Continuing Education

Optical Sciences - Contact Lenses

Aug 24, 2020
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The location where your NAIT courses will be held.


The type of certification (degree, diploma, certificate) you will earn after completing your program.

  • Degree - NAIT offers a number of business degrees and applied science and technology degrees accredited by Alberta Advanced Education.
    Applied degree programs offer a stronger emphasis on practical applications of the concepts learned in the classroom
  • Diplomas & Certificates - These credit programs take 1 or 2 years and lead to government approved and industry-recognized credentials.
  • Journeyman Certificate - Hands-on and expert-led apprenticeship and industry training for skilled trades and technology professionals.
  • Continuing Education/Non-Credit - NAIT offers a wide range of non-credit programs and courses for personal and professional development in a number of interesting and exciting fields. These options are great for people who may be working but are interested in studying as well.

Delivery Options

The flexible schedule options for this course including time of day and full/part-time.

  • Day - Courses taking place between Monday - Friday, before 5 PM.
  • Evening/Weekend - Courses taking place on weekdays from 5 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Online - Sometimes called "Home Study" or "Computer-Based Learning"
  • Distance - Traditional correspondence format. These courses work best if you can't get to a campus or if your schedule can't accommodate fixed class times


The average or expected time it will take to complete your program.

Open Studies

Open Studies allows you to explore credit courses without applying to a program.
It is an opportunity to get a feel for school and what program you want to be in.

International Students

Program availability may be limited for international applicants. Contact your student advisor for more information.

Advanced Credit

You may apply for advanced credit once you have been accepted into the program. Advanced Credit can be Transfer Credit (for completed post-secondary courses) or PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition).

Transfer Credit

In addition to the common guidelines outlined on the Transfer and Credit Options section and on the Transfer Credit Request Form (PDF), your program has other advanced credit requirements that are applied to each request including:

  • You must have completed the course or program no more than 5 year(s) ago unless a formalized articulation agreement is in place
  • You must have a minimum mark of C- in the course(s) or program

Prior Learning and Assessment Recognition (PLAR)

If you do not qualify for transfer credit or credential recognition, Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) may be an option.

Contact the program for additional information about Advanced Credit.

Increase your knowledge and confidence with contact lenses

If you’re already a licensed and practicing optician, the additional license to dispense contact lenses can help you offer increased value to employees and clients as well as increase your opportunities in the optical industry. 

The ability to dispense contact lenses is a specialized skill, one that employers recognize as a great asset. This 1-year, independent study program is an advanced practice intended for licensed opticians that will require a qualified preceptor in your workplace to guide and directly supervise your clinical training. This training consists of 500 hours over 2 clinical practicum courses.

Employment rates reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and do not guarantee future employment opportunities.

Salaries reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and are not a guarantee of future alumni income.

Hands-on, industry-relevant skills

This program is specifically focused on the fitting of contact lenses. You’ll be introduced to the art and science of contact lens fit, design, care and management of both soft and hard lenses. We will also discuss specialty lenses and examine required follow-up procedures.

This clinical consists of on-the-job training, which will allow you to practice what you’ve learned under the direct supervision of a practicing contact lens practitioner, optometrist or ophthalmologist. 

After completion

Upon completion of the program, you will receive a NAIT certificate that will provide proof of your advanced competency with contact lenses.

After completion

Graduates of the Optical Sciences program are eligible to attempt the national licensing examination:

Graduates are also eligible for transfer credit to the following degree program:

Canadian Applicants Outside of Alberta

If you are a Canadian resident outside of Alberta, please contact the Opticians Association of Canada (OAC) for registration information and an application package. Canadian residents outside of Alberta do not apply through the Alberta Post-Secondary Application System (APAS). If you apply in error, the application fee cannot be refunded.

International Students

Since, by definition, distance learning does not require one to be in Canada, IRRC will not issue study permits or Co-Op work permits for this online program.

Learn more about Canadian immigration, and refugee and citizenship statuses

Please note that this program can only accept persons already employed in the Optical field. As such, any foreign national wanting to be admitted into this program must hold a valid work permit issued by Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). There are three valid work permit categories:

  • Temporary Foreign Worker Program: Eligible foreign nationals may be issued a work permit issued on the basis of a valid labor market impact assessment (LMIA).
  • International Experience Canada (IEC): Eligible participants in the IEC program may obtain a work permit without having to apply for an LMIA. If the participant is not able to secure authorization to work for more than one year in Canada, then the participant is responsible for securing additional authorization to work in Canada through other IRCC work permit programs.
  • Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP): Eligible participants may obtain a work permit after graduating from a Canadian Designated Learning Institution without having to apply for an LMIA.

If you have any questions about the program or application process, please contact us:



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Term Definition
Open Program still has seats available.
Waitlisting Program is full and qualified applicants are being placed on a waitlist. For information about waitlists, please visit the Waitlist FAQs.

If you’re on a non-competitive waitlist, you should consider NAIT’s Academic Upgrading program or NAIT Equivalency Tests to become a more competitive applicant.

There is no guarantee that waitlisted applicants will be offered a seat, however it is common for seats to become available until the start of class. As seats become available, they are filled from the waitlist.
Closed Program is no longer accepting applications.
N/A Not available for this term.

*Program availability is subject to change without notice.