ABDO College announces new Optical Assistant course at Optrafair Exchange

If you want a flexible way to train your support team, giving them a vital induction into optical education, you will want to know more about the new Optical Assistant course from ABDO College.

Suitable for people who have just started working in optics, as well as those who have been in practice for some time and want to formalise their knowledge, the new Optical Assistant course is a great way to learn.

The course combines practical tasks to develop practice-based skills with online modules and workshops, the perfect way to combine study with a full-time job. Join the new Optical Assistant course and uncover just how much there is to working in eyecare. Students’ knowledge of frames and lenses will grow, allowing them to develop what they can offer patients with growing confidence and knowledge.

The course is open to all and will run every September and January. Individual tutor support ensures student success. The new workshops will cover repairs and pre-screening and take place at the National Resource Centre in Birmingham. These are included in the course but are optional for those who want to develop pre-screening and repair skills in practice instead.

ABDO College Head of Operations Stephen Hertz says, “Optical education has changed dramatically in recent years with a new focus on more on the job training. Having worked in the arena optical support training for the last few years we find that there is less demand for an examination based course at the entry level, and we are delighted to see this new course with its emphasis on in practice tasks and practical workshops. It will provide a firm foundation for people to progress to the level 4 OA and OT courses and the ophthalmic dispensing courses.”

The course has been developed in response to student and employer feedback. Rian Love is Optical Support Course Coordinator at ABDO College and he says, “We know that examinations can deter students from returning to study which is why this new course is evaluated by continuous assessment. There are no examinations and no examination fees, but the robust continuous assessment and workshops ensure that every student who completes the course is a high calibre asset to any optical practice.”

The course lasts 25 weeks and costs £795. The application deadline is 30 August 2019 for a September start. For further information and to apply for this and other courses, talk to the ABDO College team at Optrafair Exchange 2019 or find out more about ABDO College’s new course at www.abdocollege.org.uk.

Register for this year’s Optrafair Exchange, being held at the NEC in Birmingham from March 30 to April 1.

Optrafair is brought to you by the Federation of Manufacturing Opticians and MA Exhibitions, combining some of the most respected organisations serving the optical market.


The FMOs mission is to provide a national platform for optical manufacturers, suppliers, distributors and business service providers to communicate, educate and innovate. FMO plays a key role in educating the public about the importance of looking after their sight and having regular eye examinations.

MA Exhibitions

Optrafair is organised by MA Exhibitions (MAX), an award-winning exhibition business. MAX organises more than 200 events annually, from small, highly focussed seminars to large-scale events. Within MAX’s portfolio there are 14 large-scale events, spread across sectors including electronics, manufacturing, engineering, communications, education, healthcare and print.