Duration: 3 years
Attendance mode: Full-time
Award: BSc (Hons)
Placement: Placement year not available
Suitable for international students
Faculty of Life Sciences
Optometry is a healthcare profession concerned with examination, diagnosis and treatment of the human visual system.
In our aging population the demand for eye care is expected to increase, and optometrists are ideally placed to help meet this demand.
The programme is based on both fundamental academic sciences as well as detailed clinical and practical studies. The emphasis is very much on the optometric service to patients.
You will see patients in the University's own eye clinic, and attend local hospitals where you are instructed in the recognition and management of eye disease by senior ophthalmologists.
Our three-year programme enables you to progress towards practising as a registered optometrist - you will need to complete a year's pre-registration training after graduation in order to do this.
This programme is accredited by the General Optical Council.
"The facilities of the department are excellent along with the renowned Eye Clinic in which we start treating patients from second year."
The University of Bradford School of Optometry and Vision Science has a high proportion of registered optometrists amongst its staff. That means you will be taught by practising optometrists who understand how to deliver real world eye care to the public.
We operate a fully-functioning Eye Clinic on campus, which is open to the general public. The services we provide are identical to those offered by most Opticians throughout the UK, with the addition of some specialist clinics.
As a student you will gain invaluable hands-on experience working in the clinic from your second year.
As well as developing your practical skills under the supervision of our academic practitioners, you’ll develop the communication/customer-facing skills you’ll need for a career in Optometry.
In summer 2017 the University's Eye Clinic is moving to new, purpose built, multidisciplinary clinical and research facilities.
Ranked 7th in the country for Ophthalmics in the Complete University Guide 2018.
Typical offer: AAB / 136 UCAS points
Two pure Science subjects (Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Maths) required at minimum AA. General Studies is not accepted.
Please note that where a science A-level is taken, the University will require applicants to pass the practical element (for A levels awarded from August 2017 onwards).
BTEC Extended Diploma:
Applied Science. DDD. Only accepted if combined with a Pure Science A-level minimum grade B.
Applicants on Access Programmes:
Meet UCAS tariff of 136. Science, Medicine, Science and Engineering, Dentistry, Pharmacy or Medical Sciences accepted.
Plus minimum of:
Five GCSEs at grade C or grade 4 to include English Language, Maths (note: GCSE English Language and Mathematics equivalences will not be accepted) and at least one of the following: Double Award Science, Biology, Chemistry or Physics.
Those applying with Access courses are only required to have GCSE English Language and Maths, plus one Science subject (Double Award Science, Biology, Chemistry or Physics) at grade C or grade 4.
Additional entry requirements:
All students enrolled on the course will be required to register with the General Optical Council (GOC).
Whilst not mandatory, a period of paid employment in an optical practice (supported by an employer reference) will strongly support an application.
If you are an international student and you do not meet the entry requirements for direct entry onto this course you may be interested in our International Certificate of Foundation Studies.
English language requirements:
Minimum IELTS at 6.5 or the equivalent.
If you do not meet the IELTS requirement, you can take a University of Bradford pre-sessional English course. See the Language Centre for more details.
The modules for this course can be found in the latest programme specification.
Find more information on our module descriptors page.
Students of optometry must acquire a detailed knowledge and understanding of the human eye in health and disease, as well as the skills to examine the eye, supply and fit optical appliances, and diagnose and manage ocular conditions.
The work calls for a high degree of accuracy and attention to detail, and a measure of manual dexterity; all skills that students will have the opportunity to develop during the programme. Also necessary is an interest and ability in scientific work, and ability to communicate and empathize with people and to win their confidence. Students must also function as autonomous learners having, or being able and willing to develop, the ability to engage in independent and self-directed study.
All modules are core
- Refraction & Refractive Error (20 credits)
- Pure & Visual Optics (20 credits)
- Physiology of Vision & Perception (20 credits)
- Evidence-based Practice and Professionalism (20 credits)
- Ocular Health Assessment 1 (40 credits)
- Ophthalmic Lenses & Dispensing (20 credits)
- Clinical Optometry & Communication Skills (20 credits)
- General and Ocular Pharmacology (20 credits)
- The Assessment and Management of Binocular Vision (20 credits)
- Ocular Health Assessment 2 (20 credits)
- Contact Lens Practice (20 credits)
- Clinical Competence (0 credits)
- Evidence-based Optometry 2 (20 credits)
- Management of Ocular Disease (40 credits)
- Clinical Practice and Professional Studies (40 credits)
- Clinical Case Studies (20 credits)
Learning activities and assessment
A wide variety of teaching methods are employed throughout the programme, including lectures, seminars, practical sessions and clinical supervision. They focus progressively on student-centred approaches to learning, such that students are expected to take increasing responsibility for their learning as they progress through the programme. The Optometry programme aims to select from a range of assessment methods for each module. All modules include both formative and summative assessments. Formative assessment has a developmental purpose and is designed to help students learn more effectively by giving them feedback on their performance and on how it can be improved and/or maintained. Summative assessment for each module includes written exams whilst many modules will require students to demonstrate practical or clinical ability or competence.
Work experience is not mandatory for all entry routes, however all applicants are advised that evidence of a significant period of work experience within optometry can support their application. A continuous period of paid optical employment (full or part-time) can be documented in their personal statement and subsequently evidenced by a reference from their employer. Reference letter typically include the start/finish dates of the employment, details of the employees duties and the applicants suitability for optometry. References should be written by a dispensing optician or optometrist who is currently registered with the General Optical Council.
Applicants must have recent study or relevant optical employment history within the last 5 years.
Career support and prospects
The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.
Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.
100% of our 2016 graduates in Optometry found employment or went on to further study within six months of graduating.*
Most graduates, on completion of the pre-registration year and having passed the Final Assessment Examinations set by the College of Optometrists, become registered with the General Optical Council to practise as optometrists.
Once qualified you can work in private practice, in hospital optometry or in optometric teaching and research. You will need an interest and ability in scientific work, in helping and communicating with people, and a measure of manual dexterity.
The average starting salary for our 2016 Optometry graduates was £14,324.*
Salaries for registered optometrists vary considerably, and can be between £25,000 and £60,000.
*These DLHE statistics are derived from annually published data by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), based on those UK domiciled graduates who are available for employment or further study and whose destinations are known.
The School of Optometry and Vision Science research group takes a multi-disciplinary approach to investigating vision and visual perception. This research informs our teaching, ensuring you are learning the very latest techniques and best practice. The group continues to build on over 35 years of vision research at the University of Bradford. Current research embraces a broad range of disciplines including ophthalmology, optics, ocular imaging, machine vision, psychophysics, biomechanics and visual neuroscience. Our aim is to further our understanding of the basic mechanisms of human vision in health and disease, as well as the functional consequences of visual loss. In pursuing this aim we have prioritised a strong translational research dimension and have developed an excellent track record of applying basic research to address clinical problems. The group has achieved a diversity that is naturally collaborative and multi-disciplinary, working with optometrists, ophthalmologists, orthoptists, medical engineers, physicists, psychologists and neuroscientists at local, regional, national and international levels.
The University’s Eye Clinic provides comprehensive optometric services of a high standard to University staff, students, their families and members of the local community. It also supports local optometrists and other healthcare professionals requiring diagnostic, consultative or treatment services.
Explore our Pre-clinical Ocular Health Assessment Lab using the 360° tour below:
Fees, Finance and Scholarships
- Home/EU: £9,250*
- International: £17,800
* Fees going forward have been capped by the Government at £9,250 in October 2017..
See our Fees and Financial Support website for more details.
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Download the programme specification for Optometry
This is the current course information. Modules and course details may change, subject to the University's programme approval, monitoring and review procedures. The University reserves the right to alter or withdraw courses, services and facilities as described on our website without notice and to amend Ordinances, Regulations, fees and charges at any time. Students should enquire as to the up-to-date position when applying for their course of study.