General Overview of PLAB

General Overview of PLAB


As medical students or graduates, we all wish to safely practice in a conducive environment with better pay. In order to achieve this, many explore several possibilities, one of which is practicing medicine in the UK. Because of this reason, we have decided to write on this particular topic ‘General Overview of PLAB’.


For better understanding and easy reading, we shall be following the content below:


  • Introduction
  • Parts of PLAB
  • PLAB Eligibility Criteria
  • PLAB Examination Application
  • PLAB Examination Centers
  • PLAB Identification Requirement
  • PLAB Examination Result
  • Next Step After Passing PLAB



PLAB stands for Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board. International Medical Graduates(IMG) who wish to practice medicine in the UK must take and pass this examination.


This exam assesses the necessary skills and knowledge of a doctor to practise medicine in any NHS (National Health Service) hospital in the UK. It should be noted that anyone who holds an approved GMC (General Medical Council) postgraduate qualification or an EU (European Union) national and qualified in a European institution can automatically apply for registration without the need to apply for PLAB.


Parts of PLAB

PLAB is divided into two parts, these are PLAB 1 and PLAB 2



This is a multiple choice examination which is made up of 180 questions. The questions must be completed within the period of 3hours. PLAB can be done in any country of your choice provided there is a PLAB designated center there (you can scroll down to check the centers that is closer to you).


Registration fee: According to  GMC registration fee for PLAB 1 is £239 from 1st of April, 2020.



As against part 1 of PLAB which is a multiple choice question, part 2 is a practical objective structured clinical examination(OSCE).


This exam comprises about 18 stations; each station spanning 8minutes, at least two resting station and 11/2 minutes between each station to read instruction. In all, the exam spans a period of about 3hours.


Registration fee: According to GMC, registration fee for PLAB 2 is £875from 1st of April, 2020.


PLAB Eligibility Criteria

The following criteria must be met before an individual can be eligible to sit for this exam:


  • You must be a graduate of any of the institutions listed in the world directory of medical science
  • You must have passed any of the English tests (IELTS or OET) with the required scores. For OET, you must score at least grade B in all areas of testing(reading, writing, speech, listening) while your score must not be less than 7.0 in each of the testing areas(same as above) and not less than 7.5 in total.
  • You should have had at least 12months of postgraduate clinical experience in a teaching hospital or another hospital approved by the medical registration authorities in the country. It should however be noted that candidate can register without this experience, but that will be a limited registration of the grade of House Officer.


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PLAB Examination Application

If you are willing to write this examination, you will need to apply. How do you apply?

  • Set up an online account with GMC and show them that you have the necessary knowledge of English to practice safely in the UK.


PLAB Examination Centers

 PLAB 1 runs four times in a year in the UK and in a number of centers located outside the UK. It should be noted that these locations are limited and so are in high demands. Therefore you will need to always check if your preferred location is available in your GMC account under ‘My Tests’.


Contact details for overseas venues for PLAB 1


Country City Contact details
Australia Sydney
Bangladesh Dhaka 

+880 (02) 861 8905
Canada Toronto
Egypt Alenxandria

+20 (0) 2 19789
Egypt Cairo

+20 2 3001666 +20 (0) 2 19789
Ghana Accra

+233 (0)30 2610090
India Bangladore

+91 044 42050600
India Chennai

+91 044 42050600
India Hyderabad

+91 044 42050600
India Kolkata

+91 33 282 5370
India Mumbai

+91 22 6748 6748
India New Delhi

+91 11 4219 9000
Nigeria Abuja

+234 (0)709 8121 548
Nigeria Enugu

+234 (0)42 290 962

Nigeria Lagos

+234 1 2692188 / 2692189 / 2692190 / 2692191 / 2692192
Pakistan Islamabad

+92 51 111 424 424
Pakistan Karachi

+92 51 111 424 424
Saudi Arabia Riyadh

+96 612 657 6200
South Africa Johannesburg

+27 11 560 9300
Spain Madrid 
Sri Lanka Colombo

+94 4521 500
Sudan Khartoum

+249 (1) 87028000
UAE Dubai

+971 4 3135556


PLAB 2 can only be taken in the UK. Currently the center is at Manchester (3 Hardman square, Manchester, M3 3EB)


PLAB Examination Identification Requirement

Any of the following is accepted as a proof of identification:


  • Passport
  • UK immigration and Nationality Department Identification document
  • Home office travel document
  • UK driver’s license
  • EU identification card


You may however be permitted to write the exam without any of the above but you have to provide your identification document or evidence of change of name later in the process.


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PLAB Examination Result

PLAB 1 results are usually available around 6weeks after the exam. An email that contains a link to access your results in the ‘My Tests’ section of GMC online will be sent you. Note that results are not given over the phone, by fax or in person.


For PLAB 2, a link that will allow you to access your result will also be sent to you via email when available. This usually takes about two weeks.


Next Step After Passing

Passed the exam? Wow! Congratulations! The next step is to apply for a full registration with a license to practice in the UK. Application must be approved within 2years of passing part 2 of the test.


Your application approved? Finally, you’ve achieved you dream, congratulations.


You may be interested in what medical student should know about USMLE


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15 November, 2020

Thanks Sir. A wonderful write-up. Not too long and easily understandable.
Is there any particular reason why the there is no contact detail for the US. I can't seem to find US there. Just being curious

1 reply