What is it? 

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) ELDT regulations set the baseline for training requirements for entry-level drivers.

This applies to those seeking to: 

  • Obtain a Class A or Class B CDL for the first time;
  • Upgrade an existing Class B CDL to a Class A CDL; or
  • Obtain a school bus (S), passenger (P), or hazardous materials (H) endorsement for the first time.

When does it go into effect? 

The ELDT regulations are not retroactive; individuals who were issued a CDL or an S, P, or H endorsement prior to February 7, 2022 are NOT required to complete training for the respective CDL or endorsement.

Applicants who obtained a Commercial Learners Permit (CLP) prior to February 7, 2022 and obtains a CDL before the CLP (or renewed CLP) expires are NOT subject to ELDT requirements.

All other applicants must comply with the ELDT requirements.

How does it work? A 4-step process.

1. Getting Started 

  • Get a copy of Indiana’s Commercial Driver’s Licensing (CDL) Manual.
  • Decide which type of vehicle and what kind of driving will be required (Class A, Class B, or special endorsement).

2. Get the Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP)

This permit authorizes you to practice on public roads with a qualified CDL holder sitting next to you. To obtain the CLP you must:

  • Pass all the knowledge tests for the type of vehicle and driving you want to do.
  • Have an eligible driving record for the past 10 years in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
  • Bring proof of medical qualifications (often in the form of a DOT medical card obtained by getting a DOT physical by a qualified physician).
  • Pay any associated fees.

*There is NO Federal requirement for drivers to complete their entry-level driver theory training before applying for a CLP

3. Getting Started 

This consists of two main components: Theory and Behind the Wheel (BTW)

  • Training must be provided by a Registered Training Provider (visit Training Provider Registry at https://tpr. fmcsa.dot.gov/ to find a provider); theory and BTW can be conducted by two different providers.
  • Once training is completed, the provider will electronically submit the certification of your training completion to the Training Provider Registry.

4. Get the Commercial Driver’s License (CDL)

To obtain a CDL you must

  • Possess the CLP for 14 days and complete applicable entry-level driver training (ELDT) to be eligible to take the CDL skills test.
  • Pass all 3 parts of the CDL skills test.
    • Vehicle Inspection Test
    • Basic Controls Test
    • Road Test


*There is NO Federal requirement for drivers to complete their entry-level driver theory training before applying for a CLP

**The FMCSA has a Training Provider Registry that retains a record of which CDL applicants have completed the new training and certification process as outlined in the new Entry-Level Driver Training (ELDT) regulations


The Road Ahead 

  • Develop content for the theory portion of the ELDT program to provide to local agencies at no charge
  • Offer the theory portion in hybrid format with instruction available online and in-person
  • Offer the theory portion fully online and self-paced to local agencies through our Learning Management System (LMS)
  • Develop a Train-the-Trainer course for the Behind-the-Wheel (BTW) instruction portion. (Local agencies will have to perform the behind the wheel portion in-house)
  • Use CDL simulator for training behind-the-wheel (BTW) instructors
  • Develop CDL specific website for local agencies to access LTAP CDL training and resources
  • Develop a community of local agency behind-the-wheel trainers who have completed the LTAP Train-the-Trainer program for behind-the-wheel instruction. This community of Indiana trainers will meet annually at Road School to collaborate and share experiences
  • Conduct a meeting at Road School for behind-the-wheel instructors and provide continuing education for local agency in-house trainers