Optometry has a long visual optics tradition.  It is the only eye care profession that has a systematic curriculum to teach geometric optics, physical optics, ocular optics and ophthalmic optics.  Today we are on the verge of fast moving fundamental changes in visual optics.  The advent of lasers, the charged coupled device (CCD), powerful personal computers and new manufacturing techniques have led to a marked increase in our ability to apply optical theory to optimally correct the optics of the eye. What is an optimal correction?  It is a correction that not only eliminates defocus (as with glasses, contact lenses), it eliminates the higher order aberrations.  It is the difference between an instamatic camera and a top of the line Nikon camera.

Our Mission

To understand and improve optics of the eye and instruments used by the eye.

Short Term Goals

To design and implement the optimal compensating optic for the eye and evaluate the resulting visual performance.

Long Term Goals

To optimize vision and instrumentation coupled to the eye.


We are researchers, vision scientists, optometrists, teachers, engineers, programmers, technicians, consultants, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students.

Contact Information





Postal address

Visual Optics Institute, University of Houston College of Optometry

4901 Calhoun Rd
Houston, TX 77204-2020

Electronic mail

General Information: RApplegate@uh.edu