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PLAB Examination 2024 guidance, number of attempts and examination tips

The Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board test known as the PLAB test helps us to make sure doctors who qualified abroad have the right knowledge and skills to practice medicine in the UK.

What does the PLAB test involve?

There are two parts to the test. Part 1 is a written multiple-choice exam, with 180 single-best-answer questions. Part 2 is a practical objective structured clinical exam, known as an OSCE. You’ll need to pass both parts before you can apply for registration with a license to practice medicine in the UK.

PLAB or Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board that the international medical graduates (IMG) must take in order to demonstrate that they possess the necessary skills and knowledge to practice medicine in the UK. PLAB Exam for the UK is a gateway to medical courses. PLAB test is a 2 part assessment and assesses medical knowledge and communication skills possessed by international medical graduates.

What does the exam cover?

The exam includes the management of long-term conditions observed in primary care as well as the common, important, or acute conditions (those common in emergency departments) faced by trainees entering the second year of the Foundation Programme (F2). It does not include a general practitioner’s more complex responsibilities (GP).

PLAB Exam Requirements

Given below are the eligibility criteria for the medical graduates appearing for the test:

  • The candidates’ primary qualifications must be accepted for limited registration by an institution listed in the World Health Organisation Directory of Medical Schools.

  • The candidates should have appeared for IELTS and secured a minimum score of 7 overall and a minimum of 7.0 for all of the four language modules.

  • Additionally, the candidates should complete a minimum of 12 months of postgraduate clinical experience at a teaching hospital.

PLAB Exam Centres and Countries

The 1st Part of PLAB is conducted across various states in India namely:

  • Bangalore

  • Chennai

  • Hyderabad

  • Kolkata

  • Mumbai

  • New Delhi


Part 1 of the PLAB test can be conducted in:

  • India

  • Egypt

  • Bulgaria

  • Dubai

  • Nigeria

  • Pakistan

PLAB Exam Pattern

The PLAB test consists of 2 parts :

  1. PLAB 1 – This exam is conducted in MCQ format consisting of 180 questions that have to be solved in 3 hours.

  2. PLAB 2 – this part comprises an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) which consists of 18 clinical stations. Each station is 18 minutes long with 2 minutes of reading time. The exam is set at the level of competence of a doctor at the start of Foundation Year 2 (F2) in the Foundation Programme.

PLAB Exam Application Process

The PLAB test can also be applied to the GMA website. After the candidate applies for the test, you will receive a confirmation mail from the GMC website confirming their registration. The email will also include his/her registration, place, venue and the starting time of the test. PLAB 1 is held in numerous cities in India, twice a year (on 15th March and 15th November). The deadline for the exam is usually 8 weeks before the registration.

Candidates are allowed to appear for PLAB 1 as many times as they like but can only appear for PLAB 2 four times. On failing the 4th attempt of PLAB 2, the candidate will have to appear for PLAB 1 again.

Do you have more inquiries regarding this?

  • Yes, I want to enquire more

  • Yes, I want to register



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