The Pre-Optometry program at BSC provides core classes toward a baccalaureate degree for students planning a career in optometry. Please note: Pre-Optometry is not a major. Students are encouraged to select a major based on their area of interest. Because optometry schools differ in their requirements, BSC offers an extended associate degree program (more than 60 credits) and a variety of courses required by optometry schools. Core study includes general chemistry and biology, organic chemistry, college physics, and algebra and trigonometry or calculus. Other required optometry courses available at BSC are anatomy and physiology, microbiology, and statistics.


High school students planning careers in Optometry should study as much science and math as possible. Those with a strong background in these subjects may finish the suggested BSC curriculum in two years. It is strongly encouraged that students spend a certain amount of hours observing a practicing optometrist.


Students completing the suggested curriculum requirements receive an Associate in Science degree and are eligible for transfer to a four-year institution.

Bismarck State College has many cooperative, articulation, or transfer agreements with postsecondary institutions both inside and outside of the North Dakota University System. Some of these agreements are established to allow students to remain on campus as they complete their bachelor’s degree. In all cases, students seeking to transfer after completing a degree at BSC should consult the academic catalog of their destination college and work with their academic advisor to plan for this transition.

Career Opportunities

Optometry school applicants are selected based on academic ability, letters of reference from instructors, and score on the Optometric College Admission Test. Students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 to complete this exam with an acceptable score. Consult for more information