ABCO Fellow Login
ABCO versus ABO
|American Board of
Clinical Optometry (ABCO)
|American Board of Optometry (ABO)|
|Education and Training
|OD Degree from accredited optometry school.||OD Degree from accredited optometry school.|
|Examination / Evidence of Initial Competence
||NBEO or equivalent State Board licensing exams are proof of initial competence in general optometry.
||Obtain 150 Points to be eligible for examination, then take and pass the ABO examination.
|TPA Certification||Required, but non-TPA option available only until 2020.||Required.
|Moral Character||NPDB Background Check||NPDB Background Check|
|Qualifications||Licensed Optometrist.||Licensed Optometrist in practice for at least 3 years.
|Cost to Attain
|$350 (plus $16 for NPDB report). No additional costs for a qualifying exam, review course, or to attain qualifying "points."
||$300 to Apply, $1500 for examination ($750 for retake); Variable additional costs to obtain qualifying "points" and examination preparation/review, which range from $700-$1500.|
|Use of Net Profits||Grants to State and Local Optometric Organizations to Benefit Optometry||Unknown. ABO has not disclosed what it will do with its profits.
Maintenance of Certification
|Length of MOC Cycle
||10-year Cycle in 3-year Stages
|SAMs (Self Assessment Modules)
||1 per 5-year Cycle||2 per Stage/6 per 10-year Cycle|
|PPMs (Practice Performance Modules)||1 per 5-year Cycle||1 per Stage/3 per 10-year Cycle|
|125 hours per 5-year Cycle. Any COPE, State Board, or Medical Board approved CE is accepted.
||70 hours per 3-year Cycle, only ABO Approved CE allowed. Unknown what CE will be ABO Approved in the future.
||Required at end of every 2nd 5-year Cycle (1 each 10 years).
||Required once at end of each 10-year Cycle.
|Burdens on Doctor
||CE overlaps with state required CE; Total of 2 SAMs and 2 PPMs per every 10 years of MOC. Less expensive and less time consuming overall.
||ABO approved CE; In addition to CE, 6 SAMs and 3 PPMs required per every 10 years of MOC. More expensive and more time consuming.
|Cost of Completing a Cycle
||$95 Annual fee.
||$150 Annual Fee.
* Based on information currently available from the ABO.