Florida is one of only twenty-three states that require optician licensing by law. Rules and regulations regarding optician training requirements, licensing, and certification are established by the Florida Department of Health. The following information will be relevant to you if you are wanting to be licensed as an optician in the state of Florida.
Florida State Opticianry Law:
Any person desiring to practice opticianry shall apply to the department to take a license examination. The department shall examine each applicant who the board certifies.
General Eligibility Requirements:
- Not less than 18 years of age
- Is a graduate of an accredited high school or possesses a certificate of equivalency
Technical Skills and Training Requirements:
One of the following…
- Has received an associates degree in opticianry from an educational institution
- Is an individual licensed to practice opticianry in another state and has practiced for more than 3 years immediately preceding application
- Has registered as an apprentice and complete 6,240 hours of training under the supervision of an optician
- Practiced in a state in which licensure is not required for at least five of the last seven years immediately preceding application
Opticianry Degree Programs:
Florida opticianry candidates are fortunate to have a few more degree programs available to them than most states offer. There are currently three programs from which to choose if you are wanting to pursue your opticianry degree.
1) The Broward College Vision Care Program, located in Fort Lauderdale, offers an Associate of Science (A.S.) Degree in opticianry. In order to be accepted into this program, you must meet the following requirements:
- Has a high school diploma or GED
- Has taken the Postsecondary Education Readiness Test(PERT)
- Recent ACT or SAT scores may also be used for placement
In order to receive your Associate of Science in Opticianry Degree, you must complete at least 72 hours of credit and maintain a degree GPA of 2.0 or higher. You must also receive a grade of C or higher in all degree courses. You can learn more about the details of this degree program by visiting the college website or by clicking here to view a list of required courses.
2) Hillsborough Community College, located in Tampa, offers an Opticianry Degree. In order to be eligibile for admission, all applicants are required to complete an online orientation. Step 1 of the orientation can be found by clicking here. Once you have completed Step 1, you can then continue to Step 2 which will take you through the application process. Step 2 of the orientation can be found by clicking here. To learn more about the details of this program, click here.
3) Miami Dade College, located in Miami, offers an Associate in Science Opticianry Degree. In order to become eligible for admission to this Opticianry Program, applicants must first meet the following requirements:
- At least 18 years old
- Have or will earn a high school diploma or GED
- Has taken the Computerized Placement Test (CPT)
If you have previously taken college courses, you must have maintained a GPA of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. They also require that you enroll in ENG 1101 (English Composition 1) if you have not already taken it. You must also complete HSC 0003 (Introduction to Health Care) prior to applying to the opticianry program. You can learn more about this program by clicking here.
- National Opticianry Competency Examination developed by the American Board of Opticianry
- Contact Lens Registry Examination developed by the National Contact Lens Examiners
- National Commission of State Opticianry and Regulatory Boards(NCSORB) examination
- Prior to applying to take the NCSORB National Optician’s Practical Examination you must successfully pass the National Opticianry Competency Examination and the Contact Lens Registry Examination.
- The NCSORB National Optician’s Practical Examination is given in computer testing centers on a year round basis throughout the United States in a multiple-choice and skill simulation format.
- Original certificate documenting completion of a two-hour initial licensure laws and rules course from a board approved laws and rules course provider
- Copy of certificate documenting completion of a board approved two-hour continuing education course relating to the prevention of medical errors
- Payment of initial licensure fee within one year of notification of successful passage of the licensure examination
Fees and Forms:
- Application Fee, $100
- NCSORB Examination Fee, $325
- Re-examination Fee, $275 per part
- Initial Licensure Fee, $155
- Apprentice Registration, $60
- Certification Application Fee, $50
- Application for Examination
- Apprentice Application
- Board Certification Application
- Re-examination Application
State Contact Information:
Phone: (850) 245-4474
Fax: (850) 921-5389
Board of Opticianry
PO Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6330
Web Site: Florida Department of Health
State Association: Professional Opticians of Florida