Guidelines for Applying to Optometry School

1. OAT

Make arrangements to take the DAT if you have not done so already.  Continue to prepare for the test.   **Please release your OAT scores to the UAlbany pre-health advisor.**

2. Centralized Applications

Access the OptomCAS application on the web.  YOU must submit the application online.  Read the General Instructions prior to beginning the application.

www.optomcas.org

NOTE:  The application will open on July 1, 2013.  If you have not yet taken the OAT, we highly recommend that you spend the bulk of your time and energy on OAT preparation.  That being said, you want to apply early.  A September submission is a good goal.
**Please release your application information to the UAlbany pre-health advisor. **
 

3. Official Transcripts

  • Make arrangements to have your official transcript sent from the UAlbany Registrar’s Office directly to OptomCAS. This request can be made online through myUAlbany. There is a Transcript Matching Form in your OptomCAS application that you can print out as well.   OptomCAS will use the official transcript to verify your application.  The pre-health advising office DOES NOT send out transcripts.  Please see the Registrar’s Office website for more details: http://www.albany.edu/registrar/transcripts.html
  • AP and IB credits are not identified on your official transcript as particular courses.  They will be identified by the number of credits only (i.e. transfer credits: 7).  If you have AP or IB credit that you want to use to fulfill some of your pre-requisites (i.e. AMAT 112 or AENG 121), you can request that the Registrar’s Office writes a letter attachment to your official transcript that verifies that you have 4 credits of AMAT 112 and 3 credits of AENG 121, etc (whatever the AP credits are).  Dean Knapton is generally the person in the Registrar's office that does this.
  • If you have transfer work, you must also have transcripts sent directly from each institution you’ve attended (even University in the High School credit). 
  • The COURSEWORK section of the application requires you to list every college course ever taken.  We recommend that you request an official transcript(s) for your own personal use to fill out this section.  Be as error free as possible to avoid problems in verifying your application later.

4. Letters of Evaluation and Committee Evaluation

The Pre-health advising office sends an electric PDF document of your letters to OptomCAS.  In addition to the pre-health committee evaluation, the Pre-health advising office will also upload the individual letters of recommendation from your pre-health file.  This PDF document will be considered as ONE LOR entry. We DO NOT send resumes or personal statements (you will be asked for this info in another part of the application).

 

  • You may designate a maximum of four letters of recommendation in this section (the committee eval and supporting letters constitutes ONE LOR).
  • Choose to have your Committee Evaluation and supporting letters submitted ElectronicallyWe DO NOT send paper copies.  Again, this is will be considered as ONE LOR.  You still have the option of sending 3 additional letters (these would be letters we do not have in your file, i.e. you’ve recently been shadowing an optometrist who will be writing you a letter of recommendation in August, etc.). 
  • Use Kimberly Kerker's email and contact information as the evaluator of the committee letter

5. Submitting Your Letters of Recommendation to OptomCAS

Once you complete the information above for LORs, OptomCAS Donna LaHue so that she can submit your letters electronically.

Once you’ve submitted your OptomCAS, email Kimberly Kerker (kkerker@albany.edu) with the following information so that we can keep your pre-health file up to date:

      1. OptomCAS ID #
      2. List of all optometry schools to which you are applying. 

6. Some Last Thoughts

  • Read the Instruction Manual!  The OptomCAS Instructions and FAQ section are extremely useful when you have questions about the application.  Please see these sections first before contacting us.
  • Early submission is good, but Error Free is better.  Be complete and accurate in your application.
  • Before submitting, print out the application to double check your data.  If there are mistakes, the optometry schools will see them!
  • Log back into the application periodically to check on your application status.
  • Keep your contact information up to date with OptomCAS and Advisement Services.
  • Know your deadlines and keep track of them!

 

7. Contact Information

Kimberly Kerker                            
Pre-health Advisor                             
Advisement Services Center
LI 36
1400 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY  12222
KKerker@albany.edu
518-442-3974

Donna LaHue
Pre-Health Office Manager
Advisement Services Center
LI 36
1400 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY  12222
dlahue@uamail.albany.edu
518-442-3964