We are now accepting applications from AAOMC members who wish to be considered for one of our 10 testing spots in April.

Please review the requirements below and if you qualify, please contact the AAOMC Fellowship Chair for an application.  

AAOMC Fellowship Chair - Caroline Cauchi, OD, FIAO  - cowkey@pacbell.net

What is a Fellow of the IAO?

An individual who possesses intimate, comprehensive knowledge of the concept of Orthokeratology, the process of fitting Orthokeratology lenses (any design) as well as troubleshooting to improve a treatment outcome.  A fellow is a Master of the science and technology of Orthokeratology.

What are the duties of an FIAO? 

  • To passionately promote the IAO at all conferences and professional situations.
  • To have a willingness to help, educate and serve as a role model/mentor for doctors new to the field.
  • To participate in IAO educational activities including speaking, recording webinars, posting answers on the IAO internet forum, serving on section committees, serving as an FIAO testing mentor or oral reviewer.

FIAO Testing Protocol - 2017

 While the candidates will learn and grow from the testing process, its primary mission is not education.  It is certifying the candidate as “expert” in the field of Ortho-K.

       What skills are necessary to attain a fellowship in the International Academy of Orthokeratology (FIAO)?

 Understand the function of every curve used to design an Ortho-K mold:

  • Be able to demonstrate how and why one would manipulate each of the curves of an Ortho-K mold when designing and troubleshooting
  •  If your manufacturer of choice does not allow manipulation of all curves, you must still be able to demonstrate your ability to alter a fit on a theoretical lens by modifying the various parameters

Topographic maps: 

  • Possess comprehensive knowledge of every type of topographic map
  • Understand which maps you would choose (and why) in pre-fit, post-fit analysis and troubleshooting

Complex designs:

  • Have the skills to design treatment or troubleshoot challenging cases such as high myopia, high astigmatism, limbus-to-limbus astigmatism, high or low eccentricity, resistant cornea, decentered treatment, etc. (see list below)
  • You must be able to present complex cases that highlight your advanced skills


  • Fit using fully modifiable software or a minimum of two Ortho-K manufacturers
  • If your preferred manufacturer is not fully modifiable, be able to explain what can and cannot be modified as well as what you would predict was modified with the proprietary changes


  • Be able to troubleshoot a case and anticipate problems with outcome before you design (including myopia control
  • Recognize all treatment complications, their causes and remedies.


  • 1.] Submit application
  • 2.] Attend advanced fitting seminar
  • 3.] Pass written test
  • 4.] Pass mentor led exam
  • 5.] Pass oral exam

1.]  Submit Application


  • Must be a continuous member of the IAO for two years
  • Must have attended one of the IAO section meetings within the last 3 years
  • Must be recommended by an FIAO
  • Must have fit at least a total of 100 Ortho-K patients and provide documentation (from manufacturer, ledgers, etc.)
  • Must be able to perform Ortho-K with a minimum of 2 different manufacturers (if empirical or from fitting set) OR order lenses using a software that allows each parameter to be fully modifiable
  • Must possess the advanced skills listed above
  • If the candidate is a member of the IAOA, they must hold the rank of SIAOA (senior member of the IAOA) before they may apply to take the FIAO test.


  • SFC (Section Fellowship Chair) will make selection based on most-qualified and testing spots available.  Priority will be given to in-section candidates.
  • If selected, SFC will provide candidate with study materials and proceeds to step 2          
  • If not selected may apply at next testing opportunity

2.]  Attend the Advanced Ortho-K Fitting seminar

Offered at the section’s next scheduled annual meeting

3.]   Written Test

Post-seminar written exam is delivered to those who have attended the seminar

Pass with minimum score of 90% 

  • Advance to mentor led exam-MLE
  • Must submit cases to mentor no later than 1.5 years from written exam date

Score is less than 90%

  • Must attend course when it is offered again
  • Pass test with a minimum score of 90%
  • Allowed one re-test at no charge
  • If candidate fails a second time, must submit a new application and pay full fee again

4.]  Mentor-led exam (MLE)


Submit practice case #1 and receive detailed feedback from mentor

Submit cases 2 and 3 by deadline

  • If cases are not prepared adequately or not of sufficient complexity you will be required to submit different cases or make repairs by deadline
  • Mentor-led Skype exam arranged

Pass with minimum score of 90%

  • Advance to oral panel exam OPE
  • Cases for oral exam must be submitted no later than 1.5 years

Score is less than 90%

  • Provided with extensive feedback
  • Assigned a new mentor
  • Must submit two new cases for MLE but not eligible to continue with current year’s testing opportunity
  • A fee of $150 is required to retake this portion of the exam
  • May only retake MLE once.  If candidate fails again, they must re-apply
  • MLE must be undertaken at next testing opportunity (If this is impossible negotiate with SFC)


  • Cases must be submitted that are interesting and of sufficient complexity to demonstrate their fellowship-quality fitting skills.
  • The mentor will determine if the cases qualify and may request additional cases until the submitted cases are of sufficient complexity and preparation. 
  • If the lens is ordered empirically, the first lens must be considered a “trial” lens.  Candidate must be able to assess and document fitting characteristics.
  • A case review will not be scheduled until the case data are presented in good order.
  • Here is a list of categories for complex cases which MAY qualify:

5.]  Oral panel exam OPE

Submit cases 4 and 5 to SFC

Section Fellowship Chair will evaluate cases for complexity. 

If quality is good for exam, proceed to schedule oral exam panel.

If insufficient , one of two options exist

  • Request new case(s)  if time permits
  • Cases must be submitted at next testing opportunity.
  • Not eligible to continue with current year’s testing opportunity.

Final, definitive cases should be submitted no later than 2 months prior to exam

Oral Panel will:

  • Consist of a minimum of 3 FIAOs
  • One should be from outside the candidate’s section
  • Held at the section’s annual meeting
  • Format will be decided by the SFC
  • Pass with minimum score of 90%

Score is less than 90%

  • New cases must be submitted for next testing opportunity (If timing is not possible negotiate with SFC)
  • A fee of $150 is required to resubmit cases
  • May only retake OPE once.  If candidate fails again, must reapply.

Updated 11/16