Why Major in Optometry?

The curriculum at the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University is designed to produce doctors of optometry who are qualified to practice full-scope optometric care in any state and practice setting. The optometry degree curriculum includes clinical training in optometry and practice under the supervision of college faculty.

The college of Optometry, which meets the standards of the Association of Schools and College 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 optometry degree and clinical lab facilities also are used to maximize clinical education.

Examples of the College's off-campus clinical affiliations in optometry include Veterans Administration hospitals, military medical facilities, optometric referral centers and prison health care facilities.

College Optometry Graduates Get Great Jobs

The Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University was established in 1975 and remains the only institution in Michigan (one of only 17 nationally) to offer an optometry degree 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 optometry patients.

The optometry degree program encompasses the prevention and remediation of disorders of the eyes and visual systems through the optometry examination, optometry diagnosis, eye care 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 optometry profession offers many career options and great freedom in choosing a location to live and practice. Career options for graduates of the Michigan optometry degree program include private practice, group practice or institutional practice in hospitals, health centers, health maintenance organizations or corporate offices.

Advance Your Career with an Optometry Degree

Earn an Optometry degree at Ferris State an enjoy many career options that can include residency training and further optometry specialization. Graduates of the optometry degree program report a high level of satisfaction with the career choice, income and lifestyle. An optometry degree and doctorate degree optometry leads to a rewarding career in the optometry profession, rated as the number two career in the "excellent" category by the U.S. News & World Report website.

Regardless of the type of practice, optometry is counted as one of the top ten income-earning professions in the country. In 2004, the average net income for all optometrists was $136,898. The income of private practice ODs with a doctorate degree in optometry was slightly higher than average, at $148,923. For 2004, the employed corporate annual income was down to $85,000 and the independent contractor (corporate optometrist) was $106,083. In addition to the monetary rewards, and optometry degree leads to a career in a very satisfying profession since, by treating a patient's vision problems, one can improve the quality of the patient's life. Earn an optometry degree and doctorate degree in Optometry at Ferris State. The profession of optometry provides substantial financial security as the demand for quality eye care in America will only continue to grow as the population ages.

Optometry Degree - Doctorate Degree in Optometry
Admission Requirements

Applicants to the Michigan College of Optometry (MCO) optometry degree program 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 for the optometry degree program may be submitted while the minimum requirements are being completed. The baccalaureate degree is preferred for doctorate degree optometry applicants entering the Michigan College of Optometry - MCO.

Pre-professional college optometry 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 optometry degree 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 college courses are recommended but not required: business management or accounting, genetics, physiology, anatomy, embryology/developmental biology, and biochemistry.

All optometry degree 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. Optometry degree applications are received beginning August 15 and doctorate degree optometry applications must be completed by February 1.

College Degree Optometry Graduation Requirements

The Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University grants the doctor of optometry degree. Graduation requirements for the optometry degree program include completion of all courses outlined in the optometry curriculum, a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 and recommendations for the optometry degree by the dean and by the faculty based on academic performance and ethical and professional standards.

If you would like more information on Optometry Degrees & Optometry Doctorate Degree Programs at Ferris State University call (231) 591-2000.

  • About Ferris State University: College optometry classes including our Doctor of Optometry Degree Program, are taught at all levels by professional teachers, not graduate assistants. College students in Optometry at Ferris State University, including our Optometry Doctorate Degree students, study in more than 170 different college educational programs which include many doctorate degrees in optometry, masters degrees, bachelor's degrees and associate degree programs.

    More than 180 educational programs - including doctorates, master's, bachelor's and associate degrees - are offered through the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Education and Human Services, Engineering Technology, Health Professions, Optometry, Pharmacy, and Kendall College of Art and Design.

    Ferris State University offers a wide variety of scholarships and financial aid. A majority of our students receive financial aid assistance. We encourage you to explore this website for more information on available scholarships and financial aid opportunities at Ferris State University. Ferris State provides all enrolled students access to a variety of academic skill-building opportunities that will assist them in their pursuit of academic excellence in a format that accommodates various learning preferences and schedules. At FSU students experience small classes with individual attention in 170 career-oriented majors leading to job placement for our graduates. FSU students also enjoy 220 student organizations for fun in a relaxed, hometown setting in the heart of Michigan's recreation area.

    The group presentation, by one of our admissions recruiters, includes information on academic offerings, scholarships, housing, student life, and costs. A question and answer period follows the presentation and includes a few surprises! Lunch is provided at one of our well known dining facilities on campus. After lunch, guests may take part in a walking tour of campus led by one of our exceptional student guides. The walking tour takes approximately 1 hour.

    If you would like more information on Optometry Degree or would like to talk with or visit our campus in Big Rapids, Michigan contact us.

    To Learn More About Ferris State University click here for the Mission Statement.