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OSCE Exam Overview

OSCE Test for Nurses: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know in 2024

OSCE Test for Nurses

A Complete Guide to OSCE Test for Adult Nurses

If you are an International Nurse looking for nursing jobs in the UK, you must be aware of the registration process and its requirements. One of the essential parts of this process is completing your Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).

You may have already passed the first part of the Test of Competence (ToC) – the CBT – and received approval from the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) to take the second part, the OSCE. Alternatively, you may be new to the process, in which case we recommend reading our guide to get a comprehensive overview.

OSCE Test For Nurses

Regardless of your situation, this guide provides you with everything you need to know about taking your OSCE test, including eligibility criteria, available locations, and what you need to do to pass the exam.

What Is OSCE Exam?

The Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) is an opportunity for you to showcase your clinical practice skills and demonstrate your ability to provide exceptional nursing care. In this simulated clinical setting, you will be evaluated on your knowledge and expertise in administering medication, conducting patient assessments, providing wound care, as well as your communication skills and ability to work effectively with a healthcare team. Use this exam as a chance to shine and show the world what you’re capable of!

Why the requirement of OSCE in NMC Process ?

In order to work as a nurse in the UK, you will need to obtain registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). One of the key requirements for nursing registration is to successfully pass the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).

The OSCE is a rigorous exam that assesses your ability to translate your theoretical knowledge into practical skills. It is designed to test your clinical skills and knowledge in a simulated clinical environment to ensure that you have the necessary skills to practice safely as a nurse in the UK.

The exam consists of a range of stations that assess different aspects of nursing practice, such as communication skills, medication administration, and clinical decision-making. The stations are designed to replicate real-life scenarios that you may encounter as a nurse.

While preparing for the OSCE, you will have access to a range of resources and opportunities to practice your skills, including mock exams, workshops, and feedback from experienced nurses. This will help you to develop your skills and confidence, and prepare you for the exam.

Passing the OSCE is crucial as it demonstrates to the NMC that you have the necessary skills and knowledge to practice safely as a nurse in the UK. It is an important milestone in your nursing career and a significant achievement that will open up a range of opportunities for you.

Who all needs to take the OSCE Test ?

The OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination) is a mandatory requirement for all nurses who are not nationals of European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and wish to practice in the United Kingdom. It is also mandatory for those nurses who were previously registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) but have not practiced for a while and are no longer registered with the NMC.

Eligibility for OSCE Exam

It is expected that you would have received an invitation from NMC in the form of an authorization letter to undertake the OSCE. It is imperative that you comply with the requirements outlined in the letter to ensure a smooth and efficient process for your OSCE examination. Please do not hesitate to seek clarification on any matter that may be unclear to you.

OSCE Mock test

OSCE Topics and Marking Criteria

During the OSCE exam, you’ll move between stations or scenarios that test all fields of nursing. Each one has a different task or skill to assess. You’ll have a set amount of time to complete each station, with a little rest time between them.

OSCE Test for Nurses

The 10 OSCE stations comprise:

  • 4 stations linked together around a scenario (the APIE)
    • 1 for Assessment
    • 1 for Planning
    • 1 for Implementation
    • 1 for Evaluation
  • 4 stations clinical skills (2 pairs of 2 clinical skills)
  • 2 stations assessing your values, behaviours and evidence-based practice.

The test takes around 3 hours.

Subjects That Will Be Evaluated In The Test

  1. Communication skills refer to both verbal and non-verbal abilities, and include your capacity to demonstrate compassion towards patients and their families.
  2. Clinical skills encompass various tasks, such as administering medications, measuring vital signs, and dressing wounds.
  3. Critical thinking and decision-making abilities are essential components of your clinical judgment. They enable you to assess patient circumstances, prioritize patient care, and manage complex situations.
  4. Professionalism and ethical practice involve upholding ethical principles and maintaining a professional standard. This includes respecting cultural diversity, ensuring patient confidentiality, and following safety guidelines.
  5. Record keeping refers to the accurate and effective documentation of patient care. It demonstrates your ability to maintain precise and up-to-date records, as well as your attention to detail.

OSCE Exam Centers In UK

Start off by reviewing and revising the professional standards code. You can then move to the NMC’s OSCE information booklet, the OSCE blueprint, the test specifications (if you haven’t already) and the other relevant OSCE documents according to your field. All of these are available on the NMC website.

The approved test providers are:

OSCE Exam Fee details

The fee for the OSCE Exam is £794.

The reduced resit fee is £397 if you need to resit 7 or fewer stations.

What If I Fail Any stations in OSCE Exam?

Don’t worry. You can take the OSCE test again up to three times should you need it.

You’ll get a short amount of feedback on why you failed a station which will help you prepare for your next try. And there’s really no need to feel discouraged if you don’t pass on your first go. Many nurses pass the OSCE on their second or third attempt with the right support and prep work.

Re-sits are only needed for the stations you fail and do require a fee. If you need to re-sit between one to seven stations, it’s £397. Eight or more is the full fee of £794.

You also need to wait 10 days between each re-sit and can take up to four weeks between your second and final go.

If you fail on your third attempt, you’ll need to wait six months before you can reapply.

How to get my OSCE exam results?

You’ll should receive a copy of your test results from the NMC via email within five working days, but it can sometimes take up to 10.

Duration to complete OSCE Exam?

You must pass the CBT and OSCE within two years of each other. You can sit them in any order, but you need both parts to keep going with your registration.

Points to remember to ace OSCE Exam :

Points to remember to ace OSCE Exam :

  1. Focus on your communication, both verbal and non-verbal, especially when listening to the patient.
  2. Make sure to take your time and carefully read each scenario or instructions provided.
  3. Ensure to obtain the patient’s consent before proceeding with any medical procedures or treatments.
  4. Always remember to practice proper hand hygiene before touching the patient.
  5. It is important to always check for allergies.
  6. Please ensure that you finish all the tasks at each station within the given timeframe.

For more details regarding how to crack OSCE , please click here.

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