Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

We Show You Where the Best Truck Driving Schools in Illinois are Located

We show you how to choose the best truck driving schools in Illinois with our comprehensive list of state-mapped truck driving schools in Illinois. On this page you will also find a list of truck driving schools in Illinois that have been rated and reviewed by the students themselves using a 5 star rating system. Feel free to bookmark this page for future reference by pressing Ctrl-D on your keyboard. Usted puede cambiar el texto en esta página a español con el botón Google Translater ubicado ya sea en el izquierdo lado o el inferior de esta página web.

Illinois Truck driving Schools Information

Total Number of Schools:                                  88
Average Number of Students:                           22
Average Acceptance Rate:                             55%
Average School Tuition Cost:                     $7,768
Average School Loan Amount:                   $4,554
Average Scholarship Award:                      $2,523

Illinois Heavy Truck Driver Jobs Information

Number of Truckers Employed:                      66,050
Average Yearly Salary:                                   $45,040
Average Monthly Pay:                                       $3,753
Average Weekly Pay:                                           $866
Average Hourly Wage:                                      $21.65
National Average Salary:                                $38,700

Illinois heavy truck driver jobs information was current as of May 2013 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

Let Truck Driving Schools Info Connect You With a Reputable CDL Training School In Your Area!

Are you ready to take the next step and begin your career as a well-paid professional truck driver? Our large network of nationally recognized truck driving schools will make it easy for you to find the right school and get started training immediately. The schools in our network hold one or more of the following quality standards:

  • State Licensure
  • PTDI Certification
  • Nationally Recognized Accreditation
  • Job Placement Assistance for Those Who Qualify

Simply fill out the 1-minute application below, and a local specialist will contact you with more details about their quality CDL training program. 

Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

1. Academia Truck Driving School
2249 W. 47th Place
Chicago, IL 60609-4002
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

2. Advantage Driver Training, LLC**
18126 N.W. Frontage Road
Shorewood, IL 60404
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

3. Alamo Truck Driving School
5264 W. 47th Street
Forest View, IL 60638
*Se Habla Espanol

4. ATS Professional Truck Driving School
1205 Carl Court
Suite 111
Wauconda, IL 60084

5. Black Hawk College
1501 State Hwy 78
Kewanee, IL 61443

6. Blue Horizon Truck Driving School
Main Office
6814 W. Archer Avenue
Chicago, IL 60638
Google Plus 5 Stars
*Se Habla Espanol
*mówimy po polsku
*Мы говорим на русском

7. Blue Horizon Truck Driving School
Training Lot
5201 S. Lawandale
Summit, IL 60621
Google Plus 5 Stars
*Se Habla Espanol
*mówimy po polsku
*Мы говорим на русском

8. Bulldog Driving School
7711 W. Belmont Avenue
Elmwood Park, IL 60707
Google Plus 3 Stars

9. CDL Mega Driving School
3320-80 N. River Road
Franklin Park, IL 60131
Google Plus 4 Stars

10. CDL Training Service & Consulting, Inc.
3600 Nameoki Road
Suite 200
Granite City, IL 62040

11. CJ’s Driver Training Center
305 W. Illinois
Assumption, IL 62510
Google Plus 5 Stars

12. CJ’s Driver Training Center
St. Teresa High School
2710 N. Water Street
Decatur, IL 62526

13. College of Lake County
Workforce & Professional Devolopment Institute
19351 W. Washington Street
Grayslake, IL 60030-1198

14. College of DuPage
Addison Regional Center
301 S. Swift Road
Door 6
Addison, IL 60101-1495

15. Columbia Driving School
5028 S. Archer Avenue
Chicago, IL 60632
Google Plus 5 Stars
*mówimy po polsku
*Мы говорим на русском
*Mes kalbame lietuvių

16. Commercial Truck Driving School
135 N. Addison Avenue
Elmhurst, IL 60126

17. Compass Truck Driving School
15W580 N. Frontage Road
Burr Ridge, IL 60527
Google Plus 5 Stars

18. Danville Area Community College
2000 E. Main Street
Danville, IL 61832
Google Plus 4 Stars

19. Eagle Training Services
College of Lake County
19351 W. Washington Street
Grayslake, IL 60030

20. Eagle Training Services
9182 Pyott Road
Lake in the Hills, IL 60156

21. Eagle Training Services
Harper College
Northeast Center
1375 S. Wolf Road
Prospect Heights, IL 60070

22. Elgin Community College
1700 Spartan Drive
Elgin, IL 60123-7193
Google Plus 4 Stars

23. Expert Driving School
1346 W. 18th Street
Chicago, IL 60608

24. Expert Driving School
7644 W. Touhy Avenue
Chicago, IL 60631

25. Expert Driving School
Training Yard
977 W. Cermak
Chicago, IL 60608

26. Express Truck Driving School
1645 E. Oakton Street
Des Plaines, IL 60018
Google Plus 5 Stars
*Mówimy po polsku

27. Harper College
1375 Wolf Road
Prospect Heights, IL 60070

28. Heartland Community College
1500 W. Raab Road
Normal, IL 61761
Google Plus 5 Stars
*Se Habla Espanol

29. Highland Community College
2998 W. Pearl City Road
Bldg. R-155
Freeport, IL 61032
Google Plus 5 Stars

30. Illinois Central College
Professional Devolopment Institute
East Peoria Campus
1 College Drive
East Peoria, IL 61635

31. Illinois Valley Community College
815 N. Orlando Smith Road
Oglesby, IL 61348

32. John Wood Community College
Workforce Development Center
4220 Kochs Lane
Quincy, IL 62305

33. Joliet Junior College
1215 Houbolt Road
Joliet, IL 60431
Google Plus 4 Stars

34. Juarez CDL Training
1151 W. 18th Street
Chicago, IL 60608
*GI Bill Approved

35. Kankakee Community College
231 E. Broadway Street
Bradley, IL 60915

36. Kaskaskia College
27210 College Road
Centralia, IL 62801
Google Plus 3.5 Stars

37. Kishwaukee College
21193 Malta Road
Malta, IL 60150
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

38. Kotra CDL Driving School
1616 Grand Avenue
Suite 206
Waukegan, IL 60085
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

39. Lake Land College
305 Richmond Avenue East
Mattoon, IL 61938
Google Plus 4 Stars

40. Lincoln Land Community College
5250 Shepherd Road
Springfield, IL 62794
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

41.McHenry County College
8900 U.S. 14
Crystal Lake, IL 60012

42. Mega Driving School, Inc.
6105 W. Belmont Avenue
Chicago, IL 60634
Google Plus 1 Stars

43. Mid-City Truck Driving Academy
6740 W. Belmont Avenue
Chicago, IL 60634
Google Plus 2.5 Stars

44. Midwest Technical Institute
Springfield Campus
2731 Farmers Market Road
Springfield, IL 62707
Google Plus 5 Stars

45. Midwest Technical Institute
Springfield Training Range
3401 Remington Road
Springfield, IL 62707

46. Midwest Technical Institute
East Peoria Campus
280 High Point Lane
East Peoria, IL 61611
Google Plus 4 Stars

47. Midwest Technical Institute
East Peoria Training Range
100 Sanitation Road
Bartonville, IL 61607

48. Midwest Technical Institute
Quad Cities Campus
3620 Avenue of Cities
Moline, IL 61265
Google Plus 5 Stars

49. Midwest Technical Institute
Quad Cities Training Range
690 Mill Street
Rock Island, IL 61201

50. Moraine Valley Community College
9000 W. College Pkwy
Palos Hills, IL 60465-2478

51. Oakton Community College
Des Plaines Campus
1600 E. Golf Road
Des Plaines, IL 60016
Google Plus 3.5 Stars

52. Oakton Community College
Skokie Campus
7701 N. Lincoln Avenue
Skokie, IL 60077
Google Plus 4 Stars

53. Olive Harvey College
10001 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60628
Google Plus 3.5 Stars

54. Olney Central College
305 N. West Street
Olney, IL 62450-1099

55. Parkland College
Business Training & Community
1315 N. Mattis Avenue
Champaign, IL 61821

56. Prairie State College
202 S. Halsted Street
Chicago Heights, IL 60411
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

57. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC
5529 Dial Drive
Suite 4
Granite City, IL 62040
Google Plus 5 Stars

58. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC
1315 N. Mattis Avenue
Champaign, IL 61821

59. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC
17840 Laraway Road
Joliet, IL 60433

60. Premier CDL Training Services
Highland Community College
2998 W. Pearl City Road
Freeport, IL 61032

61. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC
8923 N. Prairie Point
Peoria, IL 61615
Google Plus 3 Stars

62. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC
231 E. Broadway Street
Kankakee, IL 60915

63. Professional Truck Driving School
6246 S. Archer Road
Summit, IL 60501
Google Plus 5 Stars

64. Progressive Truck Driving School†**
5538 W. Belmont Avenue
Chicago, IL 60641
Google Plus 1 Stars

65. Progressive Truck Driving School
1945 Bernice Road
Lansing, IL 60438

66. Progressive Truck Driving School
3475 S. Cicero Avenue
Cicero, IL 60804
Google Plus 1 Stars

67. Reeder Transportation Training Center
1242 E. Empire Street
Bloomington, IL 61701

68. Reeder Transportation Training Center
4603 N. University
Peoria, IL 61614

69. Reeder Transportation Training Center
1400 W. Main Street
Carbondale, IL 62901

70. Rend Lake College
468 N. Ken Gray Pkwy
Ina, IL 62846

71. Richland Community College
1 College Park
Decatur, IL 62521

72. Rock Valley College
3301 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61114
Google Plus 3.5 Stars

73. Sauk Valley Community College
173 Illinois Route 2
Dixon, IL 61021

74. Shawnee Community College
8364 Shawnee College Road
Ullin, IL 62992

75. Southeastern Illinois College
3575 College Road
Harrisburg, IL 62946
Google Plus 5 Stars

76. South Suburban College
Business & Career Institute
16333 S. Kilbourn Avenue
Oak Forest, IL 60452

77. Southwestern Illinois College
Collinsville High School
2201 S. Morrison Avenue
Collinsville, IL 62234
Google Plus 2.5 Stars

78. Spirit CDL Training Corporation
1202 Ipsen Road
Belvidere, IL 61008

79. Spoon River College
23235 N. County Hwy 22
Canton, IL 61520
Google Plus 2.5 Stars

80. Star Truck Driving School
South Suburban College
15800 S. State Street
South Holland, IL 60473

81. Star Truck Driving School**
1250 Route 34
Oswego, IL 60543

82. Star Truck Driving School**
710 Larsen Lane
Bensenville, IL 60106

83. Star Truck Driving School
9610 S. 76th Avenue
Hickory Hills, IL 60457

84. Uptown Driver Training
36 Park Plaza
Galesburg, IL 61401

85. Viking Driving School, Inc.
600 Busse Hwy
Park Ridge, IL 60068
Google Plus 5 Stars

86. Wolf Driving School**
2229 W. Schaumburg Road
Schaumburg, IL 60194
Google Plus 4.5 Stars

87. Wabash Valley College
2200 College Drive
Mount Carmel, IL 62863

88. Waubonsee Community College
Workforce Development
Aurora Campus
Room 256
18 S. River Street
Aurora, IL 60506


Truck driving school offers truck driver training programs that are certified to meet the standards of the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI).
** Truck driving school is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Here is the state-mapped list of truck driving schools in Illinois. The list of truck driving schools in Illinois above matches the markers on the map below.

Map of Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

TitleAddress
1. Academia Truck Driving School 2249 W. 47th Place, Chicago, IL 60609-4002
2. Advantage Driver Training, LLC 18126 NW Frontage Road, Shorewood, IL 60404
3. Alamo Truck Driving School 5264 W. 47th Street, Forest View, IL 60638
4. ATS Professional Truck Driving School 1205 Carl Court, Suite 111, Wauconda, IL 60084
5. Black Hawk College 1501 State Hwy 78, Kewanee, IL 61443
6. Blue Horizon Truck Driving School 5926 S. Pulaski, Chicago, IL 60629
7. Blue Horizon Truck Driving School Training Lot, 5201 S. Lawandale, Summit, IL 60621
8. Bulldog Driving School 7711 W. Belmont Avenue, Elmwood Park, IL 60707
9. CDL Mega Driving School 3320-80 N. River Road, Franklin Park, IL 60131
10. CDL Training Service & Consulting, Inc. 3600 Nameoki Road, Suite 200, Granite City, IL 62040
11. CJ's Driver Training Center 305 W. Illinois, Assumption, IL 62510
12. CJ's Driver Training Center St. Teresa High School, 2710 N. Water Street, Decatur, IL 62526
13. College of Lake County Workforce & Professional Devolopment Institute 19351 W. Washington Street, Grayslake, IL 60030-1198
14. College of DuPage Addison Regional Center, 301 S. Swift Road, Door 6, Addison, IL 60101-1495
15. Columbia Driving School 5028 S. Archer Avenue, Chicago, IL 60632
16. Commercial Truck Driving School 135 N. Addison Avenue, Elmhurst, IL 60126
17. Compass Truck Driving School 15W580 N. Frontage Road, Burr Ridge, IL 60527
18. Danville Area Community College 2000 E. Main Street, Danville, IL 61832-5199
19. Eagle Training Services College of Lake County, 19351 W. Washington Street, Grayslake, IL 60030
20. Eagle Training Services 9182 Pyott Road, Lake in the Hills, IL 60156
21. Eagle Training Services Harper College, Northeast Center, 1375 S. Wolf Road, Prospect Heights, IL 60070
22. Elgin Community College 1700 Spartan Drive, Elgin, IL 60123-7193
23. Expert Driving School 1346 W. 18th Street, Chicago, IL 60608
24. Expert Driving School 7644 W. Touhy Avenue, Chicago, IL 60631
25. Expert Driving School Training Yard, 977 W. Cermak, Chicago, IL 60608
26. Express Truck Driving School 1645 E. Oakton Street, Des Plaines, IL 60018
27. Harper College 1375 Wolf Road, Prospect Heights, IL 60070
28. Heartland Community College 1500 W. Raab Road, Normal, IL 61761
29. Highland Community College 2998 W. Pearl City Road, Bldg. R-155, Freeport, IL 61032
30. Illinois Central College Professional Devolopment Institute, East Peoria Campus, 1 College Drive, East Peoria, IL 61635
31. Illinois Valley Community College 815 N. Orlando Smith Road, Oglesby, IL 61348
32. John Wood Community College Workforce Development Center, 4220 Kochs Lane, Quincy, IL 62305
33. Joliet Junior College 1215 Houbolt Road, Joliet, IL 60431
34. Juarez CDL Training 1151 W. 18th Street, Chicago, IL 60608
35. Kankakee Community College 231 E. Broadway Street, Bradley, IL 60915
36. Kaskaskia College 27210 College Road, Centralia, IL 62801
37. Kishwaukee College 21193 Malta Road, Malta, IL 60150
38. Kotra CDL Driving School 1616 Grand Avenue, Suite 206, Waukegan, IL 60085
39. Lake Land College 305 Richmond Avenue East, Mattoon, IL 61938
40. Lincoln Land Community College 5250 Shepherd Road, Springfield, IL 62794
41.McHenry County College 8900 U.S. 14, Crystal Lake, IL 60012
42. Mega Driving School, Inc. 6105 W. Belmont Avenue, Chicago, IL 60634
43. Mid-City Truck Driving Academy 6740 W. Belmont Avenue, Chicago, IL 60634
44. Midwest Technical Institute Springfield Campus, 2731 Farmers Market Road, Springfield, IL 62707
45. Midwest Technical Institute Springfield Training Range, 3401 Remington Road, Springfield, IL 62707
46. Midwest Technical Institute East Peoria Campus, 280 High Point Lane, East Peoria, IL 61611
47. Midwest Technical Institute East Peoria Training Range, 100 Sanitation Road, Bartonville, IL 61607
48. Midwest Technical Institute Quad Cities Campus, 3620 Avenue of Cities, Moline, IL 61265
49. Midwest Technical Institute Quad Cities Training Range, 690 Mill Street, Rock Island, IL 61201
50. Moraine Valley Community College 9000 W. College Pkwy, Palos Hills, IL 60465-2478
51. Oakton Community College Des Plaines Campus, 1600 E. Golf Road, Des Plaines, IL 60016
52. Oakton Community College Skokie Campus, 7701 N. Lincoln Avenue, Skokie, IL 60077
53. Olive Harvey College 10001 S. Woodlawn Avenue, Chicago, IL 60628
54. Olney Central College 305 N. West Street, Olney, IL 62450-1099
55. Parkland College Business Training & Community, 1315 N. Mattis Avenue, Champaign, IL 61821
56. Prairie State College 202 S. Halsted Street, Chicago Heights, IL 60411
57. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC 5529 Dial Drive, Suite 4, Granite City, IL 62040
58. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC 1315 N. Mattis Avenue, Champaign, IL 61821
59. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC 17840 Laraway Road, Joliet, IL 60433
60. Premier CDL Training Services Highland Community College, 2998 W. Pearl City Road, Freeport, IL 61032
61. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC 8923 N. Prairie Point, Peoria, IL 61615
62. Premier CDL Training Services, LLC 231 E. Broadway Street, Kankakee, IL 60915
63. Professional Truck Driving School 6246 S. Archer Road, Summit, IL 60501
64. Progressive Truck Driving School 5538 W. Belmont Avenue, Chicago, IL 60641
65. Progressive Truck Driving School 1945 Bernice Road, Lansing, IL 60438
66. Progressive Truck Driving School 3475 S. Cicero Avenue, Cicero, IL 60804
67. Reeder Transportation Training Center 1242 E. Empire Street, Bloomington, IL 61701
68. Reeder Transportation Training Center 4603 N. University, Peoria, IL 61614
69. Reeder Transportation Training Center 1400 W. Main Street, Carbondale, IL 62901
70. Rend Lake College 468 N. Ken Gray Pkwy, Ina, IL 62846
71. Richland Community College 1 College Park, Decatur, IL 62521
72. Rock Valley College 3301 N. Mulford Road, Rockford, IL 61114
73. Sauk Valley Community College 173 Illinois Route 2, Dixon, IL 61021
74. Shawnee Community College 8364 Shawnee College Road, Ullin, IL 62992
75. Southeastern Illinois College 3575 College Road, Harrisburg, IL 62946
76. South Suburban College Business & Career Institute, 16333 S. Kilbourn Avenue, Oak Forest, IL 60452
77. Southwestern Illinois College Collinsville High School, 2201 S. Morrison Avenue, Collinsville, IL 62234
78. Spirit CDL Training Corporation 1202 Ipsen Road, Belvidere, IL 61008
79. Spoon River College 23235 N. County Hwy 22, Canton, IL 61520
80. Star Truck Driving School South Suburban College, 15800 S. State Street, South Holland, IL 60473
81. Star Truck Driving School 1250 Route 34, Oswego, IL 60543
82. Star Truck Driving School 710 Larsen Lane, Bensenville, IL 60106
83. Star Truck Driving School 9610 S. 76th Avenue, Hickory Hills, IL 60457
84. Uptown Driver Training 36 Park Plaza, Galesburg, IL 61401
85. Viking Driving School, Inc. 600 Busse Hwy, Park Ridge, IL 60068
86. Wolf Driving School 2229 W. Schaumburg Road, Schaumburg, IL 60194
87. Wabash Valley College 2200 College Drive, Mount Carmel, IL 62863
88. Waubonsee Community College Workforce Development, Aurora Campus, Room 256, 18 S. River Street, Aurora, IL 60506-4128

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Student Reviews of Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

If you are a current student, former student, or a graduate of any of the truck driving schools on this page, please leave a short review and rate your school underneath the review form. You will be helping prospective students choose a quality truck driving school by providing some insider information. 

Instructors, employees, and owners of the truck driving school are prohibited from leaving a review and rating their own school. Students only please.

Student, please follow the instructions below to rate and review your school:

  1. Fill in the review form below, including your name and email address.
  2. Type in the name of the truck driving school you attend or attended as the title of your review.
  3. Please write an honest review of the school.
  4. Use the 5-star system below the review form to rate the six different criteria of the school.
  5. Click the “SUBMIT” button to submit your rating and review.

Truck Driving Schools in Illinois - Student Reviews
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How to Choose the Best Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

      Most truck driving schools in Illinois train their students by following the same basic curriculum. In the classroom, students are taught what they need to know to pass the written knowledge test when they go to obtain their Illinois commercial drivers license. This includes coursework in:   Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

  1.       The driving laws and safety regulations as they pertain to truck driving in the state of Illinois.
  2.       The different mechanical and safety parts of a semi.
  3.       The various driving techniques needed to competently operate a tractor trailer.

      In the training yard, students observe and practice operating a tractor trailer using the techniques they were taught in the classroom, so that they will be prepared to pass the pre-trip inspection and the driving test when they go to obtain their Illinois commercial drivers license.

      That’s basically it. There may be minor differences in how the coursework is handled from school to school but, the end objective is always the same; train students to become safe, knowledgeable, and highly qualified commercial truck drivers who are ready to obtain their Illinois CDL and begin their truck driving career.

      With that being said, there are a few things you will need to take into careful consideration when choosing a truck driving school in Illinois. The decision you make could lead you on the path to a great learning experience or a dead end disaster. Although they teach the same thing, not all truck driving schools are the same.

Cost

      Of all the factors you need to consider when choosing a truck driving school in Illinois, the tuition cost will invariably be near the top of the list. Let’s face it, the final decision you make will determine the quality of training you receive and the amount of money you pay to receive that training. Although price is not necessarily the most important factor when choosing a truck driving school, it is still very important. In the real world, you get what you pay for. The same holds true when it comes to education and vocational training. Now, don’t get me wrong. There may be a few truck driving schools in Illinois that charge an outrageous amount of money for mediocre training. Remember, a truck driving school is a business, and like any other business, it is in business to make a profit so that it can stay open. Like any other business, there are good ones and there are bad ones. On average, CDL training should cost somewhere between $2,500 and $4,500. There is usually a $500 difference in pricing between competing truck driving schools in the same general location. If the difference in price between schools in the same location is more or less than $500, you may want to do some research and find out why one school charges much more than the others. Here are some questions you may want to find the answers to when doing your research:  

Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

Which one would you rather train on?

  1. Is their equipment more modern than the other schools?
  2. Do they only train students in simulators or in tractor trailers?
  3. How much “behind the wheel” time do they give their students?
  4. Do they have more instructors on their payroll?
  5. Do they have larger class sizes and, therefore, more wear and tear on their trucks, and higher fuel expenses?                     
  6. Do they have more trucks for the students to train on than the other schools?
  7. Do they go above and beyond the state minimum “required hours of training”?
  8. Are they accredited by the Professional Truck Driver Institute?
  9. Are they accredited by the Better Business Bureau?
  10. Do they award student scholarships or participate in state and federal grant programs?
  11. Do they have a more successful job placement program than the other schools?

      If the answer to these questions invariably comes up as “no”, then that school is most likely charging students more money for no other reason than to make a higher profit.

        Almost all truck driving schools in Illinois offer financial aid. Student financial aid can help lower the cost of attending school. Many truck driving schools in Illinois actively participate in state and federal grant programs and even give out scholarships for academic excellence. Student loans are also available for those who qualify. Fill out the Federal Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA) and check with the financial aid office of the school to see if there are any available student grants, scholarships, or loans you may qualify for if you decide to attend.

Program Length

      When choosing a truck driving school, be wary of any school that promises to get you trained and on the road in two weeks or less. Not only is this unrealistic, it is also unsafe. Commercial driver training should take anywhere from three weeks to three months to complete. There are two main factors that will determine the length of a school’s CDL training program. They are:

  1.       Full-time vs. Part-time training.
  2.       State mandated regulations. 

      Full-time training programs will usually be much shorter since the students will be going to class and training five days a week. Part-time classes will usually be longer since the students will only be training on nights and weekends. Another factor that will determine the length of a school’s CDL training program is the minimum amount of hours a student is required to train both in the classroom and in the yard. Some states require students to acquire a minimum of 160 hours of CDL training while other states do not. If a truck driving school promises to train you and get you ready to take your CDL tests in a week… RUN!… in the other direction! These type of schools are called “CDL mills” and they are only out to take your money and get you out the door as fast as possible so they can exploit a new batch of unsuspecting students. Trust me, learning how to safely and competently operate a tractor trailer takes longer than seven days. Passing the CDL tests and obtaining your commercial drivers license doesn’t make you a well-trained truck driver anymore than getting a hunting license makes you a great hunter.

Location

      Location, location, location. In a perfect world, the best truck driving school would be the school that is closest to where you live. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world and so, you may have to travel some distance to get the best CDL training. Think of it as job preparation. If you can’t even handle the daily commute to truck driving school then, maybe you’re pursuing the wrong profession. If the best truck driving school is hours away or in another state, then obviously you’ll have to take living expenses into account. Some truck driving schools provide room and board for an added expense and may put you up in a hotel until your training is complete. One more thing to consider. If you do decide to attend a truck driving school outside the state of Illinois, be sure to read up on the rules and regulations for transferring your out of state CDL to the state of Illinois. You may have to simply fill out a few forms or you may have to retake the written test, the driving test, or both. Also, make sure that the amount of hours you will receive during your out-of-state CDL training will meet the minimum required hours for obtaining your CDL in the state of Illinois. Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

Behind the Wheel Time

      Probably one of the single most important factors to consider when choosing a truck driving school is how much “behind the wheel” drive time they give their students. Not simulator time or passenger seat observation time but, shifting, steering, braking, backing up, and parking time. Remember, most truck driving school students have never even been inside a semi. Driving a tractor trailer competently and confidently takes practice, practice, and more practice. The amount of drive time a school gives their students directly impacts the price of tuition because of the expenses involved. It will also impact how well you can drive a tractor trailer when you graduate.

Ratio of Instructors to Students

      First of all, when you attend a truck driving school, you are paying for an education. You can’t get an education unless you are given instruction, and you can’t get instruction without an instructor. Paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to a school to be “self-taught” would be just plain dumb. But, in essence, that’s what you are doing if the truck driving school you attend has too many students and too few instructors. Almost all truck driving schools in Illinois are set up the same way. There is a building where students are given classroom instruction and there is a training yard where students are given driving instruction. In order to keep costs down and profits up, some schools will have four or five students sitting in the cab with the instructor instead of one-on-one instruction. They may also have multiple students training behind the wheel of two or three semis at the same time while the instructors walk from truck to truck, educating the students on the right way and wrong way to maneuver the vehicle. While being behind the wheel and getting some drive time is a good thing, not having one-on-one instruction the entire time can be very detrimental to your ability to learn how to maneuver a tractor trailer correctly. In order to learn a skill, you must practice it over and over again until it becomes “second nature”. The problem is, if you are practicing something the wrong way, you will eventually be ingrained with bad habits, and it is a well known fact that it is harder to get rid of bad habits than it is to pick them up in the first place. 

The Instructors

      The instructors are the cornerstone of any truck driving school. Without instructors, all you have is a building with a bunch of books, and a parking lot full of tractor trailers. It is the instructors that will ultimately make you or break you. A good truck driving school will have good instructors, and good instructors will be knowledgeable, experienced, nurturing, and enthusiastic about what they’re teaching.  Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

      If you are paying thousands of dollars for an education, you want to learn from the best, and the best instructors become the best at what they are teaching through years of experience. Would you want to be taught by someone who just graduated from truck driving school a year ago? Of course not. You want to be trained by someone who knows what it’s like to have to maneuver a 53 foot rig through a crowded city, or what it’s like to carry a five ton load over hilly terrain, or what it takes to beat the clock and deliver a time sensitive load on time. You want instructors who will not only lecture but will also listen. Instructors who will listen to your questions and to your concerns. Instructors who will take the time to help you catch up with the rest of the class if you happen to learn at a slower pace. Instructors who are there because they want to be, not because they have to be. They should be up-to-date with all the industry trends and regulations.

      Before you shell out thousands of dollars to a truck driving school, set up an appointment to tour the school and meet the instructors. Before you arrive at the school, write down any questions you would like to ask the instructors about the program and about their experience in the field of truck driving. Talk to some of the students and ask them if they’re pleased with the instructors, the program, and the equipment. You may want to schedule a tour towards the end of the school’s semester so the students can give you a good review of their training experience.   

Accreditation

      There are a few truck driving schools in Illinois that have been accredited by the Professional Truck Driver Institute or PTDI. The Professional Truck Driver Institute
is a non-profit organization that advocates truck-driver training standards, driver professionalism, and safety. They introduced a uniform skill performance, curriculum, and certification standard in 1989 in order to raise the bar on the truck driver training process. Although it isn’t necessary to be accredited by the PTDI in order to be a reputable truck driving school, only reputable truck driving schools are accredited by the PTDI, as it is an expensive and stringent process to become PTDI accredited. 

      Since truck driving schools in Illinois are businesses and therefore, should be held accountable for their business practices and ethics, you may want to check to see what kind of rating or reviews a school has received by the Better Business Bureau. Do they have an “A” rating or an “F” rating? Do they have any unresolved complaints that have been brought forth by the students of the school? Is the school accredited by the Better Business Bureau? Truck Driving Schools in Illinois that are BBB accredited must commit to a high standard of honesty and fairness in order to receive an “A” rating. BBB accreditation isn’t necessary to make a truck driving school a great school but, it does show that the school takes it’s business practices very seriously and holds itself accountable to a higher standard.

Job Placement  Truck Driving Schools in Illinois

      Let’s face it, the main reason for going to truck driving school is to get a good paying job when you graduate. How successful a school is in getting their graduates good paying jobs with reputable trucking companies is one of the main factors to consider when choosing a truck driving school. If a school’s job placement program has a low success rate, then you may want to consider going to a trucking school with a higher job placement rate. There are many reputable trucking companies in Illinois that will hire graduates with little to no truck driving experience if they graduated from a reputable truck driving school. 

      You want your truck driving school experience to be educational, beneficial, and fun. Choose the right school and it will be. Choose the wrong one, and your truck driving career could stall before it even starts. 

      What are you hoping to experience at truck driving school in Illinois? Have you graduated from an Illinois trucking school? What was your experience like? Please let us know in the comments section below.

      If you found this article helpful, feel free to share it on Google Plus by clicking the Google Plus button below.

 

Truck Driving Schools in Illinois
5 (100%) 1 vote
  1. Paul Shuminas says:

    Very appreciated with this information took down a few notes even , actually very thankful i came across this online !!!

  2. admin says:

    Thank you, Paul! I’m glad we could help. Thank you for visiting and we wish you luck as you search for the best truck driving schools in Illinois.

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