How to Become an Optician in Massachusetts

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How to Become an Optician in Massachusetts

So, you decided you want to start a new career as an optician.

In that case, you should first decide where to work.

if you are based in Massachusetts, you should know what the laws are in this state.

Explore the optician career in Massachusetts by delving into this informative article!

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Optician Job Duties

The responsibilities of this professional extend beyond customer relations to encompass various daily tasks.

These include:

  • Conducting eyeglass and contact lens fittings
  • Assisting clients in selecting the perfect frame
  • Managing inventory and sales records
  • Interpreting prescriptions accurately
  • Repairing damaged frames
  • Ensuring proper adjustments for a comfortable eyeglass fit
  • Monitoring and tracking orders

While these tasks only represent a portion of the responsibilities you will encounter as an optician, they are some of the most common duties.

Acquiring a specialized diploma is needed if you intend to dispense contact lenses in your role as an optician.

Optician Training in Massachusetts

Securing a license in the field typically demands a formal education.

Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology

This Institute offers an Associate of Science in Opticianry.

The program lasts for about 2 years and can be attended by those dreaming of an optician career.

However, with this degree, you have several careers to choose from:

  • Apprentice Optician
  • Licensed Optician
  • Optometrist
  • Ophthalmologist

MCPHS University

At this university, you can attend a program that awards a Doctor of Optometry degree.

The class holds only 64 students, thus everyone will have more time with their teachers if needed.

The duration of the program is 4 years.

New England College of Optometry

Since this college centers on optometry offers several training options.

They award either certificates or a Doctorate.

What’s even better is the 2 locations where these programs are offered at.

School Name Address
Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology 41 Berkeley St, Boston, MA 02116
New England College of Optometry 424 Beacon St, Boston, Massachusetts 02115
MCPHS University 179 Longwood Ave, Boston, Massachusetts 02115-5896
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Admission requirements are common across these institutions, with prerequisites including:

  • A high school diploma or GED
  • Completing specific classes with a minimum grade of C
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • OAT scores – not older than 5 years
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75

Prospective students exploring education options can consider institutions in other states or online programs.

You need to ensure that the chosen program is accredited by the Commission on Opticianry Accreditation.

Formal studies cover a diverse range of subjects, like:

  • Introduction to Optometry
  • Ocular Anatomy
  • Systems 1: Neuroscience
  • Ocular Microbiology
  • Ophthalmic Imaging
  • Public Health Optometry
  • Glaucoma
  • Physics
  • Math,
  • English

Alternatively, apprenticeships provide another avenue into the field, with prerequisites including:

  • At least 6,000 hours in a minimum of 3 years
  • At least 3,000 hours in at least 18 months combined with an accredited opticianry program

Embarking on either educational path equips individuals with the necessary skills and knowledge for a successful career in opticianry.

Certification or Licensure for an Optician in Massachusetts

Securing licensure in the field demands the successful completion of the following:

  • American Board of Opticianry’s Certification (ABO)
  • National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE) certification exams, both of which are prerequisites.

Each of these pivotal exams incurs an approximate cost of $200, a financial aspect often alleviated by employers who frequently cover the fees.

Aspiring opticians can gauge their proficiency by opting for exams at varying difficulty levels, ranging from Beginner to Intermediate and Advanced.

For the ABO test, candidates must demonstrate:

  • Mastery in reading prescriptions,
  • Proficiency in fitting and dispensing spectacles
  • The utilization of standard ophthalmic equipment.

The NCLE assesses competence in dispensing contact lenses.

Competencies for this examination include knowledge of pre-fitting for lenses, diagnostic fitting, dispensing of lenses, patient education, delivery, and follow-up.

Candidates have the flexibility to undertake these exams in either English or Spanish, conducted at any Prometric testing center.

Upon achieving a minimum score of 70% in each exam, individuals earn their certifications, which necessitate renewal every three years.

To formalize the certification process, passing scores, alongside requisite documentation, must be submitted to the Board of Registration of Dispensing Opticians.

Optician Certification Renewal

The optician’s license mandates renewal every two years.

This requires the completion of 12 contact hours of continuing education to stay abreast of advancements in the field.

This commitment ensures that licensed opticians maintain their proficiency and contribute to the evolving landscape of opticianry.

Optician Salary in Massachusetts

In this state, opticians earn a median salary of $57,800 annually, despite holding an entry-level job.

While predicting your exact earnings upon securing a position is challenging, the following table may provide some valuable insights.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Newton $59,800
Malden $59,800
Revere $59,800
Westwood $58,800
Stoughton $57,900
Boxborough $57,900
Braintree $57,900
Fitchburg $56,600
Barnstable $56,500
Hyannis $56,300

Regional Salary in Massachusetts

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Barnstable Town, MA50$67,420$32.41$82,450$50,430
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH740$67,280$32.35$89,440$37,120
Leominster-Gardner, MA40$60,640$29.15$76,330$40,190
New Bedford, MA30$64,240$30.88$74,600$47,790
Springfield, MA-CT130$65,040$31.27$79,940$45,760
Worcester, MA-CT110$63,960$30.75$78,120$45,530
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Opticians, Dispensing, OCC Code 29-2081, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I find work as an optician in Massachusetts?

If you’re uncertain about the potential workplaces for opticians in Massachusetts, here’s a comprehensive list to guide you:

  • Retail Stores
  • Corporate Offices
  • Optometry Practices
  • Hospitals
  • Medical Clinics

How can I stay updated on changes to the regulations regarding opticians in Massachusetts?

If you are interested in more career resources, check out the following:

  • American Board of Opticianry (ABO) and National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE)
  • Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry
  • Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
  • Board of Registration in Optometry
  • Commission on Opticianry Accreditation
  • Division of Professional Licensure Board
  • Opticians Association of Massachusetts
  • Massachusetts Eye and Ear Optometry and Contact Lens Service
  • Massachusetts Society of Optometrists

What are the skills needed by an optician in Massachusetts?

Opticians have the following abilities:

  • Attention to details
  • Good communication skills
  • Adaptable to new situations
  • Business skills
  • Physical stamina
  • Ability to perform repetitive tasks

USA Optician Schools by State

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