Occupational therapists (OT) "help people of all ages participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations). Unlike other professions, occupational therapy helps people function in all of their environments (e.g., home, work, school, community) and addresses the physical, psychological, and cognitive aspects of their well-being through engagement in occupation. Common occupational therapy interventions include helping children with disabilities to participate fully in school and develop social skills, helping people recovering from injury to regain function through retraining and/or adaptations, and providing supports for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes" (AOTA, 2015).
Entry-level practice requires a master's degree (MSOT) although some universities offer a doctorate level program (OTD). Students can expect prerequisites and curriculums similar to those offered in other health profession schools with a focus on rehabilitation science and programs that are approximately 2 - 3 years duration. This holistic health profession continues to be in high demand with career opportunities primarily in school systems, hospitals, and long-term-care facilities (AOTA, 2015).
For more information about becoming an occupational therapist please visit AOTA.
UM Career Advisor: Tucker Squires
Program Quick Facts
Education Association: AOTA (American Occupational Therapy Association)
Application Service: OTCAS (Occupational Therapist Centralized Application Service)
Entrance Exam: GRE
Length of program: 2- 3 years