My PLAB journey started on 24th September 2016, when I gave my IELTS attempt. Fortunately, I was able to get the required bands. In my experience keep things simple and clear for IELTS. I just practiced Cambridge Book 6th and 7th edition, but yeah, I did pay right attention to each trivial detail of it and especially to time management. It’s not much about vocabulary (which most of us think), it’s about how to not lose marks in reading and listening tasks and how to manage time and your word count in writing tasks and the clarity of your voice, accent and your flow during speaking tasks (at least that’s what I have observed).
I gave my PLAB 1 on March 16th 2017. Again, with every exam we need to focus on what that exam wants us to study. There is no need to cram unnecessary details. I was able to pass PLAB 1 with 8hrs of study for 20 days of preparation and trust me if I can then anyone can. It’s just about right material to study. I used the 1700 MCQs available on Facebook and then practiced mocks with a timer. These 2 things are the key to success for PLAB 1. Other than that, no need of notes or books. Yeah, I used to open Oxford Handbook for the MCQs I didn’t understand or to read any topic, just to get the concept about any topic. 70 % of exam was from mocks and previous questions, some questions were exactly copy of what I had practiced. Rest of (30%) MCQs also resembled the ones I studied. So Yaay! I survived and scored good too (which actually doesn’t matter). And I am so glad that I didn’t study too hard for that exam. I mean just pass it, man, no need to bang your head with all those huge books, we will be giving many exams in future which would actually require hardcore preparation and a lot of time.
Ok, so after PLAB 1 the main thing is getting PLAB 2 date. So, one should keep on hand the credit/visa cards at the time when the result of PLAB 1 is out because it’s like within 15 mins the earliest dates are booked. So, the thing is while you are waiting for your PLAB 1 result, get all of your documentation done for visa, so that you get the earliest date booked and apply your visa. For example, if your result comes on April 20th, book your PLAB date in Mid-June or something, apply for Visa ASAP so you can fly to the UK before mid of May and take the exam in June. The recommended time for preparation for PLAB 2 is 30 to 40 days. I won’t recommend any time more or less than that. But yeah, I have seen many people passing the exam with 15 or 20 days of preparation. I booked my date in August as I have few family commitments in June. I attended my academy course of 15 days from 7th July till 21st July, then practiced stations and my exam was held on 24th August. PLAB 2 is all about practice! Practicing how to be an empathetic and safe doctor. Again, they don’t expect you to have a lot of knowledge; they want to see a confident and well-organized doctor with very good communication and interactive skills. Attend any academy you want and afford. Not to get too much confused about it. In all of the academies we have recent Plabbers who teach and who guide and there is nothing wrong with it btw, as there had been many fuss about academies, let’s not get involved in it. People pass as well as fail from all of these academies. Main thing is to interact with people so that you come to know about recent stations in exam during that specific time and find yourself study partner with whom you practice.
My result was out after a month, again during that time I got hold of the documents for my registration. Started my application after 2 days of my result and took enough time to explain everything within it. Because problems arise when we are not able to clarify our work experiences or any gaps we have. So, my application got accepted within 3 days and I did my ID Check on 29th Sep 2017 and got the license to practice right away 🙂.
What I would like to recommend is that please don’t fall for useless details and complexities. Get hands on the useful stuff only and pass your exams. You will come across many people who will discourage you but trust me; there is no rocket science in passing PLAB. With much determination and lesser time and least pain, you will be able to ace these exams. The real game will start after that but yeah hop into this one and let’s play along. Everything seems difficult from far but you will find it much easier once you get involved in it.
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