College of Optometry

Student Achievement

Class of 2017 Outcomes 

Summary of Applicants and Number Matriculated

Since its inaugural entering Class, the College has seen a robust applicant pool with high ratios of applicants per matriculates. The information shown below summarizes the number of applicants and the matriculates from past admissions cycles.  

Class Year Anticipated Graduation (Fall of Matriculation)

 Number of Applicants

 Number Matriculated

Ratio of Applicants per Matriculate

2013 (2009 matriculation)




2014 (2010 matriculation)




2015 (2011 matriculation)




2016 (2012 matriculation)




2017 (2013 matriculation)




2018 (2014 matriculation)




2019 (2015 matriculation)




2020 (2016 matriculation)




 2021 (2017 matriculation)





On-time Completion

On-time completion is defined by the University as completing all requirements of the program within 4 years, 6 months of the matriculation date.  On-time completion for the Class of 2017 was 85.71%.  The overall graduation rate for this cohort is estimated to be 94.51%.


Clinical Education

Early entry into patient care and ongoing, diverse patient care experiences are hallmarks of the WesternU education. Clinical education begins during the first semester of the first year. Students participate in clerkship rotations from first through second year, advancing into greater involvement and more advanced levels of care. Every third year student has exposure to not only a comprehensive eye examinations but will also care for patients with ocular diseases, provide complicated contact lens fittings, and care for patients in pediatrics, and geriatrics. The third year students also care for all aspects of rehabilitative services such as low vision, vision therapy, and neuro-rehabilitation. During the fourth year, the student externs are off campus at a variety of external rotation sites including affiliated private practices, co-management and referral centers, and Veteran Affairs facilities.

Average numbers of patient encounters for each aspect of the curriculum are provided in the table below: 

 Average number of patient encounters per student (OD 2017)

First year: screenings


First year: clerkships


Second year: clerkships


Third year


Fourth year


Across all four years combined



Licensing Exam Performance

The college values a student’s success and as such is continually improving our services. Based on our student feedback the College has implemented, and further enhanced our student support services as follows:

  • Optometry Review Course integrated within the curriculum
  • On-campus KMK NBEO (Part I) review sessions with access to books and on-line materials
  • Mock examinations supporting student growth and development
  • Personalized assessments to identify areas for improvement
  • Dedicated space for Mock Part III exam preparation as well as open access to pre-clinical lab facilities

There are no barriers to a student’s success. Our curriculum provides students with the material needed to pass boards. It is a student’s hard work, preparation, study habits, work ethic, and utilization of all resources that contributes to their overall success on national board exams. We capture students’ success on the licensure exams in a few ways for several reasons. (See tables below)

Measurement Description

Who is included


Pass NBEO by On-time completion

Students in each graduating cohort who have passed all three parts by on-time completion as defined by the University as completing all requirements of the program within 4 years, 6 months of the matriculation date.

This gives students the opportunity to complete all degree requirements as well as licensure requirements within the set time frame.

NBEO-ASCO cohort groups

Graduating students who have attempted all three parts of the exam within a specified timeframe (October 2016 – September 2017).

To capture each institution’s yearly performance in a standard manner for all member schools.


NBEO Pass Rates by On-time Completion

NBEO Parts

Number of 2017 Graduates who have taken the exam

% Pass

Part I



Part II



Part III



All 3 Parts



 *as of On-time Completion February, 2018


NBEO-ASCO Pass Rates for cohort groups

Number of Candidates

Part 1 ABS First-time PR

Part 2 PAM First-time PR

Part 3 CSE First-time PR








The Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE) will review a professional optometric degree program that has less than a 70% ultimate pass rate for two consecutive years on the NBEO or any professional optometric degree program that demonstrates a decrease of 20 percentage points or more from the prior year’s ultimate pass rate.  For more information visit the ACOE website.


Post-graduate Residency Training

Our graduates have been very competitive in seeking residency positions. Of the 78 members of the Class of 2017 who graduated on-time 11.5% (9 graduates) have been selected to a variety of residency programs across the country. The specialties range from vision rehabilitation to primary care and ocular disease. The trend has continued with graduates from the Class of 2018 successfully matching with residency programs across the country.


Student Leadership

WesternU College of Optometry (WUCO) students have demonstrated strong leadership within the College and within the optometric professional community.

The following College clubs have been actively involved in service to the College, the University and the local community. In the case of VOSH, WesternU students have traveled to Haiti, Mexico, Fiji and Peru to render service to those in need. WesternU Optometry students have also attained high-ranking positions in several national organizations.

WUCO students have established WesternU chapters of:

  • American Academy of Optometry (AAO)
  • American Optometric Student Association (AOSA)
  • Beta Sigma Kappa Honor Society (BSK)
  • College of Optometric Vision Development (COVD)
  • Fellowship of Christian Optometrists (FCO)
  • Gold Key Honor Society
  • Lions Club International
  • National Optometric Student Association (NOSA)
  • Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA)
  • Optometric Extension Program (OEP)
  • Optometry Private Practice Business Club. (OPPB)
  • Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (VOSH)

Each year students elect Liaisons to Optometric professional organizations as listed below:

  • American Academy of Optometry (AAO)
  • American Optometric Student Association (AOSA)
  • American Optometric Association – Contact Lens and Cornea Section (AOA-CLCS)
  • American Optometric Association – Sports Vision Section (AOA-SVS)
  • American Optometric Association – Vision Rehabilitation Section (AOA-VRS)
  • American Public Health Association (APHA)
  • Armed Forces Optometric Society (AFOS)
  • Asian American Optometric Society (AAOS)
  • Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry (ARBO)
  • Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO)
  • California Optometric Association (COA)
  • Inland Empire Optometric Society (IEOS)
  • Los Angeles County Optometric Society (LACOS)
  • National Board of Examiners in Optometry (NBEO)
  • Orange County Optometric Society (OCOS)
  • Rio Hondo Optometric Society (RHOS)
  • San Diego County Optometric Society (SDCOS)
  • San Fernando Valley Optometric Society (SFVOS)
  • San Gabriel Valley Optometric Society (SGVOS)
  • South Bay Optometric Society (SBOS)

On the University level, Class officers also serve as Senators and have a voice in the University’s Student Government Association.

The University also provides opportunity for service and leadership through a wide variety of inter-professional student clubs and interest groups, which now number near 100 in total.

Use the links below to view previous year’s outcomes:

Class of 2016 Outcomes

Class of 2015 Outcomes

Class of 2014 Outcomes

Class of 2013 Outcomes