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Unit of study_

OPSC5019: Cataract and Refractive Surgery 2

Semester 2, 2021 [Distance education/intensive on campus] - Remote

This unit of study aims to provide candidates with the theoretical and practical foundations of the practise of cataract and refractive surgery. Successful candidates will demonstrate to the examiners that they have a detailed and comprehensive knowledge of corneal and intraocular refractive surgery. Candidates should be able to: (1) Describe how an excimer laser, femtosecond laser, conductive and thermal keratoplasty work; (2) Describe how PRK, LASIK. Arcuate keratotomy, conductive keratoplasty are performed; (3) Demonstrate knowledge of the theory behind the lasers involved; (4) Describe indications and contraindications for the above procedures; (5) Demonstrate an understanding of the impact of systemic disease on refractive surgery patients; (6) Describe the management of corneal related refractive surgery complications; (7) Describe the treatments for keratoconus; (8) Demonstrate an understanding of the economics of setting up a refractive surgery practice; (9) Discuss lens based approaches to refractive surgery; (10) Have an understanding of the management of lens based related refractive surgery adverse events; (11) Understand the evidence for and ethical issues related to refractive surgery.

Unit details and rules

Unit code OPSC5019
Academic unit Save Sight Institute
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Con Petsoglou,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Essay 1
30% Week 05 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Assignment Essay 2
30% Week 08 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7
Assignment Essay 3
30% Week 12 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11 LO12 LO13
Participation Online discussion
Forum post and participation
10% Weekly n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO3 LO15 LO14 LO13 LO12 LO11 LO10 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO2 LO1

Assessment summary

See UoS on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Phakic intraocular lenses Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO5 LO9
Week 02 Intraocular lens calculation Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO10
Week 03 Dry eye management pre and post eye surgery Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO6
Week 04 Cataract surgery in the presence of corneal disease Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO5
Week 05 Choosing the right intraocular lens for your patient Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO10 LO11 LO13
Week 06 Toric intraocular lenses Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO10 LO11
Week 07 Lens options for the surgical correction of presbyopia Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO10 LO11 LO13
Week 08 IOL decision when capsular support is inadequate Online class (3 hr) LO9 LO13
Week 09 Femtosecond laser cataract surgery Online class (3 hr) LO9
Week 10 Dealing with residual refractive error in refractive cataract patients Online class (3 hr) LO7 LO9
Week 11 Putting it all together and becoming a better cataract and refractive surgeon Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO5 LO9
Week 12 Toric IOLs - how to evaluate your outcome Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO11
Week 13 Setting visual expectations and consenting patients for cataract surgery Online class (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO9

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

All readings for this unit can be accessed through the Library eReserve, available on Canvas.

  • LASIK: Advances, Controversies and Custom, Louis E Probst.
  • Mastering Refractive IOLs: The Art and Science, David F Chang, Slack publishers.
  • The Art of LASIK, Machet, Slade, Probst. 2nd edition. Slack Publishers.
  • Step by Step LASIK Surgery, Vajpayee R., Jaypee publishers.


Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. assess a patients suitability for refractive surgery
  • LO2. select the appropriate operation for a particular clinical scenario
  • LO3. describe how PRK, LASIK, and SMILE are performed
  • LO4. demonstrate knowledge of the theory behind the lasers involved
  • LO5. describe indications and contraindications for the above procedures
  • LO6. demonstrate an understanding of the impact of systemic disease on refractive surgery patients
  • LO7. describe the management of corneal related refractive surgery complications
  • LO8. demonstrate an understanding of monovision and how to apply it
  • LO9. discuss lens based approaches to refractive surgery
  • LO10. outline the best from IOL calculation formulae
  • LO11. understand the role of toric, multifocal and trifocal IOLs and extended depth of focus IOLs
  • LO12. understand the role of corneal inlays for presbyopia
  • LO13. understand the management of lens based refractive surgery adverse events
  • LO14. gain practical experience of PRK in a wetlab setting
  • LO15. gain experience of phakic IOL insertion in a wetlab setting.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

No changes have been made since this unit was last offered.
  • Study hours: Students are expected to spend approximately fourteen hours on self-directed study and assessment preparation per week outside the contact hours.

More information can be found on Canvas.


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.