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English courses for healthcare professionals

The United Kingdom's National Health Service (NHS) requires its staff to have the English language skills necessary to provide patients with effective and safe care.

Healthcare professionals working in the UK, whose native language is not English, are required to pass an exam demonstrating their level of English is adequate. They must be able to communicate effectively with their colleagues and patients.

Depending on the type of NHS work being carried out, healthcare professionals will need to be registered with either the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) or the General Medical Council (GMC).

Both the NMC and GMC accept both the Occupational English Test (OET) and International English Language Testing System (IELTS) to prove the level of proficiency in English.

Not sure whether to study for IELTS or OET? Read our article on the differences between IELTS and the Occupational English Test.

OET preparation courses and IELTS preparation courses

Languages United provides both OET preparation courses and IELTS preparation courses. All of our courses provide "live" lessons with our teachers, along with an element of self-study. You can study in a location that is convenient to you:

GMC requirements when taking IELTS

For GMC applicants who are planning to take the IELTS exam, the GMC requires:

  • that you take the academic version of the test
  • that you achieve a score of at least 7.0 in each testing area and an overall score of 7.5
  • that you get these scores in the same test
  • that these scores are achieved in your most recent sitting of the test

IELTS scores are valid for two years. If you are taking the PLAB test, your scores must be valid on the day you sit the PLAB part 1 exam. If you are applying for registration with a licence to practise, they must be valid when the GMC approve your application.

GMC requirements when taking OET

For GMC applicants who are planning to take the OET exam, the GMC requires:

  • that you take the medicine version of the test
  • that you achieve at least a grade ‘B’ in each testing area (speaking, listening, reading and writing) and you get these grades in the same test
  • that you obtain the grades in your most recent sitting of the test

OET grades are valid for two years. If you are taking the PLAB test, your certificate must be valid on the day you sit PLAB part 1. If you are applying for registration with a licence to practise, your grades must be valid when the GMC approve your application.

The GMC advice on providing evidence of your knowledge of English can be found here: International medical graduates – evidence of your knowledge of English

In-hospital OET and IELTS preparation courses

We provide both individual and group lessons on hospital premises. These courses are designed to:

  • practise the four OET skills components; listening, reading, writing and speaking.
  • learn specific OET examination strategies and study practice tests and past papers to prepare for the exam.
  • improve the general language skills of the participants, through a range of communicative activities
  • enable students to deepen their understanding of British Life and Culture

We can adapt our courses to your own requirements. Please complete the enquiry form for further details and prices.

Online OET and IELTS preparation courses

Our online preparation courses are suitable for individuals and small groups of students with a similar level of English.

Courses include online lessons with a teacher and some self-study between lessons.

Online courses are designed to:

  • practise the four OET skills components; listening, reading, writing and speaking.
  • learn specific OET examination strategies and study practice tests and past papers to prepare for the exam.
  • improve the general language skills of the participants, through a range of communicative activities
  • enable students to deepen their understanding of British Life and Culture

Please complete the enquiry form for further details and prices.

OET preparation courses in Bath

We provide OET and IELTS preparation courses at our school in the centre of Bath. These courses are suitable for individuals and small groups of students with a similar level of English and are designed to:

  • practise the four OET skills components; listening, reading, writing and speaking.
  • learn specific OET examination strategies and study practice tests and past papers to prepare for the exam.
  • improve the general language skills of the participants, through a range of communicative activities
  • enable students to deepen their understanding of British Life and Culture

Please complete the enquiry form for further details and prices.