School of Health and Life Sciences

Optical Sciences - Eyeglasses

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Opticianry is a growing industry that involves the fitting and supplying of eyeglasses. The skillful preparation and fitting of corrective lenses are vitally important to the customer's health; therefore, people entering this field require rigorous training and education. Since the work is retail-oriented, anyone considering this as a career must have great communication skills as well as a flexible schedule.

The Optical Sciences Eyeglasses Diploma is a two-year program. Students complete the theory portion online and the clinical portion (practicum) at their workplace. The practicum consists of on-the-job training, similar in nature to an apprenticeship. Students perfect their skills under the direct supervision of a qualified preceptor at their place of employment.

Quick Facts

Campus: Main

Any in-person components of your courses will be delivered at NAIT's Main Campus in Edmonton. View map

Delivery Options:

  • Both On-Campus and Virtual - Some of your coursework will be in-person, on campus and some will be done online.

Open Studies: Not Available

This program does not currently have any courses available for Open Studies.

International Students: Not Accepted

This program is not accepting international students for this intake.

Grad Employment Rate

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

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Median Starting Salary

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

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Enter the workforce with confidence

Upon successful completion of this program, you can expect to find work as a licensed optician in:

  • retail dispensaries
  • low vision practices
  • refractive surgery clinics

You could also go on to obtain certificates in contact lens fitting and refracting.

NAIT's Optical Sciences Eyeglasses program is a fully accredited program. After successful completion, you can take the national licensing examination to practice in Canada: National Association of Canadian Opticians Regulators (NACOR). After passing the exam, you can continue to the Optical Sciences Contact Lens program.

Flexible programming

In order to provide maximum flexibility to complete your courses on evenings and weekends, we have designed this program to be taken online. However, during your first and second year, you will be required to attend 2 full-day labs. These labs are completed in either Edmonton or Calgary. If you qualify for distance status, you may opt to complete these labs at your place of work.

The rest of the program, including course material and assessments, is accessible through Moodle, NAIT’s online eLearning system. This method of delivery allows you to participate in course forums and access learning materials whenever you want, from the comfort of your own home, office, or local coffee shop.

Canadian Applicants Outside 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.

IMPORTANT NOTE FOR RESIDENTS OF LLOYDMINSTER: If your practicum is located on the Alberta side of the border, you follow the same application process as the Canadian residents in Alberta (i.e., apply through APAS and complete your application checklist). If your practicum is located on the Saskatchewan side of the border, you follow the same application process as the Canadian residents outside of Alberta (i.e., DO NOT apply through APAS – contact the OAC instead).

International Students

Some NAIT programs are unavailable to international students because they do not meet eligibility for a study permit or Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). 

  • Study Permit: This program is delivered through distance learning and therefore does not meet the criteria for a study permit.
  • Co-Op: Due to this program not meeting the criteria of a study permit, it also does not meet the criteria for a Co-Op Work Permit.
  • Post-Graduation Work Permit: This program is delivered through distance learning and therefore is not eligible for the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Program. Completion of this program will not make you eligible for a PGWP.

International students who have questions about permissions to take this program can contact a NAIT Academic Advisor – International to discuss options.

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

Read more about advanced credit or contact us about applying for credit for this program.

Courses

Expand each course below to see details about credits, requisites, scheduling, and more.

Tuition & Fees

Scholarships & Awards

How to Apply

Want to learn more about this program?

Thank you for your interest! We want to get you in contact with the right person to answer your questions.

Please contact the Student Service Centre for general inquiries such as:

  • Student application support
  • Program entrance requirements, tuition & fees, and how to apply
  • Program admissions process
  • Enrolment support
  • Student funding options
  • Fee and refund inquiries
  • General program and course withdrawal procedures
  • Navigating nait.ca and MyNAITPortal

Contact Student Service Centre

Please fill out the form below if you have any program-specific questions relating to:

  • Program details
  • Work-integrated learning and cooperative education
  • Advance credit and Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition (PLAR)
  • Program and course withdrawal



The personal information on this form is being collected under the authority of the Post-secondary Learning Act and section 33(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP). The information will be protected by the provisions of FOIP, and will be used for the purpose of registration and administration of the event. If you have any questions or concerns about the collection, use, security or disclosure of the personal information, please contact General Council at 780.471.7664 or legal@nait.ca.

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Learn how to register through Alberta Post-Secondary Application System (APAS) or begin the application process.

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