Future Students & Residents | Academic Programs

Curriculum

First-year courses encompass a broad range of material including human anatomy, neuroanatomy, community health, geometric optics, ocular anatomy, physiology, pathology, primary-care optometry, and ophthalmic optics. All midterm exams occur in three separate exam weeks. Quizzes and homework assignments occur throughout the semester.

Fall Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO5111 Optics I Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5133 Advanced Human Anatomy Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5134 Neuroanatomy Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5171 Clinic Practicum I 1 0 3
OPTO5233 Advanced Human Anatomy 2 2 0
OPTO5271 Optometry I 2 2 0
OPTO5314 Optics 3 3 0
OPTO5320 Vision Science I 3 3 0
OPTO5334 Human Neuroanatomy and Physiology 3 3 0
OPTO5344 Advanced Human Physiology and Molecular Biology 3 3 0
Totals 20 16 12
Spring Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO5112 Optics II Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5135 Ocular Anatomy Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5172 Clinic Practicum II 1 0 3
OPTO5194 Opthalmic Optics Lab 1 0 3
OPTO5221 Vision Science II 2 2 0
OPTO5272 Optometry II 2 2 0
OPTO5282 Community Health Optometry 2 2 0
OPTO5315 Optics II 3 3 0
OPTO5331 General Pathology and Medicine 3 3 0
OPTO5335 Ocular Anatomy and Physiology 3 3 0
Totals 19 15 12

Laboratories and lectures during the second year build upon previous knowledge and introduce new topics such as general and ocular pharmacology, anterior ocular diseases, sensory and motor aspects of vision, epidemiology, advanced diagnostic techniques, contact lenses, pediatrics, clinical skills and primary-care optometry.

Fall Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO6132 Medical Laboratory Procedures 1 0 3
OPTO6163 Primary Optometry Lab 1 0 3
OPTO6173 Clinic Practicum III 1 0 3
OPTO6190 Opthalmic Optics Lab 1 0 3
OPTO6219 Vision Science III 2 2 0
OPTO6234 Ocular Pathology I 2 2 0
OPTO6311 Optics III 3 3 0
OPTO6363 Primary Optometry 3 3 0
OPTO6434 General Pharmacology 4 4 0
Totals 18 14 12

Additionally, second-year students prepare for their competency examinations during the fall semester. All students are required to demonstrate clinical techniques prior to their clinical rotations in the spring semester. After passing the competency examinations, a White Coat Ceremony is held. Students are given a lab coat with the College of Optometry's emblem to signify their move into direct patient care.

Spring Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO6151 Pediatric Optometry I Lab 1 0 3
OPTO6174 Contact Lens Lab 1 0 3
OPTO6224 Perception 2 2 0
OPTO6291 General Clinic II 2 1 8
OPTO6312 Optics IV 3 3 0
OPTO6333 Ocular Pharmacology & Therapeutics 3 3 0
OPTO6335 Ocular Pathology II 3 3 0
OPTO6351 Pediatric Optometry I 3 3 0
OPTO6374 Contact Lens I 3 3 0
Totals 21 18 14

Following the second-year studies, students participate in an intensive, seven-week summer clinical rotation. This experience builds confidence and skills in the application of clinical techniques, which are necessary for success in the third year.

Third-year clinical practice focuses on specialty contact lenses, the assessment and management of vision problems in children, geriatric vision and ocular disease. Lectures and laboratory courses cover advanced topics in pediatric optometry, glaucoma, contact lenses, rehabilitative optometry, retinal and neurological disease, ophthalmic lasers, refractive surgery, environmental optometry, primary care optometry and practice management.

Summer Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO7493 General Clinic IIIA 4 2 18
OPTO7150 Developmental Optometry 1 1 0
  *Electives 2 0 0
Totals 7 3 18
Fall Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO7152 Pediatric Optometry II Lab 1 0 3
OPTO7131 Clinical Medicine 1 1 0
OPTO7230 Glaucoma 2 2 0
OPTO7252 Pediatric Optometry II 2 2 0
OPTO7361 Geriatric Optometry 3 3 0
OPTO7336 Ocular Pathology III 3 3 0
OPTO7375 Contact Lens II 3 3 0
OPTO7494 General Clinic IIIB 4 0 16
  *Electives 1 0 0
Totals 20 14 19
Spring Semester Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO7120 OPT III Rounds/ Case Discussion 1 1 0
OPTO7130 Ophthalmic Lasers, Refractive Surgery,
& Surgical Techniques Lab
1 0 2
OPTO7162 Vision Rehabilitative Lab 1 0 2
OPTO7253 Pediatric Optometry III 2 2 0
OPTO7262 Rehabilitative Optometry 2 2 0
OPTO7330 Ophthalmic Lasers, Refractive Surgery & Surgical Techniques 3 3 0
OPTO7337 Ocular Pathology IV 3 3 0
OPTO7383 Practice Management I 3 3 0
OPTO7495 General Clinci IIIC 4 0 16
  *Electives 1 0 0
Totals 21 14 20

Fourth-year study begins as soon as the third academic year is completed and is comprised of three semesters: Summer, Fall and Spring. Two terms are devoted to external clinical rotations and one is spent at UHCO in advanced seminars and clinical practice.

(Summer, Fall, Spring)

Rotation A - Externships I - Primary Care

Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO8990 Community Health Clinics 9 0 20
OPTO8991 Community Health Clinics 9 0 20
Totals 18 0 40
(Summer, Fall, Spring)

Rotation B - Externships II - Medical Care

Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO8992 Community Health Clinics 9 0 20
OPTO8993 Community Health Clinics 9 0 20
Totals 18 0 40
(Summer, Fall, Spring)

Rotation C - Specialty Clinic / Didactic Semester

Hours
Number Description Credits Lecture Lab
OPTO8338 Rounds and Recent Developments 3 3 0
OPTO8384 Practice Management II 3 3 0
OPTO8696 General Clinic IV 6 0 20
  *Elective 3 0 0
Totals 15 6 0

Fourth-year externships provide experience working in multidisciplinary health-care settings, increase the number and diversity of patient care experiences, and broaden awareness of the many factors affecting health-care delivery in our society. Externship sites are located not only in Houston, but throughout the U.S. and the world.

Advanced seminars during the fourth-year campus term cover topics such as practice management and administration, primary-care diagnosis and treatement, new developments in optometry, and clinical rounds. Students spend their clinic time in specialty clinics: pediatrics, medical eye care, specialty contact lenses, vision rehabilitation and advanced primary-care practice.