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International Student and Scholar Services
University of Mississippi

Driving Responsibilities

*These instructions apply to applicants who are at least 18 years of age

To drive in Mississippi, you will need either a Mississippi driver’s license or a valid license in your home country and a valid international driver’s license. Even if you do have the home country and international license, it may still be preferable to get a Mississippi license because of the policies of automobile insurance carriers. An unexpired license from another state can be used for 60 days after abandoning your residence in the issuing state.

Obtaining A Driver’s License in Mississippi

Types of Licenses

Learner’s Permit

  • For learning to drive on MS public roads
  • Allows you to drive only when a licensed driver who is at least 21 years of age occupies the adjacent seat in the vehicle
  • Must pass the written and vision exams
  • Valid up to 2 years
  • More information about this can be found on the Driver Service Bureau website.

Original Driver’s License

  • Vision, written and road Skills tests required, but written test may be waived if applicant is over 18 and holds a valid out of state license
  • Issued for maximum of 4 years but actual length may be shorter depending on immigration status end date
  • More information about this can be found on the Driver Service Bureau website.

Motorcycle Endorsement

Required for all license types:

  • Original valid immigration documents plus a copy of:
    • Passport including the biographical information and visas
    • I-94
    • I-20/DS-2019, or other USCIS Immigration Document (such as an I-797 Approval Notice)
  • 2 Proofs of Physical Address (must include your name and your home or apartment address, not a P.O. Box)
    • Examples:
      • lease or rental agreement
      • car registration receipt
      • electric or water bill
      • letter from Housing Office for students who live on-campus
      • letter confirming status and affiliation with the University of Mississippi (obtained from International
        Student & Scholar Services)

        • To get your “Letter Confirming Status,” go to the Control Center in the ISSS Student Portal  and click on “Drivers License Request.”
        • NOTE: 2 proofs of physical address must be from different sources (e.g., you cannot submit both a letter from Housing Office and ISSS).
  • Certified birth certificate in English OR foreign passport
  • Social Security Card (must be presented IF applicant has one.)
  • Application fee paid with cash, debit card, Visa, or Mastercard
  • More information about this can be found on the Driver Service Bureau website.

Application and Testing

Applications and required tests are administered by the Mississippi Department of Public Safety at the Oxford Testing Center located at 72 F.D. Buddy E Pkwy. You may contact the office by phone at 662-513-6601. Applicants may walk-in or reserve an appointment online to take the tests. Tests are administered from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Monday – Friday, but applicants are encouraged to arrive before 4 p.m. so that paperwork can be processed prior to closing. You may take all of the tests on the same day, however, if a test is failed it cannot be re-taken on the same day.

  • Vision test
  • Written examination
      • Multiple choice test given on computer
      • 80% is passing score
      • A digital copy of the Mississippi Drivers License Manual can be found online to study
      • No time limit for the exam
  • Road Skills test – *NOTE:  At this time, no road skills test is required of any applicant seeking a regular driver’s license. However, this may be lifted at any time at the discretion of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety.
      • Be accompanied by a licensed driver
      • Be in a properly licensed and insured vehicle with an up to date inspection sticker
      • A trained examiner and you will be the only vehicle occupants during the test
      • Test will not be given when road conditions are wet or slippery

When applying for your initial license and when renewing, be prepared to answer the question, “Do you want to be an organ donor?”. If your answer is “yes,” a symbol will be placed on your license and your information will be entered into a registry. More information can be found on the Driver Service Bureau website.

Practice Tests

A variety of free practice tests can be found on the internet. Here are some examples (please note that these are third-party website that are not endorsed by the Mississippi Department of Transportation, The University of Mississippi, or International Student & Scholar Services and all resources should be used at your own risk and crosschecked against the official Mississippi Driver’s License Manual.)

Location of Testing Center

72 F.D. Buddy E Pkwy, Oxford, MS 38655

Car Insurance Requirements

Liability insurance coverage is required for all vehicles by Mississippi law. You can be asked to show proof of having at least the following minimum coverage:

  • $25,000 per person (single accident)
  • $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
  • $25,000 per accident for property damage

Other types of insurance to consider include:

  • Uninsured Motorist
  • Underinsured Motorist
  • Collision
  • Personal Injury
  • Comprehensive

What to Do in Case of an Accident

Automobile accidents are headaches. Here are some quick tips to help you:

  • Turn hazard lights on. In most cases for minor accidents, cars should be moved to the side of the road to avoid causing additional accidents. Take pictures and stay at the scene unless it is dangerous to do so.
  • Call the police even if you think an officer is not needed.
  • Request accident report from officer.
  • Be sure to get names, addresses, phone numbers, tag numbers and insurance information from any other parties involved in the accident. If possible, also take down the driver’s license numbers of the other drivers.
  • Contact your insurance agent as soon as possible after the accident.
  • To help you remember the details of the accident at a later date, write down everything you can about the accident as soon as you can, your version of what actually happened, position of the cars, information about the weather and road conditions, traveling speeds, and damage done to all vehicles.
  • Get the names and phone numbers of any witnesses to the accident.