Pre-Optometry at WSU

'Pre-optometry' is not a major or minor at WSU. Students who identify as 'pre-optometry' plan to attend optometry school after earning their bachelor's degree. Supplemental academic advisors work in the PMHSC with the intention of helping students prepare and submit a competitive application to optometry school. Advising topics include, but are not limited, OAT preparatory coursework, professional development activities and the application process. Students interested in learning more about optometry school are encouraged to attend a Pre-Optometry Information Session prior schedulingaone on one appointment with an advisor. 


"Doctors of optometry are independent primary health care providers who examine, diagnose, treat and manage diseases and disorders of the visual system, the eye and associated structures as well as diagnose related systemic conditions." 
American Optometric Association, 1993.

An optometrist is an eye specialist that has earned the Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree.  Optometrists examine eyes for both vision and health problems, and correct refractive errors by prescribing eye glasses and contact lenses.  Students interested in learning more about the Optometry profession can visit the American Optometric Association.

An ophthalmologist, on the other hand, is a medical doctor who also specializes in eye and vision care but differ from optometrists in their levels of training and in what they can diagnose and treat. Ophthalmologists are trained to perform eye exams, diagnose and treat disease, prescribe medications and perform eye surgery. They also write prescriptions for eyeglasses and contact lenses.

There are 23 schools in the US that offer optometry programs, including the Michigan College of Optometry (MCO) at Ferris State University. For all programs, students must earn a bachelor's degree (an allied health or science major is required or recommended by all programs) prior to beginning an optometry program. 

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