OET Writing Test – Subtest Pattern and Assessment Criteria
When we talk about medical professionals, it becomes extremely crucial for them to have aptitude in their written modes of communication. The prime reason for this is that medical professionals resort to writing letters, cases, and so on in real-world situations. Due to this, the OET Writing sub-test comes to the forefront.
The OET writing task, in a nutshell, is nothing but an organized pattern to discern the writing prowess of people related to the medical domain. Not only does it assess one’s communication in the form of written prowess, but it also determines the organization of ideas and grammatical skills of the candidates. Therefore, being in the field that heavily lies on the foundation of communication, you can’t be wobbly in any form of it.
This subtest scrutinizes your writing mastery in the form of letters (of various kinds related to the specific medical profession you are in). To give you a heads-up, focusing on the language and vocabulary alone won’t walk you through the test. It needs to be coupled with coherence, logical flow and lexical resources.
Thus, to guide you in your preparation, the entire pattern, format and points that you need to know about the OET writing task are given in the subsequent sections of this article.
In this article, we shall learn about the OET Writing subtest and the right approach before marching on the way to prepare for this section.
Let’s dig deeper into it!
OET Writing Sub-test pattern
The OET Writing part checks for the grammatical usability, lexical references and aptness of the sentences. This subtest is 45 minutes long and requires the aspirants to write a letter relevant to a medical scenario. This test is specifically designed for different professions like dentistry, Dietetics, Medicine, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Optometry, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Radiography, Speech Pathology and Veterinary Science.
Type(s) of letter aspirants need to write
The most common type of letter in the OET Writing subtest is a referral letter. However, other types of letters that are anticipated are a letter of transfer and a letter of discharge. In addition to that, a letter to advise or inform a patient, carer or group is, at times, used in Pharmacy, Veterinary Science and Speech Pathology and Occupational Therapy. Moreover, other letter types might include writing an answer to a complaint or grievance, which is generally seen in Radiology.
How should one approach the OET Writing subtest part?
First of all, in the OET Writing sub-test, the candidates are given the instructions and case notes to base the letter on. Other referral materials might include other reference documentation as well, at times. The aspirants are suggested to prepare their letter writing intent and structure well in advance in the initial 5 minutes.
This preparatory time should be very well invested in discerning the requisitions of the assigned task as it makes the concision and precision emboldened. As per the experts, the referral notes should always be referred to avoid digression from the principal idea of the letter.
Word limit and Format
In the OET Writing task, the letter is generally expected to be around 180-200 words and normally, the words anticipated for the letter-writing task wrap up around this word range. However, there is no stringent set of rules around the word limit. Nevertheless, candidates are penalized for redundancy, superfluous terms, unrelated ideas and divergence from the context. Generally, exceeding the word limit insinuates the lack of relevance, which is certainly a red flag for the examinees.
Coming to the format part in the OET Writing sub-test, various formats are accepted, as there are different types of layouts across different medical professionals. Owing to that, medical professionals need not ligate and limit to one specific format and can freely use the ones that they are comfortable with relevance to their specialization. However, the prime focus should be on the correctness and construction of the letter written. Moreover, special attention should be on sticking to the addressee and the address or other details mentioned in the notes.
Assessment criteria and touchpoints:
The OET Writing sub-test is evaluated by two trained evaluators who assess the entire task independently. In the OET Writing task, examinees should primarily focus on the six major points that form the firm foundation of this sub-test.
Purpose: This point talks about the intent of the written letter. It needs to suffice the purpose of the case notes and documentation that need to be kept in mind while framing the letter.
Content: This checks for the written content’s relevance to the solicited case notes.
Conciseness & Clarity: This point checks for the apt delivery and reflection of the case notes on the letter and its comprehensibility.
Genre & Style: This checks for the aptness of the style of the letter pertaining to the scenario.
Organisation & Layout: Checks for the organization and synchronization of the ideas of the examinees while writing a letter.
Language: It checks for the grammatical aptness, vocabulary, spelling and punctuations used in the letter.
So, this was the briefing of the entire OET Writing subtest, which needs to be religiously percolated in the mainstream while setting out to prepare for the OET. This test takes persistence, consistency and devotion of the examinees, and ones who prepare sincerely for this exam are destined to outshine all others.
All the best!
Frequently Asked Questions
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