The Illinois College of Optometry is strongly committed to excellence in research. Research projects at ICO involve a broad range of disciplines in biomedical sciences, visual sciences, and clinical studies. ICO researchers receive support from the National Institutes of Health, National Eye Institute and other foundations, such as the National Keratoconus Foundation, Children Care Foundation, Illinois Society for the Prevention of Blindness, and Field Foundation of Illinois. The college also provides an intramural grant program to support the research of faculty, residents, and students.
ICO students are required to complete a research and scholarly project during their four-year optometry training. Along with faculty, many students present their research projects at professional meetings of national organizations including the American Academy of Optometry, American Optometric Association, and Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
At ICO’s annual Research Symposium, faculty, residents, and students present their research work and discuss the future potential studies during the symposium. In addition, the college sponsors visiting professors yearly around to encourage communication and collaboration in research. Posters are exhibited from professional meetings, including SECO, ARVO, AOA, COVD, WCO, AAO, IBIA, ISER, GSLS and more. Publications are also displayed.