The Optometry Residency Match (ORMatch) is a program of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO). ASCO has set the following protocols for participants in ORMatch:
- Activities pertaining to ORMatch are governed by the Schedule of Dates.
- Participating programs must offer through ORMatch all residency positions available to start training between April 1 and December 31, 2017. Programs for which positions cannot be assured by the Rank Order List deadline should not be offered in ORMatch. However, these programs may take no action to fill non-participating positions before 12:00 p.m. noon ET on the day ORMatch results are released.
- Programs and applicants must fulfil the Eligibility Requirements of ORMatch. Programs must be affiliated with a school or college of optometry that is accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE). Programs must also be accredited by the ACOE to participate in ORMatch. An exception is provided that allows programs without accreditation to participate in ORMatch for one year provided the program genuinely pursues accreditation during that training year.
- Programs must provide complete and accurate information to applicants concerning the position(s) being offered in ORMatch, including all institution and residency program policies related to eligibility requirements for appointment, compensation for residents and accreditation status of the residency program.
- The ORMatch application service will provide information submitted by each applicant to the programs designated by the applicant. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information to ORMatch and to the programs to which they apply.
- The National Board of Examiners in Optometry (NBEO) will provide Score Report Data for each applicant. ORMatch will distribute the Score Report Data, along with other application information, to any program to which the applicant applied, matched, or accepted a position during the post-Match process, and to the program's affiliated school or college of optometry. Applicants will be sent an e-mail from ORMatch to review the NBEO Score Report Data sent to programs and the applicant is responsible for correcting any errors or omissions in the NBEO Score Report Data directly with the program(s). Programs may use the NBEO Score Report Data received from ORMatch for the sole purpose of selecting residents.
- Programs may not make any commitments to any applicant regarding offers of appointment to positions participating in ORMatch, or require any commitments from any applicant, prior to the release of the ORMatch results. Programs may rank on their Rank Order Lists only those applicants registered in ORMatch.
- Similarly, applicants may not make any commitments to, or require any commitments from, any participating program prior to the release of the ORMatch results. If a registered applicant wishes to accept a position at a program that is not participating in ORMatch, or decides not to participate in ORMatch for any other reason, then the applicant must submit a withdrawal from ORMatch. Applicants may rank on their Rank Order Lists only those programs registered in ORMatch.
- Programs and applicants may freely discuss any matter and may express a high level of interest in each other. A program may voluntarily inform an applicant as to whether or not it intends to rank the applicant, and an applicant may voluntarily inform a program as to whether or not the applicant intends to rank the program. However, neither programs nor applicants may solicit such information. In addition, applicants and programs may not disclose or solicit any information regarding the positioning of any applicant or program on a Rank Order List. The Rank Order Lists submitted by each program and applicant are the sole determinants of their respective order of preferences for the Match.
- The results of ORMatch constitute an obligation between the applicant and the program. Appointment of an applicant to a position may be contingent on the applicant satisfying any institution and program eligibility requirements for appointment specified to the applicant by the program prior to the Match. Release from the ORMatch results can only be achieved by mutual consent between the applicant and residency program.
- Violations of any of the protocols, such as refusing to honor the match obligation, will be reported to ASCO and/or to schools and colleges of optometry. ASCO may impose penalties on the violators, including barring them from future participation in ORMatch.