Occupational English Test (OET) Nurses Syllabus

Communicating accurately and effectively is critical to the safety, care and wellbeing of patients.

This course teaches the English that nurses need to communicate effectively in all essential situations at work, including key patient interactions, clinical pathways, giving accurate handovers, drugs calculations, postoperative and end-of-life care. The course is designed for nurses with low-intermediate or intermediate (B1) level of English who work, or are preparing to work, in an English-speaking environment.

Introducing yourself and saying what you do
• Welcoming a patient
• Talking to patients and colleagues
• Describing your role and responsibilities
• Staff in the hospital
• Medical terminology
• Everyday healthcare language
• Hospital charts: patient admission form

Talking about pain
• Types of pain
• Pain severity and location
• Administering pain medication
• Types of painkillers, side effects
• Chronic pain: osteoarthritis
• Hospital charts: pain scales
• The body: anterior and posterior

Pressure area care
• Pressure ulcers and ulcer stages
• The body: the lower back and buttocks
• Changing a patient’s position
• Intentional rounding
• Pressure area care of wheelchair-bound patients
• Waterlow pressure area assessment tool
• The body: lower back and buttocks

Injuries and falls
• Falls and injuries
• Sprains, strains, fractures and dislocations
• Care of a patient with a plaster cast
• Giving a handover
• Writing an incident report
• Hospital charts: Falls Risk Assessment
• The body: legs, thighs, hips, feet

Infection Control
• PPE, micro-organisms, HCAIs
• Taking a blood sample
• Taking a temperature, abnormal readings
• Wound infections, burns chart
• Isolation nursing
• Hospital chart: wound care chart
• The body: skin, nails, hair
Intravenous therapy and IV injections
• IV equipment, needle stick injuries
• Administering IV fluids
• Checking and giving an IV antibiotic; VIP scores
• Drug calculations
• Taking about clinical pathways
• Hospital charts: fluid balance chart
• The body: arms and hands

Administration of medications
• Types of medication
• Checking drugs, dose, frequency, allergies
• Discussing side effects and precautions
• Medication and the elderly
• Putting in eye drops and eye ointment
• Hospital charts: drug charts
• The body: ears and eyes

Breathing difficulties
• Respiration and respiratory difficulties
• Breathing equipment
• Asthma – types of inhalers and nebulisers
• Upper respiratory tract infections
• Discussing lifestyle changes
• Hospital charts: oxygen prescription
• The body: the chest

Post-operative care
• Vocabulary of post-operative care
• Taking a handover in Recovery
• Explaining discharge information
• Managing phone enquiries
• Using SBAR to communicate with colleagues
• Hospital documentation: district nurse referral
• The body: the abdomen

End-of-life care
• Types of cancer and cancer treatment
• Talking about chemotherapy side effects
• Managing unpleasant symptoms post- radiotherapy
• Palliative care
• Supporting relatives
• Hospital charts: DNAR orders
• The body: mouth and throat