M.S. in Vision Science

Earn an M.S. in Vision Science

Vision science is multidisciplinary, and can include the study of biochemistry, biophysics, engineering, epidemiology, molecular biology, cell biology, neuroscience, optics, ophthalmology, optometry, pathology, physiology, psychology, statistics, and any other discipline that relates to the eye and its problems.

The Master of Science in Vision Science builds a strong basis for understanding the background of modern vision science. We have two types of M.S. degree programs—thesis-based and non-thesis-based. The M.S. degree is not required for application to the Ph.D. program in Vision Science.

Thesis-based M.S.

Early in the program, students participate in targeted research under the direction of their faculty advisor. The advisor and a committee guide research toward the thesis. At least three members of the graduate faculty give the completed thesis final approval.

Non-thesis-based M.S.

The typical student applying to this program has an undergraduate O.D. or equivalent degree from another country and wishes to build on their knowledge of optometry and vision science. Most of the curriculum is based on the didactic courses in the Doctor of Optometry curriculum. A total of 40 credit hours is required.

Better treatment for diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy (or blindness in people with diabetes) requires multiple invasive procedures that aren’t always effective in the long term. A research team led by Dr. Thomas Gast, an ophthalmologist and senior scientist at the IU School of Optometry, recently created a virtual tissue model of diabetes in the eye that explains why the progression of this disease is so variable, predicts where damage will occur next, and can help answer questions that will lead to improved treatments.

Read more about diabetic retinopathy research

Pursue a master’s degree in vision science