Students interested in a career in optometry need to build a strong foundation in the sciences, as well as skills and abilities in a number of other areas as undergraduate students. You should plan your college education with the goal of building a diverse set of skills, and select a major that challenges and interests you.
Preoptometry students may select any major that interests them to combine with the courses required for admission to optometry school. Preoptometry students should select a major that interests them, allows them to build strong intellectual skills, and one that could provide opportunities for graduate work or employment if they choose not to pursue a career in optometry.
Although they can choose any major, preoptometry students must complete certain required courses in biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, and microbiology, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences. Some optometry schools also require psychology, English, biochemistry, and mathematics courses for admission. In addition, preoptometry students need to develop strong reasoning, analytical, and communication skills. Coursework in the humanities and social sciences can help you build skills in these latter areas.
The course requirements for admission to optometry programs vary from school to school. Below is a link to a plan of study for IU Bloomington students who plan to apply for admission to the Indiana University School of Optometry. We recommend that students who are Indiana residents follow this plan of preparation, and then consider including additional coursework that would help them meet the admission requirements for other optometry schools. Students should also consult the prerequisite chart provided by the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry or the school's individual websites on the requirements for each optometry school.
Please consult the following document on planning for admission to optometry school: Preoptometry Program for IU Bloomington Students.
Please also consult the Indiana University School of Optometry for further information on their programs.
The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry also provides a great deal of useful information for students considering a career in optometry.
Advising appointments at the Health Professions and Prelaw Center are focused on helping students prepare for admission to professional school. You should periodically meet with your assigned advisor (either a University Division advisor or an advisor in the academic department that offers your major) to plan your schedule and discuss how to best work admission prerequisites into your undergraduate degree plan. Your assigned advisor has expertise on the curricular requirements for your degree and is the best person for you to consult on most questions regarding your class schedule to make sure you are making good academic progress.