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Close-up of optometrist holding messbrille in ophthalmology clinic

Study optometry at Manchester

Study in our modern £4 million optometry facilities at the institution with the longest tradition of teaching optometry in the UK.

Undergraduate optometry

Learn at the cutting edge of optometry. We continually update our courses in line with the constantly evolving role of the optometrist. Start to examine patients from Year 1 and benefit from our strong links with neighbouring Manchester Royal Eye Hospital, one of the most prestigious eye teaching hospitals in Europe.

Employability and careers

Get ready for a successful career as a clinical optometrist, or set the wheels in motion for an alternative career in the optical industry or as a researcher.

“I always saw myself working solely in a community practice, but during my pre-reg year I found myself really enjoying the hospital side. It gave me the motivation to say this is what I really want to do with my career.”

Patrick Gunn / BSc Optometry


Master's integration

Our four-year undergraduate MSci course option is recognised by the General Optical Council as a fully-registerable qualification where successful students do not need to undertake the pre-registration year. This allows students to graduate with a Master in Science degree and be fully qualified to practice after four years.

You’ll spend your fourth year doing two five-month placements in a hospital and/or a leading independent practice, before taking qualifying examinations to gain full registration with the General Optical Council. You’ll also complete a research project on a subject of your choice.

"The heavy emphasis on hospital and independent practice experience was really attractive. Not only do you get to work alongside very experienced optometrists, the supervisors of each of the placements are also leaders in the profession and I thought it would be a privilege to train under them."

Joseph Ong / MSci Optometry

Personal and professional development

Throughout the course, you’ll attend small-group sessions to help you develop transferable skills to support your learning. You'll become familiar with the profession of optometry in the UK and abroad, enabling you to become a well-developed practitioner of the future.



Research strengths

You’ll be taught by research and clinical leaders in optometry. Our internationally recognised research focuses on optics and refraction, the cornea, tear film, low vision, and visual psychophysics. It includes Eurolens Research, a world-renowned facility that undertakes research for the optical industry.

Cutting-edge facilities

You will learn in purpose-built facilities that include a dispensary, bespoke optometric examination rooms, numerous dedicated specialist clinic rooms and dedicated laboratories for non-clinical practical sessions.


Clinical and practical experience

You’ll begin to apply your knowledge with patient interaction from your very first year. The amount of time dedicated to clinical practice will then increase as you progress through the course.


Year 1

  • 30% of time in a practical/clinical environment.
  • Learn the basics of anatomy, geometric and physical optics and visual perception.
  • Learn the basics of clinical subjects such as optometric examination and dispensing.
  • Practise with patients from Semester 2 of your first year.
  • Personal and professional development: ready to study.

Year 2

  • 50% of time in a practical/clinical environment.
  • Hone your skills in ocular examination and dispensing and learn about visual optics, psychophysics, vision in the real world and ocular health.
  • Increase your clinical knowledge with subjects such as contact lenses, pharmacology, binocular vision, and instrumentation, vision in the real world and ocular disease.
  • Do a one-week placement at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital.
  • Personal and professional development: ready to interview.

Year 3

  • 70% of time in a practical/clinical environment.
  • See patients at regular specialist clinics at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital.
  • Continue to build your knowledge in contact lenses, ocular disease, binocular vision, pharmacology, low vision and the latest developments in the profession.
  • Become an optometrist who uses the latest scientific evidence when treating their patients.
  • Personal and professional development: ready to practice.

Year 4 (MSci only)

  • 100% of time in a practical/clinical environment.
  • Complete two five-month placements in a hospital and/or a leading independent practice.
  • Complete a research project while on clinical placement, and present case records to show the full range of your skills.
  • Complete the only fully registerable degree in the UK.
  • Personal and professional development: ready to qualify.


Suman Kashif / BSc Optometry

"I love the hands-on clinical experience. The support from the clinic leads and supervisors always makes me feel like I am in the right hands. You also get the opportunity to see patients so early on at Manchester."

Suman Kashif / BSc Optometry

Apply for optometry

If you’re ready to apply to a optometry degree at Manchester, here’s what you need to know.


Contact us

Course enquiries

tel: +44 (0)161 529 4563



General undergraduate enquiries

tel: +44 (0)161 275 2077