Step 1: Determine your eligibility.

1. You must have a high school diploma or equivalency.

2. You must have a minimum amount of work experience. You must have worked for at least 1000 hours (about 6 months full time) under the supervision of an ophthalmologist in the 12 months prior to application.


Step 2: Complete Independent Study Course


You must complete an independent study course. It must be completed within 36 months of submitting your application for examination. If it has been more than 36 months, you must repeat the course or submit 18 CE credits for each year beyond the 36 months.


If you have not yet completed this course, click here for helpful information.


Step 3: Begin exam preparation and plan the timing of your application.


Before you begin Step 3, be sure you have time to commit to exam preparation, and that you have funds for the application process and for the exam prep course.


Using the Ophthalmic Assistant Exam Preparation Course from, you should allow for up to 4 months of studying at least one hour per day. The fee for the prep course is $120 for 4 months of access. Ask for more access time if you need it. Are the prep courses effective?


The exam is administered by the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (800-284-3937). Call them for the application. The exam fee is currently $300, which will be due with the application. The application is processed within 2-4 weeks. You will receive a response by mail. If your application is accepted, you will have a 90 day window to schedule your exam.


When using the prep course, it is a good strategy to complete at least one month of study before you submit your application. This way you will have an idea if 4 months will be enough study time for you. If you submit your application after one month, you will most likely receive your confirmation letter after the second month of study time. This will allow you to schedule your exam close the end of your prep course access time.


Step 4: Complete your exam prep and pass your exam!