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All the information you need to start or advance your career in Optical Dispensing.

Optical Dispensing is a rich and rewarding career. Optical Dispensers dispense and supply optical appliances as prescribed by Optometrists and/or Ophthalmologists in accordance with Australian Standards. Optical Dispensers practice in a range of environments including optical dispensaries, optometric practices and laboratories. They may be self-employed or employed by another Optical Dispenser, an Optometrist, a major optical dispensing company or other retailers. Optical Dispensers are often the first point of contact for patients in a practice setting and therefore must possess skills and knowledge across a wide range of topics within their area of expertise. 

Tasks and duties performed by an Optical Dispenser may include:

  • Interpreting optical prescriptions written by Ophthalmologists and Optometrists.

  • Providing accurate advice to patients about frames and lenses.

  • Recommending appropriate products to meet the prescription requirements and the patients’ lifestyle needs.

  • Taking facial, frame and lens measurements to accurately dispense an optical appliance.

  • Fitting, adjusting and repairing optical frames.

  • Edging and fitting optical lenses. 

  • Offering advice on the care and use of contact lenses. 

Regional Education and Skills Program

A BHP funded initiative that supports education
and skills development in regional Australia.

How can you become a qualified Optical Dispenser?

In Australia, you may begin your career by working as an Optical Assistant, gaining your skills through workplace training, however to become a qualified Optical Dispenser you must complete a formal qualification in Optical Dispensing. It is also possible to become a qualified Optical Dispenser through a traineeship which usually has a minimum requirement of Year 10 completion.


The Australasian College of Optical Dispensing (ACOD) is a provider of Certificate IV in Optical Dispensing (HLT47815). This is the highest level qualification for Optical Dispensing in Australia. The course is offered across most capital cities and is delivered through a combination of online and face to face workshops. Course duration is flexible and can be structured for 12 to 18 month programs part-time. 

The course comprises 14 units.

Are you already an Optical Dispenser and looking for a new position? Visit our Jobs Board.

Below is the list of units being offered by ACOD, as defined by the training package.


  • BSBCUS301Deliver and monitor a service to customers (release 1)

  • BSBLDR402 Lead effective workplace relationships (release 1) (selected elective)

  • BSBLDR403 Lead team effectiveness (release 1) (selected elective)

  • CHCCOM005 Communicate and work in health or community services (release 2)

  • CHCDIV001 Work with diverse people (release 1)

  • HLTOPD001 Provide advice on optical appliances (release 1)

  • HLTOPD002 Dispense optical appliances (release 1)

  • HLTOPD003 Dispense atypical prescriptions (release 1)

  • HLTOPD005 Process and manage optical appliance orders (release 1)

  • HLTWHS001 Participate in workplace health and safety (release 3)

  • SIRWSLS303 Analyse and achieve sales targets (release 1) (selected elective)

  • SIRXINV005A Control inventory (release 2) (selected elective)

  • SIRXMER303 Coordinate merchandise presentation (release 1) (selected elective)

  • SIRXSLS201 Sell products and services (release 1)


More information can be found by visiting

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