Blogs > IELTS/OET - English Language Requirements

A guide for [email protected]

  • December 06, 2021

We always advise that IMG’s should take the Occupational English Test (OET) for their GMC registration. We say this because it is specifically tailored for medical professionals; meaning you are not necessarily tested on the entire breadth of the English language. You will be tested on your ability to speak, listen, read, and write within a medical setting. The hope is that you will be able to demonstrate your ability better during the OET than in other English tests, such as IELTs, as the terminology and scenarios given will be familiar to you.

During the Covid-19 outbreak many have not been able to sit their OET; in order to overcome this OET have made the OET test available online for some individuals. Bookings for each test administration close 7 calendar days before the scheduled start time for the listening reading and writing tests. Candidates may select from available start times and days within a test administration window.

Before you sit the test

Who can sit the exam?

Due to lockdown many Doctors and nurses were not able to sit their OET. Now due to the backlog and high demand for tests you can sit the test online at home. The OET at home will firstly be on an invite only basis and will be first offered to those who have had their test deferred for quite some time. The Test will cost £325, the same as the normal in person examination.  

Preparing for the test

To sit [email protected], you will need to ensure that your computer can run Prometric’s ProProctor application; the company has partnered with OET to bring the test online. There are certain technical requirements that you will need to ensure your computer can uphold before taking the test, for example, your screen resolution will need to be set to 1920 x 1080 so that test materials appear correctly, and you give yourself the best chance. A guide to do this can be found here and the full ProProctor user guide can be viewed here.

Just like you would with an in-center test, it is important that you get yourself ready. For the [email protected], this means ensuring that your environment is prepared. One of the first actions you need to take is to make sure the environment where you plan to take the test meets the requirements. Whether you have an office or separate room to take the test in you will need to make sure that the space is completely walled, quiet and clean. Make sure you have the same ID you used to apply for the test to hand.

During the test

Ensure you give yourself lots of time before the exam to organise your environment and get into the right frame of mind. Once you are ready go to Prometric ProProctor and open the site.  Then to launch the exam enter your Prometric confirmation number and the first four letters of your surname.

What to do when taking the test

Although you will not see your Prometric Proctor, they will monitor you throughout the testing process and will be available to provide assistance at any point during your exam. Using the LIVE PROCTOR feature on the right of your screen, you can speak with or send a message to your Proctor when you need help. With this support function, you will be able to complete your exam with peace of mind, knowing that your Proctor is virtually there with you at all times. To begin your test, you’ll need to scroll down and click that you accept the OET terms and conditions. 

You will now see an on-screen a tutorial on how to navigate through the test. Please go through this carefully and once you are confident about how to proceed, click the “Start the Test” button at the bottom right of your screen.

You will start with the Listening sub-test, followed by Reading, Writing and Speaking, with an optional 10-minute break after Reading part A. Your Speaking sub-test will take place at a different time at home via Zoom. It could take place before or after your Listening, Reading and Writing sub-tests, depending on your individual timetable. Please pay close attention to the times stated in your confirmation email and your Zoom link email.

Please see the OET Speaking Test Online User Guide for everything from the device you can use for taking the test to what software you need to download. 

How can we help?

If you’re an international doctor looking to relocate to the UK, or another location in the UK, please email your CV to [email protected] and we can support you in securing an NHS post and on your journey to relocate to the UK.

Are you a member of our Facebook group? When you join IMG Advisor, you join a community of doctors all looking to relocate to the UK and join the NHS. We post a series of vlogs and blogs to the group every day. We will also be on hand to answer all of your relocation queries.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel! We have over 60 videos on everything you need to know about relocating to the UK and joining the NHS!

Listen to BDI Resourcing on the go to IMG Advisor the Podcast. You can find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Buzzsprout. We have a number of episodes with tips and advice on relocating to the UK and the routes you can take to achieve this.


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