How to Become an Optician in Maryland

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If you are interested in a job in Maryland, you can easily consider becoming an optician.

So, all you need to do is check out the below article for tips and info regarding licensing.

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Get information on Optician Certification Training programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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Optician Job Description and Duties in Maryland

Opticians have to ensure that they provide people with the correct eye-wear that also suits their facial features.

Opticians have numerous tasks to finish every day, which include:

  • Preparing eyewear
  • Fitting and adjusting eyewear
  • Educating customers about eyewear issues and maintenance
  • Keeping sales records
  • Determining insurance co-pays
  • Keeping the inventory
  • Interacting with the labs that make lenses

Optician Job Requirements in Maryland

In Maryland, you will not need a license to work as an optician.

But, getting a license will aid you in getting hired fast.

The exam you have to pass is the American Board of Opticians (ABO) exam.

You might also have to take the National Contact Lens Examiner’s (NCLE) exam as well.

You will also need to offer the next documents:

  • Good interpersonal skills
  • A high school diploma or GED
  • Reliable
  • Clean criminal record
  • Detail-oriented

Optician Education in Maryland

To meet the education requirements and receive a license, you need to attend a post-secondary school program.

Most of these schools provide optician training programs.

Have a look at the schools that provide these programs in Maryland:

Top 3 Schools in Maryland

School NameAddress
Carroll Community College1601 Washington Rd, Westminster, MD 21157
Hagerstown Community College11400 Robinwood Dr, Hagerstown, MD 21742
Harford Community College401 Thomas Run Rd, Bel Air, MD 21015

Every institution has its own specific requirements, which usually include:

  • A high school diploma or GED
  • Completing specific classes with a minimum grade of C
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • OAT scores – not older than 5 years
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75

Schools in Maryland provide externships and internships.

The optician programs can last anything between half a year and 4 years.

This depends on the education you plan on getting.

The training programs for opticians include classes like:

  • Introduction to Optometry
  • Ocular Anatomy
  • Systems 1: Neuroscience
  • Ocular Microbiology
  • Ophthalmic Imaging
  • Public Health Optometry
  • Glaucoma
  • Physics
  • Math,
  • English

Optician Certification in Maryland

The licensing entities in Maryland are the American Board of Opticianry (ABO) and National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE).

These bodies also offer licensing exams.

To be eligible for an optician license, you need to meet at least one requirement out of the following:

  • A license in a reciprocal state
  • At least 3 years of experience
  • Can be an apprenticeship of 3 years in the past 6 years
  • Can be from working as an optician in a state with no licensing requirements
  • Graduate from an approved post-secondary optician program with a year of apprenticeship

You are also required to take the National Opticianry Competency Examination (NOCE) with the ABO.

This licensing test has three difficulty levels.

These are:

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

The subjects for the ABO exam beginner level are:

  • Reading prescriptions,
  • Fitting and dispensing spectacles
  • Using standard ophthalmic equipment

The exam costs $200, a sum which can be covered by your employer.

If you wish to dispense contact lenses you will be required to pass another test.

This test is called the National Contact Lens Examiners.

You also have to pass the Contact Lens Registry Examination (CLRE).

The fee for the test is $200, which is also covered by your employer.

The exam subjects are:

  • Pre-fitting for lenses,
  • Diagnostic fitting,
  • Dispensing of lenses,
  • Patient education,
  • Delivery
  • Follow-up

The tests can be taken in either English or Spanish language.

The paperwork you need to mail before you sit for the exam includes:

  • Age over 18
  • A high school diploma or GED
  • To fill out an application
  • To pay some fees
  • A clean criminal record
  • Passing the State Practical Examination
  • Proof of completed training, education, or at least 3 years of experience

Maryland doesn’t have an exact number of classes you need to take in order to continue your education.

Optician Employment and Salary in Maryland

You can find work in many places, which include:

  • Stores
  • Offices
  • Optometry practices
  • Hospitals
  • Clinics

The average yearly wage for opticians in Maryland goes between $30,000 and $100,000.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Opticians in Maryland

City NameSalary
Silver Spring$53,467
Ellicott City$49,342
Glen Burnie$49,375
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary in Maryland

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD590$42,080$20.23$56,260$31,370
Hagerstown-Martinsburg, MD-WV70$42,020$20.2$62,430$30,170
Salisbury, MD-DE110$38,790$18.65$46,720$28,990
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Opticians, Dispensing, OCC Code 29-2081, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Additional Information for Opticians in Maryland

If you are interested in more career resources, check out the following:

  • American Board of Opticianry (ABO) and National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE)
  • Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry
  • Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
  • Maryland Optometric Association
  • American Optometric Association
  • National Optometric Association
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