College of Optometrists celebrates sector’s researchers

The College of Optometrists recognised the achievements of some of the sector’s leading researchers in the field at its annual Diploma Ceremony at Central  Hall Westminster in London last week. Four optometric researchers were presented with a Research Excellence Award for their contributions across a variety of areas:

  • Dr Julie-Anne Little MCOptom was presented with the Neil Charman Medal for Research for her work on vision problems in children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Down Syndrome.
  • The George Giles Postgraduate Research Prize was presented to Dr Andrew Logan MCOptom for the development of a fast, repeatable and highly sensitive face discrimination test, which has allowed further research into the visual elements of facial recognition and will hopefully allow some form of more precise clinical testing in the future.
  • Dr Richard Armstrong accepted the Bernard Gilmartin OPO Award for his paper, ‘When to use the Bonferroni correction’, which provided key guidance to the optometric research sector on how and when to use an important statistical method. This prestigious prize is awarded annually to a highly regarded paper published in Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics (OPO) in the preceding five years, as chosen by the OPO editorial board.
  • The Philip Cole Prize for excellence in practice-based research by College members was awarded to Nicholas Rumney FCOptom for his work on dry eye practice and macular hole services.

College President, Dr Mary-Ann Sherratt MCOptom, also welcomed over 300 newly qualified optometrists to the profession at the ceremony, as well as recognising outstanding achievement through the presentation of Higher Qualifications, Fellowships by Portfolio, Life and Honorary Fellowships.

Speaking at the event, Dr Mary-Ann Sherratt MCOptom, President of the College of Optometrists, said: “It is such a pleasure to honour those who are contributing to the evidence base with our awards for Research Excellence and to recognise the inspirational professionals receiving higher qualifications and becoming Fellows. It’s also great to see so many young and talented diplomates celebrate the start of what I hope will be a long and successful career.”

For more information on the Research Excellence Awards, visit