New England College of Optometry 2014-2015 Catalog
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Academic Policies

Degree Requirements

Students are required to apply to the Registrar’s Office for the award of any degree at the College. 

Students eligible for a first professional degree (OD), graduate degree (MS) or a specially devised curriculum for an undergraduate optometry degree should contact the Registrar’s Office six months in advance of when they are expected to complete their program to complete a Diploma Application if they have not received prior notification from the Registrar’s Office.

A student who has not earned a bachelor’s degree prior to enrolling in the four-year first professional program may apply for the Bachelor of Science in Optometry degree.  At the beginning of the second year of study, the student must submit a written request to the Registrar stating that he/she has not received a bachelor’s degree and requesting to be evaluated for eligibility to receive the College’s bachelor’s degree.  Because a student is not eligible for the bachelor’s degree after graduation from the College, any deficiencies in the undergraduate course requirements must be completed prior to receipt of the Doctor of Optometry degree.

In order to be eligible for the bachelor’s degree, the student must:

  • Hold no prior bachelor’s degree;
  • Have successfully completed (C or above) at least twelve semester hours of Social Science and twelve semester hours of Humanities at the undergraduate level (Information regarding the categorization of courses may be obtained from the Registrar’s Office.);
  • Have successfully completed two years of study at the New England College of Optometry;
  • Have not yet received the Doctor of Optometry degree.

Degrees will be conferred pursuant to the completion of the following requirements:

  • Curriculum Requirements – All didactic and clinical requirements for the degree must have been completed successfully.
  • Academic Requirements – A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.000 with no outstanding grades of Failure, Remedial, or Incomplete is required in a first professional program. For a graduate program a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.000 is required with no outstanding grades of Failure or Incomplete. (The cumulative GPA is not a rounded number.  Example: a cumulative GPA of 1.999 does not qualify a student in a first professional program to graduate.)
  • Professional Conduct Requirement – No student will be allowed to graduate with charges or pending actions.
  • Thesis Requirement for Graduate Program only – An approved thesis must be defended and submitted.
    Requirements for MS/OD China Program only The award of the MS degree and passing Part I of the board exam is required prior to the OD degree being awarded.
  • Faculty and Board of Trustees Approval – Conferring of a degree requires formal approval by the Faculty and Board of Trustees.
  • Fiscal Requirements – All fiscal obligations must have been satisfied at least one week prior to the conferring of a degree.  These include tuition and fees, expenses incurred at the clinic and Campus Store, library charges and/or other fees.
  • Financial Aid – A student who has received financial aid must have an exit interview with a member of the Financial Aid Office.