An Optical Assistant requires many skills to be able to work within the Optical retail Industry. They are often the people that spend the most time interacting with customers. Therefore strong communication, listening skills and a passion for working with others to deliver excellent service and products that are both clinically and cosmetically correct, are skills, knowledge and behaviours that need to be demonstrated at all times.
Optical Assistants have to interpret and understand a clinically issued prescription, its effects on the eye, and the customer’s vision. They need to be able to identify the appropriate spectacles to meet the customer’s needs and be able to explain the features and benefits of these, using non-technical customer friendly language. This Apprenticeship aims to give the students the knowledge and confidence to do just that.
Employed in the optical industry and a minimum of two GCSE at grade 4 (grade C) or above in Maths and English is required. Functional Skills Level 2 can be obtained on the course. You may have to complete your English and Maths Functional Skills depending on your GCSE grades.
Where will I study?
18 months - one day per week
English and Maths
You may need to complete your English and Maths Functional Skills depending on your GCSE grades, or if you cannot provide evidence of your GCSE results.
The Functional Skills programme runs as an addition to the time you are already required to spend doing your off-the-job training. Following a thorough assessment process, we will select a learning plan suitable for you, which will be either 2-weeks full-time or 12-weeks (one day per-week) each for English and/or maths.
If a subject needs re-sitting, this will be additional time in the classroom on top of your learning plan.
Act within the limits of own competence and within agreed ways of working, following the relevant local and national standards, policies, standard operating procedures used in the workplace.
Promote and provide a high level of service and care throughout the customer journey.
Health & safety
Maintain the health, safety and security of yourself, customers and others in the workplace by identifying risks and taking appropriate action to keep people safe.
Identify customer needs and offer the appropriate services and products to meet those needs.
Provide and maintain a triage and appointment booking service for customers.
Provide a pre-appointment service for customers, gaining valid consent.
Review spectacles for quality, prescription and measurement accuracy.
Provide a (product recommendation, measurement and fitting) dispensing service for customers requiring spectacles.
Provide a spectacle collection, fitting and adjustment service.
Provide and maintain a concern handling service for customers and manage queries.
Meet personal and business targets and goals on an ongoing basis.
Provide a contact lens insertion and removal service.
An in-practice supervisor needs to be a Qualified and Registered on the General Optical Council. (Dispensing Optician, Contact Lens Optician or OMP or Optometrist) for an apprentice to commence training.
Frequently asked questions
No the course is delivered completely on-line but your employer may require you to travel
You will need access to either a PC, laptop, tablet or smart phone with the internet
The entry requirement is grade 4 in English and maths but get in touch and we can talk to you about alternative routes onto the course
No, not for a Level 3 qualification
If you can’t attend the class, you will need to make this time back during working hours and this can be logged on oneFile
In the form of written questions, reports, logs and case studies. The standard of your work will help determine whether you are ready for the end point assessment.
No the coursework content is covered over the full 18 months
No you have no physical exam to take, you have an end point assessment which is in three parts: 1. Direct observation of practice with questions, 2. Report with questioning, 3. Professional discussion
Your employer would either supply this or provide guidance on what to wear
Four days at work, one day in the virtual classroom
All our live Apprenticeship vacancies can be found on our website. If there are none available we can help you find one or you already may know an opticians that is looking to recruit an optical assistant
This will depend on where you work, the minimum you will be paid is the national apprenticeship wage
This will depend on your place of work
On completion of this course you may want to consider the following options to further your career.