Academic Program Code: 340
Occupational therapy assistants work under the supervision of registered occupational therapists to help rehabilitate patients who are physically or mentally disabled. They help develop and implement programs of educational, vocational, and recreational activities that strengthen patients’ muscle power, increase motion and coordination, and develop self sufficiency in overcoming disabilities. Students interested in the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program are advised to take preparatory courses in biological and behavioral sciences, such as anatomy, physiology, and psychology. All applicants will be asked to take English and Math placement tests since good reading, writing, and math skills are essential for success as an occupational therapy assistant.
Occupational Therapy is a profession in which members are required to give care to others. The Occupational Therapy Assistant student will need to develop the skills necessary to relate to others verbally and in writing. The student will be required to use written documentation skills to communicate with other professionals. In the field of Occupational Therapy, therapists need to demonstrate the characteristics of self-awareness, self acceptance, awareness of others, and the ability to communicate that awareness. Therapists need to cope effectively with the emotional demands of the environment and to interact effectively with a variety of people. A therapist must be capable of subordinating personal feelings and must possess sufficient emotional stamina to deal with patients who will depend on him/her for emotional and psychological support during therapy. The student must demonstrate fundamentals of practice by adhering to the Occupational Therapy code of ethics and safety regulations, and use sound judgment in regards to safety of self and others.
The OTA program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. The phone number is (301) 652-AOTA. www.acoteonline.org. Graduates of the program will be able to sit for the national certification examination for the Occupational Therapy Assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT).
A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or state registration. For further information on limitations, you can contact NBCOT at 12 South Summit Ave, Gaitherburg, MD 20877; (301) 990-7979. After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA).
The State of Michigan requires licensure for therapists to practice. There are several professional-level education programs directed toward providing specific career advancement for certified occupational therapy assistants. To become a registered occupational therapist, a post baccalaureate degree will be required. Assistants may apply to other professional programs, but their previous training does not automatically include a transfer of credits or eligibility. Students in the OTA program should be prepared to pay for their own textbooks, liability insurance, name tags, OTA examination fee, supplies, transportation, and parking.
Program Admissions Requirements
Students are admitted to the program once a year, in the Fall semester. In order to be eligible for admission into the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program, a student must:
Be a high school graduate or have passed the high school equivalency GED (General Educational Development) Test.
Have a high school GPA of at least 2.5.
Math competency can be demonstrated through any one of the following ways: SAT Math subsection score of 25 or higher within the last five years, ACT Math score of 18 or higher within the last five years, Math Placement Test (ALEKS) with a score of 30 or higher, Completion of MA 098 or higher with a grade of C or better.
Reading and writing competency must be demonstrated through any one of the following ways: EN 101 with a grade of C or higher; Score of 18 or higher on ACT or 25 or higher on SAT within the last five years; Accuplacer placement test scores of 70 on the reading portion and 6 on the written portion.
Have completed a one-semester course of middle or high school computers, focusing on computer literacy, Internet skills, retrieval and management of information with a grade of at least a “C”.
Pass a preliminary criminal background check.
Successful completion of BI 121 and BI 122 within two attempts with a grade of C or higher. Successful completion of OT 102 with a grade of C or higher within 2 attempts (a withdrawal is consider an attempt).