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School of Optometry and Vision Science

Keep up to date with all the latest news and information from the School of Optometry and Vision Science.

Message from the Head of School – July 2020

Tēnā koutou katoa

Welcome to the July issue of our newsletter.

As we resume some level of normal operations under Level 1 – with our clinic reopening to the public on June 2 – we have a packed issue reporting on the activities of SOVS staff.

In terms of the school, we are considering the lessons learned during lockdown. In particular we are exploring ways for staff to work more flexibly, and for our teaching programme to make more extensive use of the online delivery platforms we have become so familiar with. Our goal here is to keep the programme engaging for students, and to ensure that workplace-practice within SOVS supports both the productivity and the quality of life of its staff.  Another lesson I have learnt is that our students appreciate regular but less formal updates on the programme, and we will be continuing to hold regular Zoom meetings to let them know what is going on behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly.

One person behind the scenes, quietly maintaining the very highest standards of teaching, is Kerry Atkinson. I was delighted to learn that Kerry is a recipient of one of the 2020 Dennis Pickup Clinical Educator Awards. Kerry will receive this prestigious award at a prizegiving ceremony in the FMHS atrium on 29 July. Kerry is singularly one of the most positive educators I know and his unwavering enthusiasm for optometry is infectious. Congratulations Kerry from all at SOVS on a well-deserved award.

Finally, warmest congratulations to Professional Teaching Fellow Michelle O’Hanlon, and her husband Tristan who welcomed their daughter Sarah Frances O’Hanlon into the world on 1 July. All the very best from SOVS to you both.

Ngā mihi

Professor Steven Dakin
Head of School, Optometry and Vision Science
Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences

Steven Dakin

 

The Issue of Eye Health Inequity

The Issue of Eye Health Inequity

SOVS Head of School, Professor Steven Dakin, discussed how New Zealand has an issue with eye health inequity.

AI software preventing blindness in diabetics

AI software preventing blindness in diabetics

Dr Ehsan Vaghefi received Science for Technological Innovation (SfTI) funding in 2019, to investigate the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to prevent diabetes retinopathy (loss of vision) for diabetes sufferers in New Zealand.

Prosthetic Eye Research

Prosthetic Eye Research

For the past 10 years SOVS and the NZ National Eye Centre has carried out research into Ocular Prosthetics.

Size – in the brain and in the mind’s eye

Size – in the brain and in the mind’s eye

Associate Professor Sam Schwarzkopf gave a talk entitled “Size – in the brain and in the mind’s eye” via video chat in the Zangwill Club seminar series at the University of Cambridge.

Recent Publications

Recent Publications

There have been eight recent publications from SOVS staff.

Message from the Head of School – July 2020

Message from the Head of School – July 2020

As we resume some level of normal operations under Level 1 – with our clinic reopening to the public on June 2 – we have a packed issue reporting on the activities of SOVS staff.

Teaching – 3D eyes and face

Teaching – 3D eyes and face

Dr Phil Turnbull, Senior Lecturer with SOVS, is working on a virtual patient that can be programmed to have a range of ocular disorders and uses probability models to determine their responses.

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