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Anxious about what happens on the day of the PLAB-1 Exam?

Updated: Dec 12, 2023


  1. On Reaching the Exam Center.

  • You will see a queue at the entrance when you reach the exam hall. It takes little time to enter.

  • When you enter the facility, someone will give you a pack containing a pencil, eraser, and a breathable mask (Yes, they too understood your anxiety). Contents may vary depending on the center to center.

  • After that, you will move to the hall where someone sitting on a chair will check your documents.

  • What documents to carry? These include:


  1. YOUR PASSPORT

2. YOUR GMC BOOKING CONFIRMATION

3. YOUR VENUE CONFIRMATION IF OUTSIDE THE UK

That’s all! Nothing extra to carry.


Note: GMC letter says you can’t carry any type of watch (digital or analog) but the center will be allocated with a big wall clock and you will be given reminders as well.


There is often a fuss about the type of Hb pencils to use. It doesn’t matter what type you use till you mark the answers correctly. GMC specifies to use 2B pencils and I myself used 2B pencils.


2. Entering the Examination Hall



Upon entry, you will be allowed 30 minutes prior to the exam and will sit till the exam time begins. During this period, you will have a hell of anxiety. You will observe a lot of people around you. What was my observation? These were:


  • Books were actually allowed in the Exam hall. You just have to put them in the allocated place before the exam starts.

  • You can use your phone to read till the last moment. Yes, you can carry them in the hall but again, you will have to switch them off and place them in the same bag.

  • While many people say to calm your mind and don’t read till the end, I say otherwise. Revise till the last moment, who knows what comes from your last 5 min read. I personally read till the last minute and I got 20 questions in the exam from them.

  • Sharpen your pencils and put everything else in the polythene bag.

  • You will not be allowed to keep your pencil box or pencil cover on the table.

  • There is a burrow on the table, you can place your pencils in that gap easily.

3. Starting the Exam



  • You will receive a huge booklet of 100 pages having questions. So reading this booklet itself takes a lot of time and you need to manage your time very wisely.

  • Mark your answers on the answer sheet immediately as you solve each. Don't postpone it for later otherwise, you will end up wasting a lot of time.

  • If you want to review a question, circle that question to come back later and review it. Don't keep too many questions for review.

  • You need to read the question carefully and answer the question within 30-40 sec and bubbling takes 5 -10 secs.

  • Most importantly, when you are done early, your next step should ALWAYS be checking if you marked the right answer on the sheet. There is a chance you might bubble the answer wrong

  • Lucky are those who get a clock in front of them, most don’t. Check the clock after every 30-40 questions. This way, you can make out how fast you need to be. Ideally, you should do a minimum of 70-80 questions in the first hour.

  • Don’t overthink, some questions are sometimes straightforward. Applying our clinical practice only forces us to mark them as incorrect.

  • Some of the questions are straightforward. Try to answer them in 30 secs and move to the next one. Don't waste time on big epidemiology questions.



4. Exiting the Exam hall:



You have done it. Move out of the hall and capture the moments around. If in the UK, spend at least1-hour clicking pictures of the places around the hall. Most often, there will always be something beautiful.


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Dr Deepika

Hi, I'm Dr Deepika Gupta

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