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  • OKAP® Exam

  • 2023 Exam Dates: March 16-19

    The Ophthalmic Knowledge Assessment Program (OKAP) is a 260-item multiple choice examination administered to ophthalmology residents in each year of training throughout the United States and Canada.  It is designed to measure the ophthalmic knowledge of residents, relative to their peers, in order to facilitate the ongoing assessment of resident progress and program effectiveness.  Test scores are the property of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and may be used to improve ophthalmic education.

    Programs outside of the United States and Canada interested in taking the exam, learn about OKAP International.

    Exam Administration 

    • Format: the exam will be administered online, through the internet, at institutions via an in-person residency proctor guided by national standards.
    • Dates: the exam will be offered over four consecutive days, March 16-19, 2023, to allow programs the flexibility of scheduling proctors and residents as desired. Programs may conduct exams on more than one day if desired. Particularly for programs interested in their Program Coordinators acting as proctors, Thursday and Friday dates and times may be more preferable than the traditional Saturday.
    • Times: the exam will be offered at 5 times each day at the top of each hour from 8:00am-12:00pm Eastern Time to allow programs the flexibility of scheduling proctors and residents as desired. Exam times will be in Eastern Time, so please convert your time zone as needed to prepare. Residents must start the exam during the hour they are scheduled. Programs may schedule and conduct exams at more than one time if desired.
    • Capacity: the exam will be offered to a maximum of 200 residents per exam start hour each day to stagger access to the exam, minimize any login issues or potential overload of the exam platform, and to ensure adequate Academy technical and other support. Based on past load and technical testing, we do not expect to encounter technical issues, but to ensure system stability, we will implement a capacity limit to assure a robust test experience for all involved.
    • Registration: programs will select testing dates and times for each resident on a first-come first-served basis. The registration portal will show how many time slots remain for each exam start hour. There should be ample time slots available for your residents to test, so if your first choice isn’t available, please remain flexible and choose the next best option.
    • Proctors: programs will provide their own proctor(s) to administer the exam (more than one proctor is allowed). A proctor can be any individual associated with your institution. To allow a resident to test, proctors will need to log in and accept an attestation prior to a resident being allowed to test. Currently, all program directors and coordinators have been assigned the proctor role in our database, but if another individual needs to be added or removed, you can email us to update. Your program’s proctor(s) will display in the registration portal and the Academy will provide notifications listing your selected proctor(s) for you to verify. Instructions with national standards will be shared with each proctor prior to exam administration.    
    • Testing Location: programs will provide their own testing location to administer the exam. The exam testing location must be a quiet space with no distractions and no one other than the residents and proctor(s) are allowed to be present during the exam. The location should have a strong, stable internet connection and ensure there is enough space or barriers to prevent residents from seeing another resident’s screen.

    Registration Instructions

    • The Academy will open registration in mid-November for programs to register their residents for the exam (program directors and coordinators will be sent an email with instructions prior). Programs will verify program, proctor, and resident information, select an exam date/time for each resident, create an invoice, and pay for the exam. The exam fee is $375 per resident. Registration information will be submitted, and your program will receive an email with your registration summary.
    • If a resident requires an accommodation for extended exam time or an alternate exam date, programs must complete an Accommodation Request Form during registration.
    • Programs must register residents by December 31. Reschedule/Cancellations/Refunds: all are allowed up until 30-days prior to the exam date.

    Exam Requirements and Exam Day Information

    The Academy will send an email to all programs 6-weeks prior to the exam with a confirmation summary of who your proctors are, when your residents are scheduled to test, and provide exam day guides for proctors and residents. Proctors and residents must review the guides prior to testing to ensure they are prepared for exam day:

    Proctors will Need:

    • Exam URL which you will provide to each resident to access the exam.
    • Academy login to log in on each residents computer, before they log in, to allow access to the exam (username is your email on file with the Academy and if you do not know your password go to Forgot Password and reset it).
    • To ensure a quiet testing location with no distractions, materials, or electronic devices. Residents are not allowed to have any materials (books, notes) during the exam and all electronic devices in the testing location (smart watches, tablets, cellphones) must be turned off and stored with the proctor for the duration of the exam.
    • One sheet of clean scratch paper and pencil for each resident if they forget to bring one. Residents may use one sheet of clean scratch paper during the exam. Proctors must collect and destroy any scratch paper used after the exam. Calculators are not allowed.
    • To frequently walk around the testing location to ensure residents do not have any materials, other web browser windows, or applications open on their computers.
    • To observe residents at all times and report any suspicious activity or violations to

    Residents will Need: 

    • A Computer (laptop or desktop) with one screen, power cord, and a stable internet connection.
    • Google Chrome or Firefox. The exam works best in these browsers.
    • Academy login to access the exam (username is their email on file with the Academy). Residents must prove that they can log in to the Academy website prior to exam day.
    • Earplugs, beverages, snacks, one sheet of clean scratch paper (all optional). Residents are allowed to wear earplugs if they are sensitive to noise, they are allowed to bring beverages and snacks to enjoy during their break, and they are allowed to use one sheet of clean scratch paper during the exam.

    Exam Format/Time Allotment/Break Policy

    The OKAP exam consists of 260 multiple choice questions equally randomized across the thirteen BCSC sections/ophthalmic practice areas.

    • Residents will be able to enlarge images (by clicking on them), skip items, mark items for review, and be presented with a summary (at any time during the exam) of all items displaying which items are marked or unanswered before officially submitting the exam.
    • The submit exam button will only appear after all 260 questions have been answered or after reaching the exam time limit.

    The OKAP exam time is 4 hours and 40 minutes (residents will have 4 hours and 30 minutes to complete the exam, plus 10 minutes for a break).

    • Immediately after 2 hours and 15 minutes have elapsed or answering 130 items, residents will be allowed a 10-minute optional break.
    • During the break residents are not allowed to communicate with anyone, use any electronic device, or access any reference materials.

    User's Guide

    For comprehensive information about the OKAP exam and a list of the national averages, refer to the OKAP User's Guide.

    If you have any questions, please call the Academy at 415-561-8540, or send your inquiry to

    Exam Timeline for Program Directors and Coordinators

    July-August: Programs Update Resident Information

    Review “Resident Verification and Registration Login” Academy email

      • Ensure that all Residents (PGY1 and up) apply for free “Join”
      • Confirm that the resident information we have listed for your program is accurate.
      • Verify your login credentials.

    Mid-November: Registration Opens

    Review “OKAP Registration is Now Open” Academy email

    How to Register Residents and Confirm Exam Proctors:
      • Confirm that the exam proctors and resident information we have listed for your program is accurate before accessing the registration portal.
      • Register each resident from the resident table that displays in the registration portal and select the exam date, time, and any accommodations needed.
      • Pay for the exam by using a credit card or generate an invoice to submit payment later. 
      • After registration is complete the program director and coordinator on file will both receive an email with a registration summary.
      • Reschedule residents as needed (until 30-days prior to the exam date) by logging back into the registration portal and selecting Reschedule from the resident table.

    Programs must register residents by December 31. Reschedule/Cancellations/Refunds: all are allowed up until 30-days prior to the exam date.

    March: Exam Dates

    Review “OKAP Exam 6 weeks away” Academy email

    How to Ensure your Program is Ready for the Exam:
      • Confirm that the exam proctors, resident information, and exam dates and times we have listed for your program is accurate.
      • Payment Status – confirm that your program has paid.
      • Exam Day Guides – please review and share the OKAP Exam Day Guide for Proctors and OKAP Exam Day Guide for Residents with your proctors and residents to ensure they are prepared for exam day.

    Late April: Score Reports Available

    Review “OKAP Scores Available for Download” Academy email

      • Download and Save all Reports.
      • Score report disputes can be addressed up to 7 days after scores are available.
      • Next year’s exam date sent in June.