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Record number of students meet GOC retention deadline

18 Jul 2013

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A total of 89.9 per cent of student optometrists and dispensing opticians have applied to renew their General Optical Council (GOC) registration by the 15 July deadline.

It marks an improvement on the 2012 figure of 87.6 per cent. 2011 was the first year that students could apply using the MyGOC online system and in that year 87 per cent met the deadline. This means that the percentage of students meeting the deadline has increased every year since MyGOC’s introduction.

Philip Hallam, GOC Head of Registration, said: “We are very pleased that more students than ever have renewed on time. The vast majority of students can now go into the summer holidays knowing that they are registered for next year.”

A total of 437 students missed the deadline, down from 548 last year. They must now pay an extra £10 late application charge on top of the £20 fee. If they have still not applied by 31 August they will be removed from the register and unable to continue their studies until they have restored their registration, at a cost of £40.

Philip Hallam added: “I encourage all students who missed the deadline to remember that GOC registration is a legal requirement. Any students removed from the register will be unable to take part in clinical training or exams.

“I would also urge all students, and fully-qualified registrants, to make sure they apply for retention promptly each year to avoid facing extra late registration fees and putting their careers at risk.”

Students with registration queries can contact the GOC registration team on 020 7580 3898 (option 1), email or send a tweet to @GOC_UK.


For media enquiries please contact:
Simon Grier
Communications Manager
General Optical Council
t: 020 7307 3478

Notes for editors:

1. Optometry and dispensing optics come into contact with patients during their educational courses and vocational training. Since 30 June 2005, it has been a legal requirement for optometry and dispensing optics students to be registered with the GOC.

2. Students who renew their registration now but decide not to continue with their course in September should inform the GOC in writing before 31 August to receive a refund of the £20 retention fee.

3. Overall, 3978 out of 4424 students applied for retention by 15 July. 99.5 per cent of those chose to use the online system, with just 19 students sending in a paper application.

About the General Optical Council:
The GOC is the regulator for the optical professions in the UK. Its purpose is to protect the public by promoting high standards of education, performance and conduct amongst opticians. The Council currently registers around 26,000 optometrists, dispensing opticians, student opticians and optical businesses.

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