(D.I.T. Department of Optometry, School of Physics)
WHAT IS OPTOMETRY?
Optometrists (also known as Ophthalmic Opticians) are health care professionals who provide primary eye care services. This 4-year honours degree programme provides an education in the sciences associated with vision and their practical application to the examination and assessment of visual functions and correction of sight by spectacles and contact lenses. As an Optometrist, you are responsible for the detection of eye diseases that may require medical attention. Conditions such as diabetes or multiple sclerosis are often first detected by an Optometrist.
The Optometry programme offered by DIT's Faculty of Science is the only Optometry course in the Republic of Ireland. A survey of DT224 optometry students by the School of Physics, in 2015, showed that 92% of optometry students would recommend the BSc Optometry programme to a friend.
WHY CHOOOSE OPTOMETERY AS A CAREER?
- Salary expectations for a newly qualified optometristas (as at September 2016) €37K+ per annum in the Republic of Ireland and up to £45K per annum in the UK (dependant on location).
- No shift work
- No unsociable hours
- No requirement to take work home
- No finishing late (i.e. no unpaid overtime)
- Job-related stress is minimal
- Flexible (can work as a locum)
- Offers the opportunity to own and operate one’s own business
WHAT WILL I DO?
Optometry students are taught how to apply scientific knowledge in a modern, purpose built National Optometry Centre (N.O.C.) based at the D.I.T. Kevin Street, with state of the art facilities and equipment.
Students are trained to:
- Perform an eye examination to determine if a correction is required
- Chose suitable spectacle frames and lenses based on a detailed knowledge of a wide-range of optical appliances
- Fit contact lenses
- Identify eye related pathology so that a patient may be appropriately managed and referred if necessary
- Carry out specialised clinics in: Low Vision, Aged Vision, Paediatrics, Binocular Vision
- Use specialised ophthalmic diagnostic and imaging instrumentation
The majority of newly qualified Optometrists work in established practices in Ireland. Some graduates chose to start their own practices. Other graduate have pursued higher research degrees (Masters and Doctoral degrees) through DIT and elsewhere. Opportunities also exist to undertake industrial research and to work in hospitals (usually abroad).
The first year of the Optometry course focuses on the relevant science subjects necessary for optometric training. Clinical teaching commences in year 1 with Visual Science, which aims to equip the student with some of the core clinical skills necessary for the routine eye examination. The clinical training increases throughout the course and students carry out eye examinations and fit contact lenses under supervision in the National Optometry Centre clinic from the beginning of third year. Advanced specialised clinical skills such as low vision and paediatrics are taught in the 4th year of the course. Students at the end of 4th year spend a period of 5 months (Jan-May) working in an Optometric practice under supervision (Students are responsible for their own upkeep during this period). This is designed to give the student workplace experience and skills, and to provide them with future employment prospects. This period may in future take place following graduation.
The BSc (Hons) degree programme summarised:
Ophthalmic Optics & Dispensing
Physics for Health Science
Ocular Anatomy and Physiology
Histology, Anatomy & Physiology
Mathematics for Optometry
Learning Skills & Development
Physiology of Vision
Contact Lens Practice
Intercultural Communications for Optometrists
Primary Care Clinic
|Supervised work placement
Primary Care Clinic
Vision Rehabilitation Optometry
Optometric Practice Management
Topics in Modern Optometry
All Optometry and Ophthalmic Dispensing undergraduates are required to insert drops, contact lenses and probes (with ocular anaesthetic) into fellow students’ eyes and allow fellow students to insert the same into their eyes during the course of their programme. All procedures will be carried out in a safe, clean, clinical environment under the supervision of an optometry faculty member.
BSc (Optometry) of the Dublin Institute of Technology with grades of Pass, Lower Second Class Honours, Upper Second Class Honours or First Class Honours.
After graduation, you are required to pass the clinical examinations run by the Association of Optometrists, Ireland. Success in these examinations earns you the qualification F.A.O.I. (Fellow of the Association of Optometrists, Ireland). This qualification allows you to register with CORU as a fully qualified Optometrist to enable you to practice in your own right. A DIT degree in optometry allows graduates to apply for registration with the General Optical Council in order to work as an optometrist in the UK and Northern Ireland. The U.S.A. and Canada do not accept Irish (or British) qualifications. This is due to American and Canadian optometrists having greater medical prescribing powers. Further study and examination will be required to practise in these countries.
- The Central Applications Office handle the applications for the programme- degree list, reference DT224
- Minimum entrance requirements: 6 LC subjects, 2 H5's one of which must be science related, 03/H7 in Maths, 06/H7 in English or Irish.
- At Least H4 in one of: Physics, Chemistry, Physics and Chemistry or Biology.
- Other qualifications such as GCE and International Baccalaureate, may also be accepted if an equivalent standard is obtained.
- Realistic entrance requirements: In 2007 the points cut-off was 500.
- "Special category" applicants (e.g. those who are "mature", or who have third level qualifications) are given separate consideration by DIT, but application is made to the CAO in the usual way. Formal interviews are conducted for short- listed applicants.
- The number of applicants accepted onto the programme each year is approximately 25.
- The above notes are intended for information only. Applicants are strongly advised to study the CAO handbook and the D.I.T Faculty of Science prospectus.
- All applicants are strongly advised to discuss the career of Optometry with a practising Optometrist before applying and accepting an offer of a place on the course.
Students will be required to undergo Garda Vetting. Students must complete the required documentation, including a full list of all previous addresses, in order for clearance checks to be made. Students with previous addresses outside of the Republic of Ireland will be required to provide evidence of vetting by the relevant authority in which the address is located and at their own cost.
Currently Irish addresses are vetted by the Garda Vetting Bureau at no cost to the student.
Please see our international office page for more information.
Head of Department of Optometry
phone: +353 1 402 4751
phone: +353 1 402 4785
Please contact the D.I.T. Admissions Office for further information concerning study at DIT