University bosses in Preston have announced two major new initiatives which will benefit the health sector.
The University of Central Lancashire has launched a new optometry degree programme after getting formal approval from the General Optical Council and has also signed a three-year agreement which strengthening its international presence with a leading German university in the field of health.
A new integrated masters in optometry is the first of its kind to incorporate blended learning, combining online and classroom teaching with practical experience which is work-based.
The course has been developed by UCLan to meet demands for the services of optometrists and dispensing opticians, which is set to increase as a result of the ageing population.
The course is a fast-track programme as within each calendar year, the teaching and learning will be delivered over three semesters meaning there are no long gaps between learning.
Completion of the first two years of the course will result in students being awarded the BSc (Hons) Ophthalmic Dispensing qualification with the added flexibility of being able to exit the programme at that point.
For those progressing onto the additional three years the final (fifth) year will see students combine the Optometry Scheme for Registration period along with the master’s research project module.
UCLan’s Faculty of Health and Wellbeing signed the contract with Hochschule für Gesundheit in Bochum, Germany, formalising an agreement to extend teaching, research and clinical practice over the next three years.
This will see German physiotherpists on placement at the Royal Preston Hospital and staff exchanges will see German academics enrolling on UCLan PhD programmes,