FSS > Undergraduate Division > Letters & Science > UC Berkeley

Vision Science 24, Section 1
The Human Eye (1 unit, P/NP)
Professor Richard C. Van Sluyters
Friday 2:00-4:00, 491 Minor Hall, Class number: 40703

This seminar will meet approximately every other week throughout the semester, beginning the first week of the semester.

This seminar will include a series of instructor-led discussions on the structure and function of the human eye and its appendages. The use of a standard clinical instrument to view the eye will be demonstrated. Students will then employ this instrument to observe one another's eyes. Digital images of the iris will be captured and provided to each student. Examples of the types of topics to be discussed include the following: Why is the cornea so clear and the sclera so white? Why is the iris so beautifully colored? What is the fluid in the eye, where does it come from, and where does it go? How do the skull and bony orbit protect the eye without hindering its performance? How do the appendages of the eye—the eyelids and eyebrows—work, and what are their functions? How does the eye adjust its focus from far to near, and why do we lose this ability with age? How do contact lenses work, and what happens to the cornea when laser refractive surgery is performed? What structural and functional changes in the eye are found in various ocular diseases?

Professor Richard C. Van Sluyters joined the faculty of the School of Optometry in 1975, and currently serves as the School's Associate Dean for Student Affairs. He received his undergraduate training at Michigan State University, studied optometry at the Illinois College of Optometry and was a graduate student at Indiana University. He holds doctorates in optometry and vision science and was a postdoctoral fellow at Cambridge University in England. He teaches courses on the anatomy and physiology of the eye and visual system.

Faculty web site: http://vision.berkeley.edu/VSP/content/faculty/facprofiles/vansluyters.html

Quotes from Fall 2016 seminar:

Very worth taking if you’re interested in anatomy or optometry. Experience in the optometry clinic was a treat.

It’s such a fun class and also a great way to explore your interests without having to worry about getting a good grade. Professor Van Sluyters is hilarious and so fun to learn from as well.

Take it! The course is taught so well that the topics are interesting for everyone – even those who don’t plan a future in optometry.

"It is a very chill, but practical, class that you can carry lots of general knowledge about vision out of it." - student in spring 2015 seminar

"The best and most informative two hours. This is the Berkeley education you've been waiting for!" - student in spring 2015 seminar

"Everyone is walked through some basic optometry of the eye. This is definitely a course to take, if only to learn a little bit more about how your body works." - student in spring 2014 seminar

"The class is small and the professor is extremely personable. He is very interactive with his students." - spring 2013 seminar

"Professor Van Sluyters was both extremely knowledgeable and funny. He helped create a comfortable atmosphere and let us know that questions and comments were welcome." - fall 2012

"Our class was very interactive. We all got to know each other, we played with models and machines, and we were learning at the same time." - spring 2012 seminar

"It's a very fun class with an awesome professor." - spring 2011 seminar

"The professor is one of the best teachers I have gotten to know. His sense of humor is unrivaled and his perception/knowledge in the field is vast." - fall 2010 seminar

"This class is fantastic! I love it. It’s really interesting and laid back. You even get to play with the devices and instruments that you usually see when you go to get your eye checked out every year. You will learn that there’s a lot more to the eyes than you think." - student in fall 2007 seminar

"This class is very fun and educational. The professor is very active in class and has a very effective teaching method." - student in spring 2007 seminar

"It is very relaxing compared to other classes and very informational. The instructor seems excited to teach us and knows his information like the back of his hand." - student in spring 2007 seminar

"The class was definitely informative and diverse: everyone in the class had a different experience with vision problems, and I learned many new aspects: science, history of optometry, politics of the field. It was an enriching and stimulating class." - student in fall 2006 seminar

"Dr. Van Sluyters is a helpful professor who cares a lot about his students and what he does. His seminar class is a reflection of this." - student in fall 2006 seminar

"It is very fun and interesting. Dr. Sluyters is AWESOME!! He's the best teacher ever! – student in fall 2004 seminar
Freshman and Sophomore Seminars are co-sponsored by the Undergraduate Division
of the College of Letters & Science and the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education.
For further information about the program,
contact Alix Schwartz (alix@berkeley.edu / 642-8378).

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