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Over the last 4 years, 61.3% of Miami undergraduate applicants have been accepted to medical schools, compared to a national average of 45%.

Mallory-Wilson Center
for Healthcare Education at Miami University

Preparing for a Career in Optometry

Once you have decided to pursue a career in optometry, you should:

  • Familiarize yourself with general advice for students considering healthcare careers (general advising page).
  • Familiarize yourself with the information on this page.
  • Visit websites such as:
  • Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO)
    Learn more about the organization that advances and promotes optometric education.
    American Optometric Association (AOA)
    Learn more about the organization that sets professional standards, lobbies on behalf of the optometric profession, and provides research and education leadership.
  • Try to attend the meetings of and consider joining the Miami Pre-Optometry Club. This student-run organization is there to help you attain your goal of becoming an optometrist. Also check out the opportunities offered by the Center for Visual Sciences at MU.
  • Contact Dr. Katia Del Rio-Tsonis (, 513-529-3128, 244 Pearson Hall) for any questions you may have about a career in optometry.


Optometry School Requirement - Miami Equivalent

English (1 year)
ENG 111, 112
Calculus (1 semester)
MTH 151 or MTH 153
Statistics (1 semester)
STA 261
Biology (1 year)
BIO/MBI 115, 116
Microbiology (1 semester)
MBI 201
Physiology (1 or 2 semesters)
BIO 305, 45x
Inorganic Chemistry (1 year)
CHM 137 or CHM 141,
CHM 142, 144, 145
Organic Chemistry/Biochemistry (1 year)
CHM 241, 242, 244, 245
CHM 231, 332
Physics (1 year)
PHY 171, 172
Psychology (1 semester)
PSY 111
Social Sciences (1 year)
SOC 151, 154

Additional Requirements

Some schools do not require all of these courses and some schools may require or recommend other courses such as Comparative Anatomy (BIO 201) or Developmental Psychology (PSY 231). With respect to advanced chemistry, schools may require as little as 1 semester of Organic Chemistry to as much as 1 year of Organic Chemistry plus 1 semester of Biochemistry. The CHM 231 and CHM 332 combination is the best choice for some, but not all, schools. Contact the schools you are interested in to check admission requirements.

Admission to optometry schools is competitive and schools choose among many qualified applicants. Evaluation of candidates is based on largely objective criteria. A high overall GPA and sciences GPA are important. Other important factors are:

  • competitive Optometry Admission Test (OAT) score
  • strong letters of reference
  • evidence of leadership potential as demonstrated by a few carefully chosen extracurricular activities
  • well-developed interpersonal skills

Optometry Admission Test

The Optometry Admission Test (OAT) is available only by computer. Application information, preparation material, and test sites (Thomson Prometric Centers) may be obtained from the ASCO page above or by calling (312) 440-2693 or (800) 232-2159. It is advisable to take this in February of the year preceding application.


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