Prepare to enter a school of optometry, where you will study vision, learn to prescribe corrective lenses and become a primary provider for eye health.

Give yourself a head start

In the past ten years, nearly all of Calvin’s pre-optometry graduates have been admitted to their school of choice. Calvin has a close relationship with the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University, Indiana University School of Optometry and the Illinois College of Optometry.

Take your skills to those in need

Don't miss the chance to go on one of Calvin's interim trips to Mexico, where you'll get first-hand experience providing eyecare to people who desperately need it. Learn more

Course Requirements 2014-2015

Becoming an optometrist requires a Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) degree after you finish college. There's a lot you can do to prepare for this degree and increase your chances of getting into optometry school.

You can prepare for a career in optometry even while you're still in high school. Make sure you emphasize math and science in your classes, and take a class in physics.

The pre-optometry course at Calvin gives you many common prerequisites for optometry school. Requirements for particular optometry schools vary, but all require the following:

  • 8 semester hours general biology
  • 4 semester hours microbiology
  • 8 semester hours general chemistry
  • 10 semester hours organic chemistry or 4 hours of organic chemistry and 3 hours of biochemistry
  • 8 semester hours physics
  • 4 semester hours calculus
  • 4 semester hours statistics
  • 6 semester hours English
  • 3-6 semester hours social science

Many schools also recommend physiology, anatomy, biochemistry and a business or economics course. While you can pick any major to accompany your pre-optometry requirements, most students complete these courses in the context of a biology or biochemistry major.

All applicants to optometry school are required to take the Optometry Admission Test (OAT), which is given on computer and may be taken at any time. Most students take the OAT after completion of the junior year of college. Application deadlines at the various optometry schools range from January 1 to April 1.

Visit the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry website and work with the pre-optometry advisor to plan a course of study that meets the requirements of the optometry schools to which you intend to apply.

Learn more about the field of optometry at the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry ».

John Ubels

Professor
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