How to become a dispensing optician
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- an apprenticeship
To qualify as a dispensing optician, you can do a course approved by the General Optical Council. There are 3 different types of course to choose from.
You can do a:
- full-time diploma which takes 2 years followed by working under supervision for a year
- day release training course combined with working which takes 3 years
- distance learning course which includes on the job training and takes 3 years
You'll also need to pass the professional qualifying examinations from the Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO).
You'll usually need:
- 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
- 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, including a science
You may be able to apply for a place on a Dispensing Optician Level 6 Apprenticeship, with an opticians company.
This can take 3 years to complete.
To get onto an apprenticeship, you'll find it useful to have:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship
- you'll need to be registered with the General Optical Council
You might find it helpful to get some work experience before you apply to study.
Professional and industry bodies
You could join the Association of British Dispensing Opticians for professional development and training opportunities.