PLABS exam information

The Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board exam is a general medicine foundation level examination to ensure doctors who originally qualified abroad have the right knowledge and skills to practise in the UK.

As a postgraduate qualification in English, this is accepted by the General Medical Council (GMC). It is evidence of your eligibility to work as a doctor in the UK. This is not a psychiatry-specific exam, and will, therefore, not add much to your portfolio when seeking job opportunities. However, this is a much faster route when compared to MRCPsych; if you have previous psychiatry experience, this could be an excellent pathway for you.

Why PLABs?

We recommend PLABs for psychiatrists relocating to the UK, particularly for those with more than four years of experience. Completing this exam allows you to obtain your GMC and secure a job as a speciality (Middle grade) doctor in psychiatry.

There are two parts to this exam; the first is a written, multiple-choice test with 180 questions and part 2 is a practical, objective structured clinical exam. You will need to pass both before you can apply for your GMC registration.


  • Medical qualification
  • IELTS OR OET result
  • Make an online account with the GMC to book your test

Exam pricing

PLAB 1: £239 for the exam
  • This is a three-hour exam worth 180 marks. Each question will start with a short scenario, followed by the choice of five possible answers. It can be sat in several different countries and often runs throughout the year.
  • For more information on PLAB 1, please click here.
PLAB 2: £875 exam
  • This is an objective structured clinical exam made up of 18 scenarios that last eight minutes each. The goal here is to reflect real-life situations, including a mock consultation. It is sat in Manchester (in the UK) and runs every few months.
  • For more information on PLAB 2, please click here.

Ready to apply? Click here.

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