Exam Policies

Rescoring of Examinations

All examination failures will be manually rescored and evaluated by the AOBOG office or the respective exam chair prior to exam results being released.  Any discrepancies will be reported to the exam chair and Executive Committee for review.  Because all failures are manually reviewed, no additional requests for rescore will be accepted.

AOBOG Refund Policy

  • Primary Written Examination
    • Applicant not accepted for examination by the Credentials Committee = 75% refund
    • Applicant cancels prior to 14 days of the scheduled examination = 50% refund
    • Applicant cancels within 14 days of the scheduled examination = no refund
  • Primary Oral Examination
    • Applicant not accepted for examination by the Credentials Committee = 75% refund
    • Applicant cancels prior to 30 days of the scheduled examination = 50% refund
    • Applicant cancels within 30 days of the scheduled examination = no refund

Exam Failure

Candidates who fail an exam may continue to pursue certification by retaking the exam at a future administration provided their board eligibility is still active.  Candidates whose board eligibility has expired may petition to re-enter the certification process through the re-entry pathway.

Right to Appeal

If a candidate feels that the actions of the AOBOG with regard to any part of the examination constitute unequal application of the regulations and requirements or standards, unwarranted discrimination, prejudice, unfairness or improper conduct of the examination, he or she has the right to appeal to this Board.

Appeals must be made on an appeal request form and submitted to a member of the executive committee or staff within two hours of the exam administration. Appeal request forms will be provided to all candidates prior to the start of the exam. All appeals submitted after the two-hour deadline will be denied.

A majority vote of the AOBOG Appeal Committee will determine whether the AOBOG accepts or denies the appeal. An in-person meeting between the candidate and the Appeal Committee may be necessary in order to make a decision.

Candidates will be advised of the Board’s decision by certified mail. If the Appeal Committee accepts an appeal, then the candidate’s examination will not be scored or recorded, and the candidate has the right to take a new exam at the next scheduled exam date with no additional fee. If applicable, the candidate’s original case log will be utilized and the next oral exam will be not be conducted by the original examiners.

If an appeal is denied by the AOBOG, the candidate retains the right to appeal to the AOA Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists (BOS) and AOA Board of Trustees.

The AOBOG will not consider appeals based on examination content, sufficiency or accuracy of answers given to examination questions, scoring of the examination, scoring of answers to individual questions, and/or the determination of the minimum passing score.

Compliance With Federal Regulations

The Board supports the intent of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for candidates who meet ADA eligibility. The board will make a reasonable effort to provide qualified board candidates who have documented disabilities the necessary auxiliary aids and services that do not fundamentally alter the measurement of the skills or knowledge the board assessment process is intended to test or result in an undue burden.

The Board supports the intent of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) for all patients or patient records that may be used as part of any part of the AOBOG board certification process.

Code of Conduct: Irregular or Improper Behavior

Because of the AOA’s commitment to the high level of confidentiality and integrity of our certifying board examinations, board examination results and questions of improper conduct are reviewed by board members. Improper behavior, including but not limited to, giving, receiving, or otherwise obtaining unauthorized information or assistance, looking at or utilizing the test material of others, taking notes, failing to comply with computer site staff instructions, talking with other candidates or other disruptive behavior will be considered cause for review of conduct and a possible violation of the certification process. Candidates must not discuss the examination while the session is in progress. Candidates must not disclose the contents of the examination to others or reproduce the examination or any portion of the examination in any manner, including without limitation reconstruction through memorization, electronic means, or dictation. All AOA examinations are copyrighted and protected by federal law. The above policies apply to all examinations administered by any AOA specialty certifying board.

It is a criminal offense to copy or reproduce any portion of the certifying examinations. Each board will monitor examinations for irregular or improper behavior by direct observation, statistical analysis, and by other means. Irregular or improper behavior will constitute grounds for invalidation of the candidate’s examination and each board reserves the right to invoke other sanctions, such as exclusion from future examinations, revocation of board certification, and reporting misconduct to censing bodies or law enforcement agencies.