Tips for Improving Eyesight/Passing the FC1 Eye Exam


Jul 5, 2017
Hi Everyone,

I'm a USAFA/AFROTC applicant hoping to get a slot to UPT (that's the plan anyway). Does anyone have any thoughts or knowledge about the FC1 Eye Exam? I know it's a ways out for me, but I'm trying to educate myself about improving/maintaining my vision now, so I can keep my eyes good thru college. Are there good ways to improve vision? Is there any way to prep for the FC1? Does anyone know if the AF is maybe letting people in w/ marginal eyes because of the pilot shortage?

If any flight docs, pilots, or cadets w/ rated slots can give me some tips, that would be great!
Sorry for so many questions, and I hope that all makes sense!
I have normal color vision and substandard acuity. Here are my DODMERB Optometry results:

Color Vision (Ishihara test): Passed 14, missed 0
Distant Vision (Snellen chart): Right Eye 20/40; Left Eye 20/30 - both correctable to 20/15
Near Vision: both 20/20

I've got my refraction numbers, too, if that is any help. Thanks!
Your vision has to be correctable to at least 20/20 for a pilot slot and USAFA will pay for and provide eye surgery to correct any vision issues. Hundreds of cadets receive surgery and most of them have way worse vision than you. As long as you don't have depth perception issues it should not be a problem.
My advice would be to not read without lights on, wear safety glasses when appropriate, and don't poke yourself in the eye. You meet standards, so don't worry about it.
Thanks all! I'll keep the advice in mind.
Does anyone know if AFROTC will provide eye surgery? I've heard that you have to pay for it yourself and get it approved, whereas USAFA cadets get it payed for.
AFROTC will not pay for your surgery. It is all out of pocket, unless your folks insurance will pay for it.