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PLAB Exams are Changing in 2024

PLAB Exams - UKMLA Exams

For aspiring international medical graduates seeking to practice in the UK, navigating the licensing process can be daunting. In 2024, the Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board (PLAB) test undergoes a key update to align with the Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA) requirements. While this might sound like a significant shift, the good news is that the impact on candidates will be minimal.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s changing and what remains the same:

Continuity for Candidates

  • No change to the test itself: International medical graduates will still take the familiar PLAB test. The core content, structure, and format remain the same.
  • Eligibility criteria unchanged: If you’re currently eligible to take the PLAB, you won’t be affected by this update.
  • Focus on essential skills: The MLA content map emphasizes the crucial knowledge, skills, and behaviors required for safe and effective practice in the UK. PLAB already covers these areas extensively, ensuring continuity in your preparation.

What’s New in 2024

  • Shifting blueprint: The existing PLAB blueprint will be replaced with the MLA content map, ensuring alignment with the latest standards. This signifies an emphasis on quality assurance and assessment construction, without changing the actual test experience for candidates.
  • Alignment with MLA: This update ensures consistency between PLAB and the MLA, which medical graduates from UK universities will take starting from 2024-25.

Key Dates

  • PLAB 1: All tests taken on or after August 8th, 2024, will be based on the MLA content map.
  • PLAB 2: All tests taken on or after May 17th, 2024, will be based on the MLA content map.

PLAB Exam Dates / UKMLA Exam Dates


Exam datesOverseas closing dateUK closing date
15 February 2024 4 January 2024 1 February 2024
23 May 2024 11 April 2024 9 May 2024
 8 August 2024 27 June 2024 25 July 2024
 7 November 2024 26 September 2024 24 October 2024

Source: GMC PLAB1

Read more about UK Medical Exam Dates

What This Means for You

If you’re currently preparing for the PLAB Exams, you can continue with your existing study resources and strategies. The MLA content map might provide additional context, but the core knowledge and skills tested remain consistent. Focus on understanding and applying the essential medical principles relevant to UK practice, and you’ll be well-equipped for success.

Staying Informed

For the latest updates and resources, consult the official GMC website:

Remember, this change primarily affects the test’s underlying framework, ensuring its continued relevance and effectiveness in assessing your suitability for UK practice. As an aspiring international medical graduate, your dedication to achieving excellence remains the most important factor in your journey.



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