The College of Optometrists has accredited two new courses in Low Vision and Glaucoma, including the first Professional Higher Certificate course, as part of the continued expansion of its nationally recognised higher qualifications framework.
City University London will begin teaching the new Low Vision course in May 2013. The new Professional Higher Certificate Course in Glaucoma will be run by Moorfields Eye Hospital.
Following an extensive review of its higher qualifications, the College now accredits three levels of qualification: the Professional Certificate; Professional Higher Certificate, which builds on the certificate and Professional Diploma. Accredited courses are now running qualifications in Glaucoma and Low Vision and the College is in the process of developing learning outcomes for qualifications in Contact Lenses and Medical Retina.
The framework promotes a flexible system of accredited qualifications that can be used professionally. Optometrists benefit from the knowledge that the courses they undertake are quality assured by the College, meeting the College’s standards. They can choose to study at an expanding range of learning institutions across the country which provide increased levels of support and guidance to optometrists as they work towards these qualifications.
Optometrists can specialise in one area by doing courses at each of the three levels in the same subject, or can choose to obtain a broader qualification by studying courses in different subject areas.
The College’s Director of Education, Jacqueline Martin, said: “The College is delighted that we are able to work in partnership with both City University and Moorfields Eye Hospital to offer optometrists professional development in Low Vision and Glaucoma.
“With the changes to the health service giving optometrists the opportunity to play a broader role in delivering eye care in the community, the College, in partnership with course providers, is now offering relevant, flexible and supported routes for optometrists to achieve higher qualifications”.