Wave optics is the branch of optics concerned with interference, diffraction, polarization, and other phenomena for which the ray approximation of geometric optics is not valid. As with geometric optics, there are many medical and life science research applications of wave optics ranging from the use of X-ray crystallography to study proteins and nucleic acids to many applications of interferometry in medical and biological imaging. On the new MCAT if you encounter a passage on something like optical coherence tomography (OCT), a radiology technique for visualizing internal tissue microstructures, or differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy, remember that such a passage is not going to be testing whether you have specific prior knowledge of the technologies but whether you can apply the fundamental principles of wave optics to comprehend what you are reading.
Wave Optics Cards
Conceptual Vocabulary Self-Test
Basic Terms Crossword Puzzle
Basic Puzzle Solution
Conceptual Vocabulary for Wave Optics