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What will I learn?

The Doctor of Optometry (OD) at the University of Melbourne is a master’s-level professional entry degree. The OD program is the first of its kind in the southern hemisphere, creating a new benchmark in optometric education. It is an internationally recognised qualification with full accreditation from the Optometry Council of Australia and New Zealand (OCANZ).

The OD degree is a four-year full-time program consisting of a combination of on-campus teaching and clinical placements. Clinical studies commence in first year and gradually increase to full-time in the final year. The course covers the basic and applied optical, visual, and biomedical sciences that underpin optometry.

A research project, with clinical relevance, is conducted as a required component of the degree. Students will also be given the opportunity to undertake clinical training at metropolitan, rural and overseas sites as part of their final year of study.

Course description

The Doctor of Optometry is the pathway to an exciting and rewarding career in optometry. Specific graduate attributes have been carefully defined, developed and mapped to every component of the course. Graduates of the program will achieve:

  • Understanding of the normal human visual system and its physical, chemical and biological foundations
  • Expertise to quantitatively describe light and its passage through optical systems (including ophthalmic instruments, ophthalmic lenses and the eye), the design of optical systems to meet required specifications, and quantitatively assess the nature and quality of optical images
  • Advanced knowledge of the mechanisms and associated manifestations of ocular and visual system disease. This includes expert competency in clinical ocular examination using current best-practice methods, enabling them to fully assess and manage the health and visual performance of their patient
  • Ability to construct appropriate differential diagnoses and to acquire additional information to arrive at correct definitive diagnoses. and expert knowledge of current best practice management strategies for the safe and effective use of ocular therapeutic drugs
  • The skills and knowledge required to manage the establishment, planning, promotion, finances, operations and workforce of an optometric practice
  • A strongly developed sense of professional and ethical responsibility for patients, colleagues and the community generally, and be aware of the moral and legal responsibilities of professional practice
  • Knowledge of ethical research principles and methods applicable to optometry and the vision sciences
  • Ability to achieve a leadership role in the advancement of optometry on a global stage, both in clinical and research spheres

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences



Study options

Full Time (4 years)

Tuition fees
A$53,088.00 (28,75,840) per year
Indicative total course fee: AUD $228,816
Start date

28 February 2022


The University of Melbourne

Parkville Campus,

Grattan Street,



3010, MELBOURNE, Australia

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants should have achieved an overall H2A (75-79%) grade in the relevant honours or masters degree to be eligible to apply. However, in recent years successful applications have required an H1 (80-100%) overall grade range. English language requirements: IELTS (academic English Only) - 7.0 overall, with written 7 and no band less than 6.0; TOEFL (paper-based test) - 600 + TWE 5.0; TOEFL (internet-based test) - 94 + (Writing 27; Speaking 18; Reading 13; Listening 13); Pearson Test of English (Academic) - 65 + written communicative skill of 65 and no other communicative skill below 50; Cambridge English: Advanced/ Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) - 185 + no less than 185 in Writing and 169 in each other skill.

For international students

In order to be considered for entry, applicants must have completed

An undergraduate degree in any discipline, with studies to have been completed within 10 years of commencing the Doctor of Optometry
For applicants whose most recently completed undergraduate degree was completed 10 or more years before January 1st of the year in which the applicant intends to commence the Doctor of Optometry, a Graduate Diploma, Master or PhD degree, or equivalent, completed within 10 years of commencing the Doctor of Optometry
Three subjects at level 2 or level 3 (or equivalent) from one or more relevant biological science disciplines with subjects to have been completed within 10 years of commencing the Doctor of Optometry.
One of either the GAMSAT (Graduate Australian Medical School Admissions Test), the MCAT (Medical College Admissions Test) or the OAT (Optometry Admission Test (USA)), no more than two years before the date of commencement of the Doctor of Optometry.

English language requirements:

IELTS (academic English Only): 6.5 (no band less than 6.0);
TOEFL (paper-based test): 577 +, TWE 4.5;
TOEFL (internet-based test): 79 + (Writing 21; Speaking 18; Reading 13; Listening 13);
Pearson Test of English (Academic): 58 +, no communicative skill below 50
Cambridge English: Advanced/ Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): 176 +, no skill below 169.

Applications will close on 30 September.

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.