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Advanced Standing International Program

Through the College’s Advanced Standing International Program (ASIP), graduates of international optometry programs may be admitted with advanced standing to the doctor of optometry degree program. ASIP students have to meet the same standards as the other program students, and reach the same competency standards in clinics in order to receive the Doctor of Optometry degree. Once admitted, ASIP students follow an intense two year curriculum, which includes one year of clinical externship rotations. Course work centers on basic sciences, disease, and advanced optometry skills and concepts.

What to Expect

ASIP students begin their studies with an intensive summer term which focuses on basic science classroom instruction and clinical care principles. In the fall and spring terms of the first year, students take classes on providing care to specific populations and on ocular disease with the traditional four year OD and AODP students. They work in a clinical setting refining their exam and ancillary testing skills and develop their differential diagnosis abilities, analytical skills, and clinical efficiency.

As a second year ASIP student, students complete four full time clinical rotations. They have a primary care, advanced care, and specialty care rotation and a fourth elective rotation. They see very different populations of patients within each rotation, providing them with a rich and challenging clinical experience. Their clinical experience at NECO prepares them for multiple career paths from which to choose, post-graduation.

A Unique Perspective

While this program helps to assist in advancing internationally-trained Optometrists to achieve their career goals, the ASIP program in Boston has also created a more dynamic, multicultural-based academic environment, giving the campus a global perspective of Optometry outside the US, expanding the administration, faculty and student knowledge of optometry worldwide.

A Precedent for Post-Graduation Success

Approximately 150 optometrists from 22 countries have received their doctor of optometry degrees from the College’s Advanced Standing International Program. Graduates of the ASIP have gone on to become faculty at optometric institutions, have been involved in curriculum development, and have become contributors, authors, and editors for journals and articles. They have also gone back to their country of origin to increase the level of optometry in their respective countries.

ASIP graduates are involved with legislative issues, are active in providing lectures of continuing education programs, have established international clinical externships, and have gone on to sub-specialize in residency programs, clinical research, and humanitarian work.

Specific Accomplishments of ASIP graduates:

  • part or full time faculty at pre-existing Optometry programs in: Argentina, Australia, Colombia, England, France, Hong Kong, Italy, South Africa, Spain, USA 
  • involvement in curriculum design of Optometry degree programs in: Argentina, Italy, South Africa, Spain 
  • contributors, editors and authors of text books, journals and articles for journals related to Optometry: Argentina, France, Italy, South Africa, Spain, US 
  • involvement in legislative issues to update and change the pre-existing Optometry law: Argentina, Italy, South Africa 
  • advocates and active participants and lecturers of continuing education programs: Argentina, Spain, South Africa, USA 
  • establishment of clinical externship programs overseas affiliated with NECO: Italy, Spain, South Africa 
  • educational program development with NECO either at certificate, degree, visiting scholar level 
  • involvement with industry and clinical research in US 
  • completion of a residency program in a sub-specialty area in US 
  • involved with developing countries and volunteer Optometric activities 
  • Fellows of the American Academy of Optometry and College of Optometrists in Vision Development