Jul 22, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

“3+4” Accelerated Program in Optometry, Salus University, B.S.

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Go to information for Pre-Medicine Programs at SFU .

Department Contact:

Chair: Dr. Justin Merry, jmerry@francis.edu, 814-471-1105
Coordinator: Dr. Susan Reimer, sreimer@francis.edu, 814-472-3086

Program Description:

Under a joint agreement between the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO)/ Salus University and SFU, undergraduate students who have successfully completed specific core course requirements at SFU may continue their education in medicine at PCO in this program of study. The program is comprised of two phases: Phase I consists of the first three years of undergraduate education at Saint Francis; Phase II consists of the remaining four years of optometry school education at PCO. Saint Francis University will confer the Bachelor of Science degree to students upon successful completion of the first year of PCO academic curriculum.

Students will be admitted to the SFU Phase (Phase I) of the program based upon the following criteria:

         SAT Scores
High School GPA
          1170 (re-centered)
3.5 on a scale of 4.0
  Potential   Additional evidence of scholarly and professional potential and desire to become a doctor of optometry.

The SAT scores (1170) and high school GPA (3.5) serve as targets for applicant selection for admission to the program; other parameters, such as personal traits and desire to become an optometrist, will also be considered for each applicant.

SFU representatives will interview applicants to the program and submit acceptable applications for review to PCO with a recommendation for provisional acceptance.

Progression and/or Retention Criteria:

To successfully complete Phase I of the program, a student must;

  • Complete the current pre-medicine curriculum at Saint Francis University, which must consist of a minimum of 90 semester hours of undergraduate education, including the required pre-requisites for Salus University PCO. Prerequisite courses must be completed with a grade of ‘C-’ or better.  Advanced Placement (AP) courses are accepted only if college credit is awarded by Saint Francis University and appears on the official undergraduate transcript.
  • Besides the required courses for Salus, the student must also complete current general education requirements, as well as their major requirements, at Saint Francis University.
  • Maintain a GPA of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale.
  • Submit a completed application to the Optometry Centralized Application Service (OptomCAS) including score results of the Optometry Admissions Test (OAT) and required letters of evaluation (scores of 300 or higher in each section of the OAT is recommended).
  • Shadow a practicing optometrist(s) in order to be familiar with the role of the optometrist as a member of the healthcare team.

Additional stipulations for matriculation are set forth in the articulation agreement between Saint Francis University and Salus University.

Students who are interested in pursuing the pre-optometry studies program in optometry should contact Dr. Susan Reimer, program coordinator.

Students can also find additional information about the program on Salus University’s website.

Student Learning Outcomes:

Learning outcomes will vary depending on the student’s major.

Estimated Completion Time:

Typically three years at Saint Francis University, plus one year at Salus University Pennsylvania College of Optometry to complete B.S.  Completion of optometry school takes a full four years at Salus University.

Capstone Requirement:

In this “3+4” program, the senior capstone requirement is satisfied by successfully completing the first year of their professional program at Salus University in good standing.

Total Credits Required:

Students pursue an existing pre-medicine program at Saint Francis University, such as the Biology, B.S. Pre-medicine Concentration or Chemistry, B.S., Pre-Medicine Concentration. See program links below.

Biochemistry, B.S., Pre-Medicine Concentration  

Biology, B.S., Pre-Medicine Concentration  

Chemistry, B.S., Pre-Medicine Concentration  

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