2% online
Kansas - 9% online
Texas - 35-40% online
Virginia - 3.13% online
Wisconsin - less than 5% online
According to the report, only 15 states offer an online alternative to the traditional classroom course. These states include Indiana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Utah, and the states mentioned above. Many of the other states were unreported. I used the averages of the 9 out of 15 states that did report the percentages of online students compared to the total drivers ed students to come up with a percentage that can be reasonably applied to the rest of the states. For Florida, I took the 183,000 students reported and divided it by 779,237, the number of total 15-18 year old drivers ed students who receive licenses annually according to the NHTSA overview of drivers ed. This gave me an average of 23.4% for the state of Florida. In total, the average among all nine states was 19.8%. I kept in mind that the other 35 states in the US do not offer the option for taking a course online. Therefore, only 15/50 states, or 30% of the states, have the option for online drivers ed courses. So I took 19.8% of online students out of the 30% of the states that offer the courses, and found that approximately 5.9% of students who take drivers education courses do so online. State populations differ, so this will render my estimations very rough. I had hoped for more statistical data for our results, but was able to use what we had for a rough approximation.
In summary, we found that there is little reported data on the number of teen students who take drivers education each year, but we were able to estimate the percentage using the available information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. We found that the average number of students who take online courses in the states where this option is available to be 19.8%, and the total percentage for the US to be approximately 5.9%.
Thanks for using Wonder and I hope this research puts you on the right track!