The Most Common Medical Exams for Doctor

We must understand that there are those courses and exams to be taken but one is the most common medical exams for doctor which he or she as potential dreamer for the health career must take importantly. Doctors are also parts of those whom we can regard as the health careers professionals.

As the major subject and deciding power in the process of becoming doctors, one cannot sideline the important attitude of sitting exams and passing as prerequisites to fully becoming full-fledged doctors. In order to complete specialty training you will need, in some cases, to pass relevant membership exams.

These are widely regarded as challenging, and some candidates may need to sit exams more than once to be successful. You must also be aware of the demands of combining a full-time job with the level of study required to pass these exams. Membership exams are offered by the following Royal Colleges, colleges and faculties responsible for groups of specialties. You are required to pass membership exams to gain the qualifications indicated below.

  • anesthetics (FRCA)
  • emergency medicine (MCEM)
  • general practitioners (nMRCGP)
  • obstetrics and genecology (MRCOG)
  • occupational medicine (MFOM)
  • ophthalmology (MRCOphth)
  • pediatrics and child health (MRCPCH)
  • pathologists (FRCPath)
  • physicians (MRCP)
  • psychiatry (MRCPsych)
  • public health (MFPH)
  • radiology (FRCR)
  • surgeons (MRCS)

Most Popular Medical Exams

The most common medical exams for doctor that is also regarded as the one of the major test for qualification in the health line is duly analyzed below:

  • PLAB

The Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board test – known as the PLAB test – helps us to make sure doctors who qualified abroad have the right knowledge and skills to practice medicine in the UK. If you graduates from a medical school outside of the UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, you’ll probably need to take the PLAB test.

The PLAB test will check that you know and can do the same as a doctor starting the second year of their Foundation Programme training in the UK.

PLAB 1 is a written exam made up of 180 multiple choice questions which you must answer within three hours. Each starts with a short scenario followed by a question. You need to choose the right answer out of the five possible answers given. You can sit part 1 in a number of countries, as well as in the UK. Have a look at the available locations and dates when you log in to GMC Online.

PLAB 2 is an objective structured clinical exam. It’s made up of 16 scenarios, each lasting eight minutes and aims to reflect real life settings including a mock consultation or an acute ward. Part 2 tests run throughout the year at our clinical assessment center.


The United States Medical Licensing Examination exam tests the candidate’s ability to apply the taught knowledge, concepts, and principles. It also tests the physician’s ability to demonstrate patent-centered skills. Preparations for the exam can take a long time.

Read Also: Things to Know Before Taking NCLEX Exams

USMLE is a three-step examination for medical licenses in the US. The exam is sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards and the National Board of Medical Examiners. The first step of the exam takes eight hours, the second step takes nine hours, and the third step takes two days (seven hours for day one and nine hours for day two, respectively).

The exam tests the candidate’s ability to apply the taught knowledge, concepts, and principles. It also tests the physician’s ability to demonstrate patent-centered skills.

Preparations for the exam can take a long time. Candidates usually take 6-12 months to prepare for the Step 1 exam and around 4-7 months to prepare for the Step 2 (Clinical Knowledge) exam. The passing percentage of Examinees from US/Canadian Schools is 95% for Step 1, 98% for Step 2 (CK), and 97% for Step 3, as of 2021 performance data. Examinees from Non-US/Canadian Schools have a lower passing percentage, ranging from 77% to 88%.

  • The Step Exams

In the US, aspiring doctors are required to pass three sets of national board examinations, commonly known as the “Step” exams, before they are licensed to practice. The first two sets, Step 1 and Step 2, are completed during medical school and are marathon tests that last up to nine hours.

In recent weeks, public debate has broken out about whether we need to reform this exam process in the US, following the publication of a commentary by a group of medical students on Step 1. The commentary and its supporters argue that an overemphasis on the test’s results has created a pernicious “Step 1 climate,” which harms trainees and reduces the quality of medical education.

For years, doctors have questioned the relevance of Step 1’s content to modern clinical practice. It seems that these doubts were not unfounded. A 2011 study found that Step 1 scores were not associated with the acquisition of “real world” clinical skills among medical trainees.

Despite this, the ramifications of a low Step 1 score can be long lasting. The three digit Step 1 score is among the most important factors that residency programme directors cite in their selection of medical residents. Since it is not uncommon for competitive US residency programmes to require a minimum Step 1 score when screening applications for interview, poor scores can even prevent medical students from entering some specialties entirely.

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