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Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery - FAQs For Program Administrators

Learn more about FLS by watching this video.

2020-2021 Academic Year graduates should watch this FLS Video.

Some content below has been updated as of May 1, 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic.


The Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgery (SAGES) is the non-profit organization that offers FLS. You can download the order form and purchase FLS packages for your residents there.

The FLS is a standardized curriculum and high-stakes examination that has been validated. The test questions and tasks have been field-tested for efficacy, and the FLS Test Committee continually reviews their statistical properties. The assessments are proctored by accredited FLS testing centers.

All residents who graduate in the academic year 2020 and beyond must complete the formal FLS curriculum and certification at an FLS testing center. This requirement does not apply to candidates who graduated in academic years prior to 2020.

Institutions wishing to become FLS Test Centers must first complete an FLS Test Center application and submit the application, along with the application fee, to the SAGES FLS Program office. The FLS Test Center application is available, along with the FLS Test Center Standards and criteria here.

Residents may apply for the QE regardless of where they are in their FLS certification process. Residents may apply for the QE without verification of FLS registration or completion of the FLS program. Residents are encouraged to apply as soon as the application opens on September 17. 

They can take FLS at any time during residency, but the ideal time may be during the second year as residents are gaining more exposure to laparoscopy.

Candidates who are unable to complete FLS prior to the 2022 Qualifying Examination may take the exam. However, residency graduates who pass the 2022 Qualifying Examination will be required to provide documentation of FLS certification to become active candidates for the Certifying Exam. This means that these physicians must achieve FLS certification to be eligible to move forward as an Active Candidate for OB-GYN certification. 

FLS certificates can be emailed to fls@abog.org or uploaded directly by the candidate to their ABOG portal. The task to upload the certificate will be available on the candidate's portal during their senior year.

Questions? Contact the Exams Department at exams@abog.org or 214.721.7520.