Please check our Examinations Calendar for dates of all upcoming examinations.
How do I book the exam?
Booking the exam will depend on whether you are already an RCOphth member or previous exam applicant – or whether you are a first-time exam applicant:
- If you have not registered with us previously and are sitting our Part 1 exam for the very first time or are an overseas candidate you MUST use this:
- If you have not registered with us previously and are sitting our Refraction Certificate exam for the very first time or are an overseas candidate you MUST email [email protected] to request an application form.
- Only if you are already an RCOphth member with an online log in or have sat the exam previously, you can book your exam here.
All candidates must hold a medical qualification approved by the General Medical Council of the United Kingdom (GMC) or Ireland (IMC) before registering.
Please note that we do not confirm receipt of individual exam applications and candidates will have their applications confirmed soon after the closing date.**
Please also note that exams close for registration at 5 pm UK time on the closing date and applications received after this time will not be accepted. Candidates are strongly encouraged not to leave an exam application until the closing date itself.
The Part 1 FRCOphth and Part 2 Written exams are now delivered online via remote proctoring which means a candidate in any country can sit these exams without the need to travel. This new format has seen an expanded global reach and the recent Part 1 exam in October 2020 saw nearly 400 candidates sit it in 27 different countries.
The Part 2 FRCOphth Oral and Refraction Certificate exams take place every year in India, Trinidad and Tobago, Egypt, Singapore and Malaysia.
New Hybrid Exams from November 2022
The FRCOphth Part 2 Oral and Refraction Certificate Examinations will adopt a new hybrid format beginning from November 2022.
After two years of running specially adapted examinations without real patients due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both the Refraction Certificate and the Part 2 FRCOphth Oral examinations will now adopt a new hybrid format from November 2022.
These new hybrid formats will see the re-introduction of some patients into both exams, utilising a combination of patients alongside the substituted methods of assessment that were introduced in 2020.
For the Refraction Certificate, this will mean that 2 of the 5 OSCE stations will still use the retinoscopy simulators that have been used over the past two years but stations 3-5 will once again use real patients and re-introduce subjective refraction.
Please note that the May 2022 and July 2022 sittings of the Refraction Certificate in Birmingham and Glasgow respectively will still be the current COVID-era format.
For the Part 2 FRCOphth Oral, each of the five OSCE stations will now utilise a combination of real patients alongside the videos that have been used since 2020.
You can view samples of these video excerpts here:
Sample Video Excerpts
Temporary examination entry requirements (for October 2022 Part 2 Oral exam in Chennai ONLY)
The temporary work-place based examination entry requirement to confirm candidate clinical examination skills that was introduced in 2020 has now been dropped for all exams from 1st November 2022.
The only remaining exam that will still require these pre-exam assessments will be the sitting of the Part 2 Oral in Chennai in October 2022. Candidates taking the Chennai exam are advised to still consult the following information pack on the clinical assessments:
The updated information packs for both these new hybrid exams can be found here:
2022 Refraction Certificate Information Pack – New Hybrid Exams (Exams after 1st November 2022 only)
2022 Part 2 FRCOphth Oral Information Pack – New Hybrid Exams (exams after 1st November 2022)
The 2022 Admission Ceremony is scheduled to take place on Friday 9 September 2022 in London. Further details will be sent to those eligible to attend in mid 2022.
Exam Pass Lists
RCOphth Pass Lists are published online after all marks for an exam have been verified by the senior examiner. Click on the individual exam pages to view exam pass lists.
As per the General Medical Council’s (GMC) Standards for Curricula and Assessment Systems, abridged reports are provided for the Refraction Certificate examinations from 2009 as “the methods used to set standards for the classification of trainees’ performance/competence must be transparent and in the public domain” [Standard 12, Standards for Curricula and Assessment Systems, July 2008]. Click on the individual exam pages to view exam reports.
Examinations Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
You can find a list of commonly asked questions and answers on our RCOphth Exams page.