When ophthalmic medical technicians or technologists ask to look you in the eye, they really mean it. These professionals assist ophthalmologists— or eye doctors— to provide eye care to patients. Ophthalmic medical technicians and technologists administer eye exams, dispense eye medications, and instruct patients in the care and use of corrective lenses. They take measurements of the eye with highly specialized equipment. Technologists also train and supervise technicians and assistants, take diagnostic images of patients’ eyes, and may assist with minor surgical procedures. Technicians may measure a patient’s current lenses for accuracy. Working with eyes is delicate work. It takes attention to detail and dexterity. Interpersonal skills are also important, whether comforting an anxious patient or clarifying specifications for lenses. Generally these skilled professionals work full time. Both ophthalmic medical technicians and technologists typically earn an ophthalmic technician certificate, earned in 1-2 years at a community college or professional school, then obtain a certification. When these technicians and technologists see eye to eye with their patients, better vision is in sight.
What they do:
Assist ophthalmologists by performing ophthalmic clinical functions. May administer eye exams, administer eye medications, and instruct the patient in care and use of corrective lenses.
On the job, you would:
Take and document patients' medical histories.
Conduct tonometry or tonography tests to measure intraocular pressure.
Operate ophthalmic equipment, such as autorefractors, phoropters, tomographs, or retinoscopes.
medicine and dentistry
Arts and Humanities
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
talking to others
looking for ways to help people
understanding people's reactions
communicate by speaking
listen and understand what people say
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
put together small parts with your fingers
People interested in this work like activities that include data, detail, and regular routines.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
Concern for Others
You might use software like this on the job:
Electronic mail software
high school diploma/GED or certificate after high school usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.
You might like a career in one of these industries: