Optometrists provide primary vision health care. Doctors of Optometry examine people's eyes for vision problems, disease and other abnormal conditions, and they test for proper depth and color perception and the ability to focus and coordinate the eyes.
Regional schools of optometry:
- Southern College of Optometry, Memphis, TN
- University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry
- Indiana University School of Optometry
The basic entrance requirements:
- 6 SH - English (ENGL 1010, 1020)
- 6 SH - Mathematics (MATH 1130, 1830 or 1710, 1720, 1910/1920)
- 3 SH - Statistics (MATH 2100 or equivalent statistics course)
- 8 SH - General Biology (BIOL 1110/1110L, 1120/1120L)
- 4 SH - Microbiology (BIOL 3110/3110L)
- 4 SH - Biology Elective
- 8 SH - Inorganic Chemistry (CHEM 1110/1110L, 1120/1120L). Although Organic Chemistry 3020/3020L is no longer required for admissions to SCO, it is a prerequisite for Biochemistry 4510, which is a requirement for SCO admissions. Therefore, prospective students from UTC will need to take 8 hours of Organic Chemistry.
- 4 SH - Organic Chemistry (CHEM 3010/3010L)
- 3 SH - Biochemistry (CHEM 4510)
- 8 SH - Physics (PHYS 1030/1030L, 1040/1040L)
- 3 SH - Psychology (PSY 1010)
- 6 SH - Two additional social science courses
- 27 SH - Electives
- 90 SH - Total
Physiology, and Comparative Vertebrate Zoology are strongly recommended. Preference is given to applicants with baccalaureate or higher degrees. Selection for interview is based on competitive scores on the Optometry Admission Test (OAT), and letters of recommendation from the pre-optometry advisor and an optometrist. Applications may be submitted one year prior to the expected entry date in August. Applications are processed as they are received and acceptances are offered on a rolling admissions basis, thus early application is encouraged.
Depending on the completion of prerequisite science courses, students may choose to take the OAT as early as February of their junior year. If the student scores well on the test, the student can submit a complete application at an earlier date than other students. Most students take the test in October of their senior year.
For more information about the career of optometry see information on the website of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry