La Trobe University

Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Orthoptics


Start dates
Semester 1 (March)
4 years full-time as accelerated (equivalent to 4.5 years full-time study). Some students may take longer.
Fees and costs
CSP contribution band 2
This degree gives you the knowledge you need to detect, diagnose and treat vision and eye problems in both children and adults.

Your first year will cover the fundamentals of applied science. You'll then go on to study the components of the eye, learn about conditions like cataracts and infection, and build knowledge of the different forms of rehabilitation available to patients.

Along with this fundamental knowledge, you'll develop an understanding of neuroscience, pathology and pharmacology in your applied science studies.

In the last 18 months of your course, you will participate in four block clinical placements. You will undertake placements in hospitals with dedicated ophthalmology programs such as the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, Alfred Health, the Royal Children's Hospital or with one of the Orthoptic Clinical School Network's private or public practices around Melbourne. You will also complete one placement outside Melbourne with one of our partner clinics in regional Australia, interstate or overseas in places like Auckland, London, New York, Dubai and Singapore. These placements will test your classroom knowledge in a practical environment, demonstrating your ability to detect eye conditions and administer treatments to a range of patients.

The course structure lets you complete the required subjects for this 4.5 year degree in only four years.

The qualification awarded on graduation is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) as Level 9.

Entry requirements


VCE Units 3 and 4: a study score of at least 30 in English (EAL) or at least 25 in English other than EAL; and a study score of at least 25 in two of Biology, Chemistry, any Mathematics, Physical Education or Physics. NB: Meeting minimum prerequisites does not guarantee an offer of a place. Entry into all La Trobe courses is based on competitive selection and there may be limited places available.

Special consideration

A study score of 30 in any Mathematics, Physical Education or any Science equals 4 aggregate points per study. A study score of 25 in Health And Human Development equals 4 aggregate points. A study score of 20 in any LOTE equals 4 aggregate points per study. Overall maximum of 12 points.

Advanced standing - credit for prior study

Advanced Standing is the recognition of previous study or learning that can be counted towards a qualification. This can reduce the number of subjects required to complete your course. The amount of credit received depends on the level and relevance of your previous tertiary study and the number of subjects completed.

Visit our Advanced standing information to see if advanced standing is available for this course.


If you wish to delay your studies until a later time, it may be possible for you to defer. Find out if you can defer.

Career outcomes

Professional recognition

The Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Orthoptics is accredited by the Australian Orthoptic Board (AOB). Professional registration may require an application to the professional body and may have additional or ongoing requirements beyond the completion of the degree. Please contact the relevant professional body for details. Graduates of the Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Orthoptics may apply for membership with Orthoptics Australia, the International Orthoptic Association, and the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists. Membership may be subject to additional or ongoing requirements beyond completion of the degree. Please contact the relevant professional body for details.

Fees and scholarships

Course fees

CSP contribution band 2

Additional costs

Students must purchase a uniform for clinical placements which includes an Orthoptic Discipline shirt (AUD$60), a name tag (AUD$12) and approved black pants or skirt. Orthoptic equipment will also be necessary, at a cost of about AUD$400. Travel and accommodation costs for clinical placement may also be incurred and will vary according to the venue. All students must obtain a Police Certificate (Victorian Police Certificate or Fit2Work) - AUD$20.00 (annually) and a Working with Children Check (no cost). A schedule of mandatory immunisations are required, the costs of which may vary depending on previous immunisation history, approximately AUD$250 -AUD$500. Students can purchase books and equipment from any supplier; however LTU branded uniforms must be purchased from a university approved vendor; these items remain the student's personal property. Please note that all costs are approximate and are subject to change.


Scholarships are available for both current and future students. Find out what La Trobe scholarship opportunities might be available to you.

How to apply

How to apply for an undergraduate degree To find out more about this course and studying at La Trobe: - ask us a question - chat online - visit our FAQ page - connect with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram - call us on 1300 135 045.

Additional information

This course has a clinical component. For further information, please visit the Professional Placements website.

Advanced Standing (credit)

If you have undertaken previous tertiary study, you may be eligible for credit towards your course. This is called Advanced Standing. It is important to note that Advanced Standing for this course is limited given this course is designated for entry into first year only Find out more

See Student Handbook for more details

The Handbook contains detailed course information designed for enrolled students, including course structures, electives and options. The delivery of this course can vary between campuses.