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Eye Care Governance (PgCert)

  • Duration: 2 years (September start)
  • Mode: Part time distance learning

Course options See other modes of study
Start date

Open day

Find out more about studying here as a postgraduate at our next Open Day.

Why study this course

The PgCert in Eye Care Governance seeks to provide those involved in the governing of eye care with a qualification that is currently not provided.

The Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) in Optometry in Eye Care Governance is a 60 credit Level 7 qualification, which seeks to provide those involved in the governing of eye care in the UK with a professional qualification. Whilst we also run highly successful qualifications for those involved in clinical practice, this qualification is aimed at those who undertake clinical governance and advisory roles in the sector.

Starting in September, this course consists of three core modules – leadership skills, evidence-based eye care and audit, and legal aspects of UK optometry – as well as a free choice of 20 credits to allow students to follow their interests and increase their knowledge and understanding of a specific area. The aim of the course is to provide eye care professionals with the skills required to successfully oversee ophthalmic services, with the opportunity to become effective leaders within the sector, and with a comprehensive overview of their legal obligations in optometric practice in the UK.

Several modules are aligned with nationally agreed competency standards – for example, the Low Vision Service Wales and the MECS scheme among others.

Students who have evidence of achieving such standards within the last three years can present this to the Director of the programme for consideration for approved prior learning (APL) accreditation, where module credits would be given to the student in recognition of their prior achievements.

Distinctive features

  • The opportunity to learn with one of the leading Optometry Schools in Europe, rated excellent for teaching and research.
  • The involvement of research-active staff in course design and delivery.
  • The variety of modules on offer.
  • The flexibility of open learning.
  • The only eye care governance course available in the UK.

Where you'll study

School of Optometry and Vision Sciences

Our students benefit from hands on experience, outstanding optometry facilities and involvement from our internationally renowned staff.

  • icon-chatGet in touch
  • Telephone+44 (0)29 2087 6316
  • MarkerMaindy Road, Cathays, Cardiff, CF24 4HQ

Admissions criteria

In order to be considered for an offer for this programme you will need to meet all of the entry requirements. Your application will not be progressed if the information and evidence listed is not provided.

If you are registered with the GOC, with your online application you will need to provide:

  1. Evidence of full GOC registration (UK students). If you are registered with the GOC, you must provide your GOC number in the Membership of Professional Bodies section of the application form.

If you are not registered with the GOC, with your online application you will need to provide:

  1. A copy of your certificate and transcripts which show you have achieved an honours degree in Optometry or a professional optometric qualification. If your certificate or result is pending, please upload any interim transcripts or provisional certificates.
  2. A copy of your IELTS certificate with an overall score of 6.5 with 5.5 in all subskills, or evidence of an accepted equivalent. Please include the date of your expected test if this qualification is pending. If you have alternative acceptable evidence, such as an undergraduate degree studied in the UK, please supply this in place of an IELTS.

Application Deadline

We allocate places on a first-come, first-served basis, so we recommend you apply as early as possible. Applications normally close at the end of August but may close sooner if all places are filled.

Selection process

We will review your application and if you meet all of the entry requirements, we will make you an offer. 

Find out more about English language requirements.

Applicants who require a Student visa to study in the UK must present an acceptable English language qualification in order to meet UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) requirements.

Criminal convictions

You are not required to complete a DBS (Disclosure Barring Service) check or provide a Certificate of Good Conduct to study this course.

If you are currently subject to any licence condition or monitoring restriction that could affect your ability to successfully complete your studies, you will be required to disclose your criminal record. Conditions include, but are not limited to:

  • access to computers or devices that can store images
  • use of internet and communication tools/devices
  • curfews
  • freedom of movement
  • contact with people related to Cardiff University.

Course structure

The majority of the course will be delivered via Learning Central, the University's e-Learning system. You will have access to multimedia lecture presentations, supporting resources and discussions led by course tutors. On many of the modules leading educators in the field also provide practical skills workshops and tutorials. Formative and summative assessment is via online multiple choice questions, submitted written coursework and assignments (including group wikis and blogs) plus practical exams where appropriate.

Three of the modules are compulsory, and the further twenty credits can be taken from the wide variety available.

Some modules have pre-requisite partner modules.

Modules start at varying points throughout the year and the PGT team can advise students on the best order in which to study them according to personal circumstances.

The remaining 20 credits can be made up of any of our other modules.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2024/25 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2024.

Year one

Year two

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

Learning and assessment

How will I be taught?

Modules may differ, but you can expect to be taught online (via lectures and webinars), and by attending workshops for clinical modules.

Lectures are supported by the appropriate references and resources, and accompanied by assessment exercises. Participation in moderated online discussions is a feature in almost all modules. Practical workshops for skills training will be held at locations convenient to either the module content or the student cohort enrolled at that time, and instructed by educational leaders in that discipline.

How will I be assessed?

The assessment activities have been specifically designed to facilitate participants’ learning and achievement. All assessment elements are compulsory.

Assessment varies across the modules, but includes:

  • Written reports
  • Coursework assessment
  • Multiple choice questions (MCQ)
  • Practical examinations
  • Key Features Scenarios (used in medical education to test clinical reasoning, problem-solving ability and the ability to apply given knowledge)
  • OSCE's – Objective Structured Clinical Examinations
  • Group wikis
  • Blogs.

Feedback from assessments will be provided in written format for written reports and coursework, and written and/or oral for practical examinations and presentations. Scientific discussion via online forums will be moderated by module leaders, allowing them immediate input and opportunity to offer feedback. Students will need to pass each individual component in order to pass the module.

How will I be supported?

At the beginning of your course there is a compulsory online induction module.

This will help you find your way around Learning Central and it will also provide general information including about the personal tutor system, and how our administration and IT teams will support you.

At the start of each semester you will be advised of who your Module Leader is. At the beginning of each year a Chair of the Student Panel will be appointed and this will be communicated to all students.

Throughout the course Administration Staff, Module Leaders and Tutors, and Personal Tutors are available via email. The Student Support Service at Cardiff University is able to help with many diverse issues should you feel unable to approach staff in the Optometry department.

What skills will I practise and develop?

By fully engaging in this course, you should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate knowledge at the forefront of a range of disciplines within optometry.
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge in your chosen specialist field.
  • Understand the need for evidence-based practice in optometry.
  • Search for appropriate evidence within the field to support your professional development.
  • Appreciate the role for optometrists in provision of enhanced services in the community.

You should also be able to practise and develop the following skills:


  • The ability to search for appropriate information to support their learning.
  • The ability to critically evaluate such information.
  • Experimental design.
  • Data collection and analysis.

Subject specific

  • Clinical decision making with management of glaucoma patients.
  • Higher levels of professional skill and knowledge.
  • Working in peer groups as part of a mentoring system for students in hospital placements.


  • Independent learning skills
  • Time management
  • Project management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication and presentation skills.

Tuition fees for 2024 entry

Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on your fee status. Your fee status could be home, island or overseas.

Learn how we decide your fee status

Fees for home status

Fees will be invoiced by module. Normally, invoices will be released shortly after enrolment for each individual module. For more information please refer to our tuition fees pages.

Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland

If you are an EU, EEA or Swiss national, your tuition fees for 2024/25 be in line with the overseas fees for international students, unless you qualify for home fee status. UKCISA have provided information about Brexit and tuition fees.

Fees for island status

Learn more about the postgraduate fees for students from the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.

Fees for overseas status

Fees will be invoiced by module. Normally, invoices will be released shortly after enrolment for each individual module. For more information please refer to our tuition fees pages.

Additional costs

Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?

No specific equipment is needed, although, as the majority of your studies take place online, you will need a reliable computer with a good internet connection.

Living costs

We’re based in one of the UK’s most affordable cities. Find out more about living costs in Cardiff.


Postgraduate loans

If you are starting your master’s degree in September 2024 or later, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan to support your study at Cardiff University.

Career prospects

The aim of the course is to provide eye care professionals with the skills required to successfully oversee ophthalmic services, with the opportunity to become effective leaders within the sector, and with a comprehensive overview of their legal obligations in optometric practice in the UK.

Next steps


Open Day visits

Register for information about our 2023 dates.

Make an enquiry

Contact us for more information about this course.


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Related searches: Optometry, Healthcare

HESA Data: Copyright Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited 2021. The Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited cannot accept responsibility for any inferences or conclusions derived by third parties from its data. Data is from the latest Graduate Outcomes Survey 2019/20, published by HESA in June 2022.