What is the Scheme?

An overview of the Scheme for Registration 2020-21

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The Scheme for Registration is your route to becoming a fully qualified optometrist. You can enrol as a pre-registration trainee on the Scheme here.

The Scheme is in three parts: a two part work-based assessment (Stage One and Stage Two), and the final assessment (OSCE).

The Scheme and COVID-19

The Scheme for Registration has been fully reviewed in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. All parts of the Scheme have been adapted and approved by the GOC. We will continue to review the Scheme, and may make adjustments in light of new evidence or changes to practice.

What will I have to do to complete the Scheme?

You have 2 years and 3 months to complete the Scheme. Many trainees complete it in a shorter period – on average 15 months.

Work-based assessment

At Stage One, you will work with your supervisor and an assessor to sign-off 75 competencies. 

At Stage Two, you will be assessed while performing an eye examination and a contact lens aftercare. You will also be assessed on 13 overarching elements of competence.

During the work-based assessment, you will keep a logbook of patient encounters and a reflective learning portfolio. You will also complete either our virtual hospital eye service experience, or a placement in an NHS hospital.


Final assessment

You can take the final assessment (OSCE) when you have passed Stage Two. You can have up to four attempts at the OSCE. 

When you pass the final assessment, you can apply to register as a qualified optometrist with the GOC, as long as you have also completed your degree.


Watch our Introduction to the Scheme video


Watch our Instragram Q&A on the 2020-21 Scheme