Examination Guidelines

FOR TRAINEES STARTED BASIC TRAINING BETWEEN JULY 2010 AND JUNE 2022

Intermediate examinations (Part A & Part B)

Basic Training is considered complete only after the trainee has passed the intermediate examinations, has undergone logbook inspection and satisfied the active assessment requirement.  AFCOphth(HK) will be awarded after completion of basic ophthalmology training.

Part A

  • Prerequisite: The candidate must be registered with the the Medical Council of Hong Kong.
  • Format: 3-hour written examination. 90 Multiple choice questions (MCQ) on basic sciences related to ophthalmology, optics, ophthalmic investigative techniques, and generic issues of medical practice.

Part B

  • Prerequisite: Passed Part A examination and completion of at least 20 months of Basic Ophthalmology Training.
  • Format: written, oral and clinical components, including practical refraction. There are eight stations in total:
    1. Written examination: 60 multiple choice questions, 2 hours in total.
    2. Clinical refraction: 30 minutes in which objective and subjective refraction is performed on a patient in the presence of 2 examiners
    3. Objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) comprising of 3 stations, 20 minutes each with emphasis on the following:
      a. Anterior segment
      b. Posterior segment
      c. Neurology and medicine in relation to ophthalmology
    4. Viva examination comprising of 3 stations, 20 minutes each with emphasis on the following:
      a. Clinical ophthalmology
      b. Medicine & neurology in relation to ophthalmology
      c. Principles of good medical practice & ocular pathology
  • Failure & re-sit: If a candidate fails one or more stations, he/she only needs to re-sit the failed station(s).

After failing 4 times in Part A or 4 times in Part B examinations, the candidate may not be allowed to sit for the examination again, unless the candidate has been granted special permission by the COHK Education Committee.

Exit examinations (Part C & Part D)

Higher Training is considered complete only after passing the exit examinations, logbook inspection and satisfying the active assessment requirement.  FCOphth(HK) and FHKAM(Ophthalmology) will be awarded after completion of higher ophthalmology training.

Part C

  • Prerequisite: Passed Part B examination and completed at least 3 years of Higher Training
  • Format: There are four parts in total:
    1. A written examination consisting of 4 questions to be completed in 3 hours. These questions can be in the format of essays, case scenarios or short notes.
    2. Critical appraisal of scientific publications/articles: Three articles from any of the following ophthalmic subspecialties (anterior / posterior segment, glaucoma, oculoplastics, pediatrics, neuro-ophthalmology) will be selected by the Examination Subcommittee. Candidates will be given one article to appraise one hour prior to their examination. The article will then be discussed with a panel of examiners for 20 minutes.
    3. Communication: The candidates will be evaluated by a panel of examiners for 20 minutes on their communication skills regarding treatment & management and /or consent in various ophthalmology scenarios.
    4. A 45-minute examination of one clinical case. The history-taking and clinical examination are conducted in the presence of a panel of examiners for 20 minutes; and the case is presented and discussed in the remaining 25 minutes.
  • Failure & re-sit: If a candidate fails one part of the examination, only the concerned part needs to be re-attempted. However, if an overall pass cannot be achieved at the next sitting, or if the candidate fails more than one part, all parts will need to be re-taken.

Part D

  • Prerequisite: Passed part C examination and completed at least 4 years of Higher Training
  • Format: Logbook inspection and assessment (30 minutes)

 

FOR TRAINEES WHO START BASIC TRAINING ON OR AFTER 1 JULY 2022

Intermediate examinations (Part A & Part B)

Basic Training is considered complete only after the trainee has passed the intermediate examinations, has undergone logbook inspection and satisfied the active assessment requirement.  AFCOphth(HK) will be awarded after completion of basic ophthalmic training.

Part A

  • Prerequisite: The candidate must be registered with the Medical Council of Hong Kong.
  • Format: 3-hour written examination. 90 Multiple choice questions (MCQ) on basic sciences related to ophthalmology, optics, ophthalmic investigative techniques, and generic issues of medical practice.
  • Failure & resit: If a candidate fails Part A four times, the candidate will not be allowed to sit for the examination again.

Part B

  • Prerequisite: Passed Part A examination and completion of at least 20 months of Basic Ophthalmic Training.
  • Format: written, oral and clinical components, including practical refraction. There are eight stations in total:
    1. Written examination: 60 multiple choice questions, 2 hours in total.
    2. Clinical refraction: 30 minutes in which objective and subjective refraction is performed on a patient in the presence of 2 examiners
    3. Objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) comprising of 3 stations, 20 minutes each with emphasis on the following:
      a. Anterior segment
      b. Posterior segment
      c. Neurology and medicine in relation to ophthalmology
    4. Viva examination comprising of 3 stations, 20 minutes each with emphasis on the following:
      a. Clinical ophthalmology
      b. Medicine & neurology in relation to ophthalmology
      c. Principles of good medical practice & ocular pathology
  • Failure & re-sit: If a candidate fails half the stations or more, all stations of the Part B examination must be retaken. If a candidate fails fewer than half of stations, only the concerned station(s) need(s) to be re-attempted. If a candidate fails Part B (one or more parts) four times, the candidate will not be allowed to sit for the examination again.

Exit examinations (Part C & Part D)

Higher Training is considered complete only after passing the exit examinations, logbook inspection and satisfying the active assessment requirement.  FCOphth(HK) and FHKAM(Ophthalmology) will be awarded after completion of higher ophthalmic training.

Part C

  • Prerequisite: Passed Part B examination and completed at least 3 years of Higher Training
  • Format: written, oral and clinical examinations. There are four parts in total:
    1. A written examination consisting of 4 questions to be completed in 3 hours. These questions can be in the format of essays, case scenarios or short notes.
    2. Critical appraisal of scientific publications/articles: Three articles from any of the following ophthalmic subspecialties (anterior / posterior segment, glaucoma, oculoplastics, pediatrics, neuro-ophthalmology) will be selected by the Examination Subcommittee. Candidates will be given one article to appraise one hour prior to their examination. The article will then be discussed with a panel of examiners for 20 minutes.
    3. Communication: The candidates will be evaluated by a panel of examiners for 20 minutes on their communication skills regarding treatment & management and /or consent in various ophthalmology scenarios.
    4. A 45-minute examination of one clinical case. The history and clinical examination are conducted in the presence of a panel of examiners for 20 minutes; and the case is presented and discussed in the remaining 25 minutes.
  • Failure & re-sit: If a candidate fails one part of the examination, only the concern part needs to be re-attempted. However, if an overall pass cannot be achieved at the next sitting, or if the candidate fails more than one part, all parts will need to be re-taken. If a candidate fails Part C (one or more parts) four times, the candidate will not be allowed to sit for the examination again.

Part D

  • Prerequisite: Passed part C examination and completed at least 4 years of Higher Training
  • Format: Logbook inspection and assessment (30 minutes)
  • Failure & resit: If a candidate fails Part D four times, the candidate will not be allowed to sit for the examination again.

A trainee must complete his/her ophthalmology training (including all parts of the examination) within 12 years unless he/she has been granted special permission by the COHK Education Committee.
 

General Guidelines

Examinations

Applications

Application forms are available from the College secretariat. Completed forms, fees and required documents must reach the secretariat by hand or post before the closing date. Fax applications will not be accepted.

Withdrawal

Notice of withdrawal from examination must be made in writing. The College of Ophthalmologists of Hong Kong shall not refund examination fees if notice of withdrawal is received after the closing date.
 

Overseas Ophthalmology Training

For doctors who received ophthalmology training overseas, please contact the College secretariat at [email protected] for further information on recognition of overseas qualifications.
 
 
Note: Regulations are under continual review therefore it is recommended that candidates keep in regular contact with the college to ensure that they have the most up-to-date information.

Revised May 2022