Specialist Language Courses

SLC Return to Moscow!

As part of our ongoing partnership with Sechenov University, Russia’s leading medical university, SLC will be working on three projects with the Linguistics and Intercultural Communication department over the next week.

Top 3 tips for teaching Medical English online

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Do you teach Medical English? Are you helping to prepare your learners for the OET? Did your working life change abruptly during the pandemic? We’re sure you remember when the world went into lockdown. At first, teachers and institutions abandoned all in-person teaching. If you were teaching then, […]

3 reasons why a real-life class might be for you

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post You’ve done the quiz to discover what sort of learner you are. You understand how to study online without getting distracted. Maybe you’re sure that remote learning is the future. That you don’t need to go back to college again. But there are advantages to blended learning. Blended […]

5 tips for effective online study

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Did you do last week’s quiz? If so, you’ll know whether you prefer to learn Medical English in-person, or online. The worst of the pandemic is behind us. However, many colleges and universities continue to offer online courses. Others offer blended learning. This is where some classes are […]

Online classes vs traditional classes: what sort of learner are you?

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post What sort of language learner are you? Do you prefer sitting in an actual classroom, chatting to people in a spontaneous way? Or do you prefer an online-led class, on Zoom or another platform? If you’re studying Medical English, or if you need to pass the OET, you […]

English for Healthcare Conference 2022 – Some Reflections

It was with a slight feeling of trepidation that I boarded a plane from Heathrow to Belgrade to attend this year’s English for Healthcare conference. The programme that followed was varied and interesting, including presentations on research projects, classroom practice and assessment.

English Questions: When does ‘no’ mean ‘no problem’?

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Please note: this post contains advice on Advanced English grammar. For Essential English grammar for Healthcare, check out SLC’s beginner’s course here. English questions can be very confusing – both for asking, and for understanding. As you saw last week, some questions don’t sound like questions. But if […]

How to make requests that don’t sound like questions

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In some languages, it’s important to use the correct form of address when asking politely. Perhaps your language has two or more forms of the pronoun ‘you.’ In English, we have only one form. That’s why there are other ways to show your politeness when you speak. And […]

3 great ways to ask ‘How are you?’

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post How are you? I’m fine thanks. And you? I’m very well, thank you. Did you learn the dialogue above when you were studying beginner’s English? Most people have learned a form of it. It’s great, and it works. As you saw last week, small talk is important to establish […]

Small talk: Use questions for better connections

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In English, you can use questions to make polite conversation. In Medical English, or if you’re studying for the OET speaking test, these types of questions are useful to show your fluency. Over the next four weeks you’ll learn some ways that you can use them. One way […]

A world of accents

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Are you studying Medical English with the hope of working one day in an Anglophone country? If so, you’ll need to understand a variety of accents. There’s the accent that’s local to where you live, but cities across the world contain many people who were born in other […]

The Eye is our ‘window to the brain’ – 30 Minute Worksheet

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Teacher Notes Topic: The Eye is our ‘window to the brain’ Timing: 30 mins Lesson Type/Focus: Reading Level: B2-C1 Aims Reading for detail Vocabulary development (the eye/ eye conditions) Part 1: Review the vocabulary terms: the stressed syllable is in bold. age-related macular degeneration foveal hypoplasia glaucoma nystagmus […]

The truth about the ‘British’ accent

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post When it comes to British accents, there’s one difference that distinguishes the Brits from everyone else. It’s that people in the UK never use the phrase ‘British accent.’ The reason they don’t is because there’s no such thing as a British accent. There are instead hundreds of varieties […]

Refugee & asylum seeker healthcare professionals & their barriers

We’re delighted to be hosting another free webinar in conjunction with EALTHY for Medical English teachers and teaching institutions. This webinar is of particular relevance given the political upheavals of the last few years and the rapidly growing number of refugees around the world and the many healthcare professionals among them.

When do you pronounce ‘R’?

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post A quiz for you: how do you pronounce the R in the following words? Doctor. Nurse. Practitioner. Injure. Fracture. Emergency. The pronunciation rule for R trips up even fluent speakers of English. It’s difficult because it depends where in the world a native speaker comes from. To put […]

Which English-language accent is ‘best’?

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Do you believe that speaking in a particular English-language accent will help you pass the OET? Often, English language learners have a belief that one accent is ‘better’ than another. However, in Medical English, it’s far more important to speak clearly, and with the correct intonation. Whether you […]

SLC’s quick guide to using British honorifics

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post An honorific is a word or title you apply to a person to denote respect. In English, the most used are Mr, Mrs, Miss and Ms. We also have professional honorifics such as Dr and Rev. Then there are titles bestowed by the state, such as Baroness and […]

Nanotechnology in Medicine – 30 Minute Worksheet

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Teacher Notes Topic: Nanotechnology in Medicine Timing: 30 mins Lesson Type/Focus: Reading Level: B2-C1 Aims Reading for facts Reading for detail expanding vocabulary (nanotechnology) 1. nanofiber 2. tissue engineering Before you start, look at pictures 1 and 2 and answer the questions. What do you know about nanotechnology? […]

Which is more formal – American or British English?

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Which is more formal – American or British English? Is spoken English the same in every Anglophone country? There are a lot of similarities, but the more fluent you become, the more differences you will notice. If you’re studying Medical English, you may wish to work in one […]

Informal British English – A Quick Guide

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post People often assume that the UK is a formal culture. Likewise, they imagine that British people use formal English when they speak. These assumptions are both wrong. They’re based on a stereotype of the British as being stiff and upright. People think that the Brits say ‘how do […]

How to use formal spoken English

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Formal language is appropriate when you’re speaking in a professional situation. But what exactly is formal spoken English, and how should you use it? Over the next few weeks you’ll learn more about the specifics of using formal spoken Medical English. Below are a few general tips for […]

Is “overworking” OK? – 30 Minute Worksheet

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Part 1: Vocabulary Before you read the article, check your understanding of the vocabulary terms. Complete the definitions using terms from the vocabulary list. to overwork to call time on something  a culture of…  poor time management service provision  be short-staffed  leave someone in the lurch a run […]

Using Gestures

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post As you now know, effective non-verbal communication is key to fluency. In Medical English, getting your meaning across using NVC is crucial. It’s also important to show that you’re listening properly. Gestures are movements using the body, especially the hand or the head. They’re an important aspect of […]

Non-Verbal Communication: Using Sounds

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Imagine you’re speaking to someone on the phone. How do you know that the other person is listening? How can you tell if they’re impressed, surprised, or intrigued? Without any visual clues, it will be because of the sounds they use. This part of non-verbal communication (NVC) is […]

The Importance of Pauses

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post When using Medical English in conversation, it’s important that you’re as clear as possible. Your choice of vocabulary and phrasing is vital, but so is your use of NVC – or non-verbal communication. Strangely, it’s sometimes the lack of sound – or the pauses you use – that […]

The importance of non-verbal communication

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post You want to pass the OET speaking exam. You might reasonably think that you’ll be tested on your fluency, accuracy, and vocabulary. It’s how well you do in these areas that will help you pass. It’s called a speaking exam for a reason, right? Well, yes, but the […]

WHO Global Code of Practice – Users Guide

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This WHO User’s Guide is a companion to the Code. It is designed to provide an overview of the Code and to help readers understand its content. It explains the context in which it has been developed and highlights its […]

Syllabus: Advanced Grammar for Healthcare

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This Online Advanced Grammar for Healthcare course covers a wide range of grammar at advanced level. Your students learn how it is applied to the language of healthcare, so they can express complex ideas accurately and effectively. Units include how […]

Build Your Empathy Muscles: See the World Through Another’s Eyes

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Welcome to week 4 of building your empathy muscles. In this final week you’ll learn how to see the world through another’s eyes. This is the hardest part of empathy. It’s often known as putting yourself in another person’s shoes – and wearing shoes that don’t fit is […]

OET Speaking: Remember Your Vulnerability

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Your patient is in a vulnerable situation. Normally, they go about their life quite securely. But today they’re possibly in pain and frightened. Hospitals and clinics can be intimidating places when you’re not used to them. Consequently, they might behave in ways that make it difficult for you […]

Lesson Plan: Antibiotic resistance is threatening our health

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson plan focuses on building vocabulary through an article on one of today’s hottest healthcare topics, the growth of antibiotic resistance. B2-C1 level Before you read the article, think about these questions What do you know about antibiotic resistance? Why do you think antibiotic resistance is threatening […]

OET Speaking: Build Empathy By Reserving Judgement

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post It’s easy to judge others by the standards you think are correct. He’s so selfish. I can’t believe she’s been that stupid. If you’ve ever caught yourself saying or thinking these things, you’re only human. The urge to assess someone by your own standards is very normal. Yet […]

OET Speaking: Start Building Your Empathy Muscles Today

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In the OET’s speaking sub-test, your skill at showing empathy will be assessed. As a definition, empathy is the ability to understand the feelings of another person by imagining what it would be like in their situation. It’s a skill anyone can work at, and over the next […]

Feeling under the weather

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Are you feeling under the weather? In this post, Stephanie Lam gives you insight into how the British both under- and overstate what they feel by using idioms rather than plain language. An essential tip when dealing with British patients! How are you this morning, Mrs Fisher? A […]

Eaquals Conference 2022

Eaquals recently held their annual conference in Venice. Chris chaired a number of sessions and attended others, including excellent and insightful plenaries from Professors Steve Walsh and Waldemar Martyniuk.

OET Test Date 2024

Back to Menu ↩ The OET is an international English test for healthcare professionals. It is recognised by government healthcare bodies around the world to assess the language communication skills of medical professionals, including doctors, nurses, dentists and allied health professionals. Table of Contents About OET Booking an OET test OET Test Preparation Calendar 2024 […]

The British sense of humour

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post Any international healthcare professional coming to work in the UK will need to get to grip with the unique British sense of humour. In this post, Stephanie Lam gives you a brief guide on what to look out for. Have you ever noted to yourself the strangeness of […]

Lesson plan: Diabetes tests

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In this lesson students learn and practice the language used to describe diabetes and diabetes tests. It includes speaking, listening, and vocabulary activities. B2-C1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: diabetes and diabetes tests ●    Timing: 30–40 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, listening and vocabulary Aims ●      Speaking: discuss diabetes and […]

NEW COURSE! Advanced Grammar for Healthcare

We’re delighted to release our second Grammar for Healthcare course! Advanced Grammar for Healthcare enables you to learn, practice and apply advanced level grammatical structures accurately and effectively.

Lesson Plan: Using pain scales

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In this lesson, students learn how to discuss pain effectively with a patient, focusing on using a pain scale. It includes, speaking, listening and role play activities. B2 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: pain scales ●    Timing: 30–50 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking and listening Aims ●      Speaking: […]

Lesson Plan: Lung Infections

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post In this lesson, students learn the vocabulary they need to describe the lungs and lung infections. It includes speaking, vocabulary and reading (a patient leaflet) activities. B1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: lung infections ●    Timing: 30–50 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, vocabulary and reading Aims ●      Speaking: […]

Lesson Plan: Working on a Ward

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson teaches the language used when working on a ward in a hospital. It includes speaking, vocabulary, pronunciation, reading and grammar activities. B1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: working on a ward ●    Timing: 30–50 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, vocabulary, reading, grammar Aims ●      Speaking: discuss […]

SLC to give EALTHY webinar on OET

We’re delighted to have been invited to give the first of a series of monthly webinars by EALTHY, the world’s leading association for Medical English teachers.

Useful vocabulary – OET Dentistry

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Check out his video and download the handout on dentistry so that you are prepared for the reading and listening papers and achieve OET success! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our YouTube […]

Useful vocabulary – OET Dietetics

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Watch this video and download the handout where Jo guides you through the world of dietetics and how to learn vocabulary useful of the OET exam. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our […]

Useful vocabulary – OET Occupational therapy

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Check out this video and download the handout for useful vocabulary relating to occupational therapy and and learn how it can help you ace the OET exam! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to […]

Useful vocabulary – OET Physiotherapy

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Join Jo as she shows you how to learn vocabulary related to physiotherapy, its links to the writing paper and how it can help you in your OET exam. Don’t forget to download the handout! Get the latest tips and […]

Useful vocabulary – OET Medicine

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Check out this video which guides you on useful vocabulary relating to medicine which will help you pass the OET listening and reading papers. Don’t forget to download the handout! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses […]

Study tips for learning vocabulary for OET

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Check out this video where Jo explains how you can learn vocabulary effectively for the OET exam and don´t forget to download the handout! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our YouTube channel. […]

OET: The 12 professions

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post What are the 12 professions in the OET exam? The 12 professions are dentistry, dietetics, medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, optometry, pharmacy, physiotherapy, podiatry, radiography, speech therapy and veterinary science. OET Sub-tests profession specific While the speaking and writing part of the exam are profession specific, the reading and […]

Spelling in OET Listening A

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you struggle with spelling in OET Listening A? Watch this video and download the handout where Jo shares her top tips for improving. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our YouTube channel. […]

How to use the OET transcripts for Listening C

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email In this video, you will learn how to use listening C transcripts to improve your skills and vocabulary and ace the OET exam, don´t forget to download the handout! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by […]

How to use the OET transcripts for Listening B

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Check out this video and download the handout where Jo shows you how to use listening B transcripts to help you study for the OET exam. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our […]

How to use the OET transcripts for Listening A

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Join Jo where she shows you how to use listening A transcripts to develop your vocabulary and improve your listening and don´t forget to download the handout! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to […]

New SLC YouTube Channel

We’re delighted to launch our second YouTube Channel, Medical English SLC. We’re working hard behind the scenes to create high-quality Medical English videos that will be useful for both Medical English teachers and Medical English learners.

Managing your time in OET Listening

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you find timing difficult in the listening paper? Watch this video and download the handout where OETJo shows you how to use the time effectively and ace your OET exam! Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language […]

OET Reading C: Understanding the structure of a paragraph

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Watch this video and download the handout where you’ll understand the structure of a paragraph and answer OET Reading C questions quickly. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our YouTube channel. SUBSCRIBE NOW […]

OET Reading: Language for cause & effect

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Watch this video and download the handout to improve your language for OET Reading C and understand the ideas quickly. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by subscribing to our YouTube channel. SUBSCRIBE NOW Download the […]

OET Reading: how to use language for reporting research

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you find it difficult understanding language in OET reading C? Watch this video and download the handout where #OETJo shows you how to understand how research is reported. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by […]

OET Reading C: Linking and Cohesion

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you struggle to navigate the ideas in Reading C? This video will help you identify linking and cohesion in OET Reading C so that you can understand the ideas quickly and ace your reading exam and don’t forget to […]

OET Reading: Understanding the main idea

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you struggle to understand the texts in OET reading? Watch this video and download the handout to find out how to identify the main ideas quickly and effectively. Get the latest tips and strategies from Specialist Language Courses by […]

Managing your Time in OET Reading

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Do you find it hard to manage your time in the OET reading exam? Check out this video and download the handout for tips on how to use your time effectively and succeed in OET reading! Get the latest tips […]

5 top tips to pass the OET Exam

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Are you taking the OET exam soon? Don’t know how to prepare? Watch this video and download the handout where #OETJo gives you her top 5 tips on how to prepare and ace the OET test! Get the latest tips […]

OET Nursing Preparation for Overseas-Qualified Nurses

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email In 2021, SLC prepared 64 groups of overseas-qualified nurses working as healthcare assistants from 35 different NHS Trusts around the country to achieve the grades in OET Nursing required by the NMC for registration. This case study looks at a […]

Lesson Plan: Taking Observations: Pupil Reaction

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson teaches the language used when describing the eye and pupil reactions. It includes communication, vocabulary and reading activities. B2-C1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: the eye and pupil reaction ●    Timing: 40–60 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, vocabulary and reading Aims ●      Speaking: discuss taking observations, […]

Lesson Plan: Asking about current symptoms

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson teaches language used when interviewing a patient and discussing their symptoms. It includes reading, vocabulary and speaking activities. B2-C1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: asking a patient about current symptom ●    Timing: 45 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, reading and vocabulary Aims ●      Speaking: discuss patient […]

Lesson Plan: Feeding Patients

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson teaches the language used when assisting patients at mealtimes. It includes speaking, vocabulary, listening and reading activities. A2-B1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: feeding patients ●    Timing: 30-60 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, vocabulary, listening and reading Aims ●       Speaking: discuss feeding patient, practise a mealtime […]

Lesson Plan: Describing Injuries

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson teaches the language used to describe injuries. It includes vocabulary, speaking, reading and writing activities. B1 level Teacher Notes ●    Topic: describing injuries ●    Timing: 30-45 minutes ●    Lesson Type/Focus: speaking, reading, vocabulary and writing Aims ●       Speaking:  discuss and review language to describe injuries ●       […]

GMC English Language Requirements for International Doctors

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email The General Medical Council (GMC), the UK regulator for doctors, uses the following ways for an international medical graduate (IMG) to demonstrate their knowledge of English if they are applying to register to practise in the UK. Evidence Type 1: […]

SLC partner with EALTHY

SLC and Ealthy are bringing together resources to grow and support an engaged, global community of best practice in Medical English and OET preparation.

Syllabus: Medical Terminology

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This online Medical Terminology course introduces hundreds of medical terms covering body parts, symptoms, conditions, treatments and procedures. It also shows how medical terms are formed and pronounced, and how they translate into everyday English. Medical terminology is essential to […]

Syllabus: Essential Grammar for Healthcare

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email In Essential Grammar for Healthcare, students learn how to use verb forms to describe the present, past and future. They also learn how to ask for advice, make requests, given instructions and make suggestions. Course features On this course, students […]

Syllabus: English for Pharmacy

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Online English for Pharmacy enables pharmacy students to build a strong foundation in pharmaceutical English and engage effectively with the international pharmacy world. This 20-hour, online course is for students of pharmacy who want to use English more proficiently in […]

Syllabus: English for Radiography

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email Online English for Radiography enables radiography students to build a strong foundation in the English they need to study and work in the field of radiography. This 30-hour, online course is for colleges and teachers who want their radiography students […]

Syllabus: English for Pandemics

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email English for Pandemics gives healthcare students the English they need to talk about viruses, pandemics, Covid-19, managing pandemics, virus treatments and vaccines. Course features On this course, students learn: What are viruses? Types of virus Coronaviruses and Covid-19 Management of […]

Syllabus: English for Care

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This English for Care course gives students a strong foundation in the language of care and nursing. SLC’s English for Care course covers a wide range of language across many essential areas of care. Inputs and tasks focus on interactions […]

Syllabus: English for Nursing

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This online English for Nurses course enables nursing students to learn the English they need to complete their studies and use English in the workplace. English for Nurses covers the language used in a wide range of nursing scenarios, from […]

Syllabus: English for Doctors

Share This Post This online English for Doctors course enables medical students to learn the English they need to complete their studies and engage with the international healthcare sector. The course takes a medical student through the patient journey, from admission to interview, diagnosis, treatment, surgery and end-of-life care. The units cover medical terminology, patient […]

Syllabus: English for Medical Academic Purposes

Share This Post Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on email This English for Medical Academic Purposes course enables healthcare science students to write better academic work, understand lectures and talks, give presentations and keep up with research – all in English. This online course is for students of medicine, pharmacy […]

Lesson Plan: Doing a Dressing

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson focuses on the language used around wound care and, specifically, on that used when doing a dressing. It is relevant for nursing and care students and professionals. B1 (lower-intermediate) level. Note: this article introduces the first part of the Teachers Notes. There is a link at […]

Lesson Plan: Types of Medications

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson enables students to describe different types of medication, how they are administrated and how they work. It is relevant for nursing and care students and professionals. B1 (lower-intermediate) level Note: this article introduces the first part of the Teachers Notes. There is a link at the […]

Lesson Plan: Oxygen Therapy

Back to Menu ↩ Share This Post This lesson enables students to describe and discuss oxygen therapy, and covers multiple skills and vocabulary. It is relevant for nursing students and professionals. B2 (intermediate) level Note: this article introduces the first part of the Teachers Notes. There is a link at the bottom to download the […]