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Prepare for a career in optometry

We'll help you choose courses and experiences that optometry schools look for.

Pre-Optometry Path

Students of several different majors have applied to become an optometrist in the past and we help to make sure that you are prepared to apply to optometry school.


If you are a biomedical sciences major you will be all set for applying to these schools. If not, here are typical classes needed as prerequisites for optometry programs:

  • General Biology (BIO101, 4 credits with lab)
  • General Chemistry I & II (CHE111 & CHE112, 8 credits with lab)
  • Organic Chemistry I & II (CHE241 & CHE 242, 8 credits with lab)
  • Physics for Life Sciences I (PHY103 & PHY104, 8 credits with lab)
  • Statistics (MAT161, 3 credits) or Biostatistics (BIO333, 3 credits)
  • Calculus I (MAT221, 3 credits)
  • General Psychology (PSY101, 3 credits)

Also, you will need a good score on the Optometry Admission Test (OAT)

The Honors Program at SUNY Plattsburgh is important way to show academic excellence.

Healthcare Experience

Schools will often expect you to have experience shadowing or working with an optometrist. We can offer you and excellent opportunity to get these hours through our affiliation with Eye Care for the Adirondacks, a rehabilitation facility.

Applying to Optometry School

Application to optometry schools is through the OptomCAS system. Most program deadlines are in the fall for the following year. The OptomCAS system will process your application and then submit it to the schools you select. Submit your OptomCAS application and arrange for materials to arrive at OptomCAS by the program’s deadline. Many schools have rolling admissions, which means they accept qualified candidates as their applications become complete, including OAT scores.


We have a 3 + 4 articulation agreement with the SUNY Optometry program to help you become an optometrist faster and save one year of tuition. In this program you will apply near the end of your sophomore year. If accepted, you will start at SUNY Optometry after your junior year. After your first year there, credits will transfer back to SUNY Plattsburgh to complete your bachelor’s degree.

SUNY College of Optometry, O.D. 3 + 4 Program

Alumni Profile

Patrick Boyea, Class of ’19

  • Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University

“SUNY Plattsburgh’s biomedical sciences degree gave me the opportunity to fulfill all of the prerequisite requirements I needed when I applied to optometry school. With the knowledge and experience I gained from the biology and chemistry department at SUNY Plattsburgh, I was able to go into my new profession with the base of knowledge and confidence I needed to succeed.

“You are really able to get to know your professors which goes a long way in your education and experience at SUNY Plattsburgh. I want to thank all of my professors along the way for the enjoyable yet challenging environment that pushed me to continue an education in the health sciences field.”

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