What is occupational therapy?
Occupational therapy is a health profession that uses purposeful occupations with individuals whose lives have been disrupted by physical injury or illness, developmental or learning deficits, poverty and cultural differences, the aging process and/or mental challenges.
What does an occupational therapist do?
Occupational therapists work with clients to provide specialized assistance in learning functional skills that will maximize independent, productive and satisfying lives. Occupational therapists are members of the health care team who work with physicians, physical therapists, nurses, social workers, prosthetists and orthotists, vocational counselors, psychologists, speech pathologists and audiologists and other professionals.
The Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) works under the supervision of the Occupational Therapist (OT). Under the guidance of an OT, OTA’s play an important role in carrying out treatment programs. They may choose or construct equipment that helps clients to function more independently, plan and carry our treatment occupations for individuals or groups of clients, and work closely with families as clients prepare to return home.
Which qualities or personal traits are useful in practicing occupational therapy?
Occupational therapists need patience, understanding and compassion when dealing with clients facing health problems. Patience is important because many clients may not show rapid progress and practitioners must be prepared for that challenge. Being understanding and having compassion is also vital when working with clients who have disabilities that require them to undergo extensive and sometimes painful treatment in order to improve their function. And finally, occupational therapy is a field that calls for a certain amount of passion for the beneficial and life-changing work that therapists perform.
Is the program offered as part-time, online, or in the evenings?
The OTA program is offered as a full-time traditional day program.
Can a program graduate work as an OTA without a license?
The states where a student intends to practice or apply for employment may require licensure, certification, or other mandates. The student should contact the relevant agency to obtain the necessary information for application. Each state differs in procedure, however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) Examination (or pending results).
A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification exam or attain state licensure.
For more information about the Ohio OT licensure visit www.state.oh.us/pyt.
Is it possible to attain state licensure if one has a past felony conviction?
This is handled on a case by case basis. A student should contact the licensing board in the state in which he/she wishes to practice. In Ohio, contact the Ohio Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Athletic Trainers Board at firstname.lastname@example.org or (614) 466-3774.
Regarding the certification exam and state licensing, what are the associated costs and can the exam be repeated?
Depending on the state, total costs could be in the $600.00-$650.00 range, which includes payment for the national certification exam, and application for state licensure. There is a 45 day waiting period after the last examination date before the candidate may test again. The candidate MUST submit a new application in order to re-test.
Will classes taken at another college transfer in for the OTA program?
Students should submit transcripts from all schools attended as part of their admissions application. It is important to get transfer credit prior to the admissions deadline so that admissions points are granted for completion of equivalent general education courses required by the OTA Program. Course equivalencies can be found on Transferology (formerly U.select). View the Transferology Student Guide for helpful information.