Doctor of Optometry


Pacific University offers a four-year doctor of optometry program preparing tomorrow's optometrists for licensure and practice.  Our core perspective on optometry education is distinctive.  We believe that vision and eye health are foundational to people’s success and enjoyment of life – throughout their lives.  Our approach to curriculum and course design, delivery, and sequencing is thoughtful, and based on 75 years of experience fulfilling our mission, and supporting an advancing profession.

The curriculum consists of academic and laboratory experiences integrated with clinical work. The fourth year is entirely clinical, consisting of four full-time rotations, with over 120 sites in our network, including international opportunities.  Our students start gaining real-world experience right away.  During the first semester of the first year, students provide care and receive direct outreach experience with a diverse patient population.  By the time they graduate, they will have rotated through multiple clinics, serving a wide range of patients.

Pacific University graduates are fully qualified to practice in any state in the US and province in Canada, the curriculum far exceeding the most stringent educational requirements. The curriculum also prepares students for successful completion of the exams administered by the National Board of Examiners in Optometry (NBEO) and Optometry Examining Board of Canada (OEBC). Our students typically score above the national average on the exams, which reflects the excellent education our students receive here at Pacific University, and the hard work, dedication and focus our students and faculty bring to the classroom every day.

Data from the American Optometric Association shows the average net incomes ranging from $140,013 for the primary practice of optometry to $172,356 for optometrists who own all or a portion of their practice.

In addition to clinical training, Pacific's College of Optometry demonstrates its commitment to quality optometric research by offering all students an elective research thesis opportunity, encouraging and providing funds for faculty to attend scientific meetings and providing research facilities. Conferences on campus allow practitioners, students, faculty and other researchers the opportunity to exchange findings and information.


College of Optometry Jefferson Hall

The only professional association for optometry in Oregon, the OOPA recently established the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association Scholarship at Pacific, which has already benefited five current doctor of optometry students.

Pacific University College of Optometry Professor Tad Buckingham '92, OD '94, also the college's clinical attending doctor and Forest Grove Fire & Rescue Division Chief, has spent several wildfire seasons on the front lines, both battling blazes and helping those experiencing vision problems resulting from smoke exposure.

Alumni & friends rise to the occasion to support Lead On: The Campaign for Tomorrow at Pacific University