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Master of Science in Optometry

This course is available


Level of Study

Master's Degree


1 year

Next start date



The Master of Science (MSc) programme enables you to pursue advanced study in your area of interest with the opportunity to work on independent research.

Programme overview

Studying for an MSc is an opportunity for committed scientists to focus on a relevant area of interest or practise and pursue an advanced qualification. While taught masters will provide you with specialist training in your chosen field, a research masters will develop advanced research skills, working alongside Faculty of Science researchers - many of whom are major contributors in their field. Late Year Semester will start in December.

120-point MSc

Most students enter an MSc following completion of a PGDipSci. You will need to complete 120 points (maximum of 160 points) in a specialisation within one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study (research masters) or four years of part-time study (taught masters). Not all specialisations offer both taught and research options.

240-point MSc

If you enter a MSc directly from an undergraduate degree you will need to complete 240 points (maximum of 280 points) in a specialisation in two years of full-time study or four years of part-time study (research masters) or six years of part-time study (taught masters). Not all specialisations offer both taught and research options.


Optometry and Vision Science is the study of optometry coupled with a strong foundation in health science to embrace the expanding role of optometry to the community.

The School of Optometry encourages both new and less-recent graduates to consider postgraduate study as it provides an opportunity to gain advanced knowledge in a specialised field.

The school’s postgraduate programmes are designed to assist and enhance clinical, biomedical and vision science research. There are a number of active research groups within the school who are all undertaking leading-edge clinical, biomedical and vision research.

In addition, there are research study collaborations with a number of specialist groups:

  • New Zealand National Eye Centre
  • Department of Ophthalmology
  • School of Medical Sciences
  • School of Biological Sciences
  • Department of Physiology
  • Department of Sport and Exercise Science
  • Auckland Bioengineering Institute
  • Liggins Institute
  • Department of Psychology
  • Postgraduate study in the school offers:

Outstanding clinical, biomedical and psychophysical research facilities
Leading researchers in various fields of clinical, biomedical and vision research
Access to collaborators, equipment and excellent facilities

Study options can be undertaken full-time, and some programmes allow primarily distance-based study. This is an attractive option for practising optometrists.

Where could this programme take you?

As a graduate of the MSc programme you will be skilled in a focused area of expertise, and better equipped to find employment in your chosen field. The MSc is a vital qualification if you want to pursue employment in a research-led area, or progress further academically.

Further study options

Doctor of Philosophy

1 December start available for 120-point research masters only, subject to supervisor availability.

Entry criteria

Research 120 points:

You must have completed one year of postgraduate study, following an undergraduate degree, at a recognised university (or similar institution), in a similar field to your intended specialisation. You will need a GPE of 5.0.

Research 240 points:

You must have completed an undergraduate degree in science in a similar field to your intended specialisation at a recognised university (or similar institution) with a GPE of 5.0.

IELTS (Academic): Overall score of 6.5 and no bands less than 6.0; Internet-based TOEFL (iBT): Overall score of 90 and written score of 21; Paper-based TOEFL: Overall score of 68 and a writing score of 21; Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) or Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE): Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169; Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic: Overall score of 58 and no PTE Communicative score below 50; Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP): Grade of B-; Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB): 85.

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