Scheme for Registration

The Scheme for Registration is a structured and supported route from student to professional optometrist. It gives you the chance to put into practice the skills you learned at university in a safe environment. Those who successfully complete the Scheme can apply to join the GOC Register.

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The College delivers the Scheme for Registration for pre-registration trainees. This consists of work-based assessments and a final practical examination (called the OSCE) which assess trainees against the GOC elements of competence.

Before you start the Scheme you will need to find a pre-registration training placement and then enrol with the College. To become a qualified optometrist, you will need to complete the three assessment stages of the Scheme: Stage 1, Stage 2 and the OSCE.  

We have developed a range of useful resources and support to guide you through the Scheme. 

COVID-19 and the Scheme for Registration

Announcements regarding COVID-19 and the Scheme for Registration

The GOC Education Strategic Review: Let us know your views

Help us shape our response by letting us know your thoughts.

GOC consultation on 2020/21 Scheme for Registration – our proposals

The GOC is consulting on potential changes to its education requirements. This has partly been prompted by the College’s proposed changes to the Scheme for Registration in the context of COVID-19, and the Optometry Schools Council proposed changes to undergraduate education.

Pre-reg jobs board

The College pre-reg jobs board is ideal for candidates and employers - and completely free of charge.


Once you are enrolled, you will be sent a confirmation email stating you are enrolled. You will also be sent a link to the Scheme for Registration Handbook. You cannot practice under supervision until you have been enrolled.

My trainee area

A timeline of your journey through the Scheme for Registration.

Scheme for Registration Handbook

The Scheme for Registration Handbook contains everything trainees need to prepare for assessment visits and the final OSCE. Also access our logbook templates.


Appropriate supervision whilst completing the Scheme for Registration is crucial to trainees progressing as well as ensuring the safety of the public. It is the trainee's responsibility to ensure they have appropriate supervision arrangements in place at all times.

Work-based assessment FAQs

Do you have questions about assessment, supervision and training placements? We have the answers.

Scheme for Registration guidance videos

Watch our series of guidance videos to find out what to expect from the Scheme for Registration at each stage.

Final assessment - The OSCE

The final assessment takes the form of an OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination), where candidates show that they can apply optometric theory in a clinical setting. The OSCE consists of a series of five minute stations, where candidates carry out tasks based on the 75 GOC elements of competence.

Performers lists

Apply to register before qualifying - and don't forget to complete our free online safeguarding training, developed specifically for pre-registration trainees.

Reasonable adjustments

Trainees with a disability can apply to the College to make reasonable adjustments to their assessments and/or examinations.

Extending or restarting the Scheme

A trainee may be able to apply for an extension to their time on the Scheme for Registration or for the ability to begin their training one further time if they have encountered exceptional circumstances.


Appeals against examination results can only be made against the process of the assessment or examination. If you would like to complain because the service we have provided has been unacceptable, we would welcome the chance to investigate this.


The College is committed to providing a high quality, professional service to everyone involved in the Scheme for Registration. In order to do this we need you to give us any feedback about our service, and to tell us when we get things wrong.

Scheme for Registration Report

We've published a report analysing pre-registration trainees’ performance on its Scheme for Registration.


Do you have any further questions?