Log in

5991 Spring Garden Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3H 1Y6   -   902.425.7928   -

becoming an optician - pathway 1

To become an optician in Canada there are two potential pathways – pursuing your education regarding opticianry here in Canada, or having your education and experience assessed by the National Alliance of Canadian Optician Regulators (NACOR). Both can lead to fulfilling and well-paid careers.

Several institutions offer programs in Dispensing Opticianry in Canada for both domestic and international students.  The  program also requires an internship period with a sponsoring optician/employer and covers all areas of the modern optical industry. Remember to register first with the provincial optician regulator of your choice to ensure you are meeting all of their professional requirements. Click here to register with NSCDO.

After graduating from an opticianry program, students must pass the NACOR (National Optical Sciences Examination). More information on the exam can be found using the following link: National Licensing Exam.

The passing mark for eyeglasses is 61% and for contact lens 68%. This examination is necessary for opticians in all provinces with the exception of Quebec, who has alternative testing modalities. Should students choose to pursue a career in opticianry in Quebec, they should consult the regulatory body in Quebec.

In Nova Scotia once you have passed the NACOR exam you will receive notification from NSCDO which will outline the next steps required as a new graduate to be licensed and allow you to practice to the full scope of our provincial legislation. Students can further pursue licensure for contact lens fitting should they wish, making them essentially double-certified. You must be fully licensed as an Optician before you are able to apply as a student Contact Lens Fitter.

NOTE: All exam decisions or appeals must be addressed with NACOR. Details can be found at the link provided.

You can obtain your Opticianry education at one of the following institutions:

  • Georgian College
  • Seneca College
  • Collège La Cité
  • Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT)
  • Douglas College
  • Stenberg College
  • College Communautaire de Nouveau Brunswick
Further information on how to become an Optician can be found on this website How to become an Optician.


Internationally Educated or a Graduate of an Unaccredited Opticianry School in Canada.

This applies to you if you have completed education related to opticianry in Canada or internationally at an institution that has not been accredited by the Nova Scotia College of Dispensing Opticians.

You may be eligible for the Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) if, as a result of work experience, you possess the necessary knowledge and skills to successfully pass the national examinations.

To apply to the Nova Scotia College of Dispensing Opticians for a review of your qualifications, please complete the following form and return it to the Nova Scotia College of Dispensing Opticians.

PLAR Application Form

To determine whether your knowledge and skill level meet the requirements a series of 17 bridging modules was developed to help internationally trained opticians prepare for PLAR.  The bridging modules are based on the National Competencies for Opticians that are evaluated in both the Competency Gap Analysis (CGA). Additional information on this process and fees required can be found at National Alliance of Canadian Optician Regulators (NACOR).

Requirements can be sent to: or

Nova Scotia College of Dispensing Opticians
Suite 342, Halifax Professional Centre
5991 Spring Garden Road
Halifax, NS   B3H 1Y6

Alternatively, requirements can be dropped off at the above address.

Office Hours

Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 10:00am-3:00pm
Wednesday: 10:00am-3:00pm
Thursday: 10:00am-3:00pm
Friday: Closed

Call or Fax

Office: 902.425.7928
Fax: 902.425.0360


5991 Spring Garden Road, Suite 342
Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3H 1Y6

Email -

* Closed Weekends & Holidays

Call 902.425.7928 to schedule an appointment

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software