How to Apply | Vision Science (MS)

Application materials vary by pathways. To be eligible for admission consideration by the Vision Science Graduate Committee, your complete application must be received no later than the application deadlines.

Application pathways:

Traditional MS

  1. Online Vision Science Graduate Program Application form
  2. Curriculum vitae 
  3. An application essay
  4. Two letters of recommendation
    • At least one letter must be from a course instructor of a prior-attended undergraduate program.
    • In addition to the letter, your recommenders also need to fill the Applicant Evaluation Form. 
  5. Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
    • Applicants with degrees from non-US accredited schools must submit the official credentials evaluations report.  (list of evaluation agency)
  6. Prerequisite requirements: All prerequisite courses must have been taken with traditional classroom teaching (Purely online program is not acceptable. However, the VSG Committee may consider accepting the credits under special condition) and must be completed with a grade of "C" or higher. Where possible, all courses should be those intended for science majors. All science prerequisites (Biology, Physics, and Chemistry) must include a laboratory. (see the Unofficial Prerequisite Worksheet form)
  • General Biology: a standard two-semester course or the quarter system equivalent of one year of study with lab
  • General Physics: a standard two-semester course or the quarter system equivalent of one year of study. It need not be calculus based.
  • Chemistry: a standard two-semester course or the quarter system equivalent of one year of study with lab
  • Mathematics: a standard one-semester (3-semester credits or 4 quarter credits) course in analytic geometry or calculus
  • Statistics: a standard one-semester (3-semester credits or 4 quarter credits) of statistics study from the Department of Mathematics, Psychology, Sociology or Statistics. A biostatistics is acceptable. Courses from Business and Economics Departments will not meet this requirement
  • Applicants who have taken the required series of the specific content area offered by their institution may appeal to the admission committee with regard to the equivalency of course content or credit hours in their transcript. 

7. Proof of English proficiency:

  • Required for non-native English speaker
  • Conditional admission may be given without a report of English proficiency, but the requirement of English proficiency must be met before matriculation into the program. The conditional admission is valid for two application cycles, starting from the current application. After two cycles, the admission offer is void an the applicant must re-apply for admission.
  • May be satisfied by meeting one of the following conditions:
    • With a bachelor’s or higher degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States, or from an institute where English is the only language of instruction (must be verified by the institute with an official documentation).
    • Minimum acceptable official score on a qualifying English Language test:
      • A satisfactory TOEFL score administered by Educational Testing Service (ETS) or Pacific University English Language Institute (ELI) within two years:
        • Paper-based: 550 or better overall
        • Computer-based: 213 or better overall
        • Internet-based: 80 or better overall
      • A satisfactory IELTS score (6.5 or better overall) taken in the last two years
      • Chinese College English Test Band 6 (CET-6): score 520 or above taken in the last two years.

OD/MS Concurrent Pathway

Students who are currently enrolled in Pacific University OD Program can apply for the OD/MS concurrent pathway and take advantage of the MS program's discounted tuition. Students are encouraged to apply early during their 1st or 2nd OD study to complete both degrees within the OD study's four years.

Admission criteria:

  • To help students succeed in both programs, applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better from the OD program at the time of enrollment.
  • Application time is given to the current OD students:
    • December 1 in the Fall semester
    • March 15 in the Spring semester
  • Application materials:
    • Complete the OD/MS application form.
    • Curriculum vitae
    • One letter of recommendation from a college faculty
    • An application essay

*Application fee, College transcripts, Prerequisite requirements, and Proof of English proficiency are waived.


Post-OD Pathway

  • Minimum study time: One year (3 semesters)
  • Applicants with an OD degree from an ACOE approved OD program 
    • With a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better from your OD program
  • Application materials:
    • Online Vision Science Graduate Program Application form
    • Application fee: US$40.00 (waived for alumni of Pacific University College of Optometry)
    • Curriculum vitae
    • Two letters of recommendation (at least one letter from a class instructor)
    • An application essay
    • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
      • Transcripts from institutes outside of the US or Canada need to be evaluated by an international credentials evaluation agency (list of agencies)
      • the course catalog/class syllabi from your OD program

*Prerequisite requirements and Proof of English proficiency are waived.



Applicants from Institutes with MOU.


Applicants from an institute with MOU or special arrangements established with Pacific University College of Optometry should contact the program director, Dr. Yu-Chi Tai, for details.