Top Tips for International Medical Graduates (IMGs) Pursuing GMC Registration

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Looking for information about the registration process as a doctor in a foreign country can be both daunting and confusing. I will try to summarise the most important aspects of this process. Even though there are different routes to get registration, I will focus on the route I decided to follow and the one that is the most common amongst IMGs (i.e. the PLAB route).

In brief, this route involves sitting three different exams:

  • English language examination (IELTS/OET)
  • PLAB 1 (written examination)
  • PLAB2 (OSCE)

Understand Your Motivating Factors

Moving overseas is an exhausting process, but having clarity regarding the motivating factors that have led you on this journey can be helpful when things feel overwhelming. Being aware of what brought you to this point in your career will help you stay perseverant whenever you feel that you might not achieve your goals.

Connect With Other IMGs

We now live in a globalised world where you can easily connect with other doctors who share similar interests. I remember when I started my OET preparation, I found myself in a few study groups and suddenly started to make new friends who would progress to the next exam along with me. You can find groups on various social media platforms for the specific exam you are preparing for.

Do Your Homework

Even though I have just mentioned that you can connect easily with other people who are pursuing the same dream, it is recommended that you also check important information using official websites such as the GMC’s page for IMGs. I am approached on a regular basis by confused colleagues who have trusted some inaccurate information from a friend, rather than checking official resources.

Be Compassionate

When you have passed your exams and achieved your goals, never forget that you started this journey with many doubts and concerns. Try to pay it forward by assisting other IMGs who are going through this challenging process wherever possible.


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