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  • 'Once they passed the exam, they worked in a national hospital and received more training.'

I can't understand the correct meaning of this sentence.

I know a sentence like 'Once they pass the exam, they will work in a hospital.' is correct. So, I wonder 'passed' in the first sentence should be 'had passed'.

Please explain to me the meaning of the first sentence and using of 'passed'. Thank you.

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Once they passed the exam, they worked in a national hospital and received more training

The sentence is grammatical. Another example:

Once he got inside the house, he slammed the door (The Free Dictionary).

The word once can be used as an adverb and a conjunction. As an adverb, it implies one single time. When you use it as an conjunction, it means as soon as or after. You can use the simple past or the past perfect in the "as soon as/after" clause. Same is the case with the conjunction "once".

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