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Doctor of Optometry (O.D.)

See the Future: Start Your OD Degree Today

With Nova Southeastern University's Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) degree, you get a view into someone’s overall health—you can be one of the first to detect serious health issues that ultimately can save lives as well as vision. You'll examine, diagnose, treat, and manage diseases and disorders of the visual system, and enhance vision with glasses, contact lenses, and visual rehabilitation. Optometry offers various modes of practice allowing you to choose the appropriate path for you to achieve work-life balance.

At NSU's College of Optometry, we take great pride in our high graduation rates and board exam scores. More importantly, our graduates excel clinically in their areas of practice. In recent years over 25% of our graduating class were successful in earning residency positions across the country. We hear repeatedly about our graduates' outstanding preparation and performance at clinical residency sites across the country. Each year, OD’s, MD’s, and corporations, nationwide, contact us seeking to hire or provide practice opportunities to our graduates.


Applicants to our program are considered competitive applicants with Optometry Admissions Test (OAT) scores of 320 or above and grade point averages (GPA) of 3.4 or above. Please contact our Admissions Counselor and schedule a 15 minute telephone information session for more information about admissions.  

Program Format

The Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) is a professional degree which requires four years of professional study. View the program curriculum. 
During the first year of optometry school, students concentrate on the basic biological sciences including; anatomy and physiology, microbiology, and neuroanatomy. In addition, they receive lecture, laboratory, and clinical instruction in theoretical optics and the conducting of an optometric examination.
During the second year, students study ocular physiology and psychophysics. They also begin with their first courses in ocular disease and anomalies of binocular vision. In the summer between the second and third years, students begin to examine patients at NSU Health Eye Care. They care for adult, pediatric, and geriatric patients with all types of ocular and visual needs in the primary eye care clinic.
In addition to seeing patients, third year students continue to study ocular disease, contact lenses, and clinical medicine. A two semester practice management course begins in third year with introduction to basic business and management concepts.
During the fourth year, students receive extensive training in; secondary-tertiary eye care, specialized optometric care and continued clinical education. Training emphasizes practical experience through externships, specialty clinical rotations, and clinical practice. A fourth year practice management course presents business decisions and concepts that will be necessary for success in practice.
The College of Optometry offers an extended program for students interested in completing the degree in five years instead of the traditional four years. 


We are proud to live and work in the South Florida community and provide eye care to this diverse area. The diversity of our classes truly reflects our local community, with more than 27% of students self-identifying as Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, or American Indian/Alaskan Native. While 45% of our students come from Florida, the rest of our student population is made up of students from more than 35 U.S. states. Canada is well represented with approximately 10% of our student population coming from 5 Canadian provinces. 


Academic Year

2019-2020 *



National Average



# of all first time takers Pass rate (%) of first time takers # of all first time takers Pass rate (%) of first time takers # of all first time takers Pass rate (%) of first time takers Pass rate (%) of first time takers

Part I First Time Pass Rate 

(August and March Administrations)

98 75.51 104 68.57 103 59.22 63.66

Part II First Time Pass Rate 

(December and April Administrations)

96 86.46 99 86.87 100 86 84.65

Part III First Time Pass Rate

(August - June Administrations)

96 86.46 99 84.85 102 79.41 79.64

Ultimate Passage Rate

(Year of graduation, October 1 – September 30, as defined by NBEO)

# passing all parts % of graduates # passing all parts % of graduates # passing all parts % of graduates  Ultimate Pass Rate
104 97.62 107 96.26  97 90.72 87.77


 *Reporting adjustments to NBEO test administration dates due to the impact of COVID-19 for 2019-2020, the administrations include July 2020, November 2020 and January 2021 for Part I and December 2019 and July 2020 for Part II.


NSU Entering Class Student Profile (ASCO's Entering Class Profiles)





2014 3.34 3.24 322.31/320.44
2015 3.40 3.30 323.62/322.98
2016 3.42 3.30 328.83/328.72
2017 3.37 3.22 323.44/321.04
2018 3.47 3.33 318.31/313.82
2019 3.43 3.30 322.87/319.57
2020 3.48 3.36 322.76/318.97
2021 3.36 3.21 323.23/320.52
2022 3.51 3.42 328.80/325.42
2023 3.52 3.41 322.02/313.57

Year Initially Matriculated








Number Matriculated

105 101 105 104 104 105 105

Graduated in 4 years

91.4% 92.0% 89.5% 84.6%  84.6% 93.3% 90.5%

Graduated in 5 or more years

4.8% 4.0% 6.7%  7.7% 6.7% 1.9% TBD

Graduated at any time

96.2% 96.0% 96.2% 92.3%  91.3% 95.2% TBD

Attrition for Academic Reasons

3.8% 2.0% 1.9% 3.8% 3.8% 4.8% 4.8%

Attrition for Other Reasons

0% 2.0% 1.9% 3.8% 4.8% 0% 1.9%

Still enrolled or on a leave of absence

0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 2.9%


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