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Masters Degrees (Refractive Surgery)

We have 6 Masters Degrees (Refractive Surgery)

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The programme is designed to be a complete introduction to the how, what and when of cataract and refractive surgery. It covers the basics of refractive surgery from how excimer lasers work to ablation profiles and topography and aberrometry. Read more
The programme is designed to be a complete introduction to the how, what and when of cataract and refractive surgery. It covers the basics of refractive surgery from how excimer lasers work to ablation profiles and topography and aberrometry. It progresses through microkeratomes and femtosecond lasers to LASEK, LASIK, phakic intraocular lenses (IOLs) and clear lens extractions and the complications and management of each. Pre-op assessment and post-op follow-up, prevention and management of complications, surgical variants of phaco, and modern IOLs for cataract surgery will also be covered.

Key benefits

- This programme has been designed in collaboration with The Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCOphth) standards, curriculum and examination committees and is the only endorsed RCOphth refractive surgery programme completed fully online in the UK.

- Innovation, flexibility and creativity in curriculum design and delivery.

Visit the website: https://www.ulster.ac.uk/course/msc-cataract-and-refractive-surgery-theory-pt-el

Course detail

- Description -

Celebrating now the twenty-fifth anniversary of LASIK in 2015, Refractive Surgery commands far greater evidence-based clinical concordance amongst specialists performing preoperative surgical assessment, surgical technique and complication management, than ever before. This programme of study includes the best practice patterns based on the wealth of accumulated scientific knowledge of the last two decades and provides, for both the novice and experienced surgeon, a template for establishing safe and effective practice in the field.

- Course purpose -

The Postgraduate Diploma in Cataract and Refractive Surgery (Theory) is suitable for ophthalmologists, optometrists, orthopists, nurse practitioners and ophthalmic technicians. This programme is the endorsed by the RCOphth as the only preparatory course in the UK for their Certificate in Laser Refractive Surgery examination. The programme offers a platform to learn the latest complex and sophisticated methodologies in laser and other refractive corneal and lens (IOL) based surgery including preoperative keratoconus screening, toric-IOL diagnostics and calculations, as well as understanding ocular and systemic co-morbidity when considering elective refractive surgery. A critical approach to multifocal IOL surgery is included based on published safety and efficacy as well as neuro-psychoadaptation. There is much attention focused on the systematisation and optimisation of surgical techniques. Advances in published knowledge provide a more established understanding of therapeutic refractive surgery for complications management.

Career options

The majority of students undertaking this online programme will do so for their continued professional development within their individual areas of employment for career enhancement.

How to apply: https://www.ulster.ac.uk/apply/how-to-apply#pg

Why Choose Ulster University ?

1. Over 92% of our graduates are in work or further study six months after graduation.
2. We are a top UK university for providing courses with a period of work placement.
3. Our teaching and the learning experience we deliver are rated at the highest level by the Quality Assurance Agency.
4. We recruit international students from more than 100 different countries.
5. More than 4,000 students from over 50 countries have successfully completed eLearning courses at Ulster University.

Flexible payment

To help spread the cost of your studies, tuition fees can be paid back in monthly instalments while you learn. If you study for a one-year, full-time master’s, you can pay your fees up-front, in one lump sum, or in either five* or ten* equal monthly payments. If you study for a master’s on a part-time basis (e.g. over three years), you can pay each year’s fees up-front or in five or ten equal monthly payments each year. This flexibility allows you to spread the payment of your fees over each academic year. Find out more by visiting https://www.ulster.ac.uk/apply/fees-and-finance/postgraduate

Scholarships

A comprehensive range of financial scholarships, awards and prizes are available to undergraduate, postgraduate and research students. Scholarships recognise the many ways in which our students are outstanding in their subject. Individuals may be able to apply directly or may automatically be nominated for awards. Visit the website: https://www.ulster.ac.uk/apply/fees-and-finance/scholarships

English Language Tuition

CELT offers courses and consultations in English language and study skills to Ulster University students of all subjects, levels and nationalities. Students and researchers for whom English is an additional language can access free CELT support throughout the academic year: https://www.ulster.ac.uk/international/english-language-support

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The purpose of this course is to prepare ophthalmologists for the appropriate selection of candidates for refractive surgery, understand the surgical techniques involved and deal with complications. Read more
The purpose of this course is to prepare ophthalmologists for the appropriate selection of candidates for refractive surgery, understand the surgical techniques involved and deal with complications.

The Masters degree normally involves 1.5 years of full time study, assuming the standard progression of units of study, as specified by the Discipline is undertaken and needs to be completed in 3 years from commencement of enrolment. If studying part-time, the Masters degree normally involves 3 years of study, assuming the standard progression of Units of Study as specified by the discipline is undertaken, and needs to be completed in 6 years from commencement of enrolment. Each candidate must achieve a total of 48 credit points (CP) to successfully complete the Masters degree. Areas of study include Ophthalmic Anatomy, Ophthalmic Optics, Refractive Surgery 1, Refractive Surgery 2, and a research dissertation. The course work is completed by the Practical Refractive Surgery unit of study that involves a 3 week full time clinical and wet lab placement to ensure the skills required in performing refractive surgery are gained. The practical unit of study also assesses the candidates’ skills in patient selection, test interpretation, intra and post operative complication management.

Please note: overseas-trained specialists who plan to practice in Australia will require documentation from the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists showing that they have met the College guidelines for specialist practice in Australia.

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Refractive surgery is an ever-expanding area within the field of ophthalmology that encompasses laser and non-laser vision correction. Read more
Refractive surgery is an ever-expanding area within the field of ophthalmology that encompasses laser and non-laser vision correction. Such surgery has traditionally been performed by surgeons in large private clinics, but in recent years has become accepted as part of mainstream ophthalmic care. Laser eye surgery is now the most frequently performed eye operation in Australia.

Upon completion of the Master of Medicine (Cataract and Refractive Surgery) at Sydney Medical School you will be equipped with knowledge of cataract and refractive surgery theory and practice. The course is primarily online with a two-week placement in an accredited refractive surgical centre and time spent in the wet lab at Sydney Eye Hospital. Jointly offered with the University of Auckland, New Zealand, the course is the first of its kind in the world.

Your lecturers include internationally recognised corneal and refractive surgeons.

To ask a question about this course, visit http://sydney.edu.au/internationaloffice/

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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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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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