Vision Science | MS

Vision science is a broad and growing field. It encompasses numerous disciplines, such as anatomy, physiology, pathology, molecular, cellular, cognitive and behavioral neuroscience, optics, psychophysics, eye movements, perception, color vision, engineering, and computational vision, among others.

The Master of Science in Vision Science (MSVS) Program engages students in advanced study and research of the visual system and prepares them for career success in teaching and/or research in academic settings or application in the ophthalmic industry.

Faculty of Pacific University College of Optometry have expertise in numerous fields, including contact lenses, optics, ocular disease, binocular vision and learning, sports vision, vision performance, low vision, and neuroanatomy.

Students are accepted into the program with a minimum of a bachelor of science (or the equivalent). The MSVS program provides an individual with a comprehensive understanding of vision science, in-depth knowledge in a particular area within the field, and a solid training in vision research methodology.

The degree requirements include a minimum of 36 semester hours of coursework and a written thesis based upon original research. It usually takes about two years of study. 

Students who have earned a doctor of optometry degree from an accredited program in the past five years or who are studying in Pacific's OD program may take an abbreviated course of study to complete the MSVS in one year.

Graduates of the MSVS program are prepared to embark on a career in basic and/or applied vision research in an academic or ophthalmic industrial setting, continue working toward a PhD, or as clinical-trial research consultant for research institutes as well as private sectors.

The College of Optometry's Vision Science Graduate (VSG) Program also offers a PhD degree

Contact Us

For additional information and an application packet for the MSVS Program, please contact the Graduate Admission Office at 1-800-933-9308 or gradadmissions@pacificu.edu.

Pacific University College of Optometry is accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE) of the American Optometric Association.

MSVS Curriculum for Bachelor's Degree-Holders (updated on July 27, 2015)

Students entering with a bachelor of science degree, or the equivalent, can complete the Master of Science in Vision Science Program in two years.

Year 1

Fall Credits
OPT-501: Geometric & Physical Optics with Lab 3
OPT-532: Anatomy of the Visual System with Lab 3
OPT-911: Graduate Seminar in Vision Science I 2
OPT-923: Research Methodology 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 11
Spring Credits
OPT-502: Geometric & Physical Optics II with Lab 3
OPT-531: Ocular Anatomy Physiology & Biochemistry with Lab 3
OPT-912: Graduate Seminar in Vision Science II 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 9
Summer Credits
OPT-991: Research & Data Analysis Part I 2
OPT-992: Research & Data Analysis Part II 2
OPT-913: Graduate Seminar in Vision Science III 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 7

Year 2

Fall Credits
OPT-662: Visual Info Processing & Perception 4
OPT-914: Discussion of Optometric Clinical Care 1
OPT 995: Thesis Research 2
OPT xxx: (elective course)* 1
OPT xxx:: (elective course)* 1
Total 9
Spring Credits
OPT-503: Physiological Optics I with Lab 4
OPT 701: Physiological Optics II 3
OPT 915: Practice of Clinical Skills 1
OPT 995: Thesis Research (or an elective course) 2
Total 10

* A total of 46 credit hours is required, including 4 credits of elective courses.

** A one-time two credits of OPT 995 Thesis Research is required. OPT 995 Thesis Research can be taken many times to fulfill the requirement of 4 credits of electives. 

Total Credit Hours Toward MS Degree: 46

Note: Students matriculated before August 2015 need to take 41 credit hours, spread out in five semesters. 

 

MSVS Curriculum for OD Students or Degree-Holders (updated on July 27, 2015)

Year 1

Summer Credits
OPT 991: Research & Data Analysis Methods, Part 1 2
OPT 992: Research & Data Analysis Methods, Part 2 2
OPT 913: Vision Science Seminar III 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 7

... and other OD coursework

Year 2

Fall Credits
OPT 911: Vision Science Seminar I 2
OPT 923: Research Methodology 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 5
Spring Credits
OPT 912: Vision Science Seminar II 2
OPT 933: Vision Research Colloquium 1
Total 3
Summer Credits
OPT 995: Thesis Research 2
Total 2

... and other OD coursework

Year 3

Fall Credits
OPT 995: Thesis Research (or other 900-level elective) 2
Total 2
Spring Credits
OPT 995: Thesis Research (or other 900-level elective) 2
Total 2

... and other OD coursework

Total Credits Toward MS Degree: 21