Accelerated Scholars Program - Course Descriptions

Introduction to Optometry and the Healthcare System | PCO-ODS-7000-AB           
This course is an introduction to the role of optometry within the changing healthcare system. The course will be presented within the context of the unfolding of the Affordable Care Act which pervaded the 2012 presidential election and which continues to spark the national debate over “healthcare reform.” The national challenge of improving our healthcare system provides a public health platform for understanding the continuing evolution of the profession of optometry.
 
Pharmacology 1 | PCO-ODS-7040-AB        
This course will provide a survey of the general principles of pharmacology and the application of these principles to patient care situations. Evidence-based medicine practice is weaved through the above areas where available and appropriate. This course will cover an introduction to pharmacology vocabulary, routes of administration, receptors, pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic review, and processes of drug development.
 
Pharmacology 2 | PCO-ODS-7041-AB        
This course will provide a survey of the general principles of pharmacology and the application of these principles to patient care situations. Evidence-based medicine practice is weaved through the above areas where available and appropriate. This course will cover Antimicrobial Agents, Medications That Alter the Autonomic Nervous System, NSAIDs, Medications that Alter the Cardiovascular System, and Alternative Medicine.
 
Pharmacology 3 | PCO-ODS-7042-AB        
This course will provide a survey of the general principles of pharmacology and the application of these principles to patient care situations. Evidence-based medicine practice is weaved through the above areas where available and appropriate. This course will cover Medications That Alter the Autonomic Nervous System, Respiratory Medications, Renal and Excretory Medications, Endocrine Medications, GI Medications, Medications that Alter the Cardiovascular System, and Alternative Medicine.
 
Integrated Organ Systems 1 | PCO-ODS-7240-AC        
This module continues the integrated approach of anatomy, histology, and physiology with pathology at the systemic level by looking at specific organ systems. The module will primarily emphasize the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, renal and endocrine systems. There will be a limited emphasis on the gastro-intestinal system and the integument systems.
 
Integrated Organ Systems 2 | PCO-ODS-7241-AC        
This module continues the integrated approach of anatomy, histology, and physiology with pathology at the systemic level by looking at specific organ systems. The module will primarily emphasize the renal and endocrine systems. There will be a limited emphasis on the gastro-intestinal system and the integument systems.
 
Ocular Biology 1 | PCO-ODS-7330-AA        
This course forms the framework for many of the biomedical aspects of vision by presenting the gross anatomy, microanatomy, development, and physiology/biochemistry of ocular tissues and fluids of the anterior segment of the eye. Ocular structures of focus include: eyelid, conjunctiva, limbus/sclera, nasolacrimal system, cornea, anterior chamber, iris, and ciliary body. The course will provide the knowledge base in ocular tissue structure and function, as well as normal and abnormal development concepts, which enable the student to understand patho-physiological processes present in primary and secondary ocular diseases and congenital anomalies. Clinical correlates, case-based materials, and discussion board posts are an integral part of the course presentation.
 
Ocular Biology 2 | PCO-ODS-7331-AA        
This course forms the framework for many of the biomedical aspects of vision by presenting the gross anatomy, microanatomy, development, and physiology/biochemistry of ocular tissues and fluids of the posterior segment of the eye. Ocular structures of focus include: lens, vitreous, retina, choroid, ocular fundus and pathological color changes, ocular circulation, and optic nerve.  Ocular Biology 2 will build upon anterior segment structure and function from Ocular Biology 1. The course will provide the knowledge base in ocular tissue structure and function, as well as normal and abnormal development concepts, which enable the student to understand patho-physiological processes present in primary and secondary ocular diseases and congenital anomalies. Clinical correlates, and case-based materials are an integral parts of the course presentation.
 
Head and Neck Anatomy | PCO-ODS-7400-AA        
The course emphasizes anatomical relationships, which support clinical application including imaging and the relationship of the head and neck to organ systems. A case-based approach is often used, especially in lab, to emphasize the anatomy which supports the understanding of visual/ocular emergencies and morbidity as well as common problems of the visual system. While Head and Neck Anatomy is a general course, it is designed to specifically facilitate the understanding and integration of normal function and pathological changes in the nervous system, including vision, in the curriculum.
 
Orbital Contents | PCO-ODS-7601-AA        
Orbital Contents is a basic science course introducing the student to the relationship between the orbital cavity and the skull. It introduces students to the structures found in the orbital cavity, known as orbital contents, their relationships to each other, the bony orbit and related anatomy. This background of the normal provides the basis of understanding dysfunction of the orbital contents. In general the approach in Human Anatomy is to ask, “What anatomy do I have to understand to solve this clinical problem?” Or, in other words, “How does it work?” The course emphasizes anatomical relationships, which support clinical application.
 
Pathology | PCO-ODS-7602-ABPathology encompasses the study of disease – its causes (etiology) and the underlying mechanisms (pathogenesis) that result in the presenting signs and symptoms of the patient. This course introduces basic pathologic processes. It integrates principles from histology, biochemistry, genetics and physiology to promote an understanding of the structural and functional changes in cells, tissues and organs. The response of cells and tissues to pathologic stimuli will be explored in presentations on cell injury, cell adaptation, inflammation and healing. The course concludes with a discussion of neoplasia, the result of extreme growth dysregulation. Knowledge of pathologic processes promotes an understanding of the clinical manifestations of disease and forms the basis for utilizing treatment modalities to intervene in the disease process.
 
Biochemistry | PCO-ODS-7603-AB        
Understanding the basic concepts in biochemistry is pivotal in creating competent, well-versed, and successful optometric healthcare practitioners. Breaking down both systemic and ocular clinical conditions into their basic science core requires a thorough understanding of biochemical processes and cell structure and function. This course will emphasize major themes in the area of biochemistry such as cellular structure and function, bioenergetics and energy storage, proteins, carbohydrates, and lipids. Major themes will be applied and highlighted through clinical case analyses.
 
Genetics | PCO-ODS-7604-AB        
All aspects of a person’s health are influenced by the expression of their genes. As our understanding of the human genome has increased, the use of genetic information for diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases has become an important tool in clinical medicine and optometry. Over the past 10 years, the Human Genome Project (HGP) and other revolutionary advances have led to an exponential increase in the amount of genetic knowledge and an exponential increase in the rate at which new knowledge is being acquired. The genomics revolution is transforming the way optometrists classify, understand, diagnose, treat, and manage disease. This course will introduce the student to some of the principles and concepts of genetics/genomics and their relevance to modern clinical optometry.
 
Histology |
 PCO-ODS-7606-AA        
This course will introduce the microscopic structure of cells and tissues. It begins with a discussion of stem cells, followed by an overview of the differentiation of cells and their organization into tissues and tissues into organs. The structure and function of the basic tissue types will be presented, including epithelium, connective tissue, muscle and nervous tissue. Emphasis is placed on normal structure (histology of cells, extracellular components and tissues) as a basis for understanding normal physiological and biochemical functions. Examples of the structure-function relationship will be applied in discussions of anatomical components of the eye.
 
Microbiology/Immunology |  
PCO-ODS-7608-AB         
This course provides a comprehensive introduction to medical microbiology and immunology. The medical microbiology aspect of the course will focus on the on relevant aspects of microbial infection in humans – microbial structure, microbial replication, pathogenic mechanisms of microbes, clinical manifestations of microbial infections, and diagnosis and treatment of microbial infection. This course will emphasize major themes in the four core areas of microbiology such as bacteriology, virology, mycology, and parasitology. Major themes will be applied and highlighted through assigned reading of the recommended textbook, case studies, and clinical problem solving, with emphasis on ocular and ocular-related systemic microbial diseases. The immunology aspect of the course will focus on basic and clinical immunology. The basic immunology content will focus on cells and molecules of the immune system, innate and adaptive immunity, the complement system, and immunogenetics. Clinical immunology will cover clinical immunological disorders such as autoimmune disease, transplant rejection, tumor immunology, immunodeficiency, and hypersensitivity.
 
Integrated Decision Making 1 | PCO-ODS-7630-AB         
Integrated Decision Making 1 (IDM-1) will tie together the concepts being taught across the curriculum. Clinical cases will be introduced to emphasize and highlight selected material being taught in other courses. Students will work through these cases with a facilitator each week, and new material will be introduced through brief lectures as needed. IDM-1 will emphasize skills in evidence-based practice, public health, case history taking, entrance testing, and the integration of basic science into clinical care. This course will also incorporate concepts from research methods such as basic study design and evaluation, developing a research question, writing an abstract, and basic epidemiology and statistics.
 
Integrative Decision Making 2 | PCO-ODS-7631-AC         
Integrated Decision Making 2 (IDM-2) will tie together the concepts being taught across the curriculum. Clinical cases will be introduced to emphasize and highlight selected material being taught in other courses. Students will work through these cases with a facilitator each week, and new material will be introduced through brief lectures as needed.
 
Integrative Decision Making 3 | PCO-ODS-7632-AB         
Integrated Decision Making 3 (IDM-3) will tie together the concepts being taught across the curriculum. Clinical cases will be introduced to emphasize and highlight selected material being taught in other courses. Students will work through these cases with a facilitator each week, and new material will be introduced through brief lectures as needed.
 
Integrative Decision Making 4 | 
PCO-ODS-7633-AC         
Integrated Decision Making 4 (IDM-4) will tie together the concepts being taught across the curriculum. Clinical cases will be introduced to emphasize and highlight selected material being taught in other courses. Students will work through these cases with a facilitator each week, and new material will be introduced through brief lectures as needed.
 
Neuroscience 1 | PCO-ODS-7640-AA        
Understanding the anatomy of the Central Nervous System (CNS) is directly related to solving lesions and understanding diseases of the Nervous System. This includes and expands on our study of neuroimaging. The course expands specifically on the Orbital Contents and Head and Neck course, especially relative to following the cranial nerves inside the brain. It is related, in the future, directly to Neuroscience 2, Neuro-ophthalmic Disease, Ocular Motility, Neuropharmacology and Neuropathology courses, among others. Each part of this course draws on and expands on what was taught previously so that you can continuously integrate your knowledge. This course begins with the origins of the Nervous System (NS) (Histogenesis) and the microscopic anatomy of the NS.  We will then, use this to move into the spinal cord (CNS) (and actually, beyond) and its pathways. Neuroscience 2 continues into the brainstem, thalamus, cerebellum, basal ganglia, cerebrum and their connections. It is heavily dependent on understanding Neuroscience 1.
 
Neuroscience 2 | PCO-ODS-7641-AA        
The course continues to expand on the Orbital Contents and Head and Neck course, especially relative to following the cranial nerves inside the brain. It is a continuum of Neuroscience 1. Each part of this course draws on and expands on what was taught previously so that you can continuously integrate your knowledge. Neuroscience 1 covered Histogenesis, microscopic structures of the Nervous System, spinal cord and cord pathways. Neuroscience 2 continues into the brainstem, thalamus, cerebellum, basal ganglia, cerebrum and their connections. It is heavily dependent on understanding Neuroscience 1.
 
Theoretical and Practical Optics 1 | PCO-ODS-7650-AA         
This course, which is the first part of a three-term sequence, introduces the student to the fundamentals of optical theory and provides an understanding of the application of these principles to clinical practice. The skills and concepts presented in this course are a foundation for subsequent learning and are necessary for the understanding of examination techniques and procedures.

Course information is presented in a variety of methodologies, including didactic lectures as well as through written materials. Weekly laboratory sessions accompany the course and facilitate student comprehension of material presented in lecture.
 
Theoretical and Practical Optics 2 | PCO-ODS-7651-AA         
This course is web-based and builds on knowledge from prior courses in Theoretical and Practical Optics (TPO). It discusses optical characteristics of the eye’s components and optical ocular phenomena. Schematic and reduced model eyes are presented, and their dimensions and optical parameters are used for the solution of optical problems. A number of practical and theoretical questions are addressed including how the various optical components contribute to the formation of the retinal image and why do people have refractive errors. The course presents various instruments that can be used to measure optical parameters and it evaluates their advantages and disadvantages. Lastly, the optics various optical and clinical instruments will be examined.
 
Theoretical and Practical Optics 3 | PCO-ODS-7652-AA         
This course is web-based and builds on knowledge from prior courses in Theoretical and Practical Optics (TPO). It discusses optical characteristics of the eye’s components and optical ocular phenomena. Schematic and reduced model eyes are presented, and their dimensions and optical parameters are used for the solution of optical problems. A number of practical and theoretical questions are addressed including how the various optical components contribute to the formation of the retinal image and why do people have refractive errors. The course presents various instruments that can be used to measure optical parameters and it evaluates their advantages and disadvantages. Lastly, the optics various optical and clinical instruments will be examined.
 
Theoretical and Practical Optics 4 | PCO-ODS-7653-AA         
This course is web-based and builds on knowledge from prior courses in Theoretical and Practical Optics (TPO). It discusses the concept of “stops” and its application in field of view, depth of field, and telescopes. There is also an introduction to low vision optics including visual impairment magnification, magnifiers, and a review of M notation. The students will be introduced to the concepts of interference, diffraction, polarization and aberrations with applications in pupil size and retinal image quality. There is also a discussion of physical optics, and an introduction to photometry and radiometry. The course will conclude with a review of ophthalmic optics.
 
Contact Lens 1 | PCO-ODS-8530-AB        
This course is web-based and introduces the student to the concepts of fitting, examining, and dispensing soft contact lenses. There will be a discussion of soft lens materials, corneal topography, and soft lens care systems. The student will learn the relevant components of contact lens fitting exam including the necessary preliminary measurements as well as how to select a proper soft lens for a patient. Lectures will discuss proper fitting techniques and examination of lenses on the eye to ensure a good outcome, both visual and in terms of ocular health. There will also be one live lab where students will insert and remove as well as fit and evaluate both a soft spherical and soft toric lens.

Clinical Skills 1 |  PCO-ODS-8630-AB      
Competent and successful optometric healthcare practitioners require a large number of clinical skills to be able to provide appropriate patient care to the public. The specific skills identified to allow patient interaction in clinical settings on and off campus are taught in Clinical Skills. This course will focus on the theory and clinical application of Clinical Skills in optometric medicine. The skills presented in this portion of the course are automated testing, visual acuity, color vision, stereopsis, keratometry, extraocular muscles testing, cover test, ocular dominance, retinoscopy, and subjective refraction. These will be presented via readings, roundtable discussions, threaded discussion boards, reflection papers, and in the laboratory.

Clinical Skills 2 | PCO-ODS-8631-AA           
Competent and successful optometric healthcare practitioners require a large number of clinical skills to be able to provide appropriate patient care to the public. The specific skills identified to allow patient interaction in clinical settings on and off campus are taught in Clinical Skills. This course will focus on the theory and clinical application of Clinical Skills in optometric medicine. The skills presented in this portion of the course are pupils, confrontation fields, additional subjective refractive testing, von Graefe phorias, vergences, Maddox rod testing, illumination techniques, biomicroscopy, tonometry and an introduction to gonioscopy and dilated fundoscopic examination. These will be presented via readings, lectures, and in the laboratory.
 
Clinical Skills 3 | PCO-ODS-8632-AB           
Competent and successful optometric healthcare practitioners require a large number of clinical skills to be able to provide appropriate patient care to the public. The specific skills identified to allow patient interaction in clinical settings on and off campus are taught in Clinical Skills. This course will focus on the theory and clinical application of Clinical Skills in optometric medicine. The skills presented in this portion of the course are gonioscopy, dilated fundus examination including 90D auxillary lens, binocular indirect ophthalmoscopy, three mirror retinal evaluation. Advanced techniques will also be covered. These include foreign body removal, carotid auscultation, review of cultures, scleral depression, extended ophthalmoscopy, off axis 90D fundus viewing, rotational gonioscopy and three mirror retinal evaluation. Dry eye diagnosis and management will also be covered including tear break up time, Schirmer testing, dilation and irrigation. Diagnostic imaging will be discussed with a concentration on indication and interpretation of the tests. We will continue to review previously taught procedures and theory. These will be presented via readings, lectures, in the laboratory and in the clinical setting.