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Becoming Drs

Half a dozen optometrists have completed the Dr of Optometry programme in the last year

Institute of Optometry

A total of six practitioners have completed the jointly run Institute of Optometry (IoO) and London South Bank University (LSBU) Dr Optometry programme in the last year.

Those being named doctors include: Paul Grace, Claudia Ashleigh, David Parkins, David Hillel Burns, Kathleen Goris and Sharifa Hirani.

The doctorate programme was established in 2008 after Professor Rishi Agarwal initiated talks with the LSBU about running the course in collaboration with the IoO. It has recently been revalidated at LSBU, making it “more amenable to accomplish by practising optometrists,” director of postgraduate studies at the IoO Professor Agarwal said.

“The professional doctorates are equivalent to a PhD, but more accessible to practitioners,” Professor Agarwal explained.

Optometrist and director of research at the IoO, Professor Bruce Evans, has been principal supervisor for all the Dr Optometry students on the programme. He commented: “It is wonderful to see clinicians transformed into researchers through the doctorate process. It is also good to see their research adding to the evidence-base underlying optometry in topics such as, optical coherence tomography training, multifocal contact lenses, optometrists’ referral decision-making, accommodation, myopia control and glaucoma.”

Applications are open until August for optometrists who wish to enrol on the programme in October. For more information, visit the IoO website.