PLAB Part 2 OSCE - Exam experience on the day
Date: Thursday, September 15 @ 17:35:59 IST
Topic: PLAB Part 2
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The GMC centre is located on euston road, within walking distance (5 min) of Warren street, Great portland street and Regents park tube stations. I got down at Warren street and walked to the exam centre. My reporting time was 10 am, I reached there at 9:40.
The receptionist at the ground floor asked me to sign my attendance and I got a visitors pass on a lanyard, which we are supposed to display. It also serves to keep the GMC ID for the exam.
I went upstairs to the GMC reception and the requested me to wait in the lounge. The lounge is a very relaxing area, with free coffee/tea and the days newspapers. Then, one of the GMC staff came around with a form which I was supposed to fill. Then, they called me into an office where they checked my documents and took a photo.
They gave me a temporary I card with photo, an at 10:30, we were called in to deposit our stuff in the lockers. Then, we were taken into a briefing room and shown a video. the same one on the GMC website.
I would suggest that everyone watch the video carefully because it depicts the situation very realistically.
We were also shown how to use the handrub. There are bottles of handrub outside each station.
The wait in the briefing room was rather long, but then again there was free coffee and newspapers.
My exam started at 11:40.
There are 16 cubicles, in 4 rows. They have a diagram in the briefing room showing the layout. The questions are displayed outside the cubicle, with a copy inside for your reference. There is always somebody around to guide you to the next cubicle.
The examiners are helpful, so are the actors. If you have missed out on anything, the examiner may ask you" is there anything else you would like to do?" - take this as a hint!!. They maintain a blank face for the 5 minutes, as soon as the bell rings, you can see their expression changing!!
The pressure of time is such that time flies. When I finished the last station, I did not realize that the exam was over. We were taken out of the centre. I handed back the keys and the ID badge, and was out of the centre by 1:30
Some Tips for Future Exam takers:
I found it to be a simple examination with straightforward questions - a test of skills rather than knowledge. You are expected to be competent, not exceptional or brilliant
Practising with study partners made a lot of difference - practise with a timer set to 4 1/2 minutes
List of previous OSCEs was really useful - cover them all
Macleods (latest edition)is a very useful book, you can find the answers to most OSCE stations especially History taking, Examination and Procedures. Just make sure that you cover everything in 5 min.
I did not encounter any hostile actors, examiners etc. The examiners were very helpful.
I found that reading the question before each station was possibly the most important part of the exam. The questions are very specific - examine the neurologic status, take a history, take a brief history and explain etc. Formulating a plan before entering the station was very helpful.
Now that I have passed PLAB Part 2 Exam, a round of thanks are in order, not in any particular order, to the following people.
# RxPG-OSCE busters, previous questions and the kind souls who contributed to those forums
# Dr Naqvi et al. at Fast Track medics For teaching me in 6 days what I managed to forget in as many years, and for providing us with the necessary facilities for practice.
# My study partners at the PLAB club, and Dr Farzam in particular who helped me practise the stations, and who were kind enough to listen patiently to most of my counselling, and point out my mistakes.
My FEEDBACK about PLAB 2 for all that it is worth( I hope somebody finds it useful)
Once again, many thanks to RxPG forum and its members