May 22, 2024  
2015-2016 Course Catalog 
2015-2016 Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Optometric/Ophthalmic Technician Diploma

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs Available 2015-2016

An optometric/ophthalmic technician works in eye care to provide quality vision care services to patients. Technicians conduct unique eye-testing procedures and implement special patient instruction. Technicians may work in optometry practices; ophthalmology practices or medical clinics; optical dispensaries; optical laboratories; medical and optical equipment businesses; lens, frame or contact lens companies; pharmaceutical companies; research laboratories or in academia.

This program is designed to prepare students with the skills necessary to assist practitioners of optometry, ophthalmology and opticianry to provide a full scope of vision care and prepare them to pass national certification exams.

For more information about the Optometric/Ophthalmic Technician program, please visit our website at

Location: Ankeny

Students start Fall semester.

Program Entry Requirements

  1. Complete an application for admission.
  2. Attend any required information/registration session.
  3. Satisfy the required assessment by taking the reading and English COMPASS test or equivalent.
  4. Obtain a minimum ALEKS Math placement score of 30 or ACT Math score of 14.
  5. Obtain a score of at least 35 NWPM with 5 errors or fewer on the typing/word processing skill test.
  6. Completion of one year of high school biology with a “C” or better is strongly recommended.

Graduation Requirements

To earn an Optometric/Ophthalmic Technician diploma, a student must complete all coursework as prescribed and maintain a 2.0 grade point average. A grade of “C” or better is required in all OPT courses.

This program is designed to start in the Fall semester. Students who desire to start in other semesters may be accepted, but may not graduate in three semesters due to the sequencing of the coursework. If starting other than Fall, please contact the Optometric/Ophthalmic Technician program chairperson.

Semester 1

Semester 2

Semester 3

Total Credits Required to Complete this Diploma - 39

Fixed Costs

Tuition……………………………………………………………………………………..$143.00 per credit

The costs for each program are estimates and subject to change.

Varied Costs

  Semester 1 Semester 2 Semester 3
Books (approximate) 400 200  
Supplies   65   25  
Clinic Coat and Name Tag     60  
Certification Test Fee     215
Physical Exam (approximate)     80  
Background check immunization tracker     60  
Hepatitis B Immunization Required (may be covered by your insurance) 105    
Materials Fee 100 125  

Approximate total for the program: $7,012*

* Program entry requirements are not included in the total approximate cost.

What Kind of Work Will You Do?

• Apply technical skills to perform eye care prescreening and specialty testing procedures on patients, accurately and efficiently.
• Apply technical skills to educate and assist patients with glasses and/or contact lenses to meet their eye health and visual needs.
• Perform business office procedures, such as maintaining appointment schedule, maintaining patient records, insurance
   reimbursement and billing patients.
• Demonstrate professional ethics, honesty and respect when dealing with doctors, patients and coworkers.

What Skills and Abilities Will You Need?

• Perform activities in an organized and detailed manner.
• Apply knowledge from the biological and social sciences.
• Must have necessary physical and emotional stamina to meet demands of a rigorous schedule.
• Must have self-discipline and ability to take initiative in resolving patient care problems.
• Must be able to communicate clearly and professionally in both written and oral formats.
• Demonstrate proper use and care for instruments.
• Work effectively as a part of a team

What Else Should I Consider about this Program or Career Choice?

• General education and Optometric/Ophthalmic Technician classes are scheduled on the College campus. Correlated clinical
experiences take place in doctors’ offices in the surrounding area.
• You will be required to communicate easily and clearly with patients and coworkers.
• You must accept responsibility for your actions.
• You will stand and walk most of the day.
• Working under pressure requires good physical health and emotional stability.
• Average starting salary $26,000.

Nondiscrimination Policy

Des Moines Area Community College shall not engage in or allow discrimination covered by law. This includes harassment based on race, color, national origin, creed, religion, sex (including pregnancy and marital status), sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability and genetic information. Veteran status in educational programs, activities, employment practices, or admission procedures is also included to the extent covered by law. Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against may file a complaint through the College Discrimination Complaint Procedure. Complaint forms may be obtained from the Campus Provost’s office, the Academic Deans’ office, the Judicial Officer, or the EEO/AA Officer, Human Resources. For information about the ADA, the Section 504/ADA Coordinator can be contacted at 515-964-6857. For Title IX questions and concerns contact 515-964-6850.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs Available 2015-2016