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Why Choose Pre-Optometry?
The Pre-Optometry program stresses a foundation of chemistry, biology, physics and mathematics to meet the requirements of the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University and most other optometry schools. In addition to completing coursework, students can serve as practice patients in the University's optometry clinic and can join the Pre-Optometry Club, a supportive network of students with common goals and interests. Superior academic preparation and awareness of optometry as a profession are very important factors in a candidate's preparation.
The Michigan College of Optometry (MCO) prefers to accept applicants who have completed a bachelor degree. However, MCO will continue to accept applications from candidates who have completed a minimum of three years (90 semester hours) of specified course work at a college or university. The listing of courses presented in this program sheet fulfills the minimum specified course work to be contained in the initial 90 credits as well as the additional course work necessary to complete the Bachelor's Degree in Biology. An application to the Michigan College of Optometry may be submitted while the minimum requirements are being completed. The Michigan College of Optometry website at www.Ferris.edu/mco will provide additional information on application issues.
The coursework also prepares students to take the Optometry Admission Test. This test should be initially taken in early summer of the year prior to the year of entry to MCO. This test may be retaken without penalty ninety days after the initial test.
Pursuing a career in optometry can be demanding, but graduates find the career both financially and personally rewarding. Students who are interested in becoming optometrists and who are enrolled in the Pre-Optometry program are assured of programming that meets the specific requirements of the Michigan College of Optometry.
Students have the opportunity to interact with fellow students and faculty of the Michigan College of Optometry and to explore the program and facilities firsthand.
Generally, admission to a college of optometry requires at least three years of undergraduate preparation. The doctor of optometry degree offered by Ferris requires a minimum of three years of pre-professional study followed by four years of study in the Optometry curriculum.
First year student admission is open to high school graduates (or equivalent) who demonstrate academic preparedness, maturity and seriousness of purpose with educational backgrounds appropriate to their chosen program of study. High school courses and grade point average, ACT composite score, and ACT reading and mathematics subscores will be considered in the admission and placement process. Transfer students must have at least 12 credits at the time of application with a minimum 2.0 overall GPA including an English and mathematics course, or they must provide their high school records and ACT scores for admission review.
General Education Requirements
All general University General Education requirements can be found here: http://www.ferris.edu/htmls/academics/gened/courses/GenEd-bachelor.pdf
Please consult this link for a complete listing of General Education Electives: https://wwws.ferris.edu/academics/gened/courses/
The Pre-Optometry program at Ferris leads to a Bachelor of Science degree. Graduation requires a minimum 2.0 GPA overall and a minimum of 121 credits including completion of all general education requirements as outlined on the General Education website. No grade lower than a 'C-' is acceptable in courses that apply to the major, supporting sciences, and application area of the program. At least 50% of the semester credits applying toward the Biology major must be completed at FSU with a minimum of 30 FSU credits overall. Students may earn only one B.S. degree in Biology from Ferris State University.
LEAD ADVISOR: Dr. Chris Westerkamp
PROFESSIONAL ADVISOR: Kim Ducat
PROFESSIONAL ADVISOR: Jenice Winowiecki
Department of Biological Sciences
Ferris State University
820 Campus Drive/ASC 2004
Big Rapids, MI 49307
Pre-Optometry BS, Biology - Minimum 121 Credits
Biology Electives - 6 Credits
300 or higher (consult advisor)
Choose from Biology Elective list below.
In addition to *MATH 251, choose at least one from the Application Area list below.
Additional Credits in BIOL courses may also be used.
Note: MCO will accept either STQM 260 or PSYC 210 as a substitute for MATH 251. However, MATH 251 applies toward the BS in Biology.
Note: the Optometry Admission Test (OAT) is required for admission to MCO. Students should consider taking the OAT in early summer of the year prior to the year of entry into MCO. This test may be taken as often as desired without penalty imposed by MCO, however the OAT imposes mandatory wait periods between test dates. More information can be found at www.opted.org.