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The wonders of visual sciences

Head of the new optometry and vision sciences department at the University of Huddersfield, Professor John Siderov, tells OT  about its optometry BSc honours course

Huddersfield uni staff

Why was the decision taken to launch a BSc in optometry?

The University of Huddersfield is a gold-rated university in the Teaching and Excellent Framework, representing some of the highest quality found in the UK. The University of Huddersfield is proud to be one of the newest providers of optometric education in the UK. The university’s motto, ‘Inspiring Global Professionals,’ captures a key theme of the experience on offer at the university, which one of its newest departments – the department of optometry and vision sciences – aims to embrace.

Where will students be able to develop clinical skills?

We will introduce our first cohort of 30 students in September 2019 to the wonders of visual sciences and their application to clinical optometry in new purpose-built teaching facilities. The new optometry teaching suite is part of an £18.2 million development in the school of applied sciences, which includes four floors of new teaching laboratories. Taking up the whole of the ground floor are purpose-built pre-clinical teaching areas and a new university eye clinic where students will be able to develop key clinical skills aligned with modern optometric practice.

How does this course differ from other optometry degrees?

As students progress through the three-year optometry BSc honours course, they will continue to develop their clinical and patient management skills using modern optometric equipment under the supervision of experienced academic and clinical tutors. A key goal of our course is to ensure that students develop both the clinical and analytic skills required to deal with the changes, challenges and opportunities that may arise in optometry in the future.

Who is part of the optometry teaching team?

The team includes: lecturer in optometry, Robin Clayton; senior lecturer in optometry, Dr Stella Griffiths; head of department, Professor John Siderov; lecturer in physiology, Dr Romana Mughal (all pictured, left to right); and from February 2020, lecturer in optometry, Dr Corinne Fulcher.