What is the PLAB 1 exam?

PLAB 1 is an applied knowledge test (AKT). It tests your ability to apply your knowledge for the care of patients, and not how well you can remember and recite facts. Questions relate to current best practice in the UK, and equipment routinely available in UK hospitals. You’ll need to answer the questions in relation to published evidence and not according to your local arrangements.

PLAB 1 will become compliant with the Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA) requirements from 8 August 2024.

What does the exam cover?

The exam could cover any of the common, important or acute conditions (those common in emergency departments) seen by doctors appointed to a Foundation Programme Year 2 (F2) role, and the management of long-term conditions seen in primary care. It excludes the advanced duties of a general practitioner (GP).

How do you answer the questions?

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.

The MCQ answer sheet
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PLAB exam sheet example
An example of the double-sided answer sheet given at the PLAB exam with instructions on how to complete it.