The Australian College of Optometry (ACO) is welcoming applications for its Certificate of Ocular Therapeutics (COT), now in its eighth consecutive year.
Launched in 2014, the COT enables registered optometrists within Australia and New Zealand to gain scheduled medicines endorsement. The course is accredited by the Optometry Council of Australia and New Zealand (OCANZ), and approved by the Optometry Board of Australia (OBA).
When a new technique becomes mainstream, it is imperative that lectures and resources are developed or upgraded to take that on
Associate Professor Ian Gutteridge, Chair of the Curriculum Committee and Board of Examiners for the ACO Certificate of Ocular Therapeutics, said keeping the course up to date is imperative to its success. “We endeavour to keep this course up to date. When a new technique becomes mainstream, it is imperative that lectures and resources are developed or upgraded to take that on,” he commented.
A/Prof Gutteridge, who has been involved in the development of the resources from the first course, including as the presenter for uveitis added, “each candidate is asked to complete feedback surveys on the quality of teaching and learning. This is an opportunity for us to hear from the candidates about both the good points and the areas of improvement about the course. For example, over the years we’ve added extra lectures and adapted resources to update the course accordingly.”
Flexible Learning, Supportive Environment
The course offers a flexible online learning environment with e-learning materials, 60 lectures from experts in their field, interactive webinars and a high level of support provided by the ACO throughout. No travel is required for this course and clinical placements can be undertaken locally within Australia or New Zealand.
“The course cohort has a diverse range of candidates who come from all over Australia and New Zealand. We help these candidates to study and prepare for written and oral examinations, as some haven’t sat for exams for 10, 15, 20 years,” he continued.
Participants also have the opportunity to network and participate in online forums with other registered optometrists.
“We encourage participants to join the forum and to talk to each other. It’s a bit like having a common room at school or university. I’m also a facilitator and moderator in all of the course forum discussions, so I have the chance to give feedback and steer them in the right direction.”
This certificate course is open to all registered optometrists within Australia and New Zealand and commences on 12 April 2021. With flexible delivery and self-paced online learning at the forefront, the COT is ideal for rural or remote optometrists and those balancing work and other commitments.
For more information, please visit the ACO website.