Structuring Your OET Writing
The Occupational English Test (OET) is a standardized English language proficiency test for healthcare professionals. The Writing section of the OET assesses your ability to write clear, concise, and error-free English in various healthcare contexts.
To achieve a high score on the OET Writing exam, you need to:
- Understand the format of the exam
- Practice writing in a variety of healthcare contexts
- Use correct grammar and punctuation
- Use appropriate vocabulary
- Proofread your work carefully
1. Understand the format of the exam
The OET Writing exam consists of two tasks:
- Task 1: You will be given a patient case and asked to write a letter to a colleague.
- Task 2: You will be given a patient case and asked to write a report.
In Task 1, you will be given a patient case and asked to write a letter to a colleague. The letter should be between 150 and 200 words long. You will need to:
- Introduce the patient and their condition
- Provide your assessment of the patient’s condition
- Recommend a course of treatment
- Summarize the letter
In Task 2, you will be given a patient case and asked to write a report. The report should be between 250 and 300 words long. You will need to:
- Introduce the patient and their condition
- Provide a thorough account of the patient’s medical background.
- Summarize the patient’s current condition
- Discuss the patient’s treatment plan
- Summarize the report
Both tasks are timed, and you will have 45 minutes to complete them.
Here are some additional details about the format of the OET Writing exam:
- The patient cases will be based on real-world healthcare scenarios.
- A panel of native English speakers will grade the tasks.
- The scores for the two studies will be combined to give you an overall Writing score.
The OET Writing exam assesses your ability to write in healthcare contexts. By understanding the exam format and practising writing in different healthcare contexts, you can improve your chances of success.
2. Practice writing in a variety of healthcare contexts
The OET Writing exam will test your ability to write in a variety of healthcare contexts, such as:
- Medical reports: Medical reports are written to document a patient’s medical history, diagnosis, and treatment plan. They are typically written by doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals.
- Prescriptions: Prescriptions are written by doctors to authorize medication dispensing to patients. They must be clear and concise, including the patient’s name, the medication being prescribed, the dosage, and the frequency of administration.
- Referral letters: Referral letters are written by doctors to request that another healthcare professional see a patient. They should include the patient’s medical history, the reason for the referral, and the desired outcome.
- Discharge summaries: Discharge summaries are written by doctors to summarize a patient’s hospitalization. They should include the patient’s diagnosis, treatment plan, and instructions for follow-up care.
- Patient education materials aim to inform patients about their medical condition and treatment plan. They should be clear, concise, and easy to understand.
In addition to these five contexts, the OET Writing exam may also test your ability to write in other healthcare contexts, such as:
- Case notes
- Progress reports
- Clinical letters
- Research papers
3.Use correct grammar and punctuation
Your writing must be free of grammar and punctuation errors. You can improve your grammar and punctuation skills by:
- Study grammar rules: There are many grammar rules in English, but some of the most important ones include subject-verb agreement, pronoun case, and verb tense. Grammar rules are found in grammar books, online resources, and dictionaries.
- Practice grammar exercises: Many grammar exercises are available online and in grammar books. These exercises can help you practice the grammar rules you have learned.
- Get feedback on your writing from a native English speaker: A native English speaker can help you identify grammar and punctuation errors. They can also give you tips on improving your grammar and punctuation skills.
4.Use appropriate vocabulary
It would help if you used the correct vocabulary for the healthcare context you are writing. You can improve your vocabulary skills by:
- Learning medical terms: There are many medical terms that you need to know to write effectively in a healthcare context. You can understand medical terms by:
- Taking a medical terminology course
- Reading medical textbooks and journals
- Using a medical dictionary or online medical terminology resource
- Asking a native English speaker for help
- Reading medical textbooks and journals: Medical textbooks and journals are helpful resources for learning medical terminology and its application in healthcare. Please pay attention to their usage to improve your writing.
- Getting feedback on your writing from a native English speaker: A fluent English speaker can assist in identifying and correctly using medical terminology in writing.
5.Proofread your work carefully
It is essential to proofread your work carefully before submitting it. This will help you catch any grammar, punctuation, or spelling errors. You can proofread your result by:
- Proofread your work multiple times: Don’t just proofread your job once. Proofread it numerous times, preferably at different times of the day. This will help you catch errors you might have missed the first time.
- Proofread your work in a different font: Proofreading your work in a different font can help you see it in a new light and catch errors that you might have missed.
- Proofread your work on a different device: Proofreading your work on another device can help you catch errors caused by the font or the settings on your device.
- Take a break before you proofread: If you have been working on your writing for a long time, take a break before you proofread it. This will help you return to it with fresh eyes and catch errors you might have missed.
By following these tips, you can prepare for the OET Writing exam and achieve a high score.
- Get familiar with the OET writing rubric. This will help you understand what the examiners seek in your writing.
- Practice writing under timed conditions. This will help you get used to the time constraints of the exam.
- Get feedback on your writing from a native English speaker. This can help you identify areas where you need to improve.
- Take a practice OET Writing test. This will give you an idea of your strengths and weaknesses and help you identify areas where you must focus your preparation.
Hope this blog post was helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below.