You about the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) for overseas qualified or qualification not recognized in the UK doctors who want to practice medicine in the UK must register with the General Medical Council (GMC) Before coming to the UK, they must pass a pre-assessment International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test. This is designed to find out if the doctor has a reasonable command of the English language before they can sit the PLAB test. IELTS tests can be taken in various countries, including the UK.
If the doctor passes the different stages of the test, they can sit the PLAB test in the UK. Doctors must take the PLAB test to demonstrate their knowledge of medical English and their medical skills and knowledge. The PLAB test consists of two separate assessments, part 1 and part 2. The GMC requires doctors to pass part 1 before they can take part 2 of the test. If a candidate fails part 1 by a wide margin, the GMC does not allow them to reset part 1 for a period of at least four months from the date of the failed test.
Part 1 is a computer-marked written examination consisting of single best answer (SBA) questions. The paper contains 200 questions and may contain images. It lasts three hours. You can have an unlimited number of attempts but you must pass Part 1 within two years of the date of your IELTS certificate or the date we specify when accepting alterative evidence of your proficiency in English.
Part 2 is an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). It is made up of:
Each station lasts five minutes. You must pass Part 2 within three years of passing Part 1. You can have four attempts at Part 2. If you fail at the fourth attempt you will have to retake IELTS (unless we have accepted alternative evidence from you and it is still valid) and both parts of the PLAB test.
You must apply for, and have been granted, registration with a license to practice within three years of passing Part 2 of the test.