Provisional Opticians


Provisional Registration

A provisional optician has completed all the training requirements to become an optician but has not yet successfully completed their NACOR exam(s). During this transitional period, provisional opticians may register with the COA and practice under supervision.

First time provisional registrants must submit the  Provisional Registration Package. Once your registration is processed, you will receive a username and password for your online profile, which allows you to access your registration record and renew your annual registration.

For information on provisional registration fees, please visit our Fees page.

Registration Requirements

Provisional opticians have either completed a recognized opticianry education program or have been assessed as having substantially equivalent skills and knowledge. Recognized education programs in Canada are accredited by Accreditation Canada

Graduates from non-accredited programs and international candidates complete a Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) program to demonstrate substantial equivalence. 


The National Alliance of Canadian Optician Regulators (NACOR) is responsible for administering the national examinations required for registration as an optician in Canada. NACOR administers the Optical Sciences 1 (Eyeglass) Exam and Optical Sciences 2 (Advanced Practice, Contact Lens) Exam. The exams are based on the National Competencies for Canadian Opticians.

For more information, please visit the
 NACOR website.


Provisional opticians must be supervised by a licensed optician, optometrist, or ophthalmologist in order to practice. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that the provisional optician correctly performs their duties and responsibilities. 

Examples of how a supervisor may work with a provisional optician include directly overseeing or verifying measurements, checking adjustments and demonstrating how to make corrections if needed, and answering questions and addressing any performance errors.

Download the COA Provisional Supervisor Form.