1 x 3-hour lecture per semester
1 x 1-hour tutorial-1 weekly
5 x 1-hour tutorial-2s per semester
1 x 3-hour workshop weekly
1 x 17-hour independent study weekly
5 x 1-hour on-line lectures per semester
1 x 1.5-hour exam per semester
1 Admission into BMSVMOPT-Bachelor of Medical Science (Vision Science), Master of Optometry
2 4 of MMED3934, MMED3937, OPTO3002, OPTO3006
Must Satisfy: (1 and 2)
1 OPTO3003 - Clinical Skills for Optometrists 1
2 MMED3940 - Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Must Satisfy: (1 and 2)
Assumed knowledge
A thorough knowledge of physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, immunology and pharmacology are essential for this topic. Of paramount importance is the prior completion of an Ocular Anatomy topic and a Physical Optics topic, as listed in the pre-requisites above.
Examination (50%); Oral; Tests; Tutorial Participation and Presentation.
Topic description
This topic covers key areas of medical science underpinning optometrical practice. The topic is presented using a case-based learning approach where common or important eye problems are used as vehicles for learning the underpinning medical science. The topic is structured into a series of units focussed on each of the aspects of the eye and visual system. Included are units focussed on relevant body systems. The units cover all levels of organisation, from the molecular and cellular, through optical to the clinical picture. The emphasis is on normal structure and function and on the pathophysiology of disease processes. Approaches to diagnostic testing and treatment are considered, with an emphasis on the underlying biomedical science principles. Development of information acquisition & critical appraisal skills along with the interpersonal and teaching skills for effective group/team work are a significant part of the topic.

The topic has three case-driven content areas:

  • Ametropias

  • Diseases of the eye

  • Relevant systemic conditions

    Within each area, relevant anatomy and physiology, cell biology and biochemistry, microbiology, immunology and pharmacology, pathology and pathophysiology are explored.

    The underlying physiological and ophthalmic optics aspects of each case are key considerations.

    All cases include prescribing and dispensing. Where required, pharmacological prescribing and therapeutic management are considered.

    All cases are delivered in an integrated manner using realistic case presentations.
Educational aims
This topic aims to familiarise students with the scientific basis of Optometry by providing them with knowledge of the normal structure and function of the eye and visual system and relevant body systems at the molecular, cellular, optical, organ and total individual levels of organisation. The changes that occur as a result of abnormal growth or development, disease and injury, relevant psychosocial issues, aetiology of disease processes and factors affecting outcome of disease are also covered.
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic, students will understand the overall normal structure and function of the eye and visual system. The nature and treatment of all of the ametropias will be covered in detail. The major blinding eye disease, their etiology, pathophysiology, clinical presentation and treatment will be covered. Relevant and important systemic diseases in the cardiovascular and respiratory systems will be covered. Students will have an in depth understanding of the physiological optics underpinning the conditions presented. They will have an overview of development at the molecular genetic and embryological level. The will have an understanding of ophthalmic optics and appropriate prescribing and dispensing.