University Handbook 2018

Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Orthoptics

Course code/s: HZVSO

Course details
Location Bundoora
Course code HZVSO
Mid year intake available Yes - intake commencing in June at the Melbourne campus, subject to available places, and to be confirmed in April 2018. Students taking this option study 3.5 years full-time as accelerated (equivalent to 4.5 years full-time study).
Course coordinator Dr Connie Koklanis
Available to international students Yes
CRICOS 083317C/062808B
Course duration

Commencing semester 1: 4 years full-time as accelerated (equivalent to 4.5 years full-time study). Some students may take longer.

Commencing June: 3.5 years full-time as accelerated non-standard first year (equivalent to 4.5 years full-time study). Some students may take longer.

Credit points 540 credit points
Exchange opportunity No
Leave of absence available Yes
Study plan guide To assist with planning your enrolment, you can download the course structure PDF here
Course queries Current students: ASK La Trobe
Prospective students: Future Students
Notes The June intake is only available at the Bundoora campus and will only proceed if the course has available places.

Course description

This combined degree course prepares the graduate to become an orthoptist – an eye care professional who specialises in the detection, diagnosis and treatment of vision and eye disorders. Orthoptists generally work in specialist eye clinics and public hospitals, where they work with ophthalmic surgeons to monitor eye disease and provide treatment, which includes prescribing glasses for children and adult patients. They also provide rehabilitation services in low-vision agencies and may work in orthoptic private practice. Orthoptists are increasingly being employed in eye and vision research centres and industry partners which develop and supply orthoptic and ophthalmic instruments. The majority of subjects undertaken are core subjects.

The first year of the course is an interdisciplinary common year shared with students across health sciences courses. The focus of this year is on basic human anatomy and physiology, factors influencing health and developing an understanding of the roles of health professionals in the health and welfare sectors.

The second year provides background study in neurosciences and pathology, as well as an in-depth understanding of the visual system and the eye. The basic principles of ocular pathology and orthoptic theory and practice are introduced.

During the third year of the course, students will further develop their knowledge and skills in orthoptics, ophthalmology and vision rehabilitation.

The fourth year of the course is largely clinical and students will be able to apply their knowledge and practical skills to the clinical environment and consolidate their ability to manage vision and eye problems in patients of all ages. The clinical program includes placements within the clinical school network under the supervision of an orthoptist, facilitating transition into the workforce. The course also provides students with the opportunity to undertake part of their clinical education in affiliated clinics interstate and overseas. At the completion of the double degree, graduates will be prepared for the workforce with a background in teamwork and leadership.

There is a strong demand for orthoptists at present and graduates readily gain employment in public hospitals, private ophthalmology practices, low-vision agencies, universities and eye research centres.

Essentials subjects

The three Essentials - Global Citizenship, Innovation & Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Thinking are specialist areas designed to give you an edge with employers. Essentials will enable you to adapt your knowledge and skills to new contexts in a rapidly changing world. Subjects addressing the Essentials are part of all undergraduate La Trobe degrees and can be identified in the subject search by distinct icons. The list of approved subjects can be found on the Essentials webpage.

Course intended learning outcomes

Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILOs) are brief statements defining what students are expected to demonstrate they know and can do by the end of a course.

Mastering and application of specialist knowledge in accordance with the required orthoptic competencies.
Communicate specialist knowledge effectively with a range of professional and non-professional stakeholders in a variety of practice settings using appropriate modes and media.
A safe ethical practitioner able to work autonomously and as a member or leader of a team in a multidisciplinary work environment.
Maintain high ethical standards and practise in accordance with orthoptic professional values in a socially diverse community.
A reflective practitioner able to critically analyse and provide innovative professional solutions in a changing environment.
Professional and technical research skills to evaluate and implement evidence-based orthoptic practice.

Course structure

The course requires the completion of 540 credit points over four years of full-time study (for those commencing in semester 1) or three and a half years of study for those commencing in June.

First year (commencing semester 1)

First year (135 credit points)
Teaching period Subject code Subject title Credit points
TE-SEM-1 ABS0WOM Wominjeka La Trobe: Indigenous Cultural Literacy for Higher Education* 0
TE-SEM-1 LTU0AIM Academic Integrity Module** 0
TE-SEM-1 HBS1HBA Human Biosciences A 15
TE-SEM-1 HLT1IPP Introduction to Professional Practice 15
TE-SEM-1 PHE1IDH Individual Determinants of Health 15
TE-SEM-1   Students to select a first-year level elective subject to the value of 15 credit points. Any prerequisites must be met. 15
TE-SEM-2 HBS1HBB Human Biosciences B 15
TE-SEM-2 HLT1RAE Research and Evidence in Practice 15
TE-SEM-2 PHE1SDH Social Determinants of Health 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT1HVF Human Vision and Function 15
TE-SEM-2   Students to select a first-year level elective subject to the value of 15 credit points. Any prerequisites must be met. 15
Option to exit with a Diploma in Health (HDH)

Key: *ABS0WOM is a not-for-credit subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to introduce students to Indigenous Australian perspectives, experiences, history, culture and customs.

** LTU0AIM is a zero-credit-point subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to  enhance your knowledge and awareness of issues concerning academic integrity.

First year (commencing June)

First year (135 credit points)
Teaching period Subject code Subject title Credit points
TE-SEM-2 ABS0WOM Wominjeka La Trobe: Indigenous Cultural Literacy for Higher Education* 0
TE-SEM-2 LTU0AIM Academic Integrity Module** 0
TE-W27-38 HBS1HBA Human Biosciences A 15
TE-W27-38 HLT1IPP Introduction to Professional Practice 15
TE-W27-38 PHE1IDH Individual Determinants of Health 15
TE-W42-05 HBS1HBB Human Biosciences B 15
TE-W42-05 HLT1RAE Research and Evidence in Practice 15
TE-W42-05 PHE1SDH Social Determinants of Health 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT1HVF Human Vision and Function 15
TE-SEM-2, TE-SUM1/TE-SUM2 or TE-SUM3   Students to select first-year level elective subjects to the value of 30 credit points. Any prerequisites must be met. 30
Option to exit with a Diploma in Health (HDH)

Key: *ABS0WOM is a not-for-credit subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to introduce students to Indigenous Australian perspectives, experiences, history, culture and customs.

** LTU0AIM is a zero-credit-point subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to  enhance your knowledge and awareness of issues concerning academic integrity.

Second year

Second year (150 credit points)
Teaching period Subject code Subject title Credit points
TE-SUMMER   Students to select a second-year level elective subject to the value of 15 credit points. Any prerequisites must be met. 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT2ORS Optics & Refractive State 15
TE-SEM-1 HBS2CAN Clinical Anatomy & Neurosciences 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT2PVS Ocular Physiology & Vision Science 15
TE-SEM-1 HLT2IEP Integrating Evidence into Practice 15
TE-SEM-2 HBS3PBD Pathophysiologic Basis for Disease 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT3OCP Ocular Pathology 30
TE-SEM-2 ORT3BIV Binocular Vision 15
TE-SEM-2 MIC3MCO Microbiology and Cell Biology for Orthoptics 15

Third year

Third year (135 credit points)
Teaching period Subject code Subject title Credit points
TE-SUMMER   Students to select a third-year level elective subject to the value of 15 credit points. Any prerequisites must be met. 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT3CON Concomitant Strabismus 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT3OPP Ophthalmic Pharmacology 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT3ODG Ocular Diagnostics 15
TE-SEM-1 ORT3NEO Neuro-ophthalmology 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT4INC Incomitant Strabismus 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT4EYS Eye Movement Systems 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT4OMR Ocular Management and Rehabilitation 15
TE-SEM-2 ORT4CLA Preliminary Orthoptic Clinical Practice 15

Fourth year

Fourth year (120 credit points)
Teaching period Subject code Subject title Credit points
TE-ALLL YEAR ORT5ORP Orthoptic Research Project 15
TE-WK 02-26 ORT5CLB Introductory Orthoptic Clinical Practice 30
TE-WK-11-45 ORT5CLC Intermediate Clinical Practice 30
TE-WK 27-52 ORT5CLD Advanced Clinical Practice 30
TE-SEM-2 ORT5MES Models of Eye Service Delivery 15

 

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