The BCLA Fellowship scheme recognises contributions and commitments in the field of contact lenses and the anterior eye. It allows them to use the post nominal letters FBCLA, which shows their commitment to the Association and significant contribution they have made within these specialist areas. Since the scheme was launched in 2006 over 200 professionals from the international community of contact lens practice, academia and industry have become BCLA Fellows. Find out who's a BCLA Fellow.
BCLA Fellowships awarded at the 2023 BCLA Clinical Conference
Submissions for BCLA Fellowships are now closed!
Submissions for fellowship are currently closed. If you are a member of the BCLA, you will receive an email notification once these re-open, or we recommend to visit this page for regular updates.
BCLA Fellowship Application Process
Applicants must be current members of the Association. Documentary evidence in support of the application should also be submitted.
If you are unsure on how to support your fellowship evidence, you can contact membership ([email protected]) or fellowship lead, Dr Sonia Trave Huarte ([email protected]), and they will be able to help and guide you throughout the process. This advice can be given from the time that the application process starts until the day before the BCLA fellowship deadline.
To gain a Fellowship of the BCLA you need to be a Full Member of the Association (i.e. this excludes new professional grades and affiliates). You must be awarded 50 points by the academic committee and satisfy the contact lens and / or anterior eye credentials in an oral assessment based on the evidence presented. Points can be awarded for any combination of the following achievements:
- Case record of an advanced contact lens fit or management of an anterior eye condition [10 points]. Up to four (40 points) can be submitted, but they must contain sufficient details and follow-up to allow evaluation and show reflective practice. An example of a case record which has previously been accepted can be downloaded above.
- Presentation of a paper or poster at the BCLA Clinical Conference [10 points]. Up to four can be submitted and you do not have to be the first author. Please provide a copy of the abstract(s) from the published work(s).
- Publication of a peer-reviewed journal article on contact lenses and/or the anterior eye [10 points]. Up to four can be submitted and you do not have to be the first author. Please provide a copy of the abstract(s) from the published work(s).
- Book chapter [10 points] or editorship [20 points]. You cannot gain more than 20 points from one book.
- Presentation of a workshop at the BCLA Clinical Conference [10 points]. Up to four can be submitted and you do not have to be the first presenter. Please provide a copy of the abstract(s) from the conference brochure with the year(s) clearly indicated.
- A postgraduate degree in a subject area related to contact lenses and/or anterior eye such as a PhD [20 points], MPhil [15 points], MSc [15 points], Fellowship of the College of Optometrists by Examination [15 points], DipCL [10 points] or ABDO Honours Diploma in Contact Lenses [10 points]. Other postgraduate diplomas will be considered on an individual basis. Please provide a copy of the certificate and explain what was involved in gaining this award.
- BCLA Dry Eye Certificate [10 points] and/or BCLA Myopia Management Certificate [10 points].
- (Further detail TBC) Micro-credential awarded from a BCLA conference within three years preceding your application [5 points per micro-credential; maximum of two micr-credentials can be used]
- Patent in contact lenses and/or anterior eye or equivalent, including development of novel contact lens or anterior eye related designs, manufacturing techniques, material and care product formulations [10 points each]. Up to four can be submitted and you do not have to be the first author. Please provide a copy of the patent(s) summary complete with reference number or a brief summary of the work.
- Highly significant contribution to contact lens design, manufacture, clinical practice, marketing or teaching [up to 30 points]. Please provide a detailed summary of your contribution and evidence where possible.This may include:
a. Contact lens practice development initiatives
b. Development of staff training initiatives in contact lenses
c. Contact lens marketing campaigns
d. Contact lens patient information campaigns
e. Supervision of students specifically in contact lenses (in practice or within a training institution). Supervision of a pre-registration optometry student or trainee contact lens optician will not be considered unless evidence can be provided to show that this goes beyond basic spherical soft and rigid lens fitting
f. Involvement in contact lens clinical trials either in association with contact lens companies or on a small scale, independently within the practice
g. Expertise in the verification and modification of contact lenses
h. Other activities that the Fellowship panel considers to show additional experience or expertise in the field of contact lenses and/or anterior eye will be considered. Fellowship applicants will be expected to provide evidence to support their claims.
The committee will take account of the degree of participation of the applicant in the activity in respect of which points are claimed and the relevance of the subject area. The points allocated to each item described above are a guide as to how many points are likely to be awarded. A single case study or research project constitutes only one work eligible for points.
The application fee for Fellowship of the BCLA is currently £100 and covers up to three attempts to gain a Fellowship. If the application is judged to be insufficient in the number of points necessary to proceed to the viva voce assessment, a report will be returned to the candidate outlining the reasons. Most viva voce assessments are conducted virtually. If the candidate is not considered to have met the standard of Fellowship at the assessment, feedback will be given on the gaps so these can be addressed.
Fellows will be issued with a certificate of Fellowship signed under seal by the BCLA President and will be entitled to use the affix FBCLA provided they:
− A current full member of the BCLA, to retain fellowship BCLA membership is a prerequisite.
− Attend a BCLA conference once every three years
− Remain of good standing
This is an online form. Follow the link once you all your evidence is ready. All completed application forms must be submitted by the closing dates stated above.
The Fellowship pin is presented to a BCLA Fellow with their certificate when they are awarded with their Fellowship. (Please note that there is a charge to replace lost Fellow pins.)