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2022 Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services Degree Guide

A major in Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services provides you with the education to assist Optometrists in providing clear vision for their patients.

Students in this field learn everything about the eyes so they can improve patients' vision or diagnose and treat and eye diseases. You will take classes in chemistry, biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology, and optics and visual science to learn how to perform eye exams, eye surgeries, and teach patients how to perform vision rehabilitation.

Some of the concentrations available in this major are Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician, Optometric Technician, Ophthalmic Technology, and Orthoptics.

Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services Degrees Decreasing

#274 Most Popular Major
446 Degrees Awarded
-13.0% Increase in Graduates

In 2019-2020, ophthalmic and optometric support services was the 274th most popular major nationwide with 446 degrees awarded. This represents a 13.0% reduction in optometric support degrees awarded over the prior year's total of 504.

The United States has 51 different schools where you can get a degree in ophthalmic and optometric support services. This year's Best Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services Schools ranking compares 39 of them to identify the best overall programs in the country. Continue reading to check out one of our many unbiased rankings of optometric support programs later in this article.

Requirements for Getting a Degree in Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services

Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services professionals work closely with patients, making strong communication and interpersonal skills a must. You should be able to make your patients feel comfortable in your office and trust your skills. Decision-making and critical thinking skills are also important because they will help you diagnose vision issues and decide on the best form of treatment.

Graduates with a degree in Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services often go into full time jobs in the field. They usually work in optometrists' offices and hold normal work hours, although some people decide to work evenings or weekends to accommodate their patients' schedule.

Depending on the type of job you would like to pursue in this field, you may need an advanced degree. In order to work as an optometrist you must earn a Doctor of Optometry degree, while other professions only require an associate's. Internships and summer jobs within Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services will allow you to learn more about the different career options and the necessary requirements for each.

Optometric Support Degree Program Entry Requirements

ophthalmic and optometric support services degree applicants generally need have finished high school or their GED. Many schools may also have GPA and SAT/ACT score minimums that must be met. In addition to these basic ophthalmic and optometric support services program qualifications, to serve in some optometric support careers, special certification may be required outside of your degree.

Types of Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services Degrees

There are various different levels of optometric support degrees. Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services programs offered by schools range from a to a , which is the highest optometric support degree you can get. How long it takes to complete some common optometric support degree levels is shown below.

Degree Credit Requirements Typical Program Length
Associate Degree 60-70 credits 2 years
Bachelor’s Degree 120 credits 4 years
Master’s Degree 50-70 credits 1-3 years
Doctorate Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation At least 4 years

An associate degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to optometric support, with approximately 27.7% of workers getting one. People currently working in careers related to optometric support tend obtained the following education levels.

Level of Education Percentage of Workers
High School Diploma 32.2%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 28.2%
Post-Secondary Certificate 28.2%
Some College Courses 6.0%
Less than a High School Diploma 2.0%

See the chart below for the most common degree level workers in ophthalmic and optometric support services have received.


The education level required is different depending on the optometric support career you are seeking.

Career Opportunities for A Degree In Optometric Support Graduate

Average Number of Jobs
$30.6k Average Starting Salary
17% Growth Job Outlook 2016-26

Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services graduates typically perform various tasks within an optometrist's office depending on the area of specialization you decide to major in. Other people pursue positions in physicians' offices, other medical centers, or decide to open their own practice.

High Growth Projected for Optometric Support Careers

Want a job when you graduate with your optometric support degree? Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services careers are expected to grow 16.7% between 2016 and 2026.

The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to ophthalmic and optometric support services.

Occupation Name Projected Jobs Expected Growth
Dispensing Opticians 89,300 15.1%
Ophthalmic Medical Technicians 53,200 19.6%

How Much Money Do Optometric Support Grads Make?

Recently graduated ophthalmic and optometric support services students earned an average of $30,617 in 2017-2018. Earnings can range from as low as $23,100 to as high as $41,800. As you might expect, salaries for optometric support graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.


High Paying Careers for Optometric Support Majors

Salaries for ophthalmic and optometric support services graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers optometric support grads often go into.

Occupation Name Median Average Salary
Dispensing Opticians $39,930
Ophthalmic Medical Technicians $38,220

Getting Your Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services Degree

With over 52 different optometric support degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased optometric support school rankings to help you with this.

Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services is one of 30 different types of Health Professions programs to choose from.

Optometric Support Concentrations

Major Annual Graduates
Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician 286
Ophthalmic Technician/Technologist 86
Optometric Technician/Assistant 63
Other Ophthalmic and Optometric Support Services and Allied Professions 11

View All Optometric Support Concentrations >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Nursing 305,208
Allied Health Professions 49,265
Health & Medical Administrative Services 48,523
Public Health 35,375
Rehabilitation & Therapeutic Professions 28,237

View All Optometric Support Related Majors >


More about our data sources and methodologies.

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