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 - ABDO College

BSc Hons Degree in Ophthalmic Dispensing - Year One (Foundation Degree)

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The whole program is 3 years. A 2 year course as your Foundation Degree followed by a final year at BSc Hons level delivering your BSc Hons and FBDO qualifications.

Course structure

Students learn through a variety methods. A combination of weekly assignments, teaching at the College as well as learning under an in-practice supervisor. Students complete 32 weekly assignments and attend the College in Godmersham, Kent, for 2 residential blocks each lasting a fortnight, each academic year. The Degree programme also requires students to complete module based assessments including exams, essays and other academic tasks. Students also complete in practice tasks with their supervisors to re-enforce and demonstrate the skills learnt.

Application Deadline

1st August 2022

Course start date

30th August 2022

Entry Requirements

The minimum entry standard is the achievement of 5 GCSEs, grades C (Level 4 from 2017) or above in: Mathematics, English, a Science based subject and two other subjects. You must have also taken part in a study program within the last five years that has given you a certificate - this could be training at work for example. Those that have been working in an Optical Practice for 5 years or more only require the GCSE grades in Mathematics and English along with the evidence of study or training in the last 5 years.


Year One: 2022-23 fee £6165 (including 1st sitting of exams) The BSc Hons course is Student Finance applicable. It is classed as a "Full Time Course" - students should NOT use the Distance Learning option if applying for Student Finance. This will lead to the incorrect loan amount.

Course requirements

Students are required to be working in practice for a minimum of 30 hours per week under a GOC registered supervisor. Students must apply to the GOC for student membership and retain this registration, along with complying with all relevant GOC regulations throughout their studies. Students must also be ABDO members for the duration of their study. The distance learning element of the course requires some essential textbooks. The booklist is available at the bottom of this page as well as the prices and order form for ABDO College Bookshop. The teaching elements are paperless - IT requirements are listed below.

Foundation Degree / BSc (Hons) in Ophthalmic Dispensing Programme

This course is for you if you want to train and work as a Dispensing Optician, and gain a degree at the same time.

Provided by ABDO College working in conjunction with Canterbury Christ Church University, this a three year course. The first 2 years form your ‘Foundation Degree’ which is then followed by a third year on the BSc Degree course in Ophthalmic Dispensing – leading to BSc (Hons) and the ABDO Level 6 FBDO qualifications.

Please note: due to the partnership detailed above, candidates must apply to both ABDO College (using the ‘Apply Now’ function on this page) as well as through the UCAS application system (www.ucas.com). The required course code for the UCAS application is B501.

Canterbury Christ Church University

An inspiring and welcoming community

Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU) is renowned for academic excellence, a warm welcoming atmosphere and community spirit. It is a modern university, immersed in culture, and with a strong reputation for delivering high quality professional public service education.

The University supports almost 20,000 students at its campuses across Kent and Medway. It has a strong record for employment, with 96 per cent of graduates in employment or further study six months after completing their studies; a flourishing research community with an international reputation; and one of the largest number of courses for public service careers in the South East.

Canterbury Christ Church University is committed to promoting equality of opportunity and diversity and widening participation. The University ensures that all its members are valued for their qualities, skills, experience, abilities and contribution to the organisation in their learning.


ABDO College specialises in the provision of Ophthalmic Dispensing education for the optical
profession. The BSc Hons Ophthalmic Dispensing  course is for trainee Dispensing Opticians working
in optical practice in the UK, Ireland or overseas who are interested in advancing their optical
knowledge to achieve a professional qualification.

The assignments will be delivered through a virtual learning environment (VLE). It
is a requirement therefore that you have regular access to a computer, with internet connection, a
scanner and Microsoft Word/PDF software.

The course comprises of the following elements:
Coursework – 32  weekly units as well as degree modules assessed via essays, exams and other academic means. Students will be expected to study for a minimum of 15 hours per week.
Block release – four weeks. Students will be required to attend ABDO College in Godmersham for
two weeks twice each academic year for face to face learning in a classroom setting.

There are six, twenty credit, modules in each of the first two
years of this course. They are all compulsory. In the first year
the modules are:
• Foundations for Learning
• Introduction to Optics
• Introduction to Ophthalmic Lenses
• Theory of General Optics
• Theory of Ophthalmic Lenses
• Communication in Ophthalmic Practice

The dispensing courses are periodically reviewed by the General Optical Council (GOC) who have
recorded their approval of the College as a recognised training institution in accordance with the
Optician’s Act.

Learning materials and IT requirements

The programme uses a paperless system in order to work alongside ABDO College’s commitment to sustainability. Therefore, all handouts and block materials are made available to all students at the beginning of the academic year through the Virtual Learning Environment. We encourage all students to attend block release with IT equipment to use for note taking. To facilitate this, power sources are available in all relevant classrooms and all block materials are fully editable, meaning students can make notes in a way that suits them. Should students prefer to make handwritten notes, they are required to print their materials ahead of block release and bring them along.

All examinations are run by ABDO Exams and Registration. From 2022, Theory exams will be online. Students will need access to a PC, a stable internet connection, a webcam and a mic.