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Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Major

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Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician

317 Associates's Degrees Annually
#86 in Popularity (Associate's)
$39,930 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician graduations there were in 2020-2021 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Associate Degree 317
Undergraduate Certificate 134
Basic Certificate 60

What Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors Need to Know

In an O*NET survey, opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.

Knowledge Areas for Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors

Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

  • 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.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • 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.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Skills for Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors

When studying opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • 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.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Abilities for Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors

As a opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician major, you will find yourself needing the following abilities:

  • 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.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

What Can You Do With a Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Opticians, Dispensing 15.1% $37,010

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician?

317 Associate's Degrees Annually
70% Percent Women
59% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
The major attracts more women than men. About 70% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician majors is as follows:

Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 29
Black or African American 33
Hispanic or Latino 111
White 113
International Students 8
Other Races/Ethnicities 23

Geographic Diversity

Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician appeals to people across the globe. About 2.5% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

The median salary for someone in a career related to opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician is $39,930. This median refers to all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for an Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Major  39,930
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )

Some degrees associated with opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician careers below.

Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 3.7%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 22.5%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 26.2%
Some College Courses 3.7%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 41.2%

Online Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Programs

In 2020-2021, 32 schools offered a opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 7 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 3 0
Associate’s Degree 27 0
Bachelor’s Degree 0 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 0 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician Worth It?

The median salary for a opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician grad is $39,930 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 0% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $600 after 20 years!


You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to opticianry/ophthalmic dispensing optician.

Major Number of Grads
Ophthalmic Technician/Technologist 211
Optometric Technician/Assistant 187
Other Ophthalmic and Optometric Support Services and Allied Professions 40


*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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