Accreditation Resources and Directories of Programs
ACOE offers many accreditation resources and guidelines to assist programs and for general information.
ACOE Policy and Procedure Manual for all programs
ACOE Policy and Procedure Manual (July 2021). The ACOE’s policies and procedures have been streamlined into one manual, which replaces previous versions of Accreditation Manuals specific to each type of program within the scope of the ACOE.
Accreditation standards for each type of program (professional optometric degree, optometric residency, and optometric technician) are stand-alone documents and are available under the program resources below.
- Professional Optometric Degree Programs lead to the doctor of optometry (O.D.) degree.
- Optometric Residency Programs are post-doctoral, educational programs centered on clinical training that results in the resident’s attainment of advanced competencies in eye, vision, and health care.
- Optometric Technician Programs are certificate or associate degree level programs in optometric technicianry.
Professional Optometric Degree Standards (effective July 1, 2017, updated July 2021) may be downloaded to serve as a framework for programs conducting self-studies. Use of these standards is mandatory for all programs being evaluated on or after July 1, 2017.
View the crosswalk comparison of the 2009 doctor of optometry standards and the updated 2017 doctor of optometry standards.
View the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) regarding 2017 OD Standard 1.4, approved by ACOE at its Feb. 9-11, 2018, meeting.
Directory of Accredited Optometric Degree Programs (optometry schools and colleges)
The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry publishes data and additional information regarding the schools and colleges of optometry
- Profile of Applicants for Fall 2021 Entering Class
- Profile of the Optometry 2021 Entering Class
- National Board of Examiners in Optometry Yearly Pass Rates
- Resources for Applicants and Advisors
Standards for initial pre-accreditation of new professional optometric degree programs
NEW standards for professional optometric degree programs seeking preliminary approval preaccreditation status (effective Jan. 1, 2019). These standards are for use by newly developing, professional optometric degree programs during the Stage Two Applicant Phase, as outlined in the ACOE Policy and Procedure Manual. Use of these standards is mandatory for all programs being evaluated on or after Jan. 1, 2019.
- How should we publish the graduation and attrition data on our website? The program is required to publish current and reliable data on its website. While there may be other ways to present the data, the following chart shows how this data could be presented:
- In addition to our standard 4-year program, we have a program in which students are expected to graduate in X number of years. How should we present this data? Data should be presented separately for each program offered by the College.
- For various reasons, students may complete graduation requirements in more than four years, but less than five years. How should we categorize these studetns? Students who complete graduation requirements in the same calendar year as the end of their fourth year may be included in the four-year graduation rate if the program states this when presenting their data. This is done in the sample chart provided above.
- How should we categorize a student who is on a leave of absence? Since the student has neither graduated nor left the pgoram, he or she can be categorized as in the sample chart.
Student achievement data for the schools and colleges of optometry
- Ferris State University Michigan College of Optometry
- Illinois College of Optometry
- Inter American University of Puerto Rico School of Optometry
- Indiana University School of Optometry
- MCPHS School of Optometry
- Midwestern University Arizona College of Optometry
- Midwestern University Chicago College of Optometry
- New England College of Optometry
- Northeastern State University Oklahoma College of Optometry
- Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry
- Pacific University College of Optometry
- Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University
- Southern California College of Optometry at Marshall B. Ketchum University
- Southern College of Optometry
- State University of New York College of Optometry
- The Ohio State University College of Optometry
- University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry
- University of California Berkeley School of Optometry
- University of Houston College of Optometry
- University of the Incarnate Word Rosenberg School of Optometry
- University of Montreal School of Optometry
- University of Missouri, St. Louis College of Optometry
- University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Optometry
- University of Waterloo School of Optometry
- Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry
Optometric residency standards effective Aug. 2019, updated May 2021. Use of these standards is mandatory for all programs being evaluated on or after July 1, 2017.
ACOE Residency Self-Study Working DRAFT Template 2017 Standards, has been created as a working document to allow for collaboration of participants involved in preparing the narrative to share comments via "track changes" feature in Microsoft Word and to use spell check and other features that aren't available in protected documents. Use of this document is optional; programs may instead use the ACOE Residency FINAL Version Self-Study 2017 Standards.
ACOE Residency FINAL Version Self-Study 2017 Standards is the document that must be submitted with appendices. This is a Word-protected document. Programs using the self-study working draft template are required to cut and paste the final narrative into this protected Word document and submit it with all appendices.
NEW! Guidelines for Electronic Submission of an Optometric Residency Self-Study provides guidelines for residencies to submit self-studies electronically.
View the crosswalk comparison between the 2009 and 2017 Optometric Residency Standards.
Recommended residency titles from the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO)
New Optometric Technician Standards(effective Jan. 1, 2019). Use of these standards is mandatory for all programs being evaluated on or after Jan. 1, 2019. These standards may be downloaded to serve as a framework for programs conducting self-studies.
The 15th century polymath Leonardo da Vinci quipped, “the eyes, the window of the soul.” He couldn’t know the half of it. Only now, with 21st century technology, are researchers unlocking the secrets of the retina—and the brain. The search for retinal biomarkers of neurocognitive disorders is returning results, and optometry may hold a piece of the puzzle.
Since the AOA/AOSA Opportunities in Optometry grant program was announced last spring, 32 grants have been awarded. Awardees from underrepresented minority groups in the profession talked about their hope to make a difference to others someday.