Ava K. Bittner, OD, PhD
Accepting new patients

Ava K. Bittner, OD, PhD

  • Optometry
Doris Stein Eye Research Center | 200 Stein Plaza Doris Stein 1st Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90095

About

Dr. Ava Bittner received her Optometry degree from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry with clinical honors in pediatrics and low vision. She earned a PhD in clinical investigation from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Dr. Bittner completed a clinical research post-doctoral fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute’s Lions Low Vision Research and Rehabilitation Center from 2002-2007, and then joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor at the Wilmer Eye Institute. From 2014-2019, she held the rank of Associate Professor at the Nova Southeastern University, College of Optometry in Fort Lauderdale.

Dr. Bittner is currently an Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at the UCLA Stein Eye Institute and her primary clinical interest is low vision rehabilitation. She is the Smotrich Family Optometric Clinician-Scientist Chair, and serves at the Director of the UCLA Vision Rehabilitation Center and Chief of Optometric Services at the Stein Eye Institute. Dr. Bittner's research interests include the psychophysical assessment of the healthy and diseased visual system, both to increase the understanding of this system and to develop tools to monitor disease and therapeutic outcomes. She also designs and leads the conduct of clinical trials to evaluate interventions to help improve visual functioning in patients with low vision. Dr. Bittner has received NIH funding (K23, R21, and R01 awards) from the National Eye Institute, and has served as a co-investigator or consultant for multi-center clinical trials of devices or treatments for patients with retinal degenerations. Dr. Bittner serves on several professional research committees and as an editorial board member for vision science journals. She travels regularly both nationally and internationally to speak on topics related to her research in vision rehabilitation and is the author of more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications.

Languages

English

Education

Fellowship

Research, Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2007

Degrees

PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2011
OD, Pennsylvania College of Optometry, 2001

Recognitions

  • American Association of University Women Scholarship (1993)
  • Board of Trustees Scholarship; Rowan University (1993 - 1996)
  • E. F. Wildermuth Foundation Scholarship; Pennsylvania College of Optometry (1997)
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Locations

Hospital Affiliations

Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

Medical Services

Recognitions

  • American Association of University Women Scholarship (1993)
  • Board of Trustees Scholarship; Rowan University (1993 - 1996)
  • E. F. Wildermuth Foundation Scholarship; Pennsylvania College of Optometry (1997)
  • Clinical Honors awarded: Internships at the William Feinbloom Vision Rehabilitation Center and the Thomas Lynch Pediatric Unit at the Eye Institute in Philadelphia, PA (2000); Externship at Advantage Vision Center primary careoptometry, private practice in Charlotte, NC (2001)
  • NEI Travel Grant Award; Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) Annual Meeting (2006)
  • American Academy of Optometry, Fellowship (2009)
  • Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health, Alpha chapter scholarship (2010)
  • American Academy of Optometry, Ezell Fellowship Award (2010-2011)
  • Phi Beta Kappa Academic Honorary Society (2011)
  • NIH Graduate Fellow in Randomized Behavioral Clinical Trials (2011)
  • American Academy of Optometry, Diplomate in Research Low Vision (2015)
  • American Academy of Optometry, Irvin M. and Beatrice Borish Award (2017)
  • American Academy of Optometry, Clinical Research Award (2019)
  • Silver Fellow, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (FARVO) (2022)
  • Gold Fellow, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (FARVO) (2024)