MS/OD China Program
The MS/OD China Program is a unique joint degree program between Wenzhou Medical University (WMU) and the New England College of Optometry. Students who complete the program earn two degrees: the Master of Science and Doctor of Optometry degrees.
The MS/OD China curriculum combines NECO’s AODP curriculum and the master of science degree with joint clinical externships that include 6 months in Boston-based rotations and 6 months at Wenzhou Medical University.
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A Unique Perspective on Optometry
Optometric education began in 1988 at WMU and since then the discipline and profession have emerged as a five-year, medical-based program within China’s medical education system.
Students in the program receive the highest level of Optometry training and are provided with the credentials needed for positions of leadership in China’s medical education and healthcare systems. In 2000, the Ministry of Health formally accepted Optometry as a subspecialty of medicine.
In 2000 WMU and NECO initiated a unique joint-degree program to develop a group of knowledgeable and skilled optometrists in China who could assume the highest positions in China’s medical education and healthcare systems.
The program’s goal is to foster individuals trained in optometry and educated as scientists to advance the quality of eye care and the development of educational programs within the field of optometry in China.
Twelve NECO faculty members travel to Wenzhou, China to teach courses at WMU. In addition, the clinical externship established at WMU is included as an elective externship rotation site for the fourth year OD students at NECO.
Apply to the MS/OD China Program
The course of study may take 4-5 years, with 1 to 1.5 years in the U.S.
Applicants must be enrolled at Wenzhou Medical University to enter the MS/OD China Program.
Applicants are required to have a 5-year Bachelor of Medicine degree with an emphasis on optometry or ophthalmology and must meet the admissions requirements of both colleges.
Applications are submitted to Wenzhou Medical University.
Prospective students are advised to contact the International Director of the School of Optometry and Ophthalmology at Wenzhou Medical College for more information regarding the requirements for entrance into the program: Dr. Yuan Yimin, International Director, School of Optometry and Ophthalmology.
Applicants are typically interviewed by the international programs director, WMU faculty, and a faculty member from NECO. The international programs director and select WMU faculty assess applicants for eligibility.
Graduates of the MS/OD China Program have received grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, The Natural Science Foundation of Zhejiang Province, and the Ministry of Health in Beijing.
Participants have also been elected to the People’s National Congress, lectured nationally, and have provided significant continuing education in the area of contact lenses for the ophthalmic industry. Others have held these positions:
- President of Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, China
- Director of Research and Development at the Affiliated Eye Hospital, Wenzhou, China
- Director of International Programs for the School of Optometry and Ophthalmology, Wenzhou, China
- Country Coordinator of Health Services for the International Special Olympics
- Editor of Contact Lenses, Optometric Instrumentation, Visual Neurophysiology, and Ophthalmic Lenses
- Vice Director of the Affiliated Eye Hospital, Wenzhou, China
- Principal Lecturer at Wenzhou Medical College, Wenzhou, China
A closer look at your NECO journey
Taking your career and research to the next level is an important decision. We are here to support you throughout this process. Here are key insights into what you might experience throughout the program.
MS/OD China Highlight
Guang-Ji Wang, MD, OD'92
Because of the collaboration between NECO and Wenzhou Medical College, people in China now recognize the importance of seeing doctors not only for disease, but for health.
- Adjunct Professor of Optometry Research Interests: Amblyopia, Low Vision