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Ophthalmic Practitioner Training

The Ophthalmic Practitioner Training (OPT) Programme, trains postgraduate orthoptists, optometrists, ophthalmic nurses and other eye care practitioners in secondary care to develop their skills in eye care.

The Ophthalmic Practitioner Training (OPT) Programme has been developed from the Ophthalmic Common Clinical Competency Framework (OCCCF). This is an opportunity for ophthalmology departments to transform their workforce and improve capacity within their service.


The OPT Programme is delivered at three levels in each of the four clinical areas, resulting in award of specific OPT Certificates by The College.  A Level 3 OPT Certificate can form the major part of the clinical pillar of a Masters degree in Advanced Clinical Practice (ACP).

How to enrol in Ophthalmic Practitioner Training 

The OPT Programme is open to Eye Care Professionals who:

  • Hold a post graduate qualification (eg:  MBBS, BSc in orthoptics, optometry, nursing etc)
  • Are registered with an appropriate professional body (eg: GMC, GOC, NMC, HCPC)
  • Are supported by a Regional OPT Lead and Educational Supervisor in their workplace

Learners who want to complete a Masters in Advanced Clinical Practice (ACP) in Ophthalmology will also need to enrol in the Masters Programme of a Higher Education Institution (HEI, university).

Applicants for the OPT Programme should complete the OPT application form and return it to [email protected]

Download the enrolment form

The learner decides the clinical areas to be studied (cataract, glaucoma, medical retina, emergency eye care), and to which of the three levels.  This form needs to be signed by the learner’s Regional OPT Leads and Educational Supervisor to confirm that they are eligible for the programme, and that the necessary experience and support can be provided.

How the Ophthalmic Practitioner Training is delivered

 The OPT is delivered in the workplace under the supervision of local trainers.  It is a competency based programme in which the curriculum sets standards which are assessed in the workplace by the collection of evidence in a portfolio.  Competence is acquired through self-directed learning, teaching in the workplace, clinical experience, supervision and formative assessment.