Fellowship (FCOptom) is the College’s highest qualification. It is an acknowledgement of commitment to the profession, experience and accomplishments. Since the College foundation in 1980, there have been a number of routes to Fellowship:
Life Fellows are members of the College who are elected by the College Trustees on the strength of their outstanding contribution to the profession of optometry or to the College.
Honorary Fellows are persons who are not members of the College who are elected by the College Trustees on the strength of their outstanding contribution to the profession of optometry or to the College.
Foundation Fellow: The College was founded in 1980 as the single successor body to The British Optical Association and The Scottish Association of Opticians together with the examining function of The Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers. On the foundation of the College, Fellows or Members of these bodies were awarded Foundation Fellowship.
Fellow by Examination: College Members who were successful in two or more modules of the Fellowship Diploma Examination were awarded Fellowship by Examination. The examination was superseded at the end of 1998 by criteria based on Higher Qualifications. With the new scheme, College Members who successfully achieved any four Higher Qualification certificates awarded by the College were awarded Fellowship by Examination. Fellowship by Examination was superseded in 2008 by Fellow by Portfolio.
Fellowship by Portfolio is a flexible way of achieving Fellowship based on achievements in the workplace as well as success in examinations. Applicants apply for Fellowship by submitting a portfolio of evidence covering a wide range of practice demonstrating how their accomplishments, including any examination success, have benefited the practice of optometry as a whole, as well as their own practice.
Fellowship by portfolio is a flexible way of achieving Fellowship based on achievements in the workplace as well as success in examinations. Find out more and how to apply.