Which is better for Medical Professionals? IELTS or OET

Whether you want to move to the UK to study medicine or wish to obtain a doctor’s job, you will require to dominate the English language proficiency exam. Without it, you cannot register yourself with the General Medical Council. So, there are two options out there if you want to pursue a medical career. One is IELTS or International English Language Testing System, and the other is OET or Occupational English Test. Both consist of four tests that are writing, reading, speaking, and listening. You will get the score based on a grading system. But to qualify for the IELTS exam, you have to score 7.5 with a minimum of 7.0 in each test. On the other hand, you should have a 350 or grade B score in each test to qualify for the OET exam. 

Many medical students or professionals get confused about which one to select between IELTS or OET. They contemplate which one is easier and will help them to achieve a good score. They have to understand neither test is effortless than the other in terms of a linguistic point of view. Though you might notice that OET is slightly easier than IELTS as it is a healthcare-oriented test. To prepare for the IELTS exam, you might get admission to the best IELTS online course to make it simpler for you. 

So, take experts’ advice as, after all, they both are English proficiency test exams, and their format is also the same. After appearing in these tests, you will get a scorecard that determines your current level of English. So, if you have confusion regarding what to choose between them, go through the below section. It will display a comparison study to help you understand the purposes and which one is perfect for you. So, let us delve into this section.


Many candidates cannot distinguish between the context of IELTS and OET. The OET examines your English language capability based on the medical profession, but the IELTS tests your English competency depending on numerous contexts. So, if you want to seek a medical job, you should choose OET, as it is related to your profession.  


Understanding of advanced English is evident to secure good marks. Since both the exams are separate from each other in the scoring perspective, it needs different preparation. Both require a significant amount of study time. But the range of IELTS is vast, whereas the field of OET is limited. You might discover millions of IELTS test-takers each year, but only a few opt for OET. So, the preparation options for the IELTS are far better than OET, and you might also take help from the experts of the best IELTS online course for the tests


Though the IELTS and OET are English language-based exams, they have a discrepancy in terms of recognition. The students opting for the IELTS are considered as a gold standard, and they can get acceptance everywhere. But a small number of institutions accept OET. Thus, IELTS might be a more desirable choice if you are not pursuing your career as a medical professional. 


The OET has 12 versions for separate medical professions like doctors, dentists, nurses, and others. But the IELTS only has two varieties.


The IELTS is cheaper than OET, and you can find several online courses and private coaching centers for the IELTS. Besides, the IELTS is a better option in terms of retaking the test. 


The most devastating drawback of IELTS is that if you fail in one skill out of the four, you will need to reappear for the exam to take all four. But the OET is different from the IELTS, and the students can concentrate only on the failed skill.  

Which one is better?

  • If you want to be a medical professional, the OET is the most suitable option. It is a professional specific-content test that covers 12 healthcare areas.  
  • If the education fee is your primary concern, then the OET offers you an affordable solution as you might have to reappear for the exams several times. The retaking cost is double that of the IELTS.
  • The OET is easy to understand as it deals with health-care-oriented language tests. 
  • The OET is valid if you want to get a UK visa and immigration. So, you can move to an international country with English as your native language to study medicine or seek a health-related job. 

Final Thoughts

Though the OET contents are simple for you, you will still fail unless you do not have English language competency. So, you can choose well between IELTS and OET and improve your English skills to succeed.

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