General Optical Council (GOC) have approved a trailing competencies process for international applicants who are required to complete further competencies ahead of GOC registration. International applicants are directed to a GOC approved education provider to meet Stage 1 competencies, or to The College of Optometrists for Stage 2 competencies.

Under the new arrangement, international applicants who have a limited shortfall in Stage 1 competencies, will now be able to join the Scheme for Registration trailing competencies to support their progression for full UK qualification. The College of Optometrists will ensure they communicate with employers and supervisors if an international trainee has trailing competencies.

The GOC agreed a trailing competencies approach for UK students in June 2020 on a temporary basis as a result of the pandemic.

This process has been agreed up until January 2023, with a review in Summer 2022 to ensure its effectiveness through our quality assurance processes of education providers.

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