About DCA

What is a DCA | Origin of DCA | Driving Assessments | Teaching Courses | Prices

DCA is a Canadian company that currently operates in 6 provinces and has a number of service providers. Service Providers are privately owned companies or individuals who hold the required credentials and operate under contract to administer DCA protocols and assessments. The two groups that generally offer DCA Protocols (all the different treatments and assessments developed by DCA) are those working in the fields of loss prevention and fleet training and those working in the field of medical rehabilitation. 

DCA offers consulting services for corporate fleets & agencies as well as sending speakers to various conferences and workshops. In many cases Head Office works with the service provider to counsel the fleet to find the most applicable course of action. 

DCA offers a number of training courses in becoming credentialled as a DCA Evaluator, a fleet trainer/facilitator (with signing authority in some jurisdictions) or a Driving Therapist (DT). DCA maintains an up to date record of each person holding a DCA credential. At any time a fleet or agency can contact the DCA Head Office for clarification of an individual’s active status with DCA.

What is a Driver Competency Assessment (DCA2)?

This assessment protocol is an on-road assessment of a driver's ability to operate safely. DCA2 is a risk assessment tool for evaluating how a driver matches his or her cognitive, attentional and psycho-motor skills with decision making behaviour. The ‘2’ signifies that the driver is using the entire system and is expected to be able to deal with different distracter conditions. DCA1 is used for drivers just entering the system or those starting to self restrict and not use the entire system (novice drivers and seniors). DCA3 is a measure of both a trainer’s driving and their ability to facilitate learning in their students. 

The DCA2 protocol provides an on road in vehicle relative measure of those attributes which current research suggests are most directly related to crash involvement such as risk management, inattention and distractibility. The higher order executive functions required for driving become quite apparent during this assessment and are taken into account in the analysis. 

Utilizing highly trained evaluators, the DCA2 is conducted systematically by standardizing the testing environment, distracter conditions, and driving situations. The resultant competency/risk measure profiles a driver's decision making based on six variables and quantifies the degree of variability a driver exhibits in situations of diverse complexity and different distracter conditions while driving in a complex urban environment.

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What is the origin of the DCA?

  • A "Quality of Driving" measure was originally conceived by a Transport Canada Research Team.
  • For two years research was conducted refining this measure.
  • Sue MacNeil, BA started developing the DCA after working on the Transport Canada Team.
  • A further five years of research have been undertaken to refine this process so it could measure an individual driver's crash potential across vehicle type and geographic location.
  • Standardized training was developed and is offered to fleet trainers for in-house assessment and remediation and to a host of Service Providers that offer their services to the public.
  • Routes have been developed in six provinces and many cities.
  • Approximately eighty evaluators have been trained.
  • Many fleet trainers have taken the training programs and now use the DCA assessments in their activities as trainers.

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Driving Assessments

Three levels of this assessment protocol have been developed:

The first level of the assessment (DCA 1) is geared to those new or novice drivers that have limited experience. It is also used to assess under what conditions the elder driver or medically fragile driver may wish to start restricting their own driving if training is not a viable option for their situation. During the course of rehabilitation this assessment is very valuable particularly for individuals recovering from traumatic injury, stroke or from emotional trauma. There are no task loading conditions and the complexity levels are more limited within this

DCA 2 
The second assessment level (DCA 2) encompasses the entire gambit of both complexity and task loadings that are closely linked to the real life situations we face every day as drivers. Both internal and external distractors are used to simulate task loading conditions found in any urban driving environment. It is how the driver chooses to control his/her environment and react to these conditions that is of interest and which sheds valuable insight as to how this driver may handle complex driving tasks under varying conditions.

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Teaching Courses

The third level assessment (DCA 3) has as well an evaluation for instructors and is used exclusively for those individuals carrying out duties as in-vehicle trainers.

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DCA 1 and 2 cost approximately $220 per assessment in a passenger vehicle and generally $275 per assessment on a classified vehicle route which includes a report indicating the current level of ability of an individual. Additional charges may be incurred, e.g. extra counselling, remediation or rehabilitation and are billed at a rate of approximately $85/hour.

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