MSF in my opinion is a good start but it is worthless as a learning tool by itself , I have two co workers come out of the MSF only to bust their ass off a exit at the same time ,3 days of intruction are not a replacement for miles on the saddle , the MSF needs to be modified to allow riders to get the bike up to 70 mph , riding on wet floor , locking the rear and front tires , riding with a passenger (maybe a dummy?) highspeed emergency stops and swerves .
The MSF is a good start and enough ... to ride a 50cc scooter ...
The training that we used to provide covered all of that except riding with a passenger - not a good idea for anybody without enough miles to be really comfortable - and riding at 70mph. As instructors there's no way we could have students exceeding the speed limit, so it had to be a maximum of 60. Under UK rules learners are not allowed to use 70 mph roads. MSF needs to add an 'on the road' element to its courses. Ideally that should be about 70% of the course.
50cc scoots teach you a lot about traffic, but you need some skill to be safe on one. Although our 16 year olds are limited to these things they are really a bit too slow for complete beginners.
Jason - on the going fast through traffic bit - I ride to get from place A to place B in the shortest possible time. The trick, and the skill, is in riding as fast as possible without wrecking, hitting anything, being hit by anything or losing your licence. Riding at illegal speeds is fine with me and is normal. Those who don't know what they're doing either get wrecked or get banned. Those who do know what they're doing don't have any problems. The ones who bother me are the ones who injure somebody else when they wreck.
I did forget a fixed camera a few months ago, but with a clean licence that only cost three hours attending a speed awareness course. No points or fine. The last time I got fined (for speeding) was in 1981 when a lot of the 'experts' spouting their nonsense here were still wearing nappies- or in many cases were still a long way from being born.