How is OET Better Than IELTS for Nurses and Doctors?


Both IELTS and OET are English Language Proficiency Tests but there’s a twist. The IELTS test can be used to determine the overall English language skills of both health professionals and non-health professionals. Meanwhile, OET is specially designed for healthcare professionals like nurses and doctors to ensure that they have sufficient language skills to communicate with patients and colleagues. On the behalf of NCLEX Nepal, here we are going to discuss all the similarities and differences between OET and IELTS.

Similarities Between IELTS and OET

  • Both IELTS and OET are chosen by regulatory bodies. Both of these English proficiency tests are accepted by the NMC and the GMC.
  • Both of these tests contain four sub-tests: Reading, Writing, Listening & Speaking.
  • There is no Pass/Fail system in both of these exams. Rather you receive a graded score. The below table may help you understand the scoring system of IELTS and OET:

OET Numerical Score


450 – 500


8 – 9

350 – 440

B 7 – 7.5

300 – 340



200 – 290


5.5 – 6

100 – 190


4 – 5

0 – 90 E



  • Both the IELTS score of ‘7’ and the OET score of ‘B’ is considered C1 level of language i.e. the level of English by the Common European Framework of Reference.

Differences Between IELTS and OET

1.   Content

The IELTS is used to test your academic English while the OET is designed to test your knowledge of medical English, including your ability to communicate with patients and colleagues in a healthcare setting.

2.   Varieties

There are two versions of IELTS i.e. Academic Training and General Training. On the other hand, there are 12 versions of OET for different healthcare professions including nurses, doctors and dentists.

3.   Grading

There is no Pass/Fail system in both of these tests. However, the scoring system of OET is pretty different than the IELTS test. IELTS is marked out of 9 while the OET test is marked from A to E.

4.   Recognition

OET is recognized by healthcare regulatory bodies in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Singapore, Dubai, Namibia and Ukraine. IELTS, meanwhile, is recognized by universities, immigration authorities and healthcare regulatory bodies across the world.

Is OET easier than IELTS?

Yes, there are a lot of rumors swirling around the world that OET is easier to pass than the IELTS test but it’s not true. These rumors have emerged because many healthcare professionals who give OET, pass at their first attempt. This is not because the OET test is easy but it is because they are more familiar with the questions asked in OET. OET assesses the skills one has already used in the healthcare profession.

If you are planning to take an OET test and want to boost your score, then you must connect with NCLEX Nepal. They provide the best OET preparation classes in Nepal. With experienced professions and all the essential materials, NCLEX Nepal can help you increase your OET score.