We accept two language tests as evidence of your ability to communicate effectively in English. These are: 

  • International English Language Test System (IELTS) Academic  
  • Occupational English Test (OET) 

These are the only tests we can accept as proof of English language competence. 

Our English language test acceptance criteria

We will only consider accepting an English language test if it meets all of the following criteria: 

  1. It tests knowledge of English in either a healthcare or academic context. It must not be a general test. 
  2. It tests reading, writing, speaking and listening. 
  3. The speaking element is tested by a person and not via a computer test. 
  4. There are high level security procedures for the test production and delivery. 
  5. There are test score verification systems that allow the NMC to confirm your results. 
  6. There is appropriate evidence of the reliability of the test and the dependability of its scores. 

Based on these criteria, we accept two language tests as evidence of applicants’ ability to communicate effectively in English. These are: 

  • International English Language Test System (IELTS) Academic  
  • Occupational English Test (OET) 

We’re not looking to accept any other tests at the moment. We will update this section of our website if there are any changes to this position. 

You must achieve our required scores in each of the four domains of reading, writing, listening, and speaking: 

Test Listening Reading Writing Speaking
IELTS Academic  7 7 6.5 7
OET B (350 or above) B (350 or above) C+(300 or above) B (350 or above)

If you don’t manage to achieve all of your required test scores in a single test, you have the option to take the test again, one or more times, and to combine your scores across two test sittings.  

To combine scores, you must: 

  • Sit the tests within 12 months of each other, and complete both tests no more than two years prior to the date we are assessing your complete NMC application. This means that your test dates (not certificate dates) must be within 12 months of each other, and your test dates must be no more than two years old when we review your application. 
  • Be tested in all four domains at the same time – you cannot take (or retake) individual test domains separately 
  • Gain one required pass score in each of the four domains, across the two test sittings 
  • Meet our required minimum test scores across all domains in both test settings 
  • Combine tests of the same type (for example, two IELTS tests or two OET tests) – you cannot combine an IELTS test with an OET test 

You can use our test combining calculator to check whether your combined test scores meet our requirements. 

See if your combined scores meet our requirements

For more information about combining test scores, see the IELTS Academic and OET pages. 

Your language test scores are valid for two years. This means that your test(s) must have been taken in the two years prior to us assessing your complete application in order to be able to use this evidence type.