March 13, 2024, Durham, NC – iRT is pleased to announce the release of a new version of the Plan My Ride program. Plan My Ride is an interactive, multimedia, eLearning program developed with and for young drivers to teach safe driving skills to prevent distracted and impaired driving. Unlike other safe driving educational programs, Plan My Ride uses a science-backed and theory-driven approach to change behavior by teaching concrete, practical strategies to avoid impaired and distracted driving, and providing opportunities for young drivers to practice the skills learned in 360-degree virtual scenarios.

The updated version of Plan My Ride contains new content designed to teach teens and young adults a set of strategies to plan ahead, avoid substances, drive safely, communicate, and handle social situations, so they can avoid driving while distracted or impaired. The program targets skills to prevent substance use and driving under the influence of alcohol, cannabis, and opioids. In addition, the program targets strategies to avoid distracted driving caused by texting and driving. The revised program contains seven engaging, self-paced lessons that provide education about safe driving, how distractions and impairment impact driving, and skills to avoid driving while impaired.

Plan My Ride lessons are strategically designed to help young drivers retain information and strategies they have learned throughout the program. For example, the program contains videos, animations, reflection activities, and knowledge check quizzes to engage teens and young adults with program content. In addition, learners create their own customized safe driving plan that includes strategies that they can implement in their everyday lives to avoid distracted and impaired driving. All of the eLearning lessons are mobile friendly, so learners can complete the program on a cell phone, tablet, or computer at any location where they have internet access.

The new version of Plan My Ride also contains 360-degree videos containing scenarios designed to help learners practice applying skills they have learned in the program to make decisions to avoid impaired driving in a safe, realistic virtual environment. The scenarios can be viewed on a computer or through a virtual reality headset. The program contains three immersive 360-degree role-play scenarios that provide opportunities to practice the skills taught in the lessons.

A new and exciting addition to the Plan My Ride program is a series of four brief “booster” sessions that learners complete at two, four, six, and eight weeks after they complete the program. The purpose of these mini follow-up or “booster” lessons is to reinforce the key skills learned in the program, through exposure to short web-based modules. Each booster session takes approximately five minutes to complete, and contains both videos and activities that allow learners to practice applying course content to their lives. Learners receive tailored feedback designed to increase their self-efficacy to perform safe driving behaviors. At the beginning of each booster session, learners participate in a mindfulness activity to reflect on their current mood and emotional state before diving into the booster content. In addition to boosting learner engagement, when practiced regularly, mindfulness skills can help young drivers become more aware of their thoughts and feelings before getting behind the wheel, which can help drivers avoid distracted driving.

The Plan My Ride program takes approximately four to five hours to complete, and learners take a knowledge test after completing both the lessons and 360-degree video scenarios. Learners receive a Certificate of Completion for receiving a passing grade on the final knowledge test.

In addition, Plan My Ride was designed to be accessible to users with a wide range of abilities and needs. The program is compliant with Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act and the international Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.2 standards. The program received the 2023 Diamond Award from LearnX® for Best Accessibility in the Best eLearning Design category for its accessibility and usability.

If you are ready to start offering the new version of the Plan My Ride program to young drivers, visit our website to get started.