Specialist Certificate – Management of Neuro-Ophthalmic Disorders

Area of Study Type of Course Level of Study
Optometry Award Specialist Certificate
Course Specialist Certificate in Management of Neuro-Ophthalmic Disorders
Course Code OPTO90015
Course Abbreviation SpecCertMNDV
Partner Faculty Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry & Health Sciences
Background The Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences has been reviewing the training needs of professional optometrists and the historical engagement of students in postgraduate training programs. This review has led to the closure of a number of existing programs and the introduction of the Master of Clinical Optometry (MClinOptom) and six Specialist Certificates.

The Specialist Certificate in Management of Neural Disorders of Vision is an award certificate which comprises of a previously approved subject (Neural Disorders of Vision, Optometry OPTO90015) from the Optometry programs that are being discontinued. The main change to the existing subject is a change to the subject title and the revision of total study commitment time to achieve consistency with current guidelines.
Course Description This Specialist Certificate/subject will enable optometrists to extend their abilities to evaluate the sensory and motor pathways of the visual system, both in the context of evaluating visual complaints themselves as well as gaining further knowledge of how visual and ocular motor signs may reflect a range of systemic conditions, particularly of the central nervous system. Because complaints related to these pathways may reflect problems arising anywhere from the anterior visual pathways to higher order visual centres, optometrists should benefit from gaining a deeper understanding of the current state of knowledge of these pathways and of their assessment.
Delivery Mode This course is delivered online via the UoM online learning management system, known as LMS. Once you have enrolled, you will be issued with an LMS user name and password. Enrolled students will be directed to research articles, case studies, course materials and activities, as well as being able to interact with other students using this platform e.g. participating in discussion forums.
Who Should Apply The course is designed to offer the optimum balance of formal education and flexible study options to optometrists who have a compulsory requirement to undertake continuing professional development (CPD) every year to maintain their registration as an optometrist. Under new legislation (2011), all registered Australian and New Zealand Optometrists are required to complete 40 points of CPD each year, of these 20 points are required to be in the therapeutics area.
Subjects OPTO90015 Management of Neural Disorders of Vision This is a 25 point semester-long postgraduate subject and contains 12 units, with each unit occupying one week of the academic semester. The time spent each week will vary according to the tasks that are to be completed in a particular week. The following tasks are typically to be completed in a week:

Reading: (notes, articles, online material): these can be read at any free time and are accessible from the LMS anytime the LMS is available. All reading material is available either as PDF downloads or webpages.

Clinical practice tasks: in most weeks candidates are required to carry out activities related to their clinical practice. These tasks can be conducted during normal working hours and you are advised to as soon as possible relate the experience on the Discussion Board (as required).

Online Contribution: communication with fellow candidates and the subject coordinator is an important aspect o f online education. There is a strong emphasis on sharing experiences and discussing readings on the Discussion Board. Collaboration tasks with peers encourage communication of understanding and the opportunity to learn from each other. Assignments and Assessment Preparation: at around the time an assignment is due, generally tasks in the preceding weeks are reduced to make more time for assignment preparation.

Further information: this subject may provide self-assessment quizzes for candidates to test their understanding of important key concepts. The quizzes are not compulsory and in many cases model answers are provided.

Neural Disorders of Vision Kit: the kit will be added to throughout the semester to eventually build a resource that can be used in clinical practice. Tasks (online & clinical), assignments and reflections made during a unit will contribute to the kit.
Assessment Assessments for the Specialist Certificate in the Management of Neural Disorders of Vision are as follows:
  • Critical Appraisal of Literature, 2000 words (15%)
  • 2 x Case Study Report and Peer Review, 2500 words each (60%)
  • Portfolio (20%)
  • Online Contribution (5%)
Each subject is formally assessed to meet the requirements of University accreditation. Assessment is designed to be practical and relevant to industry professionals.
Pathways to Further Study Successful completion of this subject provides 25 points of credit into the Masters of Clinical Optometry.
Academic and Teaching Team Dr Kwang Cham and A/Prof Larry Abel, Subject Coordinator, Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences
Entry Requirements A 4-year Australian degree in Optometry, or equivalent. Professional experience may be taken into account to determine equivalency. The IELTS requirement for international students is an overall band score of 6.5 with no band less than 6 in the individual listening, reading, writing and speaking components.
Course Fees Course fees for 2017 are as follows;
  • Domestic students $5,030.00
  • International students $6,150.00
Please note that fees are subject to an annual increase. Organisations that wish to enrol three or more students on a single course delivery may be eligible for a group discount if participation is entered into an organisational contract basis. Individuals all still need to meet the University entry requirements for the course. Please contact us to find for details and requirements.
Fee Inclusions Fees include tuition, course materials and access to on-line resources. As enrolled students of the University of Melbourne, students have access to a range of facilities and amenities provided by the University of Melbourne.
FEE HELP Fee-Help is a loan from the Australian Government to cover tuition fees and is available to Australian Citizens only.
Key Dates This course will be available in Semester 2, 2017.
24 July to 22 October 2017
Related Courses and Subjects OPTO90006 Management of Anterior Eye Disease and Dry Eye
OPTO90007 Management of Low Vision Patients
OPTO90009 Management of Contact Lens Patients
OPTO90010 Management of Paediatric Patients
OPTO90016 Management of Posterior Eye Disease
Masters of Clinical Optometry
Other Information The University of Melbourne is an approved provider of CPD for the Optometry Board of Australia (OBA). CPD points for specialist certificates are designated as non-accredited CPD points as they are not recorded automatically by Optometry Australia, (but they are valid for attaining the OBA mandatory CPD requirements for registration).
Contact Us Program Administrator: Kathy Griffiths
Phone: (03) 8344 2601
Email: tl-optometry@unimelb.edu.au