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Optical Dispenser

VOC Course Experience Needed Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

Optical dispensers interpret optical prescriptions and fit and service optical appliances such as spectacle frames and lenses.

An optical dispenser works as part of an eye care team alongside optometrists or ophthalmologists (who issue the optical prescription) and optical mechanics (who make the visual aid or optical appliance).


    Optical dispensers may perform the following tasks:

  • discuss the client's eyewear needs
  • choose the appropriate frame to satisfy the client's comfort, appearance and prescription requirements
  • discuss and recommend types of lenses and lens enhancements
  • ensure lenses conform to the prescription of the ophthalmologist (eye specialist) or optometrist
  • shape lenses and fit them to frames, ensuring they meet quality standards
  • ensure the new eyewear fits correctly and comfortably
  • carry out minor repairs to damaged frames


  • good communication skills
  • sales ability
  • technical ability
  • good hand-eye coordination
  • aptitude for mathematics
  • enjoy helping people
  • patient and attention to detail

Interest Area

Medical Influencing/Personal Contact Technical/Engineering


VOC Course Experience Needed Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

To become an optical dispenser you usually have to complete a VOC qualification in optical dispensing. Some courses may also require relevant employment, or include a supervised practical work placement. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You may be able to study through distance education.

You can also become an optical dispenser through a traineeship in Optical Dispensing.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.


Optical dispensers are employed by optical dispensing firms or optometrists. They may also run their own dispensing businesses. They operate throughout metropolitan areas and larger country towns.

Shifts in fashion tend to influence popular styles of glasses and therefore also impact upon the work of, and demand for, optical dispensers. There is also a demand for specialised glasses, such as no-line bifocals, half glasses for reading, glasses made of thinner and lighter lens materials, sunglasses and glasses with other enhancements such as cosmetic tints and reflection-free coatings.

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More Information - External Links

Job Outlook for Optical Dispenser Australian Dispensing Opticians Association Optometry Australia

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