Look for the Letters

This exhibition ran from the end of August 2012 until 24 January 2014. It covered 150 years of the Snellen chart...

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'Look for the Letters' is a phrase with a deliberate double meaning. First of all our exhibition marked the 150th anniversary of the Snellen chart, first designed in 1862. Secondly, the exhibition's launch coincided with a College campaign to promote public awareness of its affix, the letters MCOptom and FCOptom, that are the mark of a commitment to the highest professional standards in the public interest. We hope that members of the public will 'look for the letters' when first choosing an optometrist and then 'look for the letters' again when that optometrist performs an eye test for them.

On display were various visual acuity charts featuring letters, numbers and symbols. The oldest item, extracted from our historical books collection, was the first 'English' edition of Snellen's Optotypes dating from 1864. We then came bang up-to-date with an opportunity to see a demonstration of Test Chart 2000, the latest computerised testing programme, utilising hardware and software kindly lent to the exhibition by Thomson Software Solutions.

'Look for the Letters' was an exhibition located in the College Meeting Rooms. This meant it could only be accessed as part of our Full Building Tours (£5 fee payable, but Fellows and Members of the College who could show us their letters went free!)

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