UCLan optometry Masters receives official GOC approval

The programme will see its first students graduate this summer

Uclan students

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has received official approval for its optometry Masters (MSc) course from the General Optical Council (GOC).

The approval has been granted following a quality assurance visit by the regulator in January this year.

On receiving approval, UCLan’s academic lead for vision sciences at the School of Medicine, Rupal Lovell-Patel, said: “It’s fantastic news to receive this accreditation.”

“This is the culmination of years of hard work from colleagues in the school and I’m delighted for everybody involved. Our optometry courses are going from strength to strength, and we look forward to seeing our first graduates don their UCLan academics caps and gown in July,” she added.

The university welcomed the first student cohort onto its integrated Masters in optometry (MSci) programme in September 2019.

The MSci programme was initially designed as an integrated two-year BSc in ophthalmic dispensing, with the option to complete an additional three years, combining the College of Optometrists’ Scheme for Registration with a Masters research project module.

In 2020, the MSci in optometry programme was split into an undergraduate BSc (Hons) ophthalmic dispensing course and a renamed MSc optometry course. The MSc optometry programme, which takes approximately three years to complete, is a fast-track programme for students who are already qualified dispensing opticians.

In September last year, the university officially opened its purpose-built eye health clinic, in which final year Masters optometry students provide eye examinations to patients under direct supervision. Students on the university’s undergraduate ophthalmic dispensing course are also able to use the facility for practical learning.