The Official Methods of AnalysisSM (OMA) Program

The Official Methods of AnalysisSM (OMA) program is AOAC INTERNATIONAL's premier methods program. The program evaluates chemistry, microbiology, and molecular biology methods. It also evaluates traditional benchtop methods, instrumental methods, and proprietary, commercial, and/or alternative methods. In 2011, AOAC augmented the Official MethodsSM program by including an approach to First Action Official MethodsSM status that relies on gathering the experts to develop voluntary consensus standards, followed by collective expert judgment of methods using the adopted standards.


The OMA program has undergone a series of transitions in support of AOAC's collaborations, evolving technology, and evolving technical requirements. Methods approved in this program have undergone rigorous scientific and systematic scrutiny such that analytical results by methods in the Official Methods of Analysis of AOAC INTERNATIONAL are deemed to be highly credible and defensible.

On September 7, 2012, AOAC INTERNATIONAL further clarified the AOAC Official MethodsSM program by transitioning the conformity assessment component of the Official MethodsSM program into the AOAC Research Institute. The AOAC Research Institute now administers the AOAC Official MethodsSM program for all proprietary, single and sole source methods.  Methods submitted through the PTM-OMA harmonized process also will be reviewed through the AOAC Research Institute.  All methods in the AOAC Official MethodsSM program are now reviewed by Expert Review Panels for First Action AOAC Official Methods of AnalysisSM status.

Step 1: Application Process

Applicant/Study Director(s) must submit the following required documentation to initiate the application process. 

  1. Online Method Submission Application for Official Methods of AnalysisSM (OMA)
    1. Method manuscript in OMA format 
    2. Package insert or user manual, (if rapid method or test kit)
    3. Safety checklist
    4. Application fee
    5. Validation protocols (not required if AOAC Consulting Service is used)
  2. All applications may take a minimum of 2-3 business days to process once submitted. 
  3. An invoice will be generated and submitted to the Applicant/Study Director(s) within 2-3 business days.  
  4. Application fees must be remitted before services are rendered. Please note that it may take 7-10 business days for monetary processing (i.e., checks and wire transactions).  If you have any questions regarding the status of your payment, please contact our Customer Service department.  If you would like to send your application fee via mail, please send to:  

    AOAC Research Institute
    2275 Research Blvd, Ste 300
    Rockville, MD 20850-3250 USA
    *Please remit payment to the address above in U.S. Dollars only.

  5. Once remittance is received, the AOAC RI staff will set up a teleconference to discuss your method in detail, the Expert Review Panel (ERP) process and answer questions pertaining to the review of your submitted method. 

Step 2: Expert Review Panel (ERP) Process

The AOAC Research Institute will obtain expert reviewers via our Call for Experts to review the submitted method. The proposed ERP candidates with demonstrated expertise are reviewed by the AOAC Chief Science Officer and vetted by the AOAC Official Methods Board.  The ERP will be responsible for the following: 

  • Review methods for First Action Official MethodsSM status
  • Adopt methods as First Action Official MethodsSM status
  • Track First Action methods for 2 years after adoption
  • Review any additional information (collaborative study, proficiency testing, and other feedback) and make recommendations to the AOAC Official Methods Board regarding Final Action status.

All vetted Expert Review Panel Members have agreed to the AOAC INTERNATIONAL Antitrust Policy, AOAC INTERNATIONAL Policy On The Use Of The Association, Name, Initials, Identifying Insignia, Letterhead, And Business Cards, AOAC INTERNATIONAL Policy And Procedures On Volunteer Conflict Of Interest, and have signed the AOAC Volunteer Acceptance Form.

Step 3: Expert Review Panel (ERP) Meeting

The Expert Review Panel (ERP) will meet in person a minimum of two (2) to four (4) times per year: *AOAC Mid‐Year meeting (DC metro area) * AOAC Annual Meeting * Two (2) additional designated times for proprietary method Organizational Affiliates.  Please refer to our OMA Submission Deadlines.  

  1. The AOAC Research Institute will advise the Applicant/Study Director(s) and ERP members of the upcoming meeting date, location, and time. We require that the Applicant/Study Director(s) of the method be present during the ERP meeting.  During this time, the ERP may require changes and/or revisions to the manuscript to be updated in real-time.  
  2. The AOAC Research Institute will facilitate and coordinate the review process of the manuscript.  The ERP will evaluate the method against the proposed collaborative study protocol and submit their recommendations.  
    • Expert Reviewer comments will be made available to the Applicant/Study Director(s) prior to the ERP meeting.  
  3. At the conclusion of the review of the method, the ERP will render a decision to either grant or not to grant the method with an AOAC First Action Official MethodsSM status.
Step 4: First Action AOAC Official MethodsSM Status

  • If your method is granted AOAC First Action Official MethodsSM status, it will be published in the Official Methods of Analysis of AOAC INTERNATIONAL and manuscripts are published in the Journal of AOAC INTERNATIONAL.
  • Method status changes are published in the AOAC Inside Laboratory Management magazine.

Step 5: Final Action Review

  1. ERPs track First Action AOAC Official MethodsSM for a maximum of two (2) years.
  2. For Final Action Official MethodsSM status consideration method performance feedback on method applicability, safety concerns, reference materials, single-laboratory validation, and reproducibility/uncertainty and probability of detection is required.
  3. The ERP evaluates the method performance feedback and can make the following recommendations to the AOAC Official Methods Board (OMB):
    1. A recommendation for Final Action Official MethodsSM status
    2. A recommendation to repeal First Action or Final Action Official MethodsSM
    3. A recommendation to request a continuance of First Action Official MethodsSM
    4. The AOAC Official Methods Board reviews ERP recommendations and renders decisions on Final Action Official MethodsSM status, repeal First Action or Final Action Official MethodsSM, or grant a continuance of First Action Official MethodsSM

Official Methods of AnalysisSM (OMA) Application Fees:
  • $35,000.00 USD per method for Non-AOAC Organizational Affiliates.
  • $20,000.00 USD per method for AOAC Organizational Affiliates.
  • $15,000.00 USD per method for AOAC PTM-OMA program.