General Information
The CLSO and CMLSO exams are primarily based upon the ANSI Z136 Series of Laser Safety Standards. The parent document, ANSI Z136.1-2014 Safe Use of Lasers is the primary source of information for the CLSO exam and a major source of information for the CMLSO exam. The primary source of information for the CMLSO exam is the ANSI Z136.3-2011 Safe Use of Lasers in Health Care standard.

Laser Institute of America is the publisher of the ANSI standards; these standards can be purchased from the LIA bookstore.

It is important to realize the value of independent study prior to taking an exam. While it is true some candidates can pass an exam following a laser safety officer course without this additional effort, when examinations are revised by the subject matter experts additional independent study is considered a must.  

The exam is made up of 100 multiple-choice questions. The questions are grouped into areas of practice. Each question has five (four for CMLSO exam) possible answers from which to choose. The total allotted time to take the exam is three hours. The exam is only given in English. The exam is not translated into any other language.

Examinees may bring a simple scientific calculator (non-programmable) and spare batteries if desired. (Calculators are not necessary for the CMLSO exam). Personal computers, books, manuals, notes or other reference materials may not be brought into the exam room.

Materials will be inspected on site, and proctors can refuse to allow examinees to bring certain calculators or other materials into the examination room. If you have any questions about what types of calculators or other materials are permitted, please contact the BLS in advance.

Examination and Related Fees

All accepted applicants must submit the examination fee at least two weeks prior to the examination. Any applicant who has not paid will not be permitted to sit for the examination.

If the applicant is unable to take the scheduled examination, he/she may request to reschedule the examination. Applicants who request to reschedule an examination more than 30 days prior to the examination date may apply the examination fee to a future exam within the 2-year period of acceptance, without incurring the rescheduling fee. Requests to reschedule an examination less than 30 days notice prior to an examination date are subject to a rescheduling fee of $50.00. In some circumstances, this rescheduling fee may be waived. For consideration, petitions must be made in writing to the BLS and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants who send notification of cancellation in writing to the BLS more than 30 days prior to the examination may request a refund of the examination fee.

Application Deadlines

All applications for the CLSO and CMLSO exams must be postmarked no later than two weeks prior to when you wish to take the exam.

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