The Occupational English Test (OET) is an international English language test that assesses the language proficiency of healthcare professionals seeking to register and practice in an English-speaking environment. OET provides a valid and reliable assessment of all four language skills – listening, reading, writing and speaking – with an emphasis on communication in healthcare professional settings.
The medical professions that the OET covers include: Dentist,Pharmacist, Dietician, Podiatrist, Medical Doctor, Physiotherapist, Nurse, Radiographer, Occupational Therapist, Speech Pathologist, Optometrist, and Veterinarian.
OET Exam Format
OET provides a valid and reliable assessment of all four language skills – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking – with an emphasis on communication in medical and health professional settings.
OET comprises four sub-tests:
- Listening (approximately 45 minutes)
- Reading (60 minutes)
- Writing (45 minutes)
- Speaking (approximately 20 minutes
Candidates are required to illustrate that they can follow and understand a wide range of health-related spoken materials such as patient consultations and lectures.
Part A – consultation extracts (about 5 minutes each)
Part A assesses candidates’ ability to identify specific information during a consultation. They are required to listen to two recorded health professional-patient consultations and complete the health professional’s notes using the information they hear.
Part B – short workplace extracts (about 1 minute each)
Part B assesses candidates’ ability to identify the detail, gist, opinion or purpose of short extracts from the healthcare workplace. They are required to listen to six recorded extracts (e.g. team briefings, handovers, or health professional-patient dialogues) and answer one multiple-choice question for each extract.
Part C – presentation extracts (about 5 minutes each)
Part C assesses candidates’ ability to identify detailed meaning and opinion in two texts on topics of interest to healthcare professionals (800 words each). For each text, candidates must answer eight four-option multiple choice questions
Candidates are required to illustrate that they can read and understand different types of text on health-related topics
Part A – prompt and quick reading task (15 minutes)
Part A assesses candidate’s ability to locate specific information from four short texts promptly and efficiently. The four short texts relate to a single healthcare topic, and they must answer 20 questions in the allocated time period. The 20 questions consist of matching, sentence completion and short answer questions
Part B and Part C – careful reading tasks (45 minutes)
Part B assesses candidates’ ability to identify the detail, gist or main point of six short texts sourced from the healthcare workplace (100-150 words each). The texts might consist of extracts from policy documents, hospital guidelines, manuals or internal communications, such as emails or memos. For each text, there is one three-options multiple-choice questions.
Part C assesses candidates ability to identify detailed meaning and opinion in two texts on topics of interest to healthcare professionals (800 words each). For each text, candidates must answer eight four-option multiple choice questions
The task is to write a letter, usually a referral letter. Sometimes, especially for some professions, a different type of letter is required: e.g. a letter of transfer or discharge, or a letter to advise or inform a patient, carer, or group.
The Speaking sub-test is delivered individually and the candidate takes part in two role-plays. In each role-play, the candidate takes his or her professional role (for example, as a nurse or as a pharmacist) while the interlocutor plays a patient, a client, or a patient’s relative or carer. For veterinary science, the interlocutor is the owner or carer of the animal.
OET is recognised and trusted by healthcare boards and councils in Australia, UK, Ireland, Ukraine, Dubai, Namibia, New-zealand and Singapore. Many organisations, including hospitals, universities and colleges, are using OET as proof of a candidate’ss ability to communicate effectively in a demanding healthcare environment.
Medicourse.in is a free online marketplace where institutes can list their medical courses and connect with students, usually doctors, nurses and other paramedics.
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