The perfect career is one where the practitioner looks forward to going to the office on Monday morning. The ideal traits of an optometrist include compassion and caring for others and a logical and analytical mindset. Optometrists are considered eternal students since they must continue to study and learn new skill sets and techniques to maintain their level of competence throughout their professional careers.
High School students should plan on taking a full course load that includes English, Pure Math, Social Studies, Chemistry, Physics and Biology. Additional recommended courses include Communication Skills, Computing Science, Calculus and a second Language. The remainder of your course load should include those subjects that interest you and potentially introduce you to other disciplines such as Philosophy, Music, Business and Drama.
Most Canadian Universities require a minimum average (usually 80% to 85%) for entrance to their Faculty of Science. A university-based 3 or 4-year Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) is required for entry into Optometry School. For a complete list of required and recommended university courses for entry into Optometry School, go to www.opted.org. The list includes English, General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physics, Calculus, Linear Algebra, Statistics, Philosophy, Biology, Anatomy, Physiology, Microbiology and Psychology. Additional courses such as Genetics, Histology, Pharmacology, Computing Science and Communications are highly recommended.
The same website (www.opted.org) also has information regarding required entrance marks, male-to-female ratio’s, program costs and other required pre-requisites for each individual institution. All institutions rate applicants on their University Grade Point Average, their Optometry Admissions Test (OAT) score, personal interviews, letters of reference and extra-curricular activities through High School and University.