Successful completion of the two year Opticianry Program results in an Associate in Applied Science degree. Opticians are licensed professionals who design and fit prescription eyeglasses, contact lens and other specialized optical devices. The patient brings the optician a prescription from their doctor and the optician determines the best way to fill that prescription based on the individual’s specific needs. There are hundreds of different ways to fill any given prescription. There are many options such as lens materials, designs, colors, coatings, frame sizes and frame styles just to mention a few. Opticians select the best of these options for each patient based on his or her visual and fashion needs. The optician considers many patient variables; their prescription, the type of work they do, their hobbies, what sports they play and other special needs. Opticians need to make sure their patients see clearly, look attractive (we are also fashion consultants), and have properly adjusted and comfortable glasses and contact lenses that fit conveniently into their lifestyle.
Most opticians work in retail business settings and medical offices, providing eyewear directly to the public. However, some specialize in areas such as contact lens fitting, laboratory work, or as sales consultants for manufactures of spectacle frames, spectacle lenses or contact lenses. Some also have their own optical businesses and work for themselves.
Upon successful completion of the Opticianry Program, the graduate is eligible to apply to take the Tennessee state licensing exams.
The Opticianry Program is is taught at the Roane County Main Campus.
The Opticianry Program is accredited by the Commission on Opticianry Accreditation (COA) PO Box 592, Canton, NY. 13617; (703) 468-0566; www.coaccreditation.com.
Salaries for opticians vary greatly depending on where and for whom you work. The average salary for opticians in East Tennessee is around $36,000 with starting salaries about $25,000. However, many opticians earn significantly more than average by working their way up the management ladder in large corporate optical businesses. Also, entrepreneurial opticians may own their own businesses and work for themselves. For further information on the many varied opportunities available to graduates of the Opticianry Program contact Mike Goggin.
Roane State Tuition & Fees
All tuition and fees are subject to change by the Tennessee Board of Regents.
* Program courses that are taken in an online format are subject to a distance education fee. A Specialized Allied Health Science Fee of $25 per credit hour will be applied to all Allied Health Science courses. See Tuition and Fees link above.
Books, Supplies and Additional Program Expenses
(Visit www.roanestate.edu/bookstore for book titles and prices)
Optical tool kit: approximately $300
Liability insurance: $15