COE Continuing Optometric Education

Continuing Optometric Education (COE) is the umbrella term for continuing education courses and programmes in all areas of optometry, certified by the Association of German Contact Lenses-Specialists and Optometrists (VDCO), the Swiss Ophthalmic Optics and Optometric Association (SBAO) and the German Quality Association for Optometric Services (GOL). COE certified continuing education activities include events in presence, interactive events (e.g., professional journals) and online events.

Each issue of the journal contains a COE certified article with a quiz. This can be a scientific article, a clinical article or a case report. The Editorial Board of the journal selects the article to be published. The quiz is designed as a multiple choice test following the guidelines of the GOL. For successful completion of a COE certified course in OCL the participant will receive one COE Point. These COE credits are currently recognized as continuing education credits by both GOL, the SBAO, and VDCO.

Articles on obtaining COE Points

Articles are gradually appearing on that provide a multiple-choice test at the end of the articles. These will be linked here:


  Category Unit Max. # of COE-points per event Max. # of COE-points in 2 years
1 Symposium, expert conference, congress or similar with mixed expert contents1,2 1 COE-point per 1,5 hrs; max. 
4 COE-points per day
10 20
2 Seminar, case discussion, workshop or similar interactive 
events in small groups with one-topic focus (one or several days’ 
duration) 1,2
1 COE-point per 1,5 hrs  4 20
3 Courses of several days‘ duration for CET, as part of certificate-courses or as part of courses for 
higher qualification with 
structured syllabus and final exam1,2
1 COE Punkt je 3h 10 20
4  regional CET evening events (BVA, IVBS, SBAO, VDCO, WVAO 
or similar) 1,2
1 COE Punkt für ≥45 min + Diskussion 1 20
5 Educational events of opticalor ophthalmological industry, not product related 1,2 1 COE-point per 3 hrs 4 10

Educational events of optical or ophthalmo-logical industry, 
related to specific products 1,2

1 COE-point per 3 hrs
2 5
7 Educational events (seminar, talks, workshops, conference, congress or similar) of other fields but optometry or ophthalmology, with contents closely related to the everyday work of optometrists (e.g. 
psychology, physiology, 
ergonomics, light engeneering, optics, specific marketing)2
1 COE-point per 3 hrs 2 5
8 On-site educational events, e.g. private seminar in own optician’s 
shop 1
1 COE-point per 3 hrs 2 5
9 E-learning with assessment (e.g.
OCL-article with embedded MCQs) 1
1 COE-point per article   10
10  Observing in ophthalmologist’s 
practice, eye clinic, optometrist’s practice or specialised optician,of proofed duration and contents
1  COE-point per day 4 10
11  Pure product promotions, sales events, fairs, industry exhibition, 
    No COE-points 
12  Expert-talk (speaker) 1,2  1 COE-point per 30min incl. 
questions from audience (only 
one-time per talk) 
4 10
13 nstructor / course leader for workshop or seminar1,2

1 COE-point per 90min (only one-time per workshop/ seminar) 

4 10
14 Own journal article or textbook contribution1 Sole author: 1 COE- point per 2
print pages excl. 
advertisements and list of references; for ≥2 authors: 1 
COE- point per 4 print pages excl. advertisements and list of references
5 10
15  Scientific Poster at congress or conference 1 Sole author: 2 COE- points per
Poster; ≥2 authors: 1 COE-point
per co-author
2 5
16  Lecturing or teaching ophthalmic optics or optometry in theory or practice (evidence of contents must be provided)      5 (fulltime) 3 
(part time or 
17 Graduation from postgraduate courses (e.g. Master of Science in Augenoptik/Optometrie, ECOO-European Diploma, in addition to 
a regular German degree in optometry) 1
    20 (one-time
18  Subscription of a professional journal, published at least every two months (e.g. OCL, Die Kontaktlinse, Klinische Monatsblätter für Augenheilkunde, Der 
Ophthalmologe, Optometry and Vision Science, OPO) 1
19 Max. # of excessive COE-points allowed to carry forward to following year      5

1 with ≥75% contents from ophthalmic optics, optometry or ophthalmology 

2 in presence or online