Optometry at the University of Plymouth will open a long-term, successful
career for you. Graduates tend go on to become fully qualified and practising
optometrists. Achieving this will require you to complete a supervised period
of “pre-registration” employment after graduating (usually a year in length) in
conjunction with the College of Optometrists. This period will include further
training and work-based learning, combined with assessments and a final formal exam.
Completion of this will then allow you to register with the General Optical
Council (GOC), allowing you to practice as a professional in your own right.
work in a corporate/high street setting undertaking eye examinations, providing
relevant advice to patients/clients and prescribe spectacles/contact lenses accordingly.
Optometrists also find themselves working for the NHS in hospital environments
alongside ophthalmologists and orthoptists, providing specialist support for an
array of eye conditions. Alternatively, a role as a domiciliary optometrist suits
many, allowing them to get out and support those who cannot reach an
examination room to receive sound eye health care. Companies offering laser
refractive surgery also employ optometrists for consultation and follow ups,
before and after these operations respectively.
Personal Development (CPD) is a requirement for many optometrists, to make sure
they keep their practice up to date. Many go on to also run their own business
or manage the retail aspects and/or develop areas of the practice they work
for. Some also take their skills and qualifications to work in other parts of
the world. Within the NHS, it is possible to work your way up to become a consultant
much still to learn about the eyes, and detecting and treating eye conditions, some
graduates of optometry and/or qualified optometrists go on to become
researchers and have careers in academia, or working for lens and ophthalmic
Since specific career paths may be less obvious it is
important to use your research skills to explore the range of opportunities and
to consider your personal interests, motivations, values, and strengths. Also, do
not forget that some employers will accept applications from graduates with a
degree in any subject.
Researching your career options
Given the diversity of career options open to optometry
graduates, it is important to research and explore these fully so that you can
make informed decisions about your future.
a look at Prospects, TargetJobs and the following
websites for inspiration:
Below is a snapshot of what some of University of Plymouth
Optometry graduates told us they were doing six months after graduation. For
some graduates, these jobs serve as ‘stepping stones’ to other roles by
providing relevant workplace experience.
- Optometrist (Corporate)
- Optometrist (NHS)
- Practice Management Consultant
(with further study)