Education Strategic Review update
General Optical Council eBulletin 38
October 2018

Education Strategic Review update

As part of our ongoing efforts to improve and modernise optical education, we will soon be consulting on proposed new standards for education providers and proposed new learning outcomes for students. Our goal is to continue to protect the public by ensuring that students are fully equipped for the roles of the future as the optical sector changes. In response to these changes, the new standards and learning outcomes will promote more varied and earlier clinical experience.

The proposed standards and learning outcomes are built upon the feedback we’ve received so far from both the Education Strategic Review (ESR) and CET Review. The new standards are designed to encourage innovation by giving education providers more flexibility in deciding how to deliver their programmes. We are also proposing that education providers should take responsibility for the whole route to registration and we envisage that this will involve them developing a range of partnerships with other bodies, including professional associations and employers, to deliver improved clinical experience.

We will also be proposing that there should be new, distinct learning outcomes for student optometrists, dispensing opticians, and contact lens opticians – which would replace the current competencies. In relation to the learning outcomes for independent prescribers, we are suggesting we  adopt the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Competency Framework for all Prescribers.

We are also suggesting to have one set of learning outcomes for qualified practitioners, which will allow registrants to choose CET that ensures that they maintain their core skills but also engage in continuing professional development. 

We are planning to consult on the draft standards and learning outcomes from mid-November 2018 through to the end of the holidays and we will notify all registrants when the consultation is live on the GOC Consultation Hub. We look forward to hearing your views.

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