Saturday, January 30, 2021

OET Speaking

Speaking : (15-20 mins)

Speaking test is conducted on the same day for paper-based test while for the computer-based test it's one day before or after. How is it conducted? Speaking test has two role-plays.

Each role-play lasts for 7-10 mins. Typically, 3 mins to read the task card and 5 mins for the conversation.Role-play is basically a conversation based on the given task-card between you and the interlocuter. The interlocuter is not the one assessing your skills. He is just there to take part in the conversation and make you comfortable. These conversations are recorded and are assessed by Oet experts after. This is a good thing to calm our nerves on the test day.

For each role-play a candidate task card detailing your role, the interlocuter's (patient) condition, his situation will be given as an introduction. In addition to that, there will be tasks telling you to what to do one after the other. The interlocuter has his own corresponding task-card to understand the situation and act accordingly to your questions. Tasks are usually about explaning a medical condition, breaking bad news, dealing with a non-complaint patient or anxious relative etc.

Skills assessed :
Clinical and linguistic skills are considered while you are graded by the examiners. Keep in mind and make sure you tick all the boxes while you are speaking on the exam day.
Linguistic criteria :
  • Intelligibility
  • Fluency
  • Appropriateness
  • Grammar and Expression.
Clinical Criteria :
  • Relationship building
  • Understanding patient's perspective
  • Providing structure.
  • Information gathering
  • Information giving

Our medical knowledge is not at all assessed in the test. Remember, it is an English test. Giving wrong information is okay as long as you are fulfilling the criteria. You don't need idioms, wide vocabulary or sentence structures in Oet. You are assessed on whether you can understand the patient's situation and provide relevant solutions, show empathy.

Oet speaking test serves as a primer for PLAB, USMLE where your communication skills are as crucial as your clinical skills. Sample tests at OET official website.

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