Optometry students at Aston University will soon have access to new clinical simulation facilities, including Europe’s first ocular simulation unit where they can refine their examination skills.

The unit will facilitate the recreation of health examinations of the front and eyes, as well as a wide range of eye diseases.

Professor James Wolffsohn, head of Aston’s school of optometry, said: ‘One of the simulators even allows them to utilise their smartphone to practice at home. They can gain direct feedback and be assessed by the simulators, allowing more flexible, diverse and intensive learning than can be achieved with clinical practice placements.’

It was hoped facilities would help to plug gaps in clinical placements created by the pandemic. They are due to open in time for the September, 2022 intake of students.