Based on the philosophy of lifelong learning, the AO Spine curriculum provides continuous acquisition of the necessary knowledge and skills that will aid lifelong career progression.

Discover the new MISS Curriculum

The new AO Spine MISS (minimally invasive spine surgery) Curriculum is competency-based and aimed at surgeons with little or no experience with MISS as well as surgeons with basic procedural techniques.

What is the AO Spine curriculum?

The AO Spine curriculum is a framework that offers a foundation for continuing development in diverse practice settings. The curriculum is based on the competencies that enable spine surgeons to perform effectively across six areas of pathology in their practice setting and to meet the standards of the profession.

How does the AO Spine curriculum work?

AO Spine's competency-based approach aligns four components addressing the needs of spine care professionals: 

  • Educational plan—defines all learning activities
  • Faculty—trained to deliver all content using our framework
  • Resources—learning materials developed in response to surgeons' needs
  • Assessment—identifies surgeons' needs and tracks their progress

Delivering your curriculum

The AO Spine competency-based curriculum is delivered using a combination of face-to-face educational events, distance learning, and self-directed resources, supported by assessment tools provided to enable you to measure your knowledge and progress.
Educational activities in the curriculum are organized under six areas of pathology and are offered for three main levels of experience: Principles, Advanced, and Masters. To access a detailed step-by-step guide on how to use the curriculum to build your program please click on the below button.


The AO Spine Principles

The four AO Spine Principles that create the foundation for proper spinal patient management lie at the core of the design and delivery of the curriculum:

The four AO Spine Principles apply to each of the six pathologies taught with the support of the AO Spine curriculum.


Stabilization to achieve a specific therapeutic outcome


Balancing the spine in three dimensions


Etiology, pathogenesis, neural protection, and tissue healing


Preservation and restoration of function to prevent disability

Pablo Vela
“The AO Spine curriculum greatly helped improve the learning outcomes of our activities.”

Pablo Vela, Educational Director at Degeneration Seminar, La Paz, Bolivia

Cookies help us improve your website experience.
By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies.