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Accelerated Optometric Degree Program (AODP) Admissions

The Accelerated Optometric Degree Program is designed for medical doctors and/or scientists who wish to become doctors of optometry.


Application Information for AODP

Applicants to the AODP must hold doctorate level degrees in a science or medicine. Applicants demonstrate high scholarship in previous graduate study, as well as a firm career commitment to optometry. 

Application Fees

Application Deadline

Please note: The AODP program is currently under internal review with start dates and changes to the format of the program in discussion. We will provide more information as soon as it becomes available.  The program has been temporarily suspended for February 2019. A revised program may proceed later in 2019 or may be put on hold until details are confirmed for 2020.   In the event the program does not run during the 2019 calendar year, we will hold applications for review for the following cycle and advise applicants on a case-by-case basis.

All application and required credentials/application requirements (transcripts, test scores, etc.) must be completed and received by the Office of Admissions on or before September 15.

Decision Date

Final decisions for acceptance are made by November 15 of the year preceding matriculation in February.

Application Instructions  

1. AODP Application Form

You may download the form here. Please send completed applications to: New England College of Optometry, Attention: Audrey Burgess, Office of Admissions, 424 Beacon Street, Boston, MA 02115   617-587-5625  burgessa@neco.edu.  Paper application packets may also be requested through the Office of Admissions.

2. Three Personal Essays

The AODP application contains three essay questions. Answers to these questions must be typed or printed clearly and additional separate sheets of paper need to be used for each essay. Please see the application form for details.

3. Transcripts from Each College and/or University Ever Attended

  • Official transcripts must be sent by the issuing institution directly to the Office of Admissions at the New England College of Optometry. All transcripts must be stamped with the school stamp or seal. Please do not send copies (original or notarized) of your transcript with the application, as we only accept originals sent directly from institutions.
  • If your transcripts do not include the name of the degree received, dates of attendance, and the date that the degree was awarded (month, day and year), a letter must be sent with the transcripts that includes that information.
  • World Education Service Evaluation of Foreign Transcripts: Any transcript(s) from a university outside of the United States or Canada will need to be evaluated by WES. A course-by-course evaluation is required. For additional information, visit www.wes.org.
  • Please send the Application for Evaluation of Foreign Educational Credentials to:  World Education Services, PO Box 745, Old Chelsea Station, New York, NY 10113-0745

4. Language Testing Scores

Only one language test is required, either the Test of English as a Foreign Language Scores or the International English Language Testing System Scores (TOEFL or IELTS). You must take one of the exams.

TOEFL: 

  • Applicants whose native language is not English may take the Internet-based TOEFL test. You must take the iBT, the Internet-based version of the exam. A total score of 88, including a 22 on the speaking section, is required. Please contact the Office of Admissions for details. Please instruct the Educational Testing Service to send official score reports to NECO.
  • For additional information, contact:  TOEFL Services, PO Box 6151, Princeton, NJ, 08541  TOEFL
  • The admissions committee reserves the right to require applicants to undergo further language testing and instruction as necessary.

IELTS

  • Applicants whose native language is not English may also take the IELTS exam. A minimum total score of 6.5, including a 7 on the speaking section, is required. Please contact the Office of Admissions for details. Please instruct the IELTS to send official score reports to NECO.
  • For additional information, please visit the IELTS website. The admissions committee reserves the right to require applicants to undergo further language testing and instruction as necessary.

5. Two Letters of Recommendation

These letters provide important insights into each candidate as a student, employee, and person. The recommendation forms are included in the downloaded application packet. The form should be mailed by the recommender to the Accelerated Optometry Degree Program at NECO directly, as a confidential document.  The recommendation forms should be completed by other optometrists/ophthalmologists, college/optometry school faculty, or supervisors/colleagues who are familiar with your professional work.

6. Curriculum Vitae

A detailed and typed curriculum vitae should be included with your application.

7. The Optometry Admissions Test (OAT)

The Optometry Admissions Test is required and should be taken as early as possible in the application cycle. You must elect to have your scores reported to NECO in order for us to consider your application. Often candidates seek to re-take the OAT and must wait 90 days to do so. It is advisable to plan for a possible re-take of the OAT within the calendar of the application process.


Candidate Interviews

Applicants are invited for interviews on an individual basis, after all parts of the AODP application have been submitted. In most cases, an interview is required for admission to the program. When the applicant is unable to come to the College for an interview, a phone call or Internet-based video interview may be substituted in its place. All invitations for interviews will be handled by the NECO Office of Admissions.

Support During the Application Process

The NECO admissions staff is committed to assisting all students who express an interest in submitting an application to the College. Candidates will receive periodic updates on the state of their applications throughout the process. Please feel free to contact a member of our staff with any questions during the application process.