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Optometry BSc(Hons)


Start date

25 September 2023


3 years full-time

Entry requirements

A Level - AAB


See full entry requirements

Places available (subject to change)


About the course

Reasons to study

  1. This course has full approval from the General Optical Council.
  2. Our new Optometry clinic and consultation rooms are where a large part of your learning takes place.
  3. Gain real-world experience examining patients whilst undertaking short placements with the NHS, and at our state-of-the-art Eye Clinic here on campus.

The UK regulator for Optometry, the General Optical Council (GOC) has published revised standards for all optometry providers in the UK. As a result, the current BSc(Hons) course is being adapted and will be replaced by a 4 year integrated Masters course. Validation of this new course is in progress and may replace the current BSc(Hons) as early as September 2023. Updated details will be provided on this site as soon as this is confirmed.

Get ready to take your first steps on an exciting journey towards a career in Optometry. We'll give you the opportunity to gain the knowledge and practical skills you'll need to complete your professional training and become highly employable. As one of the UK's newest Optometry departments, we are committed to offering you a learning experience that's second-to-none, and small class sizes mean a personal approach to our teaching where you'll be well supported to reach your goals.

  • We’ve been ranked 2nd in England and best in Yorkshire for the subject area of ophthalmics, achieving an overall satisfaction score of 91.3% in the National Student Survey 2022. (Subjects rankings refer to Common Aggregation Hierarchy level 3 and are further filtered to include English HEI's with income over £100m+ in the 20/21 academic year).
  • This course is aligned to the requirements of the General Optical Council (GOC) and has full approval from the General Optical Council.
  • We combine scientific principles in Optometry and vision sciences with practical clinical skills from the first year.
  • The opportunity to learn clinical skills and develop your ability to meet the General Optical Council competencies for Optometry are embedded throughout our course.
  • You'll also have the chance to learn in a new, purpose built Optometry laboratory equipped with all the necessary equipment for your studies. *In your final year you'll get real-world experience seeing patients with a variety of ocular conditions in our newly built, state-of-the-art University Eye Clinic here on campus.
  • Your studies will also be enhanced through placements in local hospital eye departments, in your final year, where you'll have the opportunity to work alongside colleagues in the NHS.

Course detail

Core modules:

Human Body Systems

All the major organs of the body will be covered together with models of normal and abnormal bodily function. Emphasis will be directed to the concept of homeostasis and the integration of dynamic processes involved in the maintenance of health.

Ocular Anatomy and Physiology

This module covers the fundamental anatomy and physiology of the eye with an aim to build a theoretical grounding which may be applied to concurrent modules on the course. You'll be required to apply knowledge from the Human Body Systems module to various aspects of this module. The module will focus on various ocular structures (including the cornea, lens, retina) and ocular adnexa (including eyelids and extraocular muscles). You'll study these structures in detail and consider how anatomical structure links to function. You'll also begin to consider age-related changes and ocular pathologies.

Geometric and Physical Optics

This module will consider the physics of light; moving from basic light as a ‘ray’ optical properties such as reflection and refraction, lenses, mirrors and prisms through to ‘light as a wave’ optics and diffraction, interference and polarisation. This module provides the foundation for an understanding of visual optics and the mechanics of optical instruments and dispensing in optometry and will use examples from these areas to show application of the principles.

Visual Optics and Perception

This module will cover visual optics building on knowledge gained from the concurrent module on Ocular Anatomy and Physiology to develop an understanding of how those structures contribute to visual functions. You'll study the mechanisms of spatial, temporal and colour resolution and how these elements feed into normal vision and how this vision may be sub-optimal.

Assessment of Vision and Professional Skills

The professional development element of the module will encourage you to explore issues of lifelong learning, reflective practice and continuing professional development that underpin the essential skills needed in order to meet registration requirements in Optometry. Initial elements of the modules will develop your academic skills in mathematics, academic writing, literature searching using electronic databases, evaluation of material and referencing along with team working skills and professionalism. The module will introduce fundamental clinical techniques used in examination of the eye including refraction, direct ophthalmoscopy, history taking and preliminary examinations.

The UK regulator for Optometry, the General Optical Council (GOC) has published revised standards for all optometry providers in the UK. As a result, the current BSc(Hons) course is being adapted and will be replaced by a 4 year integrated Masters course. Validation of this new course is in progress and may replace the current BSc(Hons) as early as September 2023. Updated details will be provided on this site as soon as this is confirmed.

Entry requirements

AABat A Level which should include two of the following Science subjects, Mathematics, Physics, Biology or Chemistry, plus a third A Level in another subject excluding General Studies. The endorsement for practical work is an essential part of Science A Level study, and is a requirement for entry to our degree course.

DDM in BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Applied Science combined with a Science A Level in Mathematics, Physics, Biology or Chemistry, minimum grade B. Or DDM in BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care combined with a Science A Level in Mathematics, Physics, Biology or Chemistry, minimum grade B. Applicants undertaking a BTEC without an additional A Level may be considered for the Science Extended Degree leading to a BSc(Hons) Degree entry route.

  • 136 UCAS tariff points from International Baccalaureate qualifications which should include two of the following Science subjects, Mathematics, Physics, Biology or Chemistry. These should be the equivalent of AAB at A Level.

An offer will be influenced by the subjects you are studying, your personal statement and your predicted grades.

T Levels will be judged on an individual basis but are required to be in the Science, Health or Healthcare Science areas. GCSE subjects and grades will be considered in addition to the T Level.

Other suitable qualifications or experience may be considered. Please contact the Admissions Office.

Alternatively, a First degree in a relevant Science subject (Orthoptics, Ophthalmic Dispensing, Biochemistry, Chemistry, Biomedical Science, Pharmacology, Mathematics, Physics) at a minimum grade of a 1st.

If you are a registered Dispensing Optician wishing to apply you must have met the ABDO qualification (or equivalent) at 65% or better and have obtained a higher specialist certificate either in low vision or contact lens practice. For those with a contact lens specialism they must also be a registered contact lens optician. Proof of registration with the General Optical Council is also required.

Science Extended Degree leading to a BSc(Hons) Degree entry route - If you do not have the appropriate qualifications for direct entry onto the Optometry BSc(Hons), you may be able to apply to our Science Extended Degree (BCF0).

A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check takes place as part of enrolment, this is a compulsory requirement for entry onto this course. As part of this check you are required to have your identification documents verified by the Post Office. There is a charge for this, payable at the point of verification at the Post Office, which you are required to pay (usually around £10). The University will pay for the full DBS check, you are not required to pay for this. Relevant offences disclosed by the DBS will be taken into account regarding your suitability to undertake this course. Once your place is confirmed, you will be required to complete a health check questionnaire. If you have not completed courses of all relevant vaccinations you will be advised to do so. Occasionally these may be chargeable by your doctor. If there are any further medical reports required you may incur additional costs.

Please note that placement providers for this course may require you to have received a number of vaccinations, unless medically exempt, and provide evidence of these. As a student on a course with a clinical or healthcare placement, we strongly recommend that you complete any courses of vaccinations required under current guidelines for your future profession. Failure to do so may result in your inability to undertake a placement in certain clinical settings, therefore impacting upon your academic progression, and may result in academic failure of your course.

If your first language is not English, you will need to meet the minimum requirements of an English Language qualification. The minimum for IELTS is 6.5 overall with no element lower than 6.0. Read more about the University’s entry requirements for students outside of the UK on our Where are you from information pages.

For further information please see the University's minimum entry requirements.


On our Optometry BSc(Hons) course you can benefit from attending a hospital placement during your final year. The placement provides real-world experience in an NHS eye department and gives you the opportunity to work with other professional colleagues. Placements will be arranged in the local community wherever possible. You'll be required to arrange your own transport. Clinical attire will also be required

Your career

Optometry is a regulated profession requiring registration with and adherence to the General Optical Council registration requirements.

You can find out more about careers in Optometry on the College of Optometrists website and registration requirements from the General Optical Council.

As a graduate of this course you may work in corporate optometry, in private independent practice, where you could start your own business, in hospital optometry working with other ophthalmic colleagues or in research and teaching.

*93% of graduates from this subject area were in work or further study 15 months after graduation (HESA Graduate Outcomes 19/20, UK Domiciled).

93% Graduates employed*

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

Changes to a course you have applied for

If we propose to make a major change to a course that you are holding an offer for, then we will tell you as soon as possible so that you can decide whether to withdraw your application prior to enrolment.

Cancellation of a course you have applied for

Although we always try and run all of the course we offer, we may occasionally have to withdraw a course you have applied for or combine your programme with another programme if we consider this reasonably necessary to ensure a good student experience, for example if there are not enough applicants to ensure you have a good learning experience. Where this is the case we will notify you as soon as reasonably possible and we will contact you to discuss other suitable courses with us we can transfer your application to. If we notify you that the course you have applied to has been withdrawn or combined, and you do not wish to transfer to another course with us, you may cancel your application and we will refund you any deposits or fees you have paid to us.

Changes to your course after you enrol as a student

We will always try to deliver your course and other services as described. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below:

Changes to option modules

Where your course allows you to choose modules from a range of options, we will review these each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback or demand for certain modules. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let you know in good time the options available for you to choose for the following year.

Major changes

We will only make major changes to the core curriculum of a course or to our services if it is necessary for us to do so and provided such changes are reasonable. A major change in this context is a change that materially changes the services available to you; or the outcomes, or a significant part, of your course, such as the nature of the award or a substantial change to module content, teaching days (part time provision), classes, type of delivery or assessment of the core curriculum.

For example, it may be necessary to make a major change to reflect changes in the law or the requirements of the University’s regulators; to meet the latest requirements of a commissioning or accrediting body; to improve the quality of educational provision; in response to student, examiners’ or other course evaluators’ feedback; and/or to reflect academic or professional changes within subject areas. Major changes may also be necessary because of circumstances outside our reasonable control, such as a key member of staff leaving the University or being unable to teach, where they have a particular specialism that can’t be adequately covered by other members of staff; or due to damage or interruption to buildings, facilities or equipment.

Major changes would usually be made with effect from the next academic year, but this may not always be the case. We will notify you as soon as possible should we need to make a major change and will carry out suitable consultation with affected students. If you reasonably believe that the proposed change will cause you detriment or hardship we will, if appropriate, work with you to try to reduce the adverse effect on you or find an appropriate solution. Where an appropriate solution cannot be found and you contact us in writing before the change takes effect you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the University without liability to the University for future tuition fees. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

Termination of course

In exceptional circumstances, we may, for reasons outside of our control, be forced to discontinue or suspend your course. Where this is the case, a formal exit strategy will be followed and we will notify you as soon as possible about what your options are, which may include transferring to a suitable replacement course for which you are qualified, being provided with individual teaching to complete the award for which you were registered, or claiming an interim award and exiting the University. If you do not wish to take up any of the options that are made available to you, then you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the course without liability to the University for future tuition fees and you will be entitled to a refund of all course fees paid to date. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, along with the Student Protection Plan, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to. You should read these carefully before you enrol. Please note that this information is subject to change and you are advised to check our website regularly for any changes before you enrol at the University. A person who is not party to this agreement shall not have any rights under or in connection with it. Only you and the University shall have any right to enforce or rely on the agreement.

Equal opportunities

The University of Huddersfield is an equal opportunities institution. We aim to create conditions where staff and students are treated solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential, regardless of gender, age, race, caste, class, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, family responsibility, trade union activity, political or religious belief, or age. Please visit our website to see our Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy

Data protection

The University holds personal data on all enquirers, applicants and enrolled students. All such data is kept and processed in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Legislation. The University’s Data Protection Policy and Privacy Notices are available on the University website.

Students’ Union membership

Under the 1994 Education Act, students at all UK universities have the right to join, or not to join, the Students’ Union. There is no membership fee. If you choose not to join you have the right not to be disadvantaged; however, you are not entitled to vote, take part in elections, or hold any office. The following arrangements apply in order that non-Union members are not disadvantaged: Non-members are welcome to take part in the activities of Affiliated Clubs and Societies on payment of the appropriate subscription. However, they may not vote or hold office in the society or club. Union members may be offered a discounted subscription. Non-members are free to use Union facilities on the same basis as members. Welfare, catering and shops are available to non-members as well as members. Union members may be offered a discounted price.

The Office for Students (OfS) is the principal regulator for the University.

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