Written Exam


To be eligible for certification in Otolaryngology/Facial Plastic Surgery, candidates must meet the criteria below:

  • Be a graduate of a COCA-accredited college of osteopathic medicine.
  • Satisfactorily complete a one-year internship in an AOA approved training program. A one-year specialty track internship (including general surgery) is acceptable.
  • Satisfactorily complete four years of AOA-approved residency training in Otolaryngology/Facial Plastic Surgery.
  • Successfully sit for and pass all sections of the certification examination.
  • Hold an unrestricted license to practice in a state or territory.
  • Adhere to the AOA Code of Ethics.
  • Meet AOA board eligibility requirements.


At the time of application, you must submit the following to the AOBOO-HNS:

  • Copy of your current state medical license.

Exam Fees

An application fee of $2,000 must accompany your completed application. No application will be considered complete until all fees have been paid.

If an applicant fails the exam, the fee for re-examination is $2,000.

Exam Dates and Deadlines

The Otolaryngology/Facial Plastic Surgery Written Exam is offered once a year, generally every spring. Retakes are offered twice a year in the spring and the fall/winter. The application period opens in the spring and are due on March 31 for spring and Aug. 1-Nov. 1 for fall/winter.

Exam Content Outline

The Written Exam will evaluate the candidate’s understanding of the scientific bases of the problems involved in ophthalmology, otolaryngology, otolaryngology/ facial plastic surgery, as well as his or her judgment, diagnostic skill and familiarity with current advances in otolaryngology.

The four-hour exam consists of 165 multiple choice questions, with approximately 40 in each subspecialty of facial plastic surgery, otology, rhinology and laryngology. Topics will include, but are not limited to, the following:

• Audiology
• Congenital
• External Ear
• Internal Ear
• Middle Ear

• Allergy
• Congenital
• Nasopharynx
• Rhinology
• Sinus

• Larynx
• Laser
• Neck
• Oropharynx
• Salivary and Endocrine

Facial Plastic Surgery:
• Facial Plastics
• Reconstructive
• Trauma