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Requirements

Luther offers preprofessional training for the study of optometry. Typically, preoptometry students are biology majors and follow a course plan similar to that of the premedical student. Emphasis is placed on courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology. Students spend four years of professional study at an accredited optometry school or college. Students are prepared to enter any of the professional schools in North America.

Admission requirements to optometry school vary with the institution. All schools and colleges of optometry require you to complete one year of undergraduate biology, chemistry, physics, English, and mathematics before applying.

Applicants are evaluated on the basis of grade point average, performance on the Optometry Admission Test (OAT), extra-curricular and community activities, and a personal interview. You need to obtain a catalog from the optometry school which interests you to learn specific requirements.

All optometry school applicants take the Optometry Admission Test before applying. The OAT measures general academic ability and comprehension of scientific information. It includes tests on quantitative reasoning, reading comprehension, physics, biology, general chemistry, and organic chemistry. The OAT is a computerized exam, and is generally taken after completion of biology courses, organic chemistry and physics.

Student may apply to optometry school after their junior year. If you fulfill graduate requirements and are accepted after the junior year, Luther will accept the first year of optometry school in place of your senior year and will grant you a biology major. Most preoptometry students complete four years of undergraduate work with a major in biology before entering a college of optometry.

Suggested Preoptometry Courses

(Courses are to be completed in addition to the classes for a major during three or four years at Luther.)

  • Principles of Biology
  • General Chemistry
  • General Physics
  • Calculus
  • Developmental Biology
  • Human Anatomy
  • Human Physiology
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Biostatistics
  • General Psychology
  • One additional advanced psychology course
  • Biochemistry

Internship Opportunities

Internships are primarily observational, and they provide a very practical introduction to the many health-care professions. Students may arrange internship experiences during the three-week January term as well as during the regular semester. Placements are available in large medical complexes, county hospitals, medical laboratories, public health programs, and private practices. These programs vary to allow advisors the freedom to match specific internships with the career goals of the student. Luther grants academic credit for health-career internships (Biology 380B).