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Master the OET: The Ultimate Guide to Preparation and Free Resources for Healthcare Professionals

This article is sponsored by Occupational English Test

As a healthcare professional eager to expand your career in Australia, you know how critical good communication is. It’s key – not just essential for excellent patient care, but also for integrating seamlessly into new healthcare environments. 

Enter the Occupational English Test (OET)— an assessment specifically designed for healthcare pros like you. This test assesses and validates your English proficiency, ensuring you’re fully prepared to step into roles in Australia with confidence.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about the OET Test, from understanding the criteria to getting started with your preparation, ensuring you have all the tools at your disposal to succeed.

What is the OET Test?

The OET Test is the go-to for healthcare professionals planning a career in English-speaking countries. Tailored specifically to the healthcare sector, the OET test focuses on the practical language skills you need on the job, boosting your chances of success. Unlike general English tests, the OET Test is specifically designed for healthcare environments, providing test scenarios that reflect real-life interactions. Recognised by healthcare organisations in destinations like Australia, New Zealand, the USA, the UK, and Canada, it’s the most widely accepted English test for healthcare professionals. In Australia, OET can be used for many purposes such as registering with Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency (APHRA), when studying to be a doctor or nurse at university or even when completing a nursing conversion course.

Whether you’re more comfortable with a keyboard or a pencil, the test offers both computer-based and paper-based options. Thanks to its global recognition, passing the OET proves that you’re ready to provide effective patient care and ready to thrive as a professional in any English-speaking context.

How to get started

Step one: Book your OET Test! Simply visit the OET Test Booking Page to choose the test format that’s right for you:

  • Full OET Test: Planning to take the full suite of tests? It includes Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking sub-tests and costs AU$587. This is a solid investment in your healthcare career.
  • Individual sub-tests: Need to focus on specific areas? If you’ve taken the full OET Test before and want to improve certain sections, you can book individual sub-tests. Here’s what it will cost you, including an AU$7 booking fee:
    • 1 sub-test: AU$315
    • 2 sub-tests: AU$415
    • 3 sub-tests: AU$515

Remember, verify that the institutions you’re applying to accept scores from individual sub-tests.

To ensure you secure your spot, remember the booking deadlines. For the OET Test on Paper, you must complete your booking 24 days before the test date. If you’re opting for the OET Test on Computer, either at a test venue or via OET@Home®, you can book up until seven days before the test date, no later than 11:59 PM UTC.

Make sure to book within these periods, whether you choose the paper-based or computer-based format, to guarantee your place on your chosen test day. This scheduling not only secures your spot but also gives you ample time to prepare thoroughly for the test.

I’ve booked my test! Now what?

Now, with your test day set, let’s look at how you can effectively prepare and ensure you’re ready to ace the OET Test.

Get the official Intro to OET Test online course

Start your prep journey with the official, free Intro to OET Test online course. This all-encompassing resource walks you through each section – Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. It’s expertly crafted to help you get comfortable with the format and build your confidence by giving you a clear idea of what to expect in each part.

Enrol in your relevant intro course here:

Utilise the OET Test study guide

Need a roadmap for your study sessions? Grab the free OET Test Study Guide. Think of it as your personal coach, offering a step-by-step approach to conquering each section of the test. It’s packed with tips on effective studying and time management that can make a big difference.

Master each section with comprehensive preparation guides

Level up your prep with detailed guides for each part of the test:

  • Writing guide: Learn to craft well-structured responses with examples and insights into what examiners look for.
  • Speaking guide: Boost both your clinical communication and linguistic skills with practical techniques that shine in interactive test scenarios.
  • Listening guides(Parts A, B, and C): Each guide is tailored to help you navigate different listening tasks, from patient consultations to medical lectures.
  • Reading guides(Parts A, B, and C): These guides are designed to improve your speed and accuracy in processing complex medical texts, a key skill for the test.

Practice with free sample tests

There’s no substitute for practice. Make use of the free sample tests provided on the OET website to get a feel for the real exam. These tests replicate the actual test’s format and level of difficulty, offering an invaluable opportunity to assess your preparedness and refine your approach. Find the sample test for each part below:

Sharpen your skills with mini language lessons

Don’t miss the mini-language lessons on the OET website. These bite-sized sessions focus on key grammar and communication skills, tailored specifically for the healthcare context, ensuring you’re linguistically equipped for the professional challenges ahead.

Stay up-to-date

Lastly, test preparation takes time so be sure to connect with OET via their social channels to receive regular test prep updates and engage with online communities: