Pre-Optometry Post-Baccalaureate Program

Students studying outside

Program Description 

Students with an eye toward a career in optometry will thrive with an education from Rockhurst University thanks to a thorough foundation built in the basic sciences, personal support throughout the application timeline and access to admission representatives and practicing alumni in the optometry field.

Rockhurst’s pre-optometry program is strengthened by an active group of students and leadership opportunities in health-related student organizations. In addition, the Pre-Health committee, comprised of the Pre-Health directors and faculty on our Kansas City, Missouri, campus, provides pre-optometry learners with a genuine interview experience and assessment process, including comprehensive feedback on application materials and personal statements.

Learning Outcomes 

“Doctors of Optometry are the primary health care professionals for the eyes. Optometrists examine, diagnose, treat and manage diseases, injuries and disorders of the visual system, the eye and associated structures as well as identify related systemic conditions affecting the eye.” 
– American Optometric Association

Course Map 

Pre-optometry students work with their Pre-Health advisors to develop courses that prepare them for their chosen optometry programs.

Typical course requirements for pre-optometry include:

  • General Chemistry I and II (8 hours)
  • General Biology I and II (8 hours)
  • Immunology (4 hours)
  • Microbiology (4 hours)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II (8 hours)
  • Organic Chemistry (8 hours)
  • Biochemistry (3 hours)
  • Physics I and II (8 hours)
  • Mathematics (3-4 hours)
  • Psychology (3 hours)
  • Sociology (3 hours)      

Prospective Students 

Current Students 


  • Optics coursework available in the Physics of Medicine program
  • Alumni medical networks in Kansas City and St. Louis, Missouri, and Omaha, Nebraska, to create shadowing opportunities
  • Pre-Health Blackboard page to announce upcoming opportunities for research, volunteering and shadowing 
  • Annual meetings with regional and local admissions representatives from professional health programs
  • Class sizes less than 48 and instructed by full-time faculty
  • Open-door access to professors
  • Personalized advising
  • Tutoring and supplemental instruction at no cost
  • Kaplan Institutional Partnership with half-price MCAT, DAT, OAT, PCAT and GRE courses
  • In the past five years, 77% of students placed in health care professional programs


"My wish for each student at Rockhurst is to find the career they were made for. Prayer during a crossroads in my junior year led me to pursue optometry. I feel blessed to be a vision health care provider — and am constantly in awe of the amazing gift of sight."

– Remi Miljavac
Optometrist at Family Vision Center
University of Missouri-St. Louis College of Optometry 2011
B.S. in Biology 2005