The Role Of Classroom Vs Hands-On CDL Training

When it comes to getting a commercial driver’s license (CDL), there are two main approaches to training: classroom and hands-on. These approaches have different advantages and each one is better suited to different stages of truck driver training. A combination of both gives you the widest range of experience at CDL school. 

Classroom CDL Training

Classroom CDL training involves the mandatory theory training as well as studying and learning the regulations, laws, and safety practices required to be a safe and successful professional truck driver. This type of training usually takes place in an in-person classroom setting but can also be completed online through a variety of courses. 


The main advantage of in-person classroom CDL training is the amount of information you learn in a short time. You can learn about the different types of CDLs, the rules of the road, and the regulations required to be a safe and responsible driver. Additionally, in-person classroom CDL training can prepare you for the written and skills tests you must take to obtain your license.


The downside of classroom CDL training is that it doesn’t provide any on-the-road experience. You will learn a lot of valuable information in the classroom setting that you will put into practical application and apply during the hands-on driving. 

Hands-On CDL Training

Hands-on CDL training involves physically getting behind the wheel of a truck or another vehicle and driving. This training type is the best way to gain the necessary skills and experience to become a safe and responsible driver.


The main advantage of hands-on CDL training is that it allows you to apply the information you’ve learned in the classroom to actual driving scenarios. Hands-on training is also the best way to get comfortable with the size and feel of a vehicle and gain experience with the different types of roads and driving conditions you may encounter on the job.


You’ll typically need to earn your commercial learner’s permit (CLP) before you can start hands-on training. Hands-on driving is best for preparing for the skills test, but, for fairly straightforward reasons, it wouldn’t make sense to use this type of hands-on training to prepare for the multiple-choice CLP exam. 

Interactive CDL Training at HDS Truck Driving Institute

HDS Truck Driving Institute (HDS Truck Driving School) will help you become the best professional truck driver you can be. Our interactive learning environment combines classroom and hands-on training and is taught by instructors with real road experience. By combining these two approaches, we ensure that our students receive the highest-quality training possible to set them up for success in the trucking industry.

Contact HDS today to start your exciting new career as a professional truck driver.