Co-designing the Practical Driving Test for Diverse Queenslanders

  • 2023

  • Social Impact

Designed In:


Remember your driving test? You just got sweaty palms, right? Now imagine what the driving test is like if you’re neurodiverse, culturally or linguistically diverse, deaf, or all of those at once. To help solve this problem, we co-designed the practical driving test experience with people who have diverse needs.

  • MORE
  • The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) identified that Queenslanders who engage in the practical driving test can experience different barriers. We co-designed the practical driving test with people who have diverse needs, including First Nations people, people with disabilities, people who are neurodiverse and those who are culturally and linguistically diverse. We needed to ensure that we could cater to the diverse needs of our co-designers in our co-design workshops together. Our goal was to co-design a more inclusive and accessible practical driving test experience for everyone, regardless of their background or abilities.

  • We responded to the brief by collaborating with Queenslanders with diverse needs over multiple workshops: co-investigation, co-design, co-test planning, co-testing, and co-analyse. The workshops identified 32 priority recommendations to improve the practical driving test experience in ways that will help everyone. To support individual co-designer needs, we adapted our approach to ensure inclusive and comfortable environments. For example, hiring Auslan interpreters, and adapting individual session activities to cater to different group dynamics (one approach that worked well with one cohort didn't work well with another).

  • Project impact: •Making the practical driving test more inclusive for all Queenslanders •Improving customer, staff, and industry partner experiences •Empowering everyone with the opportunity to attend a driving test regardless of their abilities or background •Creating safe and supportive environments that cater to everyone's needs Exemplar for social design This project sets a new standard for government organisations to involve diverse customers in the development and creation of public services. This leads to more inclusive and effective services, promotes social cohesion, and increases access to resources. This approach contributes to a more prosperous future that values diversity and inclusivity.

  • For the co-investigation and co-design process, we conducted separate workshops with TMR customers, staff and industry partners to understand all perspectives of the practical driving test process. The recommendations generated with our co-designers, partners and TMR were prioritised during each workshop. The 32 recommendations were then evaluated and prioritised against the greatest impacts for everyone in mind. We used a trauma-informed approach in our workshops to ensure that our co-designers felt comfortable. We never forced engagement in activities, encouraged regular breaks and would sit with individuals during the sessions to help them articulate their ideas and write on their behalf when needed. We compiled a current state journey map showing the steps and challenges collected in the workshops. The end-to-end journey was mapped from when customers apply for their learner licence up until they gain their provisional licence. The customer journey map highlighted challenges, opportunities, and areas where more support was needed. The final map was validated by our co-designers. We created a storybook to seek feedback on the future-state experience. For testing, a co-designer suggested that a booklet would be less overwhelming for people than a storyboard on a wall.