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Masters Degrees (Glaucoma)

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The distance learning Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Glaucoma aims to help eye care professionals to develop the specific skills and knowledge to manage patients with glaucoma. Read more
The distance learning Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Glaucoma aims to help eye care professionals to develop the specific skills and knowledge to manage patients with glaucoma.

The course modules have been specifically designed to complement the levels of activity and responsibility that ophthalmic nurses, optometrists and orthoptists could undertake in community and hospital practice. The content is aligned, wherever possible, with national pathways for enhanced services and professional accreditation schemes.

All of the course modules are accredited for the College of Optometrists’ Higher Qualifications.

The majority of the course is delivered via Learning Central, the University's e-Learning system. You will have access to multimedia lecture presentations, supporting resources and discussions led by course tutors. On many of the modules, leading educators in the field also provide practical skills workshops and tutorials.

Distinctive features

• All of the modules are accredited for the College of Optometrists’ Higher Professional qualifications.
• This is the only university that offers all the Higher Professional qualifications in Glaucoma.
• The opportunity to learn within a leading Optometry School, rated excellent for teaching and research.
• The involvement of research-active staff in course design and delivery.
• The variety of modules on offer.
• The flexibility of open learning.

Structure

The course consists of four compulsory modules.

Students must complete one module before they can progress to the next.

The majority of the course will be delivered via Learning Central, the University's e-Learning system. You will have access to multimedia lecture presentations, supporting resources and discussions led by course tutors. On many of the modules leading educators in the field also provide practical skills workshops and tutorials. Formative and summative assessment is via online multiple choice questions, submitted written coursework and assignments (including group wikis and blogs) plus practical exams where appropriate.

Teaching

Modules may differ, but you can expect to be taught online (via lectures and webinars), and by attending workshops for clinical modules.

Lectures are supported by the appropriate references and resources, and accompanied by assessment exercises.

Participation in moderated online discussions is a feature in almost all modules. Practical workshops for skills training will be held at locations convenient to either the module content or the student cohort enrolled at that time, and instructed by educational leaders in that discipline.

Assessment

The assessment activities have been specifically designed to facilitate participants’ learning and achievement. All assessment elements are compulsory.

Assessment varies across the modules, but includes:

Written reports
Coursework assessment
MCQ - Multiple choice questions
Practical examinations
KFS - Key Features Scenarios (used in medical education to test clinical reasoning, problem-solving ability and the ability to apply given knowledge)
OSCEs – Objective Structured Clinical Examinations
Viva
DOPS – Direct Observational Patient Scenarios
Logbook of patient episodes
Case reports.

Career Prospects

The course has been specifically designed to complement the levels of activity and responsibility that ophthalmic nurses, optometrists and orthoptists could undertake in community and hospital practice. The content is aligned, wherever possible, with national pathways for enhanced services and professional accreditation schemes.

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The programme is based in the School of Optometry and Vision Science, which has continued to pioneer high-quality new developments in optometric education, and it is recognised both nationally and internationally for the excellence of its courses, graduates and research. Read more
The programme is based in the School of Optometry and Vision Science, which has continued to pioneer high-quality new developments in optometric education, and it is recognised both nationally and internationally for the excellence of its courses, graduates and research.

Professional Accreditation

This module carries 20 credits at level 7, and is accredited for the Professional Certificate in Glaucoma for the College of Optometrists.

Modules

Distance learning lectures:
-Classification, terminology and clinical features
-Epidemiology and risk factors
-Examination of the anterior segment
-Pachymetry
-Tonometry
-Visual fields
-Examination of the optic nerve head and retinal nerve fibre layer
-Differential diagnosis
-Detecting changes in clinical status
-Patient information and support
-Guidelines and landmark studies
-Clinical governance

Practical workshops:
-Binocular indirect biomicroscopy and optic nerve head assessment
-Contact tonometry
-Pachymetry
-Van Herick and introduction to gonioscopy

Learning activities and assessment

The course is delivered by distance learning lectures, and a practical workshop at the university. Assessment is via written examination and a practical station-type examination.

Career support and prospects

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

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The MSc in Clinical Optometry is designed to satisfy the rapidly changing academic, clinical and professional development needs of optometrists working in practice. Read more
The MSc in Clinical Optometry is designed to satisfy the rapidly changing academic, clinical and professional development needs of optometrists working in practice.

Who is it for?

The MSc in Clinical Optometry has an international reputation for quality and is at the forefront of continuing education in clinical optometry - you will acquire cutting-edge skills and knowledge form leading UK experts in a dynamic learning environment.

The programme will provide you with an opportunity to enhance your career prospects in this field through gaining both an academic qualification and a professional qualification with either the General Optical Council or the College of Optometrists (where appropriate).

Objectives

The MSc in Clinical Optometry has been designed to provide optometrists with up-to-date research-based and theoretical knowledge of a wide range of fields, particularly in primary care optometry. It is a flexible, taught postgraduate modular based programme, delivered on an intensive three-day modular programme design.

Emphasis is placed on 'shared-care' or 'co-management' of patients with other medical disciplines and the expansion of the optometrist's role in ocular therapeutics. The programme integrates clinical and theoretical knowledge, making extensive use of expert practitioners. It enables optometrists to continue development and accumulation of knowledge and expertise relating to ocular health care and vision science during their professional careers.

The programme provides a range of modules including 15 and 60 credit modules at Master’s level. There is a choice of exit routes a PG Cert and PG Dip level, modules can also be taken as stand-alone Continuing Professional Development courses.

Academic facilities

The Division of Optometry opened a brand-new, purpose-built ophthalmic clinic City Sight in 2015. These state-of-the-art facilities provide a comprehensive range of services and educational resources in vision sciences for our students, researchers and patients.

There will be extensive use of City's Virtual Learning Platform – Moodle for a more interactive learning experience.

Teaching and learning

A blended approach to learning and teaching is adopted including institution-based taught modules; e-learning and work-based learning. Modules are led by experienced practitioners and leading researchers, using a variety of direct and interactive teaching methods. You will learn in large and small multi-disciplinary groups and will be supported and encouraged to participate in independent learning.

The range of teaching methods is wide and includes lectures (face-to-face; on-line), tutorials, advanced clinical training, clinical demonstrations, videos and discussion of clinical scenarios and action learning sets. Discussion forums, interactive seminars, peer reviewing work-based examples and clinically focussed critical reflections via a case review process are also included.

Practical classes and clinical skills laboratories provide opportunities to develop practical skills and demonstrate techniques covered in lectures. Many lectures are delivered by external specialists, giving access to current issues, research and methods in the field.

A three-hour examination is taken 8-10 weeks after the module. Methods of assessment vary between modules, reflecting their differences in structure and content. The modular examinations include any combination of the following:
-A multiple choice question paper (normally including questions from each lecturer on the module)
-Visual recognition and interpretation of clinical signs tests (VRICS) (involving analysis of a series of slides/photographs)
-Patient management case scenarios
-An objective structured clinical examination (OSCE)
-Professional practice portfolio
-Minilabs
-Peer-reviewed publication

Some modules have more than one assessment component and the weighting for each assessment component is outlined clearly within the module specification.

Modules

The programme provides a range of modules which include 15, 30 and 60 credit modules at Master’s level. The programme provides you with a choice of exit routes but modules can also be taken as stand-alone courses.

Each 15 PG credit module includes 150 hours (15 PG credits) in duration with approximately 30% of the study requires attendance at City for face-to-face learning in either lectures/tutorials or workshops.

Depending on the module, you should be aiming to study approximately:20 hours/week if full-time. 4 hours/week if part-time.

Core modules
-Research Methods and Applied Data Analysis (30 credits)
-Dissertation (60 credits) - You may begin carrying out your dissertation during the year but you are only able to submit it once you have completed all the taught modules successfully.

Elective modules - alternatively students can take modules from this Masters degree as standalone CPPD (Continuing Personal and Professional Development) courses. In this case, course costs might vary.
-Binocular Vision (15 credits)
-Professional Certificate in Glaucoma (15 credits)
-Professional Higher Certificate in Contact Lenses (30 credits)
-Professional Certificate in Medical Retina
-Critical Thinking in Ophthalmic Practice (15 credits)
-Paediatric Optometry (15 credits)
-Professional Certificate in Low Vision (15 credits)
-Principles of therapeutics (15 credits)
-Principles of prescribing (15 credits)
-Independent prescribing (15 credits)
-Refractive Surgery (15 credits)

Career prospects

Optometrists are equipped to provide enhanced clinical care to patients, particularly in the field of ocular therapeutics – they can choose to become an additional supply optometrist or an independent prescribing as part of your MSc training. Students opt to complete the College of Optometrists' Professional Certificate in Glaucoma, Medical Retina and Low Vision or the College of Optometrists’ Higher Professional Certificate in Contact Lenses all of which enhance career opportunities whether within the HES or in practice.

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This new three year part-time Masters programme, taught entirely online, is jointly offered by the University of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and leads to the degree of Master of Science (MSc). Read more

This new three year part-time Masters programme, taught entirely online, is jointly offered by the University of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and leads to the degree of Master of Science (MSc). It has been developed in partnership with NHS Education for Scotland (NES).

Aimed primarily at optometrists seeking formal postgraduate training in community-based clinical care, this programme is also highly relevant for medical and surgical trainees entering specialty training in ophthalmology.

This degree is aligned with the curricula of both the FRCSEd and FRCOphth examinations in the United Kingdom and Ireland, making it very attractive to domestic and international students.

This programme is aimed at supporting optometrists seeking formal postgraduate training in community-based clinical care and also medical and surgical trainees entering specialty training ophthalmology.

This programme gives trainees first-rate preparation for the Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (FRCSEd) and Fellowship of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists (FRCOphth) examinations or equivalent, with additional emphasis on acquired knowledge and its application.

The third-year MSc research project also serves as an opportunity to develop an academic career.

Online learning

The programme is taught entirely online. Students are supported by synchronous and asynchronous discussion with e-tutors - all leading clinicians in their field - and have access to a large learning resource, including subscriptions to key online books and journals. Students will be expected to lead e-seminars and e-journal clubs.

Our online learning technology is fully interactive, award-winning and enables you to communicate with our highly qualified teaching staff from the comfort of your own home or workplace.

Our online students not only have access to Edinburgh’s excellent resources, but also become part of a supportive online community, bringing together students and tutors from around the world.

The programme is headed up by Professor Baljean Dhillon.

Programme structure

Delivered through an online learning environment, this programme runs on a semester basis over three years and involves approximately 10-15 hours of study each week in a flexible, modular manner. All modules are compulsory and are taught and assessed using a clinical problem-based approach and involve participation in discussion boards and reflective portfolios.

Students accumulate credits by completing a series of modules leading to a Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Master of Science degree. The minimum time for completion of the full Masters programme is three years, and the maximum time for completion is six years.

At the certificate and diploma levels, students must attend an end-of-year examination, held in Edinburgh for UK-based students or with a pre-approved partner institution for international students.

Year 1: Certificate

  • Basic Ophthalmic Science: Anatomy, Pathology, Physiology of the Ocular Structures
  • Basic Examination & Investigation Techniques
  • Basic Glaucoma
  • Basic Macular Disease
  • Basic Acute Eye Disease & Vision Loss
  • eTriage and Referral Refinement

Year 2: Diploma

  • Advanced Ophthalmic Science: Anatomy, Pathology, Physiology of the Ocular Structures
  • Advanced Examination & Investigation Techniques
  • Advanced Glaucoma
  • Advanced Macular Disease
  • Advanced Acute Eye Disease & Vision Loss
  • Advanced eTriage and Referral Refinement

Year 3: Masters

The final year involves a supervised masters research project, which will be undertaken in an approved topic that reflects your subspecialty interest and will require the submission of a written project report.

Career opportunities

This programme is designed for:

  • optometrists who wish to enhance their knowledge with particular regard to diagnosis and treatment of ocular disease as they take on an increasingly expanding role in the management of eye disease as part of a multidisciplinary healthcare team
  • medical and surgical trainees who aspire to specialise in ophthalmology, enabling them to study towards their FRCSEd, FRCOphth, or equivalent, in a flexible way

The award of MSc will highlight the student’s commitment to continuing professional development in their chosen career and will ensure a competitive edge when applying for clinical positions. The MSc will also help prepare them for an academic or research career.

The MSc is also relevant to GPs and trainee GPs with a special Interest in ophthalmology, family medicine physicians, orthoptists, ophthalmic nurses and other eye healthcare professionals seeking to advance their understanding of primary care ophthalmology and its interface with secondary care.



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Our MSc course in Investigative Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences brings together the research expertise in vision from The University of Manchester and Manchester Royal Eye Hospital. Read more
Our MSc course in Investigative Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences brings together the research expertise in vision from The University of Manchester and Manchester Royal Eye Hospital.

This course will provide you with a firm grounding in the knowledge needed to pursue a higher degree and to conduct high quality research in ophthalmology, optometry or vision sciences. It also gives an opportunity for vision-related professionals to advance their knowledge of the scientific foundations of ophthalmology and vision sciences.

The course is aimed at optometrists, ophthalmologists, orthoptists and nurses from the UK and overseas. It is suitable for:
-Individuals who are considering undertaking a research degree in the vision sciences
-Those interested in professional development
-Those interested in conducting research as part of their clinical training
-Ophthalmologists wishing to expand and extend their training into specialist areas
-Optometrists considering a career in the hospital eye service

Teaching and learning

The course has two different pathways:
1. Six taught units (15 credits each) and a project dissertation (90) credits.
2. Four taught units (15 credits each), a literature review (30 credits) and a dissertation (90 credits).

The six units are Research Methods, Cornea, Contact Lens, Vascular Disease, Macular Degeneration and Glaucoma.

In each of the units, learning will be based on a series of formal lectures on topics relating to ocular disease and treatments, and a series of more informal tutorials on current research. You will receive copies of presentations and direction to relevant literature for personal study.

Many projects have led to peer reviewed publications in the ophthalmic literature. Recent titles include the following:
-Optical coherence tomography measures of the retinal nerve fibre layer
-Development of a model cell assay to investigate the cellular processing of ARB mutant bestrophin-1
-Risk factors for late presentation of patients with primary open angle glaucoma
-Molecular analysis of autosomal recessive retinal dystrophies
-In vivo analysis of the wettability of silicon hydrogel contact lenses
-Can corneal densitometry be used to assess the treatment outcome after corneal transplantation
-A contact lens based technique delivering cultured stem cells onto the human corneal surface
-The use of corneal imaging to assessing treatment outcomes of LASIK and LASEK
-Addressing the physiological cues needed for trans-differentiation of dental pulp stem cells into limbal stem cells

Coursework and assessment

Assessment is via:
-Written examinations in January and May
-Coursework set during the taught units
-A research project dissertation

Career opportunities

This course is aimed at optometrists, ophthalmologists, orthoptists and nurses from the UK and overseas.

It is considered suitable for:
-Individuals interested in vision sciences
-Those interested in conducting research as part of their clinical training
-Optometrists considering a career in the hospital eye service
-Those interested in an academic career in ophthalmology/optometry/vision sciences
-Optometrists interested in professional development

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Our Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering first began in 1991 and provides all of the necessary technical knowledge, expertise and transferable skills to succeed in one of the fastest growing engineering disciplines. Read more

Our Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering first began in 1991 and provides all of the necessary technical knowledge, expertise and transferable skills to succeed in one of the fastest growing engineering disciplines. This degree offers four distinct steams, each of which accredited and employment-focused:

Biomedical Engineering with Medical Physics and Imaging.

Biomedical Engineering with Biomechanics and Mechanobiology

Biomedical Engineering with Neurotechnology

Biomedical Engineering with Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering

The Medical Physics stream trains graduates in the physical understanding required for healthcare and medical research, focusing on human physiology, and the use of radiation in treatment and in clinical imaging (especially MRI, ultrasound, X-ray and optical techniques), as well as the signal and image processing methods needed for the design and optimal use of such systems in diagnosis and research.

The Biomechanics stream is focused on bioengineering problems related to major diseases associated with an ageing population, such as cardiovascular disease, glaucoma, and bone and joint disease (osteoarthritis, osteoporosis).

These are major causes of mortality and morbidity, and this stream prepares engineers for a career in these key growth areas.

The Neurotechnology stream covers the development of new technology for the investigation of brain function, focusing on the application of this to benefit society—for example the development of neuroprosthetic devices, new neuroimaging techniques, and developing drugs and robotic assistive devices for those with central nervous system disorders, as well as in biologically-inspired control engineering.

The Biomaterials stream is offered jointly with the Department of Materials.

It addresses the selection and use of biomaterialsin medical and surgical devices, including their application, properties, interaction with tissues and drawbacks. Existing and new biomaterials are studied, including bioactive and biodegradable materials, implants and dental materials.

Modules also cover the development of materials for new applications, the response of cells and the design of materials as scaffolds for tissue engineering, which involves tailoring materials so that they guide stem cells to produce new tissue.

You will be required to choose your stream at the time of application. All four streams lead to the award of the MSc in Biomedical Engineering. The Medical Physics and Biomechanics streams are accredited by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM).

The course is full-time for one calendar year, starting in October. It currently has an annual intake of about 100 students.



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This course has been designed to fulfil the learning needs of the postgraduate eye care professional in practice; to provide advanced knowledge and facilitate understanding in this rapidly expanding field of healthcare. Read more
This course has been designed to fulfil the learning needs of the postgraduate eye care professional in practice; to provide advanced knowledge and facilitate understanding in this rapidly expanding field of healthcare.

The flexibility of the programme allows you to simply enrol for a module that interests you (what we refer to as non-degree), or aim for a specific Cardiff University Award

The MSc/PgDip/PgCert provides the opportunity for you to learn with one of the leading Optometry Schools in the UK, rated excellent for teaching and research, and amongst the highest ranked for overall undergraduate student satisfaction.  In 2015-16 we had 100% satisfaction in the Postgraduate Taught Education Survey.

We have designed this programme with you in mind - a busy professional who needs postgraduate studies to be flexible, to fit in with work, home and family life, to fulfil CET requirements and to achieve something worthwhile.  Many of the modules available are accredited by the College of Optometrists to provide Professional Certificates, Higher Certificates and Diplomas.

WOPEC (the Wales Optometry Postgraduate Education Centre) based at Cardiff University, already has an excellent reputation for delivering quality continuing education in an accessible format. If you have already completed a WOPEC course you may find you have already achieved some credits towards a University Award on this programme.

A deliberately wide portfolio of modules is offered in order to recognise the increasing desire for specialist training within optometry, including glaucoma, visual impairment, acute eye care, paediatrics, dry eye, medical retina, clinical teaching and leadership, amongst others. Specific programme pathways are suggested for optometrists wishing to focus on certain areas of practice, and there is a recommended programme pathway for those returning to work after a career break.

The programme is primarily aimed at eye care professionals in practice, studying part-time, at a distance from the University, with internet access to our virtual learning environment (VLE). Two thirds of the modules available on this programme also contain advanced practical training, which will normally be provided over a 1-2 day period.

Successful students on this programme will have an advanced standing both clinically and academically, taking them to the forefront of the profession, and enhancing their personal and professional development.

Several modules are aligned with nationally agreed competency standards – for example, the Low Vision Service Wales and the MECS scheme among others.

Students who have evidence of achieving such standards within the last three years can present this to the Director of the programme for consideration for approved prior learning (APL) accreditation, where module credits would be given to the student in recognition of their prior achievements.

Structure

The majority of the course will be delivered via Learning Central, the University's e-Learning system. You will have access to multimedia lecture presentations, supporting resources and discussions led by course tutors. On many of the modules leading educators in the field also provide practical skills workshops and tutorials directly relevant to everyday practice. These workshops are delivered by our staff within our custom-designed building. These sessions are an integral part of the course so attendance is compulsory.

Formative and summative assessment is via online multiple choice questions, submitted written coursework and assignments (including group wikis and blogs) plus practical exams where appropriate.

The course is designed to be flexible and so you pick and mix the modules you want to take from over twenty five 10 or 20 credit modules. All modules are optional, but some modules have pre-requisite partner modules. You can choose the modules you want to take to fit in with your home and work or we can suggest bundles that would work for your professional or personal circumstances.

Each 10 credits at postgraduate level equates to typically 25-30 hours of guided learning from your tutor(s), for example, lectures, discussions, practical workshops, tutorials, etc. You are expected to spend approximately 3-4 hours on self-directed study and reading to accompany each hour of guided learning, as directed by your tutor(s).

Please see the website for more details about the structure and content of each course:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/group/clinical-optometry

Teaching

Modules may differ, but you can expect to be taught online (via lectures and webinars), and by attending workshops for clinical modules.

Lectures are supported by the appropriate references and resources, and accompanied by assessment exercises. Participation in moderated online discussions is a feature in almost all modules.  Practical workshops for skills training will be held at locations convenient to either the module content or the student cohort enrolled at that time, and instructed by educational leaders in that discipline.

Assessment

The assessment activities have been specifically designed to facilitate participants’ learning and achievement. All assessment elements are compulsory.

Assessment varies across the modules, but includes:

Written reports.
Coursework assessment.
Multiple choice questions (MCQ).
Practical examinations.
Key Features Scenarios (used in medical education to test clinical reasoning, problem-solving ability and the ability to apply given knowledge).
OSCEs – Objective Structured Clinical Examinations.
Group wikis.
Blogs.
Written research project report.

Feedback from assessments will be provided in written format for written reports and coursework, and written and/or oral for practical examinations and presentations. Scientific discussion via online forums will be moderated by module leaders, allowing them immediate input and opportunity to offer feedback. Students will need to pass each individual component in order to pass the module.

The pass mark for the course is 50%, and a distinction is awarded for marks >70%.

Career Prospects

Successful students on this programme will have an advanced standing both clinically and academically, taking them to the forefront of the profession, and enhancing their personal and professional development.

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This programme is designed for nurses working in the specialist fields of eye care and ophthalmics, who are seeking a Masters qualification in their chosen specialism. Read more
This programme is designed for nurses working in the specialist fields of eye care and ophthalmics, who are seeking a Masters qualification in their chosen specialism.

Who is it for?

This course is suitable for nurses who see their medium or long term future within ophthalmics. In order to maximise the benefits derived from this programme, it would be helpful if you already have several months’ experience within ophthalmic care.

Objectives

This MSc programme is flexible and professionally orientated, seeking to prepare a specialist, research-focused workforce that will help revolutionise health and social care provision to better meet society’s changing demographic health needs, by using new technologies and more innovative and creative working practices.

The programme will prepare you for new, efficient and ethical ways of working that offer better quality of life and quality of care by placing service users and carers at the centre of decision-making and service. It will enable you to respond better to the increasing pressures on the current healthcare system.

We offer education in the latest theoretical and clinical developments relating to ophthalmic nursing. We will develop your research and critical thinking skills and provide the opportunity to conduct research under expert supervision, laying the foundations for independent practice and research in future.

Teaching and learning

The programme is taught by academic staff from the School of Health Sciences, supported by clinical colleagues. Most of the modules are worth 15 credits (or 1\8 of the total programme). However, some modules are worth 30 credits. A range of teaching and learning strategies are used, depending upon the nature of the material. These will include lectures and small group tutorials, group work, simulated practice and visits.

Similarly, the assessments are equally varied, and will include coursework, online projects, invigilated examination and objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs).

Your dissertation is worth 60 credits (1\3 of the entire programme) and is a piece of research undertaken with the supervision of an academic member of staff with a special interest in ophthalmics. They are appointed by the programme director or the module leader.

Modules

The exact sequence of modules is negotiable, and will depend upon your availability to study your electives and the occurrence of the modules.

Core modules - you are advised to take:
-APM001 (Critical Approaches to Advanced Practice)
-HRM001 (Introduction to Research Methods and Applied Data Analysis)
You will undertake four discipline specific modules:
-OVM013 Vision in the aged
-OVM006 Glaucoma
-NMM024 Medicines Management
-OVM056 Medical Retina

Elective modules - you will have the option of taking one elective, which may be in opthalmics or from the broader module diet offered by the School of Health Sciences.

Career prospects

This programme will prepare you to work autonomously in the area of opthalmics and eye care, within the NHS or the private sector and in the acute hospital sector or the wider community.

You will develop specialist skills in working with people experiencing vision impairment and other sensory loss. You will develop skills in conducting research projects and in critiquing and applying research to your area.

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The MSc Clinical Optometry (Advanced Practice in Health and Social Care) provides optometrists working in specialist practice with evidence-based knowledge and practice of advanced level primary eye care. Read more
The MSc Clinical Optometry (Advanced Practice in Health and Social Care) provides optometrists working in specialist practice with evidence-based knowledge and practice of advanced level primary eye care.

Who is it for?

The course is for optometrists working in specialist practice (in the hospital or community setting) who wish to build up a portfolio of training in evidence-based knowledge and practice of advanced level primary eye care.

Students are usually UK-registered optometrists who must satisfy all legal requirements to be eligible to practise as optometrists in the UK, and should be registered with the General Optical Council. Overseas candidates will be accepted on an ad hoc basis providing the individual's undergraduate syllabus and clinical responsibilities are similar to those of a UK Optometrist.

All entrants to the Programme must be in possession of a relevant first degree.

Objectives

The MSc in Advanced Practice in Health and Social Care (Clinical Optometry) has an international reputation for quality and is at the forefront of continuing education in clinical optometry - you will acquire cutting-edge skills and knowledge from leading UK experts in a dynamic learning environment.

The key purpose of the programme is the management of patients (with other medical disciplines if appropriate) and the expansion of the optometrist's role in ocular therapeutics within the hospital and community specialist practice setting.

The programme integrates clinical and theoretical knowledge, making extensive use of expert practitioners. It enables optometrists to continue development and accumulation of knowledge and expertise relating to ocular health care and vision science during their professional career. For some modules, you will learn alongside other health care practitioners enriching the learning experience.

By completing the MSc in APHSC (Clinical Optometry) optometrists will have demonstrated original application of knowledge to the field of clinical optometry and clinical decision-making in relation to practice. There is a choice of exit routes at PG Certificate and PG Diploma level and modules can also be taken as stand-alone Continuing Professional Development courses.

Academic facilities

The Division of Optometry opened brand-new, purpose-built clinic, City Sight in 2015. These state-of-the-art facilities provide a comprehensive range of services and educational resources in vision sciences for our students, researchers and patients.

There will be extensive use of City’s Virtual Learning Platform – Moodle – for a more interactive learning experience.

Teaching and learning

Postgraduate taught and distance learning modules offered by the School are designed to satisfy the rapidly changing academic, clinical and professional development needs of hospital and community optometrists working in specialist practice. Teaching and assessment methods are tailored to the learning objectives of each module component. The range of teaching methods is wide and includes lectures (face-to-face and online), tutorials, advanced clinical training, clinical demonstrations, videos and discussion of clinical scenarios. Discussion forums, interactive seminars, peer reviewing work-based examples and clinically focussed critical reflections via a case review process are also included.

Purely didactic modules are examined by means of multiple-choice question papers, whereas modules with a significant practical element may also have an objective structured clinical examination or a test of visual recognition of clinical signs and/or patient case scenarios. A professional practice portfolio / assignment may also be part of the assessment criteria.

Modules

Modules within the programme will include decision-making, resolving conflict, resource allocation and ethical issues. You will also be able to develop your theoretical, methodological and research skills to enhance your ability to critically evaluate research and the clinical evidence base.

The programme provides a range of modules which include 15, 30 and 60-credit modules at Master’s level. The programme provides you with a choice of exit routes and most modules can also be taken as stand-alone courses.

Each 15 PG credit module includes 150 hours (15 PG credits) in duration with approximately 30% of the study requires attendance at City for face-to-face learning in either lectures/tutorials or workshops.

You will study two core modules, and can choose a further five modules from a choice of five discipline-specific modules and two elective modules. If you are part-time, you should aim to take two modules per term over two years. If you are full-time, you take four modules per term over one year.

Depending on the module, you should be aiming to study approximately:
-20 hours perweek if full-time
-Four hours per week if part-time

Core modules
-Research Methods and Applied Data Analysis (online) (30 credits)
-Critical approaches to advanced practice (15 credits)
-Dissertation (60 credits)

Elective modules - you will choose a further five elective modules. Elective modules available include:
-Principles of Therapeutics (15 credits)
-Principles of Prescribing (15 credits)
-Independent Prescribing (15 credits)
-Professional Certificate in Glaucoma (15 credits)
-Professional Certificate in Low Vision (15 credits)
-Leadership for practice and service delivery (15 credits)
-Management and leadership in Health care (15 credits)
-Contact Lens Practice (15 credits)

Career prospects

The course is for hospital optometrists or community optometrists working in specialist practice. It provides an opportunity to enhance career prospects in the context of hospital or specialist community optometry through gaining both an academic qualification and a professional qualification with the College of Optometrists and the General Optical Council.

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City’s MSc Advanced Ophthalmic Nurse Practitioner is a flexible, professionally orientated programme for nurses working in ophthalmic health and eye care within health and social care provisions. Read more
City’s MSc Advanced Ophthalmic Nurse Practitioner is a flexible, professionally orientated programme for nurses working in ophthalmic health and eye care within health and social care provisions.

Who is it for?

This course is designed for registered nurses working in ophthalmic health or caring for people who are experiencing vision loss. It is for staff nurses and nurse managers, as well as those seeking a career in nursing or health research.

Objectives

The Advanced Practice in Health and Social Care (Advanced Ophthalmic Nurse Practitioner) programme provides ophthalmic nurses with up-to-date research-based and theoretical knowledge of a wide range of ophthalmic fields. The main focus of the programme is prescribing within the context of ophthalmic nursing. You will complete the non-medical prescribing programme in addition to ophthalmic-related modules which will enhance prescribing competence.

The course offers education in the latest theoretical and clinical developments relating to the role of ophthalmic nurse practitioner. It also develops research and critical thinking skills and provides the opportunity to conduct a research project under expert supervision, laying the foundations for independent practice and research in the future. This provides you with the opportunity to create a challenging and rewarding Master's programme tailored to nursing ophthalmic care.

Academic facilities

The Division of Optometry opened a brand-new, purpose-built eye clinic, City Sight in 2015. These state-of-the-art facilities provide a comprehensive range of services and educational resources in vision sciences for our students, researchers and patients.

There will be extensive use of City's Virtual Learning Platform – Moodle for a more interactive learning experience.

Teaching and learning

A blended approach to learning and teaching is used with teaching methods such as: lectures; self-directed study; tutorials; action learning sets, class-based seminars; reflective study; enquiry based learning; workshops; individual and collaborative activity and presentations.

Students will learn in a variety of multidisciplinary groups and will be supported and encouraged to participate in independent learning. There will be extensive use of City's Virtual Learning Platform - Moodle - for a more interactive learning experience.

Assessments are varied to meet the practice and academic challenges of a Master's level course, while recognising the need for motivating, realistic and relevant activity. Assessment strategies include coursework, examinations, portfolios, minilabs, case studies, reports, seminar presentations, skills schedules and objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs). Students may be expected to take part in formative assessment activities during the modules in addition to the summative assessments for each module.

Modules

The programme provides a range of modules which include 15, 30 and 60-credit modules at Master’s level.

Core modules
-Research Methods and Applied Data Analysis
-Critical Approaches to Advanced Practice
-Dissertation

Discipline specific modules
-Independent, supplementary and non-medical prescribing
-Critical thinking for Ophthalmic Practice
-Principles of Therapeutics

Elective modules
-Professional Certificate in Glaucoma
-Professional Certificate in Medical Retina
-Medicines Management

Career prospects

This course will enhance skills in practice, teaching and research leading to roles in nurse management, student support and as advanced nurse practitioners in ophthalmology in a range of public and private settings. The course is also suitable for ophthalmic nurses considering a post in research.

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This new Master’s degree will deliver an in-depth understanding of clinical ophthalmology, disease pathophysiology, diagnosis and treatment. Read more
This new Master’s degree will deliver an in-depth understanding of clinical ophthalmology, disease pathophysiology, diagnosis and treatment. The programme combines lectures and seminars at UCL Institute of Ophthalmology with direct exposure to clinical practice in the ophthalmology clinics at the world-leading Moorfields Eye Hospital.

Degree information

The programme provides knowledge of the theory and practical skills of clinical ophthalmology including ocular pathology diagnosis and management, an understanding of clinical disease processes in the eye, the assessment of patients and the different imaging modalities and treatments available, as well as their limitations and side-effects.

Students undertake modules to the value of 360 credits. The programme consists of 16 mandatory modules (240 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits) and a case-based portfolio (60 credits).

Year One core modules
-Basic Understanding of the Eye
-Common Ocular Diseases and Treatment
-Systemic Disease and the Eye
-Surgery and the Eye
-Disorders Affecting Retinal Function
-Retinal Imaging
-Ocular Therapeutics I
-Ocular Therapeutics II
-Dissertation

Year Two core modules
-Clinical Practice: Cataract
-Clinical Practice: Cornea
-Clinical Practice: Glaucoma
-Clinical Practice: Medical Retina 1
-Clinical Practice: Medical Retina 2
-Clinical Practice: Paediatrics and Neuro-ophthalmology
-Clinical Practice: Uveitis
-Clinical Practice: Vitreo Retinal Surgery
-Case-based Portfolio

Dissertation/report
In year one all students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10–12,000 words. In year two students will construct a portfolio, examined by a viva.

Teaching and learning
In the first year the programme is predominantly delivered through lectures, seminars and attendance at clinical teaching sessions. The second year is largely clinic based and supplemented by taught sessions. Assessment is through written examinations, oral presentations, problem-based learning, dissertation and a case-based portfolio.

Careers

This Master’s degree will equip students with the practical skills required to begin an ophthalmic career and forms part of a clinical specialty training programme leading to a specialist qualification. The unique exposure to high-level clinicians and instructors is likely to lead to further clinical advancement.

Employability
The degree programme aims to provide students with clinical and academic skills which will help them become clinical leaders in any future post. Students' direct contact with leading clinicians and instructors will provide them with the basic knowledge to later become independent clinicians, able to lead others into modern opthalmic medicine.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Hospital are recognised worldwide and have an outstanding track record in biomedical research, much of which has been translated into important advances in innovative therapies.

Students will have the unique opportunity to observe the implementation of clinical knowledge in the diagnosis and treatment of a range of ocular diseases by experienced clinicians and researchers, in clinics in the second year.

The programme will teach students how to assess scientific literature, to evaluate the efficacy of novel treatment strategies, and consier how they fit into existing treatment algorithms.

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A flexible distance learning Master’s programme that enables eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline. Read more
A flexible distance learning Master’s programme that enables eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline.

Course outline

Flexible credit accumulation
New students initially register as LHS postgraduate students within a framework of flexible credit accumulation (FCA). Within this framework it is possible to graduate with a Postgraduate Certificate in Optometry (60 taught credits); Postgraduate Diploma in Optometry (120 taught credits); M.Sc. in Optometry/ Ophthalmic Science (180 credits: 120 taught, 60 dissertation) or the Doctor of Optometry (DOptom)/ Doctor of Ophthalmic Science (DOphSc). The MSc requires the completion of 6 taught modules (120 credits) and a 60 credit narrative research review (dissertation). As part of the flexible programme, UK optometrists may complete the theoretical element of the GOC-approved Independent Prescribing for Optometrists. Further information is available here.

Timescales for study
Taught credits are valid for 5 years, so students studying for an MSc/ PG Diploma/ PG Certificate must complete their studies within 5 years of enrolment on the programme.

Subject guide and modules

20 credit taught modules include:
-Accommodation and Presbyopia (OP4AAP)
-Advanced Contact Lenses (OP4ACL)
-Advanced Visual Science (OP4AVS)
-General Ocular Therapeutics (OP4GOT)
-Glaucoma (OP4GL1)
-Investigative Ophthalmic Science (OP4IOS)
-Myopia (OP4MY1)
-Nutrition and the Eye (OP4NE1)
-Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics (OP4OT1) - GOC-approved Independent Prescribing module
-Prescribing for disorders of the eye (OP4OT2) - GOC-approved Independent Prescribing module
-Refractive Surgery (OP4RS1)
-Research Methods (OP4RM1)
-Retinal and Macular Disorders (OP4RMD)
-Visual Impairment (OP4VI1)

For the MSc, you will also undertake a 60 credit research review dissertation module, supervised by a member of Aston academic staff.

Learning, teaching & assessment

Online lectures are used to support your learning; these are available on our virtual learning environment whenever you chose to view them, and are accompanied by short formative tests throughout the module. Each module includes a substantial piece of coursework, e.g. a scientific literature review or portfolio of case records. The pass mark for all forms of taught module assessment is 50%.

The dissertation module involves exploring an area relevant to contemporary practice in an extended literature review or short practical project. You will be supervised by an experienced member of academic staff.

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A professional doctorate that enables eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline through taught and research elements. Read more
A professional doctorate that enables eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline through taught and research elements.

Course outline

The Doctor of Optometry/ Doctor of Ophthalmic Science (previously known as the Aston “Ophthalmic Doctorate”) is a unique qualification - a professional doctorate - that enables eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, and critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline through taught and research elements.

Taught modules are 20 credits each, nominally equivalent to 200 hours of student learning. Modules consist of remote access lectures with electronic formative assessments and a module coursework assignment such as reflective case records, or an essay/literature review related to the module. There are two study periods per year to complete taught modules; 1st October -31st January and 1st March - 30th June. Module results are ratified at Examination Boards held shortly after the end of each study period.

The research project is the major component of the doctorate, supervised by members of the Optometry Subject Group academic staff. Students will develop their research proposals based upon their own clinical interests, or may opt to select a project nominated by an Aston academic. Because this is a distance-learning programme, the research is not normally carried out on the University campus, and it is essential that the student has access to the facilities and resources needed to carry out the research, usually in the student's place of work.

The research stage requires a significant long-term commitment, as it is equivalent to around 2 years of full-time work (i.e. 4 years part-time). Candidates ultimately submit a thesis which is examined in a viva voce examination.

The Doctor of Optometry programme is aimed at practising optometrists, who will complete case records where required for taught module coursework, and will undertake a practice- based research project. The Doctor of Ophthalmic Science programme is for eye care professionals who may not be practising optometrists, e.g. medics/ orthoptists/ product designers; these students may complete scientific essays to fulfil the coursework requirements, and undertake a non-clinical research project.

This degree is only available as part-time distance learning, so it is vital that the student has access to a good broadband internet connection.

Flexible credit accumulation

New students initially register as LHS postgraduate students within a framework of flexible credit accumulation (FCA). Within this framework it is possible to graduate with a Postgraduate Certificate in Optometry (60 taught credits); Postgraduate Diploma in Optometry (120 taught credits); M.Sc. in Optometry/ Ophthalmic Science (180 credits: 120 taught, 60 dissertation) or the Doctor of Optometry (DOptom)/ Doctor of Ophthalmic Science (DOphSc).

As part of the flexible programme, UK optometrists may complete the theoretical element of the GOC-approved Independent Prescribing for Optometrists. Further information is available here: http://www1.aston.ac.uk/lhs/cpd/courses/optometry/independent-prescribing-for-optometrists/

The MSc requires the completion of 6 taught modules (120 credits) and a 60 credit narrative research review (dissertation).

Completion of the DOptom/ DOphSc requires 180 taught module credits and successful completion of a substantial personal research project, with submission of a thesis/ portfolio of work and a viva voce examination with an internal and external examiner. Up to 60 credits may be awarded in respect of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), whether experiential or certificated (e.g. previous completion of the Aston MOptom). To progress to full doctoral registration requires a minimum of 120 taught module credits including the compulsory 20 credit Research Methods module, an approved project proposal, and successful completion of the qualifying report stage, assessed by viva voce examination with an internal examiner. The report and the viva voce examination will be used to assess suitability for progression to the full doctoral project.

Timescales for study

Taught credits are valid for 5 years, so students studying for an MSc/PG Diploma/PG Certificate must complete their studies within 5 years of enrolment on the programme.

Students undertaking the DOptom/DOphSc. programme must complete their taught module requirement and complete the research stage within 6 years of registration. Note that in accordance with University Regulations for part-time research students, the earliest date for completion of the doctoral programme (i.e. submission of thesis/ portfolio) is 4 years following registration.

Subject guide and modules

Taught modules include:
-Accommodation and Presbyopia (OP4AAP)
-Advanced Contact Lenses (OP4ACL)
-Advanced Visual Science (OP4AVS)
-General Ocular Therapeutics (OP4GOT)
-Glaucoma (OP4GL1)
-Investigative Ophthalmic Science (OP4IOS)
-Myopia (OP4MY1)
-Nutrition and the Eye (OP4NE1)
-Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics (OP4OT1)
-Prescribing for disorders of the eye (OP4OT2)
-Refractive Surgery (OP4RS1)
-Research Methods (OP4RM1)
-Research Review (Dissertation modules OP4OPR and OP40SR)
-Retinal and Macular Disorders (OP4RMD)
-Visual Impairment (OP4VI1)

Learning, teaching & assessment

For taught modules, online lectures, available on our virtual environment whenever you chose to view them are accompanied by short tests throughout the module. Each module includes a substantial piece of coursework, e.g. a scientific literature review or portfolio of case records. The pass mark for all forms of taught module assessment is 50%.

For the main element of the doctorate, the research project, candidates submit a report and undergo a qualifying report stage within one year of becoming research active. Once this stage has been passed, candidates continue their research, culminating in the submission of a thesis (up to 80, 000 words) which is examined in a viva examination by experts in the chosen field. The degree of Doctor of Optometry or Doctor of Ophthalmic Science is awarded to candidates who successfully defend their thesis.

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A distance-learning course run by Aston University. Recent legislation has extended independent prescribing rights to optometrists, subject to the satisfactory completion of a General Optical Council (GOC) accredited training course. Read more
A distance-learning course run by Aston University.

Recent legislation has extended independent prescribing rights to optometrists, subject to the satisfactory completion of a General Optical Council (GOC) accredited training course. The restriction to the range of medicines that can be used and conditions that can be treated for IP optometrists is by reference to their competence:

‘Optometrist Independent Prescribers should be able to prescribe any licensed medicine for ocular conditions, affecting the eye and adnexa, within the recognised area of expertise and competence of the optometrist.’

Structure

Aston University is offering a distance learning course in Independent Prescribing for qualified optometrists. The course consists of two 20 credit modules delivered by distance learning using our e-learning environment, Blackboard. Each module is made up of online lectures assessed by unseen online tests and coursework.

The first module is entitled ‘Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics’ and covers topics including ocular immunology, pharmacology and ocular therapeutic drugs, frameworks of prescribing, prescribing safely and professionally.

The second module, taken after completion of the first module, is entitled ‘Prescribing for disorders of the eye’ and covers topics including evidence based practice and glaucoma in relation to independent prescribing.

A period of Learning in Practice

After successful completion of the two theory based modules and a practical assessment, optometrists are required to undertake practical training in the form of a clinical placement in conjunction with an Independent Prescriber (e.g. an ophthalmologist in a hospital eye department). To achieve Independent Prescriber status the optometrist must gain at least 12 days of clinical training.
For those who are already registered as Additional Supply or Supplementary Prescribers, the placement period required is 7 days.

Teaching methods

Each module consists of around ten ‘lectures’ delivered by distance learning via the Blackboard platform. Most topics are delivered by Powerpoint lectures with speech. Other lectures are delivered in a text-based format.

The first module covers aspects of ocular therapeutics, including the pharmacology and use of ocular therapeutic drugs.

The syllabus for the second module encompasses prescribing for ocular disease. Upon successful completion of the second module’s exam, optometrists will be required to undertake a clinical skills practical assessment at Aston University. The practical element will involve demonstration of slit lamp skills, contact tonometry and slit lamp binocular indirect ophthalmoscopy along with some objective structured clinical exam type questions.

Practice-based learning

Following completion of the two theoretical modules, trainees undertake a period of practice-based training. The aim of this component of the training is to develop competency in the practice of prescribing and to facilitate the integration of prescribing theory and practice with the conditions that the trainee will subsequently manage. This training will typically take place in the Hospital Eye Service under the supervision of a designated ‘mentor’ ophthalmologist. It is the responsibility of the trainee to arrange the clinical practice placement.

For IP the Clinical Placement comprises a minimum of 12 days (24 sessions of not less than 3 hours).

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The course aims to foster advanced knowledge in clinical issues for optometrists, with an emphasis on how research informs practice and the evolution of eye care services and capabilities. Read more

The course aims to foster advanced knowledge in clinical issues for optometrists, with an emphasis on how research informs practice and the evolution of eye care services and capabilities. The programme recognises and incorporates Professional Certificates from the College of Optometrists. Modules have been designed with contributions from guest experts from ophthalmology, clinicians from hospital settings and other specialists. A number of CET points are available for optometrists undertaking these modules.

This course is delivered by distance learning, on a part-time basis, so is designed for working optometrists to fit their learning around their other commitments.

Graduates of this course will be equipped with skills to undertake extended clinical roles, promote the development of eye care within their region. They will develop critical thinking skills to evaluate and undertake research, and may go on to further research endeavours including doctoral research training.

Ulster University is experienced in delivering courses through distance learning and has bespoke support and online delivery of teaching through the virtual learning environment, BlackBoard Learn. Distance learning offers the student the advantage of learning at their pace and preferred time, and teaching materials have been specifically developed with the distance learner in mind, ensuring access is simple and comprehensive. Support for distance learning students is at hand daily from online tutors and the e-Learning Support Unit at Ulster.

The MSc course is designed and structured so you will have the opportunity to choose a particular area of study that interests you, building from a series of Professional certificates and then going on to study ophthalmic public health and advanced retinal imaging or choosing to undertake the Theory of Independent prescribing for optometrists The skills of self-motivation, independent learning, problem solving and developing and communicating scientific arguments are encouraged and developed through a programme which emphasizes critical thinking and discussion of issues through online media.

Students may not wish to undertake the whole MSc (180 credits), and there are options to undertake a Postgraduate Certificate (PgCERT), which amounts to 60 credits, or a Postgraduate Diploma (PgDIP), at 120 credits.

For those completing the MSc programme, a research project will be undertaken by the student in an area of their choosing with support and guidance from an academic supervisor. In addition, another member of staff will coordinate this module and provide generic support. This project will be a significant and novel piece of research.

Modules

Year one

  • Low vision
  • Glaucoma diagnosis and management
  • Medical retina
  • Paediatric eyecare

Year two

  • Evidence-based practice in sealthcare sciences
  • Principles of pharmacology and prescribing
  • Assessment, management and treatment of ocular conditions
  • Public health in optometry: national and global perspectives
  • Structure/function relationships in ocular disease

Year three

  • MSc research project

Attendance

This is a distance learning course and students access learning material via a virtual learning environment. 'elearning' is an excellent route for postgraduate learning as it gives unique flexibility and ownership of how and when you learn. It is a different experience from traditional face to face learning and is especially suited to adults who like to learn independently and are self-motivated. This course has been specifically designed with the elearner in mind, so learning material is appropriately displayed and students are encouraged to participate in discussion boards, and to contribute to online chats and are given regular small tasks to complete so learning is broken down into manageable segments.

Career options

Graduates will gain a Master's in Advanced Clinical Optometry from a UK university designed to enhance their academic and professional development. Graduates may use skills obtained to effectively promote and develop eye care in their area, and take part in enhanced eye care services. Graduates will gain valuable experience of undertaking research activities and producing high quality scientific reports. These skills will support the graduates who wish to develop their research careers.



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