EBO Experience

EBO Experience-Maria Milia, Greece-May 2011

Passing the EBO examination was a goal I set when I started my last year of training in Ophthalmology in Greece after completing 3 years of Ophthalmology in the UK.
The EBO exam is becoming more and more popular with Greek trainees and I thought it would be a challenge and great opportunity for me. It is not obligatory in Greece at present but highly recommended.
It gave me the amazing chance to read through basic sciences applied to the eye and the most important topics in ophthalmology. Unless a trainee has the pressure of an exam coming up there are certain details which one cannot read through carefully and remember.
The written part is a bit stressful with regards to the negative marking. The 52 MCQs are reasonable but require a good preparation for this sort of test. Some questions are difficult and and there will always be certain questions a candidate will be unsure of. The main tip is not to panic, to read carefully and to allow time to concentrate and think carefully.
The second part which comprises of 4 separate stations each one with 2 examiners is the oral part. Each station has a different topic. There is no time to prepare your answers as questions are asked in the form of a clinical scenario based on images/patients tests shown on a screen. The examiners are friendly and one can choose to be examined in their own language. I chose to take the oral exam in English but if a candidate feels safer in their own language, there are options of other languages for the oral part.
The examination days ends with a nice dinner accompanied with music and results are announced on the next day followed by the Diploma Award Ceremony. The pass rate is very good so don’t stress and panic.
The organisation and administration is excellent and the two days run very smoothly for participants. The Palais de Congres is a lovely venue too.
The EBO website is a great resource for the exam along with the usual literature such as the AAO series, Kanski and books for basic sciences applied to the eye.
Paris is lovely at this time of year so after the exam is over its nice to reward yourself with a walk around this gorgeous city.
Altogether I highly recommend this exam to my colleagues across Europe regardless of whether it is compulsory for them or not. It is the best way to refresh your knowledge, revise and learn and above all a rewarding experience. Don’t miss this opportunity!