Pre-Optometry

Optometrists take care of people’s eyes and vision.

They conduct eye examinations, diagnose and treat eye diseases and injuries, and identify conditions affecting the eye. Doctors of optometry also perform certain surgical procedures. They work in a range of settings, from general-practice community health centers to pediatric specialty clinics. Optometry is a rewarding field that combines the satisfaction of improving people’s ability to see with a flexible schedule, a position that garners respect in the community, and leads to a stable lifestyle.

Yes, you’ll need to complete a four-year graduate degree program in optometry at one of the colleges of optometry. After you earn your graduate degree, you’ll need to pass the licensure examination in order to practice optometry.

As a pre-optometry student you may choose any major, as long as you complete the course requirements of the school you’re applying to.

Prerequisites vary by program, so it’s best to contact the professional school that interests you for specific information. Also, you should complete the Optometry Admission Test (OAT) at least one year before enrolling. Recommended courses include:

  • BIO 200, 201, 221 or 321; 107/108 or 430/442 highly encouraged
  • CHM 211, 212, 311, 312, 315, 316
  • ENG 105, 106
  • MTH 151, 345 (or PSY 355)
  • PHY 111, 112 or 121, 122
  • PSY 210
  • Humanities and fine arts

You will meet with the health professions advisor to discuss your specific academic and professional interests. Your advisor will work with you throughout your Elmhurst career, clearing obstacles and giving expert guidance.

You can start by visiting these useful websites:

  • American Optometric Association
    The American Optometric Association is the acknowledged leader and recognized authority for primary eye and vision care in the world.
  • American Orthoptic Journal
    The American Orthoptic Journal is the official journal of The American Association of Certified Orthoptists. The journal serves as a forum for orthoptists and ophthalmologists to present clinical studies, reviews and new material in the fields of amblyopia, strabismus, and related areas of eye movement disorders.
  • Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
    Founded in 1941, the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) is a non-profit education association representing the interests of optometric education.

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