Interested in a Career in Optometry?
Entry into an optometry school requires that you take the courses shown in the table below.
|English (6 hrs.)
||ENG 102 and ENG XXX
|Biology with labs (8 hrs.)
|General chemistry with labs (8 hrs.)
|Organic chemistry with labs (8 hrs.) or Organic Chemistry + Biochemistry with labs (8 hrs.)
||CHEM 221-222 (8 hrs.) or
CHEM 221 and BIOL 324, BIOL 326L (11 hrs.)
|General physics with labs (8 hrs)
|Mathematics (6 hrs.)
||MATH 211 or 212 (concurrently with physics)
|General psychology (3 hrs.)
|Statistics (3 hrs.)
Students are encouraged to take as many courses as possible to reflect a liberal, but targeted education. Since the individual optometry schools have slightly different admissions requirements, the student must consult the schools of interest to ensure that all prerequisite courses are taken prior to application.
In the spring of your junior year you should take the Optometry Admissions Test, or OAT. During the summer before your senior year, you should begin to accumulate and complete applications for the individual schools. By early fall semester of your senior year you should submit the applications, letters of reference (even if not required until the supplemental application), and official transcripts to the schools. You may receive a supplemental application from individual schools later in the fall and then be invited for an interview.
The OAT consists of 4 sections: survey of the natural sciences (biology, general chemistry, and organic chemistry), reading comprehension, physics and quantitative reasoning. Each section or subsection of the OAT is scored on a 200-400 scale, with 300 signifying an “average” score. Scores of 320 or better are typical of successful applicants. You should plan to have fewer credit hours your junior year so that you can dedicate as much time as possible to review for the OAT. There are many review books available at area bookstores as well as commercially available review courses. Tests are offered in computerized format (required 90 day time period between test applications), and information can be obtained online or by contacting:
Optometry Admissions Testing Program
211 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611