CACO Rules of Conduct

CEO-ECO is mandated to assess through the Canadian Assessment of Competence in Optometry (CACO) the required entry-to-practice optometric knowledge and skills of individuals who seek to practice optometry in Canada. This mandate directly supports Members (i.e. the provincial and territorial organizations that regulate the profession of optometry in Canada) in their protection of the public interest. All candidates must comply with the following Rules of Conduct and Administration Procedures to preserve the integrity of the examination process. Unauthorized access to examination content or any attempt to breach or undermine the examination is a violation of the purpose of the CACO.

By registering for and/or participating in the CACO (also referred to as “the assessment” or “the examination”), candidates are agreeing to the following CACO Rules of Conduct and CACO Administration Procedures. Failure to adhere to the Rules of Conduct may result in the penalties and actions outlined in the CACO Misconduct Policy.

Rules of Conduct

  • Every individual that participates in the CACO exam process has a responsibility to maintain the integrity and the confidentiality of the examination.
  • All examination materials of the CACO (also referred to as ‘the assessment” or ‘the examination’) are the sole property of CEO-ECO and are protected by property right laws. Examination materials include any items or materials that have been or will be used in a CACO exam including but not limited to exam questions, answers, exam booklets, answer (bubble) sheets, clinical skills exam materials and information about CEO-ECO’s examination processes that are followed in development and delivery of the CACO examination materials and information are strictly confidential and any possession, reproduction, distribution or sharing of examination materials and information is unlawful and subject to legal action which may include seeking recovery of examination development and delivery costs. Only materials and information that are made public by CEO-ECO, such as the candidate clinical record form, are excluded from the preceding confidentiality requirement.
  • Other types of prohibited behaviour include but are not limited to:
    • Reproduction, sharing and/or copying questions and/or other examination material with another individual at any time, or offers including any attempts to reproduce, share or copy examination material. This includes discussions with any individual past, current, or future candidates or assessors or subjects (patients) about any examination material, before, during or after the exam and on or off the examination site(s). This includes but is not limited to:
      • Discussion of exam questions after the exam with anyone – including fellow students, school faculty or academic advisors
      • Discussion of examination questions with any individual who has taken or intending to take the CACO
      • Conversations between Candidates and Assessors or Candidates and Subjects/Patients before the start of, during or after a skills station
      • Conversations between candidates during breaks between skills stations
      • Talking about the exam between morning and afternoon written or skills components
      • Describing questions from the CACO to a candidate who is intending to take the CACO
  • Sharing or exchanging equipment between clinical stations or using equipment not authorized in the Administration Procedures and/or the Candidate Clinical Record Form
  • Misrepresentation of personal identity by any person taking the CACO, including but not limited to attempting to take the examination for somebody else or permitting someone else to take the examination for you
  • Taking the examination for any purpose other than registration with a Canadian optometric regulatory authority
  • Bringing prohibited materials as defined in CACO Administration Procedures into the assessment area. This includes but is not limited to: cell phones, notes, books, personal calculators or digital/computer watch or other aids
  • Removal of any examination materials from the examination site other than permissible items as defined in the CACO Administration Procedures. This includes removal of any equipment supplied to the candidate
  • Writing on anything other than what is provided by the CEO for that purpose
  • Behaving in a way that is disruptive to the examination environment or process and which could be disruptive to other individuals taking part in the examination
  • Behaving in a way that could be constituted as unprofessional, harmful, violent or potentially violent toward assessors, candidates, patients or other CEO-ECO employees and contractors. This includes but is not limited to communication with CEO-ECO staff regarding CACO registration, scheduling, exam administration, scores, or score reporting.
  • Failure to disclose a conflict of interest. In the skills exam, knowledge of or acquaintance with either the assessor or patient, personally or professionally, must be declared by the candidate to the assessor or to the lead assessor
  • Providing false or fraudulent information or documents in relation to any aspect of the CACO administration including registering for the CACO and performance reporting
  • Exiting the designated waiting area, the assigned examination room for the skills station, or any part of the assessment area without permission of the Lead Assessor or Chief Proctor or other designated exam staff
  • Failure to report any of the preceding behaviour if one is or becomes aware of it