Optometry School Cost

How much does optometry school cost?

Some of the most rewarding careers are in the world of medicine, and optometrists – eye doctors – are an essential part of the medical profession in this country. The cost of training to be an optometrist can vary greatly as there is much study involved, but there are ways to keep costs as low as possible.

General Cost

• There are less than 20 colleges in the USA that offer licensed and recognised optometry courses.
• Fees for these range between $40,000 to $80,000 for the full course – that is over a number of years – for resident students.
• Non resident students can expect to pay anywhere between $90,000 and $180,000.
• The cost varies depending on the course and the institution – the University of California is at the top of the tree while Indiana University can work out considerably cheaper.
• There are private courses in optometry that can be studied, with prices ranging from $15000 to $30,000 per year – check out www.sco.edu/financialaid/Pages/stdbudget.aspx - the Southern College of Optometry – for added information on the course available there.

Extra Cost

• Books and materials for optometry courses can be quite expensive – allow at least $6000 over the four years for books and additional for added materials.
• Exams leading to licences will be necessary whether on a state university course or a private one, and total almost $4000 over the length of the course.
• Accommodation is a major factor in the student’s financial accounts, and costs will depend on where you study and the type of accommodation you choose. Check with the chosen university for details and help.


• You may qualify for financial aid from the government or other national bodies.
• Check out the Federal Aid possibilities with the college concerned and make sure you fill in the relevant applications.
• Have a good look at www.aaopt.org/aof/scholarship/index.asp - the American Academy of Optometry – where you can find information on a number of possible scholarships and financial aid options that you may qualify for.


• Check if your chosen university allows students to become residents when studying and, therefore, to take advantage of discounts allowed for residents – many do, and some do not.
• Look for students in higher years selling their early years course books – it can save you a surprising amount of money.
• Check for any state aid that may not be well publicized – it can only be to your benefit.

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