The fourth year of the professional program at the SUNY College of Optometry is devoted entirely to the Clinical Education Track and consists of a four-quarter clinical rotation system that requires student optometrists to participate in external clinical site training as well as clinical rotations within the University Eye Center (UEC).
External clinical affiliations include hospitals, multidisciplinary practices and private practices and provide experiences in primary, secondary and tertiary care settings. These experiences provide participants with a wide range of patient care opportunities.
Each student is required to complete a maximum of three external rotations. Each rotation lasts for one-quarter of the academic year (approximately 12 weeks). In addition to externship sites, each student will be assigned at least one internship within the UEC that will provide a broad clinical experience. Students are guided to choose their rotations in a way that promotes balanced exposure to key areas of clinical care. These core experiences will include experiences in a multidisciplinary setting.
The external clinical education program is managed by the director of externships in addition to the external site supervisors at each location. Internal education is managed by the fourth year instructor of record. Both components are part of the Department of Clinical Education.