In the PLAB 2 post, I discussed the exam structure.
- Exam booking: Book your exam ASAP you get your PLAB 1 result cause the exam date run out very first.
- Timeline: Calculate your timeline realistically. For example- if you need visa count visa processing time (20-30days). join an Academy (15 days), preparation time(40-60 days) etc.
- Joining Academy: I’ll suggest everyone join an academy cause PLAB 2 is a clinical exam of UK clinical settings, so you need to know there good medical practice which is a wee bit different than few countries. So I always suggest if possible at least take some classes.
- Academy: In my point of view you must ask a few questions before you join in an academy: a) Will they provide written file or you have to write it? – My advice will be joining an academy where they give you everything in a printed form because you need to practice. Even if you are good at writing a lot of your time will be wasted in writing and coping others notes to fill what you missed. End of the day you will be tired and will not have time for practicing. If you can’t practice enough during the 15 days course time you will forget a few important points which will increase your frustrations even more. When you are paying 400-600£ I guess you should deserve a stressless time to prepare for your exam. So pay for something which will worth the money. b) Are they willing to provide information when there is any change in the exam?- Please ask them this question, it’s not easy to track or ask colleagues about every change happening in the exam. c) If you think the academy environment is not friendly for you don’t choose. At the end of the day, all academy has pros and cons. Find one which is suitable for you even that totally opposite what I said here. It completely depends on you. Wherever you go you will meet some wonderful people around the globe and some will become your friends for life. c) If they maintain their timetables or it’s like whenever they like it or not? ( Bare in my mind this is just my suggestion please I have no intention of advertising or giving a negative review on any academy. I believe they are trying their best to help IMG’s as much as possible )
- Practice: Remember any exam successes depend on your background knowledge and how much you gained during the preparation days. There is no alternative of practice. So practice each station and Machines-procedures 10 times. Actually, how much practice you need it actually depends on your overall previous knowledge and skills. I know some people took the exam only 1-week preparations because they are very skilled people. So practice as much as you can.
- Partners: Pair with at least 4 people or more. It will increase your interpersonal skills.
- Important Domains: It’s ok to have a moderate amount of Clinical knowledge. GMC wants to make sure you are a Good and Safe doctor. It means you know your ethics, you know how to talk and care for your patients. That’s why Interpersonal skills i.e sympathy, empathy, cares, ethics, communication is very important.
- Interpersonal skills: My observation was some people found it very difficult to communicate with others in English though they are very good in English. To overcome this try to communicate with people even they are from a different country or gender. Smile at others. In Britain, people smile and say hello to complete strangers, so try to learn about their culture. Trust me it will help you in long run not only this exam.
- Be kind, gentle and helpful: When you are kind to others Allah/ your God will be kind to as well. If you help one people Allah will send 10 people to help you. Don’t backstab or unfaithful to anyone. Always recognize the help you get from others.
- Pray: Obviously, pray to your God so that you can pass the exam.
Best of Luck with your exam.