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How to Select Your Classes for the Annual Program

Posted By Sarah Moyer, Friday, October 19, 2012
Updated: Friday, October 19, 2012

The task of selecting your classes for the OPS Annual Educational Program can be daunting. Between workshops and lectures, there are as many as 6 courses to chose from at the same time!   I imagine everyone has a different method for picking their courses.  In the hopes that this could help others selecting their classes, I thought I'd share my technique.  I think that this will work for someone attending their first program or someone attending their 30th program.   

Step 1.  Set Goals

Before I even look at the program, I list my three educational goals (you might have more or less). Perhaps my office just got a new imaging technology and my supervisor would like me to become the expert on it.  Maybe my clinic is getting involved in national clinical trials and I'd like to impress the study coordinator with my knowledge.  Lastly, maybe there's a topic I'd like to brush up on so I add that to my list.  For the sake of the example day in this blog, my goals are to learn about Spectral Domain OCT and increased my knowledge on Fluorescein Angiography, 

Step 2.  Find Your Documents

Find the Conference-At-A-Glance and the Program Guide.  OPS members should receive these in the mail.  You can also download them on the OPS website: 

Step 3.  Highlight YOUR Courses

If you are speaking, on a panel, coordinating a workshop, instructing in a workshop, or room monitoring a course, you have committed to helping out with a course.  I start by highlighting these courses so I don't waste my time considering the courses next to them.  In the example, I used blue for this. 

Step 4.  Eliminate Classes and Workshops

While referencing the Program Guide, I go through every course on the Conference-At-A-Glance and eliminate classes.  I eliminate classes by putting a big X of over the box.  I start by eliminate the ones that conflict with my highlighted courses and the ones I have taken previously (and don't want to repeat).  At this point, I also eliminate courses that I have no interest in (like Time Domain OCT).    

Step 5.  Select Workshop(s)

As hands on learning and demonstrations is very important when learning a new technique, I like to start by selecting which workshops I want to take.  Remember to also select the workshop lecture as they are required to be able to take the workshop. In the example, I used yellow for this.

Step 6.  Select Classes

It's time to look at the classes that I haven't eliminated to see which ones fit my goals the best.  Of course, I also add a few classes with speakers whose courses I have enjoyed previously and topics I find interesting, but might not be included in my goals.  In the example, I used green for this.

Step 7.  Registration

Once I have identified the courses that I want to attend, it's time to register!  There's a bubble sheet that can be faxed or submitted on site for registration OR you can register online (after you've logged in) at: 

Give my class selection technique a try and let me know what you think.  If you have any other tips and tricks, please post them in the comments.




 Sarah Moyer joined UNC's staff as the Director of Ophthalmic Imaging in 2006. Prior to working at UNC, Sarah worked as an Ophthalmic Photographer at Columbia University in New York City and earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Biomedical Photographic Communications at the Rochester Institute of Technology. In 2007, Sarah was elected to the Board of Education for the Ophthalmic Photographers' Society.In 2011, Sarah was appointed co-chair of the PDC.

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