Skip to main content

How We See the World: Visual Function and Eye Health

Develop your understanding of vision and discover how visual functions relate to your daily life. Learn and apply techniques to help you take better care of your eyes.

There is one session available:

After a course session ends, it will be archived.
Starts Oct 18
Ends Dec 15
Estimated 6 weeks
1–2 hours per week
Self-paced
Progress at your own speed
Free
Optional upgrade available

About this course

Skip About this course

How do we see the world? How do we see details at different viewing distances? How do we see in three dimensions? How do we see colour? How can we avoid getting cataracts or prevent short-sightedness?

This course will help you develop your understanding of vision, how visual functions relate to your daily life, and how you can better take care of your eyes. Spanning six modules, the course begins with a detailed look at the structures and functions of the eye. It then moves on to explore critical issues such as the limits of the eye’s resolution, depth perception and colour vision, before examining the impact of common eye problems on daily life and outlining strategies for improving eye health.

Engage with content and fellow learners through videos, animations, hands-on experiments and forum discussions, and check your understanding through quizzes and a short assignment at the end of each module. Learners who pursue the verified track gain access to a complete 3D eye model , virtual labs , live online sessions and personalised instructor feedback on each assignment.

This course is designed for anyone in the general public with an interest in eye care or ocular health. It is a perfect introduction for aspiring eye care professionals, including optometrists, ophthalmologists, ophthalmic technicians and opticians.

At a glance

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn

By the end of this course youll be able to:

  • identify and describe the basic structures and functions of the eye
  • explain and measure the resolution capability of the human eye
  • explain how the two eyes and brain work together to perceive depth
  • demonstrate how humans see colour by detecting different wavelengths of light
  • describe how the eye and vision are affected by common eye problems, including refractive error, cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration
  • apply techniques to protect your eyes from preventable vision problems or blindness.

Module 1: Structures and functions of the eye

Learn about the anatomy and physiology of the eye. Discover how the eye focuses and captures images of the world, and how it converts light into a signal that travels to the brain for processing. Explore the movements and shape of the eye, and the structures that help to protect it.

Module 2: The resolution of the eye

Learn about the resolution capability of the human eye and how you see fine detail. Discover the characteristics of the eye chart used to measure vision and what it means to see 20/20.

Module 3: Depth perception

Learn how the two eyes and brain work together to perceive depth and what happens when this system doesn't function properly. Discover how you perceive depth in two-dimensional photos or drawings.

Module 4: Colour vision

Learn how humans see colour by detecting different wavelengths of light. Discover what happens when you add different colours of light together. Find out how people with colour vision deficiency see the world differently.

Module 5: Common eye conditions

Explore the types of refractive error and how they can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses or surgery. Learn about the signs, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of common eye diseases including cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration.

Module 6: How to protect your eyes

Find out how to protect your eyes from preventable vision problems including sun damage and sports-related injuries. Learn about ways to prevent eye strain when using digital devices. Discover the methods being used to slow the progression of short-sightedness (near-sightedness) in children.

Learner testimonials

Skip Learner testimonials

"Taking this course might be the best decision I have made on my pre-optometry journey. It has been an effective way to quickly grow knowledge in the field of eyecare."

– Payton Oxner

"I highly recommend taking this course if you are looking for a deeper knowledge and application of optometry into everyday life scenarios."

– Vianka Astorga

"I appreciated the knowledge check at the end of each module and how the information provided was easy to follow and relevant. The live sessions were also extremely helpful. I enjoyed learning so much about how we see the world."

– Patrick Nguyen

About the instructors

Interested in this course for your business or team?

Train your employees in the most in-demand topics, with edX for Business.