Optometry MOptom (Hons) degree Course overview
On City's optometry degree you will learn about vision and the eye, through topics like optics, biology, eye disease and visual impairment. You’ll also learn about therapeutic solutions such as contact lenses and ophthalmic lenses and dispensing.
You will develop your clinical practice by working in our very own eye clinic, City Sight where you will examine members of the public, from babies to the elderly, presenting with a wide range of ocular conditions and needs. You will attend 44 weeks of clinical placements during the programme to support and develop the skills you will need as a registered optometrist.
- Practise in excellent facilities, which include a range of purpose-built clinics and laboratories on campus, as well as our clinic, City Sight
- Learn from research-active academics who are leaders in their field and design the curriculum around cutting-edge developments in the discipline
- Benefit from a clinical placement at Moorfields, the UK’s leading Eye Hospital.
This four-year Masters in Optometry degree prepares you for a career as a registered optometrist in high street, independent practice or hospital optometry.
This programme aims to provide you with enhanced clinical training to examine, diagnose and manage ocular conditions in clinic as well as provide accurate prescriptions for spectacles or contact lenses.
Year 1 has a focus on the basic sciences understanding the eye under ‘normal’ conditions and the fundamental clinical skills of an optometrist.
Years 2 and 3 introduces abnormality and disease-related change and develops advanced clinical investigation and management on real patients.
The final year includes intensive clinical experience, providing the range of experience required to enable a transition to successfully work as a registered optometrist.
Optics for Optometry (30 credits)
This module covers the basics of geometrical optics, wave optics and visual optics, with emphasis on the measurement of vision, scattered light, contrast sensitivity, spherical ametropia, astigmatism and accommodation.
Biomedical Science for Optometry (30 credits)
This module covers the basics of ocular tissue, cytology, microscopy, genetics, nutrition and digestion, endocrinology, organ structure and cranial nerves, with emphasis on normal and abnormal findings.
Fundamental Clinical and Professional Practice Skills (30 Credits)
This module covers the basics of examination of the external and internal eye, refractive error, intraocular pressures and visual fields, obtaining history and symptoms of a patient, principles of a variety of optometric instruments and techniques and introduces the concept and process of evidence-based practice.
Dispensing for Optical Appliances (30 Credits)
This module covers the measurement, verification, design, material, function and manufacture of all types of lenses relevant to ophthalmic dispensing including paediatric dispensing, sport and safety lenses. Frame manufacturing and measurement will also be included.
Ocular Disease and Management I (15 Credits)
The module will cover the differential diagnosis of eye disease, comparing and contrasting the aetiology, signs and symptoms and management of anterior and posterior segment eye disease. The module will support your clinical decision making ensuring evidence-based decisions with a focus on patient outcomes and care.
Clinical and Professional Practice I (30 Credits)
This module will cover the professional regulations and guidelines of the professional optical bodies and how they relate to your legal and ethical responsibilities as an optometrist. You will also participate in clinical laboratories which will aid your dispensing skills and help you to develop clinical decision making skills.
Visual Perception (15 Credits)
This module integrates knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the visual system with an understanding of the limits of human visual performance and how this can be measured. The module is illustrated with examples and case studies from clinical practice and draws upon evidence from electrophysiology, psychophysics, functional imaging, and computer modelling to provide a holistic understanding of visual processing.
Advancing Clinical Skills (30 Credits)
This module will help you hone your clinical decision-making skills, building on your knowledge of the routine eye examination and the methods used to diagnose eye disease. You will utilise clinical techniques to determine results of normal and abnormal findings and learn how to interpret these to ensure patient centred care.
Contact Lenses I (15 Credits)
The module covers indications for contact lenses, how to choose a contact lens based on the needs of a patient, physiological changes induced by lenses, properties of materials, fitting of single vision and toric lenses and preliminary investigations and care regimes.
Binocular Vision I (15 Credits)
The module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to investigate and manage a range of normal and anomalous binocular single vision. This will enable you to apply your knowledge to interpret and explain the consequences of important disorders you will encounter later in clinical optometric practice.
Research, Audit and Quality Improvement (15 Credits)
This module will allow you to focus on a specific aspect of research in vision science or optometry which will extend your knowledge of the subject beyond the confines of the core curriculum. In the process, you will learn about the research process and acquire the ability to find, reference and cite research literature existing in a variety of media, and to properly and creatively present research information as a report.
Ocular Disease and Management II (30 Credits)
The module covers the clinical presentation and management of common diseases of the anterior eye that are amenable to therapeutic management by the optometrist e.g. dry eye. It also places a strong emphasis on the diagnosis and management of glaucoma and a number of medical and surgical retinal conditions e.g. diabetic retinopathy. To facilitate therapeutic management there is a strong emphasis on pathogenesis of inflammatory and infective disease and the principles of pharmacology.
Contact Lenses II (15 Credits)
The module will help you to decide on appropriate contact lens fits for the normal and abnormal eye, identify contact lens related changes to the eye and enable you to manage and treat issues and be aware of the advantages and disadvantages of different types of contact lens products.
Binocular Vision and Paediatric Optometry (15 Credits)
This module will help you to identify abnormalities of the binocular and/or eye movement systems diagnosed from the interpretation of symptoms/signs and clinical tests. The range of congenital/acquired paediatric ocular disorders detected will be included and you will be able to determine the refractive correction of children of all ages. Safeguarding procedures, local and national guidance in relation to children, persons with disabilities, and other vulnerable people will also be detailed.
Visual Impairment (15 Credits)
This module will help you understand the epidemiology and demographics of vision impairment and blindness in the UK and worldwide. You will be able to determine magnification requirements and to prescribe and dispense the most appropriate optical and non-optical low vision aids and assistive technology and will have specialised knowledge of social services and support groups with relevance to supporting patients with vision impairment.
Clinical & Professional Practice II (30 Credits)
The module will provide you with the theoretical and practical experience of primary care optometric practice to help prepare you for the Clinical Learning in Practice Modules in the fourth year. You will develop your clinical decision making skills and apply the knowledge gained from clinical experience in dealing with increasingly more complex patients.
Clinical Learning in Practice I (30 Credits)
Clinical Learning in Practice II (45 Credits)
Clinical Decision Making and Professional Practice III (15 Credits)
The module will support your ability to care for patients by assessing individual needs and being able to differentially diagnose eye disease. Building on this you will be able to manage patients successfully from a refractive and eye disease perspective. The module is to support your clinical experience gained in CLiP Parts One and Two.
Medical Retina (15 Credits - elective)
This module aims to provide community and hospital based optometrists with knowledge of common medical retina conditions, enabling them to make accurate and appropriate referral decisions. Additionally, the module aims to prepare optometrists to commence working in diabetic retinopathy screening services, and (under supervision) in medical retina new patient triage clinics and AMD treatment-retreatment clinics.
Glaucoma (15 Credits - elective)
The module will cover the epidemiology, classification and clinical features of glaucoma including visual fields: instrumentation, testing and sources of error, interpretation of results, evaluation of the ONH, differential diagnosis of glaucoma and influence of co-morbidity, tonometry/pachymetry, principles of monitoring and Professional and National guidance on COAG and OHT.
Fundamentals of Prescribing (30 Credits - elective)
The module will cover anatomy and physiology, immunology, microbiology, basic and ocular pharmacology,. eye disease and clinical management guidelines, history taking and examination techniques, evidence-based practice and clinical governance in relation to prescribing, prescribing safely and professionally, public health policy in relation to prescribing, compliance and concordance/confidentiality and data protection/clinical governance and clinical audit /improving prescribing practice.
Teaching and assessment
City's Department of Optometry and Visual Sciences has an excellent reputation with expert academics from a wide range of disciplines including optometrists, ophthalmologists, dispensing opticians, orthoptists, physicists, psychologists, neuroscientists and biologists.
During your optometry degree with us, you will learn through lectures, tutorials, seminars, laboratory work, clinical practice, Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) practice and our web-based virtual learning environment.
You will benefit from state-of-the-art clinics and laboratories, including our City Sight Optometry Clinic and attend clinical placements in community practice.
We use many different techniques to ensure we gain the very best from our students.
You will be assessed using a variety of methods, depending on module choices:
- written examinations
- clinical observation
- Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs)
- laboratory reports
- research, clinical audit and quality improvement reports.
Percentage of the course assessed by coursework
The balance of assessment by examination, practical examination and assessment by coursework will to some extent depend on the optional modules you choose. The approximate percentage of the course assessment, based on 2019/20 entry is as follows:
The Programme consists of 26% contact time and 74% self-learning Independent study times are for you to revise and prepare for teaching sessions and prepare for oral presentations of their work.
The contact time of the programme consists of 44% lectures, 47% Practical Classes, 6% tutorials and 1% on external visits. A student will on average have 16 hours per week of direct contact with staff in teaching sessions.
Fees and funding
Fees for year 2023/24
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2023/24 academic year only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase in the region of 5%.
- There are no fee waivers available for this course
- Means tested support is available for 2023/24 entry.
Some of our degrees may involve additional expenses which are not covered by your tuition fees. Find out more about additional expenses.
This course is approved by the General Optical Council (GOC) to deliver optometry training, and as with all such courses, there are some additional expenses incurred by students during their training:
- Students need to register with the GOC when beginning their studies. This registration needs to be renewed annually and costs approximately £30 per year.
- Students will be required to purchase some specialist equipment, usually during the first and second years of study.
This degree is accredited by the General Optical Council. Full registration with the General Optical Council is gained after successful completion of the four-year programme.
Optometry offers a diverse and flexible career pathway. Optometrists work in:
- high street and independent practice
- research and teaching.
There are opportunities to specialise in areas such as:
- binocular vision
- visual impairment
- contact lenses
- ocular prescribing
- medical Retina
City’s employment rate is very high; 100% of Optometry graduates available to work are in graduate-level work or further study within 15 months of completing the course (Graduate Outcomes Survey 2019/20)., With an average starting salary of £31,000, and £62,000 for an experienced optometrist (Government Careers Service).
How to apply
Applications for degree courses must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
This programme has now been approved and accredited by the General Optical Council (GOC).
Applications made to the BSc Optometry programme will be considered as part of the Master of Optometry selection process. If you have already submitted an application, we will be in touch with you regarding this. If you have queries, please contact our Admission team.
You will be able to apply through your school or college using the Apply system, which enables you to submit your application directly to the UCAS website.
You can apply to up to five universities or institutions on the form. The UCAS code for City, University of London is C60.
Please take care to enter the correct course code when applying, particularly for subjects with a Foundation year or with BEng (Hons) and MEng (Hons) or BSc (Hons) and MSci (Hons) options.
UCAS has implemented an 'invisibility of choices' policy so that, on the initial application and while you are receiving decisions, each institution can see only their entry and not those of other institutions you have chosen. This ensures that your application for a course at City is considered solely on your academic and personal qualities.
You should submit your completed application form to UCAS with a £26.50 application fee. If you want to apply to City, University of London only, you can make a single choice application at a reduced rate of £22.
For enquiries about the admissions process at City, please contact our Admissions Office
Complete the Admissions enquiry form
Call: +44 (0)20 7040 8716.
If your enquiry is about admission to a particular course, please use the contact details provided on the course page.
Address: Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), Rosehill, New Barn Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 3LZ
- from inside the UK 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK +44 (0)871 468 0468
For callers with hearing difficulties:
- from inside the UK use the Text Relay service on 18001 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK dial +44 151 494 1260 (text phone) and then ask the operator to dial 0871 468 0468.
City Sight and The Roberta Williams Centre
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