Loyola University Chicago

Pre-Health Professions

Career Services


Planning for an application to optometryschool is both essential and critical - it is a decision that will take years of preparation. Future applicants will need to take both academic and experiential timelines into consideration well in advance to properly prepare for an application cycle. Below, you will find resources specific to pre-optometry timelines to assist in your plans.


Suggested Academic Timelines:


First Year


Chemical Structure & Properties with Lab

CHEM 160/161

Chemical Reactivity I with Lab

CHEM 180/181

Intro Biology I with Lab

BIOL 101/111

Intro Biology II with lab

BIOL 102/112

*MATH 131 (or 161) is a pre-requisite for CHEM 260/261. If you plan on taking CHEM 260/261 by Spring Semester of Second Year, you will need to complete this pre-requisite beforehand.


Second Year


Chemical Reactivity II with Lab

CHEM 240/241

Quanititative Methods in Chemistry with Lab*

CHEM 260/261

Cell Biology or Genetics

BIOL 251/BIOL 282

Cell Biology or Genetics

BIOL 251/BIOL 282


Third Year



CHEM 361


BIOL 302

Physics I with Lab

PHYS 111/111L

Physics II with Lab

PHYS 112/112L


Fourth Year


Human Anatomy & Physiology I*

BIOL 242

Human Anatomy & Physiology II*

BIOL 243

Science Electives*

Science Electives*

*Chemistry and biology sequences differ between schools. It is important to take note of both your required courses for the schools you are interested in applying to as well as knowing Loyola's pre-requisites for those courses. Schedule an appointment with a pre-health advisor if you need assistance scheduling required courses. 

**Other common courses required by OT schools can include (but are not limited to): psychology, sociology, economics, calculus, statistics.

***From Chemistry Department Website: “Starting in Fall 2023 all students will begin the Chemistry sequence in CHEM 160+161 (replacing CHEM 101+111).  Students who began the Chemistry sequence in CHEM 101+111 prior to Fall 2023 may continue in the older course sequence, as long as they make progress in the sequence each consecutive semester, but may switch to the updated sequence as the older courses are replaced.  Students should consult with their Academic Advisor(s) as listed in LOCUS for degree requirements and options.” 

NOTE: While some schools may not specifically list courses like cell biology, genetics, or biochemistry as requied coursework, it is critical that applicants have experiences in these subjects as they are large portions of the MCAT exam. 

For school-specific prerequisites and demographic information on applicants/matriculants at optometry schools, explore this site.