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opticianry- Associate in Science title with an image of glasses and letters in the background
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Frequently Asked Questions


Q. What is an Optician?
A. An optician is a health care practitioner who works with clients requiring corrective lenses to improve a person’s vision.  The optician designs, fits and dispenses lenses while using various ophthalmic appliances that will give the necessary correction to a person's eyesight. 

Q. What are the application requirements?
A. To apply to the daytime full-time and part-time program, you must have completed or be enrolled in ENC 1101 - English Composition 1 and MAC 1105 - College Algebra at the time of application. However, the selection of students for the program is based on the number of required general education and natural science courses completed at the time of program selection. To apply for the part-time evening program, you must have completed the general education courses listed on the curriculum web page (  or have a Bachelors Degree from an accredited university.

Q. What are the admissions/selection criteria?
A. Because enrollment is limited in this program, admission/selection criteria is based on the number of required general education courses completed at the time of program selection with top priority given to students that have completed all of the required general education courses.  Additionally, GPA and Florida residency status are included into the selection process.

Q. Can I apply if I have not completed all of the general education courses?
A. You can apply to the program before completing these courses. However, selection will be based on the number of courses completed. You are encouraged to complete all of the non-program courses to increase your chances of acceptance into the program. 

Q. When does the program start and what is the application deadline?
A. The daytime full-time and part-time program starts in August of each year. The deadline is May 1st for August entry. The part-time evening program starts in January of each year. The deadline for the January entry is September 1st.

Q. How long is the part-time evening Associate in Science in Opticianry Program?
A. The program length is seven (7) semesters.

Q. What are the hours of the program?
A. The daytime full-time and part-time program classes are offered weekdays from approximately 8:00 – 3:00pm. The evening part-time program classes are offered weekdays from approximately 6:00 – 10:00pm.

Q. How many courses will I be taking?
A.  To earn the Associate Degree in Opticianry, 30 courses must be completed. (72 credits)

Q. Are weekends available?
A. Not at this time.

Q. Can I work while I am a student in the program?
A. Employment is not encouraged but you should be able to work about 15- 20 hours per week without jeopardizing your course grades. Students must earn at least a final grade of “C” or better to continue in the program.

Q. Can I mix day and evening courses?
A. That will depend on course availability and class size limitations.

Q. What if I fail a course?
A.  This is a cohort style program, and therefore you will have to wait until the course is offered again.

Q. How will I be taught?
A.  Face-to-face and online (Blackboard).  Web enhancements, Blended, and flipped classroom styles.

Q. Do you assist with job placement after graduation?
A. The Medical Campus provides assistance through the Career Center located in the New Student Center on the Medical Campus. Students can also visit the Vision Care Placement Opportunities  web site for current employment postings.

Q. Do I have the same instructors as during the day?
A. No.  However, you will have the same quality education because these instructors have previously taught in the day time program and are Licensed Opticians currently in the field.

Q. Do I need to take a test to work in this profession?
A. To work as an Optician, a license is required in the state of Florida. To be able to sit for licensure, the student must pass the credentialing examinations offered through the American Board of Opticianry and National Contact Lens Examiners.  Once the Associate in Science in Opticianry is completed you qualify to sit for the State of Florida Department of Health Board Opticianry Exam.

Q. Are the National and State exam fees included in the College tuition and fees?
A. No, Certification exams are not included in the college tuition and fees.
Q. How do I apply for the Opticianry (Vision Care) Program?
A. Visit the MDC Medical Campus and fill out a program application.

Q. What kind of degree will I be awarded when I graduate?
A. You will earn an Associate in Science degree in Opticianry in approximately two years.

Q. What is the approximate annual salary for graduates of this program in this area?
A. In the South Florida area, entry-level graduates may expect to earn an annual salary of $40,000 if employed full-time in an optical setting. Some establishments offer bonuses and commission for additional compensation.

All Medical Campus students must complete the FDLE Waiver and Statement form.This form is to authorize dissemination to Miami Dade College - Medical Campus of any national criminal history record that may pertain to you.

In addition, all program students must complete a "background check" through the identified MDC agent and cleared by the 1st day of class. Depending on your program of study an additional background check may be required. In addition, prior to entry into a clinical site, some clinical sites will require more frequent background checks and clearance.

Successful completion of the MDC level two background check process or completion of a MDC nursing/health sciences program does not guarantee a graduate's eligibility for participation in the professional credentialing process or for related employment. Credentialing agencies and health care employers may have additional eligibility criteria not required by an educational institution. Individuals who have been arrested or convicted of any felony crime during the last 15 years are strongly urged to inquire directly of the licensing board in the jurisdiction in which they intend to practice.

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