Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting
Sep 06, 2022
May 08, 2023
On-Campus Day* - Your course activity is done in-person Monday - Friday, before 6 PM.
On-Campus Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done in person on weekdays from 6 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
Online Day* - Your course activity is done online Monday - Friday, before 6 PM.
Online Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done online on weekdays from 6 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
Online Flexible Delivery - Your course activity is not scheduled and therefore you can determine when to do the coursework.
Blended Delivery - Both On-Campus and Online - Some of your coursework will be in-person, on-campus and some will be done online.
* There may be circumstances that require some day delivery of classes to be scheduled into the evenings.
Please note due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these delivery options may shift from term to term. Please consult your program for details on delivery options.
Estimated program length is based on the recommended course load per semester as outlined in the Courses tab.
Actual program length will vary based on the number of courses/credits successfully completed per semester.
This program meets the eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program for international students as long as the student is enrolled in the on-campus delivery mode or completes more than 50% of the courses on campus (for the blended option).
International students attending all classes online will NOT be eligible for a Post-Graduate Work Permit. International students are responsible for maintaining their eligibility throughout their studies.
This program is available to international students, however, program availability may be limited. This program does not meet the eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program.
Learn the scientific principles imperative to ensuring optimal eye care as part of a multi-disciplinary team that includes ophthalmologists, optometrists, opticians and medical technologists.
The Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting certificate program is two semesters long (including a four-week practicum) and prepares students to operate as medical office professionals with specialized knowledge in ophthalmic (eye health) and optometric (vision care) terminology and clinical procedures.
Throughout the program, students will learn the scientific principles imperative to ensuring optimal eye care as part of a multi-disciplinary team that includes ophthalmologists, optometrists, opticians, and medical technologists. This program is unique in that it includes a combination of ophthalmic and optometric competencies, providing graduates with skillets for two professions in one program.
Is this the right fit for me?
Students with higher secondary or post-secondary marks and effective communication skills in English usually experience greater success in SAIT’s programs.
Health care practitioners are detail-oriented in the care they provide and enjoy working in a team environment.
Basic computer skills are essential for success in this program.
Upon successful completion of this program, graduates will be awarded a SAIT Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting certificate.
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Graduates can pursue job opportunities as a(n):
- ophthalmic assistant
- optometric assistant
Related careers include:
- optical laboratory technician
- optometrist ophthalmologist
Tuition and fees
- Year 1: $9,110
- Year 1: $19,449.92
Final costs are dependent on the number of course credits a student takes per semester.
You will be offered admission to this program through direct entry if you meet the admission requirements and space is available.
When do classes start?
|Term||Year start date||Year end date|
|Spring 2022||May 9, 2022||Dec. 16, 2022|
|Fall 2022||Sept. 6, 2022||April 28, 2023|
|Spring 2023||May 8, 2023||Dec. 15, 2023|
A peek inside SAIT's new vision care sciences programs
Eye problems are increasing as people spend more time in front of screens, yet Alberta’s vision care industry anticipates many opticians will retire before 2025. So SAIT has launched two vision care sciences programs including a one-year Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting Certificate that’s unique in Canada.
Applications are accepted until the program start date but are subject to change.
- Fall 2022 start: applications opened on Oct. 6, 2021.
- Spring 2023 start: applications opened on June 15, 2022.
Program admission requirements
A minimum grade of 60% in each of the following courses or their equivalents:
- English Language Arts 30-1 or English Language Arts 30-2
- Math 30-1 or Math 30-2
- Biology 30 or Science 30
Direct Entry: four-step process
Step 1: Read the program information to see the qualities needed for student success.
Step 2: Ensure that you meet all of the admission requirements listed above.
- Admission will be extended on a first-qualified, first-offered basis until the program is full.
Failure to meet anticipated final grades will result in offers being rescinded.
This program meets the eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program for international students as long as the student is enrolled in the on-campus delivery mode or completes more than 50% of the courses on campus (for the blended option). International students attending all classes online will NOT be eligible for a Post-Graduate Work Permit. International students are responsible for maintaining their eligibility throughout their studies.
Communication during admission
Email is the primary source of communication during the admission process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications.
We recommend you add firstname.lastname@example.org domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.
The School of Health and Public Safety has many practica partners located within Alberta and across Canada.
Practicum placements in Calgary are limited. Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting students will be required to relocate outside of Calgary for practicum. Although students are requested to indicate a location of their choice, there is no guarantee to be placed at the practicum location. Students will be responsible for fees associated with practicum such as entrance requirements, relocation and travel costs.
In compliance with the practica agreements with our clinical partners, successful candidates will be requested to provide proof of the following requirements:
- Updated immunization records
- Security clearance - Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check
- Health and wellness status
Looking for course descriptions and requisites? Visit the course catalogue
|Course code||Course name||Credit|
|ANPH-220||Anatomy & Applied Terminology||3.0|
|HSCI-219||Ocular Anatomy & Physiology||3.0|
|HSCI-221||Introduction to Ophthalmic Practice||3.0|
|HSCI-223||Ophthalmic and Optometric Skills||3.0|
|HSCI-309||Systemic and Ocular Pathology & Pharmacology||3.0|
|Semester 1 total||15.0|
|Course code||Course name||Credit|
|HSCI-218||Applied Ophthalmic & Optometric Assisting||3.0|
|HSCI-222||Ophthalmic Instruments & Testing||3.0|
|HSCI-251||Assisting Surgical Procedures||3.0|
|Semester 2 Total||12.0|
Students must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better in each semester and pass the necessary prerequisite courses to progress through the program. To qualify for graduation, students must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.
The opportunity to advance your education through transfer in, within or on from SAIT is available.
Visit transfer options to learn more.
Domestic tuition and fees
Cost per credit: $283
|Year||Number of semesters||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees*||Total|
International tuition and fees
Cost per credit: $665.96
|Year||Number of semesters||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees*||Total|
*Maximum fee. Actual fees may be less and are based on the number of credits a student takes per semester and whether they opt-out of health and dental benefits.
- Campus athletic and recreation fee: $196
- Universal transit pass (Upass): $320
- Student support fee: $200
- Student technology fee: $200
Student Association fee
- Maximum: $291
This is the maximum amount the student will pay. Actual fees may be less and are based on the number of credits the students take per semester.
Health and dental fees
- Health plan: $127
- Dental plan: $135
Students with existing health and/or dental plans can opt-out. Please refer to Saitsa's website for information.
Books and supplies*
Books and supplies are approximately $1,200 per full-time year.
Students are responsible for any additional expenses related to their practicum, including pre-practicum requirements as outlined by the program, and relocation costs to practicum sites outside of Calgary.
For an estimate of the costs associated with purchasing a computer that meets the program's hardware and software requirements, see our computers and laptops page.
Learn more about tuition and financial aid.
*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
Have you been accepted to this program? Here's what you'll need for your first day of classes.
✅ Plan ahead ❗️
You are required to complete several health, confidentiality and consent forms before starting your program. All completed and signed paperwork is needed on orientation day.
Ensure you complete all three steps below ahead of orientation.
Your program orientation (ORNT 118) will be held on campus on Sept. 1. Check your schedule in mySAIT for the time and location details.
Learn more about your orientation.
How to register for classes
Course registration opens on Tuesday, Nov. 15 for Winter 2023.
You’ll receive an email from us indicating what registration process you’ll use to enroll in your classes.
Learn more about how to register and the different registration methods used at SAIT.
Computers and laptops
This is a bring your own device program with a standard hardware and software requirement. See the specific requirements on our computers and laptops page.
Required personal protective equipment (PPE) and uniforms
You will require:
- navy scrubs (pants and top)
- closed-toe water-impermeable shoes
Additional industry-approved PPE will be discussed prior to the start of labs.
To support your success, short courses are available to you to help prepare you for the academic year:
PERS 050: Student Rights and Responsibilities
This course is designed to introduce you to student rights and responsibilities at SAIT. You will learn about SAIT's rich and diverse community, become familiar with guidelines and procedures that create a safe, respectful learning experience for you, and gain practical tips for how you can engage in the SAIT community in a positive and responsible way. PRES-050 must be completed within 30 days from the start of the semester.
PREP 100: The SAIT Experience
Get tips and insider information on time management, exam preparation, effective notetaking and more through this free, online short course for new students. Plus, learn about discussion boards, online communication and submitting assignments online. Course completion is recommended by the end of your first semester.
Both courses can be accessed through Brightspace (D2L) before the first day of classes.
Students taking a full-time course load, or more than nine (9) credits per semester, will be automatically enrolled in these courses.
They are optional for students taking a part-time course load (9 or fewer credits per semester). Part-time students can register by emailing email@example.com.
Find your booklist on the SAIT Bookstore's website. The booklist will be available closer to the program start date.
Can’t find your program or course? The bookstore didn't receive a textbook list. Contact your program directly to determine if they’re still refining course details or if you're in luck, no textbook purchase required this term.
Next steps for all students
Here's what else you'll need to do to get ready!
Important dates and deadlines
Find important dates applicable to all students, including your transcript and tuition payment deadlines on our Important Dates page.