Strong backing for education reform
General Optical Council eBulletin 37
July 2018

Strong backing for education reform

Our Education Strategic Review is designed to ensure that optical education is up to speed and continues to be fit for purpose as the optical sector evolves. As part of this, from December 2017 to March 2018 we consulted on the concepts and principles surrounding optical education.

The high level findings showed strong support for the concepts presented: 97 per cent agreed with the idea of the GOC developing new Education Standards for optometrists and dispensing opticians; 84 per cent agreed with the GOC linking education requirements with the professional standards; 82 per cent supported the concept of including clinical elements of education and training from the start; and 81 per cent agreed with the idea of a national registration exam for optometrists and dispensing opticians.

The consultation asked about 11 concepts and principles, contained 21 questions and resulted in a total of 36 responses – ten from individuals and 26 from organisations. Some of the concepts included were standards for education providers, education standards and professionalism, enhanced clinical experience for students and multi-disciplinary education.

These responses will help us to ensure that our standards for education providers are supporting students in a sector that is constantly changing as new services are introduced and the needs of patients change. Our next step will be to consult informally with stakeholders on draft new education standards and draft learning outcomes for students before carrying out a public consultation in the autumn.

GOC Chair, Gareth Hadley, said: “These high level findings from the recent Education Strategic Review consultation indicate that we are exploring the right concepts for the future of optical education and it makes the direction of travel clear.”

To view our summary on the high level findings and read the full report, please visit:


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