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Summary Report for:
29-1041.00 - Optometrists

Diagnose, manage, and treat conditions and diseases of the human eye and visual system. Examine eyes and visual system, diagnose problems or impairments, prescribe corrective lenses, and provide treatment. May prescribe therapeutic drugs to treat specific eye conditions.

Sample of reported job titles: Chief, Optometry Service; Doctor of Optometry (OD); Eye Clinic Manager; Independent Contractor; Optometrist; Optometrist, Owner; Optometrist, President/Practice Owner; Optometrist/Practice Owner

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Examine eyes, using observation, instruments and pharmaceutical agents, to determine visual acuity and perception, focus and coordination and to diagnose diseases and other abnormalities such as glaucoma or color blindness.
  • Prescribe, supply, fit and adjust eyeglasses, contact lenses and other vision aids.
  • Analyze test results and develop a treatment plan.
  • Prescribe medications to treat eye diseases if state laws permit.
  • Remove foreign bodies from the eye.
  • Prescribe therapeutic procedures to correct or conserve vision.
  • Educate and counsel patients on contact lens care, visual hygiene, lighting arrangements and safety factors.
  • Consult with and refer patients to ophthalmologist or other health care practitioner if additional medical treatment is determined necessary.
  • Provide patients undergoing eye surgeries, such as cataract and laser vision correction, with pre- and post-operative care.
  • Provide vision therapy and low vision rehabilitation.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

Eye charts or vision cards — Amsler grids; Pupil diameter PD rules; Single Lea symbol books; Snellen eye charts
Eye occluders — Combined cover paddle occluders; Multiple pin hole occluders; Multiple pinhole mask occluders
Ophthalmic eye test lenses or accessories — Clear 20 diopter condensing lenses; Clear 78 diopter condensing lenses; Trial lens sets; Yellow condensing lenses
Ophthalmic lens holders — 4-well lens holders; 8-well lens flippers; Halberg clips
Opticians tools or accessories — Half nylon gripping pliers; Lens calipers; Optical screwdrivers; Snipe nose pliers

Technology used in this occupation:

Accounting software — Intuit QuickBooks software
Calendar and scheduling software — Scheduling software
Data base user interface and query software — Microsoft Access; Microsoft SQL Server
Medical software — First Insight MaximEyes; HealthLine Systems Eyecom; Universal Software Solutions VersaVision; VisionScience Software Acuity Pro
Word processing software — Microsoft Word

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Knowledge

Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Biology — Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
Psychology — Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Chemistry — Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Personnel and Human Resources — Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

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Skills

Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Science — Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

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Abilities

Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

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Work Activities

Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

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Work Context

Face-to-Face Discussions — 96% responded “Every day.”
Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 78% responded “Extremely important.”
Telephone — 78% responded “Every day.”
Contact With Others — 65% responded “Constant contact with others.”
Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 91% responded “Every day.”
Deal With External Customers — 70% responded “Extremely important.”
Physical Proximity — 74% responded “Very close (near touching).”
Electronic Mail — 65% responded “Every day.”
Freedom to Make Decisions — 61% responded “A lot of freedom.”
Letters and Memos — 57% responded “Every day.”

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).
Related Experience Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.
Job Training Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.
Job Zone Examples These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include librarians, lawyers, sports medicine physicians, wildlife biologists, school psychologists, surgeons, treasurers, and controllers.
SVP Range (8.0 and above)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
91   Doctoral degree
  Professional degree Help

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Credentials

Find Training Find Certifications Find Licenses

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Interests

Interest code: ISR

Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

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Work Styles

Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.

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Work Values

Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

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Related Occupations

25-1071.00 Health Specialties Teachers, Postsecondary   Bright Outlook Bright Outlook  

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2013) $48.70 hourly, $101,290 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 33,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Much faster than average (22% or higher) Much faster than average (22% or higher)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 17,700
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

  • Optometrists external site. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.

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