Why Choose Optometry?
The ever-changing curriculum at Ferris State is designed to produce doctors of optometry who are qualified to practice full-scope optometric care in any state and practice setting. The curriculum includes clinical training and practice under the supervision of college faculty.
The college, which meets the standards of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry and is accredited by the Council on Optometric Education and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, operates in modern, up-to-date classrooms and labs, including an on-campus clinic. Off-campus facilities also are used to maximize clinical education.
Examples of the College's off-campus clinical affiliations include Veterans Administration hospitals, military medical facilities, optometric referral centers and prison health care facilities.
Great Career Options
The Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State was established in 1975 and remains the only institution in Michigan (one of only 17 nationally) to offer an optometry program. The profession is one of the top 5 income-earning professions in the country and is dedicated to maximizing the visual efficiency and quality of life of patients. It encompasses the prevention and remediation of disorders of the eyes and visual systems through the examination, diagnosis, treatment and management of visual problems and eye diseases.
Doctors of Optometry are primary health care providers who enjoy favorable working conditions, regular hours and a minimum of emergency calls. The profession offers many career options and great freedom in choosing a location to live and practice. Career options include private practice, group practice or institutional practice in hospitals, health centers, health maintenance organizations or corporate offices. Career options may also include residency training and further specialization. Graduates of the program report a high level of satisfaction with the career choice, income and lifestyle. Optometry is rated as the number two career in the "excellent" category by the U.S. News & World Report website.
Applicants to the Michigan College of Optometry must complete a minimum of three years (90 semester hours or 135 quarter term hours) of college or university education or have earned a baccalaureate degree prior to admission. An application may be submitted while the minimum requirements are being completed. (Note that baccalaureate degrees will be preferred for applicants entering MCO in 2007 and later).
Pre-professional college/university courses must include the following: general biology (one year with lab); inorganic chemistry (one year with lab); organic chemistry (one year with lab); general physics (one year with lab); microbiology (one course with lab); calculus (one course); statistics (one course); speech (one course); general psychology (one course).
Additional required courses for individuals entering without a baccalaureate degree include: English/composition (one year); humanities, 9 semester hours and behavioral science, 9 semester hours including the general psychology course above.
The following courses are recommended but not required: business management or accounting, genetics, physiology, anatomy, embryology/developmental biology, and biochemistry.
All applicants to the Michigan College of Optometry are required to sit for the Optometry Admissions Test (OAT), which is designed to measure general academic ability and scientific knowledge. Applications are received beginning September 1 and files must be completed by February 1.
The Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University grants the doctor of optometry degree. Graduation requirements for the optometry degree include completion of all courses outlined in the optometry curriculum, a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 and recommendations for the degree by the dean and by the faculty based on academic performance and ethical and professional standards.
Ferris State University
Michigan College of Optometry
1310 Cramer Circle
Big Rapids, MI 49307-2738