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MY PLAB 2 JOURNEY AND SAMSON ACADEMY

So, a lot of medical students and doctors have been asking me about suggestions on how
to enter into the UK as smoothly as possible. This article is not about that to be honest.
You will find plenty of pages and groups dedicated to IELTS and PLAB 1 tips and blogs
dealing with Visa on facebook. Rather I would like to give an insight into my journey at
Samson Academy and my personal preparation. As a lot of people become really
confused about which academy to choose for PLAB 2, i will try to be as neutral as
possible and give an honest opinion.

So my PLAB journey started with my IELTS in August of 2016. I scored the required
score (Got 8) and booked my PLAB exam in November. However, I mistakenly did not
give UKVI and so appeared in it a few days ago. It was tricky balancing time between my
internship and my studies. But planning ahead does go a long way. My plan was to be
done with PLAB 1 as soon as possible and start my coaching not a week later than when
my Internship ended. I am from session 2010-11 from Mymensingh Medial College and
my official date of my internship ending was 30th of May 2017. By this time, I had
gotten my Visa, booked my flight, my course, my accommodation, my exam and all
related things. I flew for UK on the 5th of June and my course at Samson Academy
started on the 7th of June.
Samson Academy PLAB 2 course is 550 pounds. Each classroom consists of 20 students
and not more. This includes the full course(15 classes) and 4 full mocks. They will email
you all the necessary documents for visa from before. The best thing is you have option
to pay once you arrive there in cash as a lot of people have problem making international
transactions. Samson Academy is situated in Bow Road which is very easily accessible
from all over London. Vey cheap accommodations are found nearby.
A common complain people hear about Samson Academy before joining is that Dr.
Samson hardly takes classes and the behavior in general. So I am here to rectify those
misconceptions.
Firstly, the 15 classes are taught by teachers who are very pro at what they are
doing. They are friendly and appreciate all questions. I cannot stress this enough.
They were taught by the same process in this academy before and so know
exactly what is expected.
We were taught from a PLAB 2 book written by Dr. Samson himself. The book is
written according to the old curriculum and so I was hesitant in the beginning to
read it and was more dependent on class notes and various notes circulating
online. But with time I recognized the true value of the book and how beautifully
scenarios were set up and how professionally we had to handle scenarios. My
respect for the book increased and I poured through it.
It is common knowledge that there is a question bank of common stations from
where most of the scenarios in the exam come. However, I started noticing that
we were taught scenarios which never came in the exam along with the common
stations. This was very frustrating to me. But this was actually building us up to
deal with any possible scenarios which come in the exam. I know people who
refused to study anything other than the common stations common scenarios and
fail. Because even if a new scenario doesnt come, there is no surety that the
common station will have a scenario you are used too. We go into a robotic
approach when we find a common scenario and thus if the scene is slightly altered
in the exam we mess up big time. This was noticed by Dr. Samson and so he
always changed scenarios to keep us vigilant at all times.
The management of PLAB 2 scenarios are not very hard. But what people fail to
appreciate is that interpersonal skills carry 33 percent of the score and a good
interpersonal skill automatically increases your score in other segments. This was
bulldozed on us again and again in every class. Interpersonal Skills were the
embodiment of perfection according to Dr. Samson. By the end of 15 classes we
were given a huge dose of knowledge and techniques and now came the time to
practice. As so we practiced with each other till the mocks.
All the mannequins were available at all times to everyone. We were to give 4
mocks. The gap between each mock was set at such a way that we had time to
recognize our mistakes and work on them.
The 1st Mock was the scariest experience. 18 stations for the first time was a big
deal. I was very nervous I remember. But it was set up to resemble the real exam
as much as possible. That being said the mocks time were shortened by 1-2
minutes for the sake of the mock. I dont know how much significant that was
when it came to our exam. Also sometimes the time to read the whole scenario
was not enough. Again in the end it really gave you more time in the exam to read
and prepare your approach. By the time I appeared for my 4th Mock I was relaxed.
NO palpitations. NO nervousness. Pure professionalism in the way we
approached the stations. 18 stations 4 mock. So needless to say by the time my
exam came I had given mock of more or less every scenario in the past week. The
mocks are arranged so that they are done in the last 12 days before your exams.
The examiners would give face to face feedback on each sation to us.
And the role of Dr. Samson. Well after each Mock he would play the video of our
performance in the stations. In each mock we were recorded 3 times. He would go
through them with us personally and point out our flaws and drawbacks. He was
direct and at times harsh. But to be honest he on point every single time. NO point
in sugar coating our mistakes. Afterwards he would go through each station and
explain the approach to us. Keep in mind we were taught a particular station once
in class topic wise, then again in common station class and finally refined by Dr.
And on top of that we gave mock of that scenario. Also the night before the exam
Dr. Samson will Skype and again go through scenarios. So you can imagine the
confidence we had in the exam hall.

I cannot speak for other academies but the way we are molded from our first day to the
last in a systematic and meticulous way to deal and confront any station possible was
stunning.

Finally, I am vey happy to be done with my PLAB 2 in 2 months within the end of my
internship. I hope you found this useful. My email is drsabereenhuq@gmail.com if you
have enquiries at any time. Pray for the rest of my journey. And like my page Huq Plab
on Facebook for other infos. The bond among other nationalities is very string and so
they get a lot of help from their seniors. I hope we from Bangaldesh can grow as a unit
here too.