Preprofessional Programs

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.

Will I need further study?
What should I major in?
What are the course requirements?
What about advising?
Where can I find additional information?

Will I need further study?
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.

What should I major in?
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.

What are the course requirements?
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, and 315;
  • ENG 105, 106;
  • MTH 151, 345/346 (PSY 355);
  • PHY 111, 112 or 121, 122;
  • PSY 210
  • Humanities and fine arts

What about advising?
Expert advising is an important part of the Patterson Center for the Health Professions. You will meet with one of our expert advisors to discuss your specific academic and professional interests. Your advisor will work with you throughout your Elmhurst career, clearing obstacles and giving expert guidance. Want to know more? See Advisors.

Where can I find additional information?
You can start by contacting us at Elmhurst’s Patterson Center for the Health Professions. Or, you can check out some of these useful web sites:

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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