Learn techniques to assist patients who struggle to perform daily tasks through compassionate and evidence-based treatments under the guidance of our qualified faculty.
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Midwestern University’s Master of Occupational Therapy (M.O.T.) program provides the foundation for you to contribute to and identify healthcare solutions for patients of various ages, diagnoses, and occupational challenges.
The Occupational Therapy Program offers a curriculum leading to the Master of Occupational Therapy degree for qualified students. The full-time, continuous, entry-level master’s curriculum is designed to deliver the academic and clinical education required to prepare students for their professional role as key members for the healthcare team and as integral practitioners in the healthcare delivery system. The curriculum for the Master of Occupational Therapy degree is a continuous, full-time program, extending 24 months from matriculation to graduation. The maximum allotted time for completion of this program is 36 months. It is also required that all Level II fieldwork must be completed within 18 months of completion of the didactic portion of the program. The general education, professional training, experience, and personal character development of occupational therapists uniquely prepare them to respond to the needs of individuals who face challenges participating in their daily lives.
Upon completion of the Master of Occupational Therapy Program, graduates are expected to:
- Provide evidence-based occupational therapy services in traditional and emerging areas of practice.
- Meet the occupational needs of individuals and populations through professional advocacy and leadership.
- Apply therapeutic use of occupations to support engagement in activities that promote health, well-being and quality of life.
- Sustain continued professional development through lifelong learning activities.
- Uphold the ethical standards, values and attitudes of the occupational therapy profession in order to sensitively meet the occupational needs of a culturally and socially diverse clientele.
These outcomes are accomplished through a curriculum model that is based on:
- Intentionally sequenced courses that develop the knowledge required to progress through the curriculum and successfully provide care to improve occupational performance;
- Repeated translation and integration of knowledge into new contexts, and to develop increasing depth and complexity, in the competencies required for occupational therapy practice;
- Occupation-focused intervention, recognizing the therapeutic value in occupational engagement as a change agent in therapy as well as the ultimate outcome of the therapy;
- Client-centered intervention as a means to address unique aspects of individuals, and to empower them to play an active role in directing their own therapy;
- Opportunities for both individual and group work that provides active assimilation of new and prior knowledge, exposure to diverse viewpoints and different perspectives, while developing an individual sense of self-efficacy, mastery, and professional growth;
- Simulated and authentic learning encounters that provide a means by which new knowledge and skills are assimilated into "live" practice, providing opportunities to test professional judgement, evaluate knowledge and skills, and self-reflect on performance.
As an occupational therapist, you are trained to provide treatment and services that help individuals of all ages — infants to elderly — regain, develop, or master everyday skills so they may live independent, productive, and satisfying lives. You will assess your clients' physical and mental challenges and develop a plan to address the activities of daily living that suit them best, focusing first on critical daily routines such as dressing, grooming, bathing, and eating. Client plans then may be expanded to include education, caring for a home and family, or finding and holding a job.
Your education as an occupational therapist typically includes a bachelor's degree in fields such as biology, kinesiology, psychology, sociology, anthropology, liberal arts, or anatomy. All of those subjects, in addition to strong communication skills, a desire to help others, and actual experience working with people with disabilities, are valuable to the performance of your future profession. Fieldwork assignments provide the opportunity to put your classroom instruction into practice and learn the expectations of the profession under the guidance and model of an experienced practitioner. Your entry-level professional study prepares you to be a generalist first; you may decide to specialize at any time during your career.
Occupational therapists work in a variety of settings, including public schools, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, mental health centers, nursing homes, long-term care and psychiatric facilities, physician offices, outpatient rehabilitation centers, home health agencies, community health programs, and private practice. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment for occupational therapists to increase at a faster than average rate of 24 percent through 2026.
The president of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) was cited by Monster.com describing "six hot OT practice areas," including:
- Support for 'aging in place,' including assisted living, home safety, and home modification;
- Driver assessments and training programs, including low-vision rehabilitation.
- Community health and wellness, such as Alzheimer's disease, caregiver training, disease management, and life skills training;
- Addressing the needs of children and youth;
- Ergonomics, design, and accessibility consulting;
- Technology and assistive-device development and consulting
If you want to be the type of healthcare professional who sees a whole person rather than a symptom or illness; someone who gets to know your patients as people and wants to be involved in your community; someone who is compassionate, has a healing touch, and communicates well; and someone who enjoys knowing a diverse range of people from different backgrounds, a career in occupational therapy may be just right for you.
Sources: American Occupational Therapy Association; http://ExploreHealthCareers.org; US News & World Report, August 17, 2008; OT Practice, January 2005
The Midwestern University Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE's telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA. Visit the ACOTE website for more information.
Midwestern University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission/A Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (HLC/NCA), 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1413.
View program results from the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT).
Academic Course Catalog
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Career Placement & Salaries
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Occupational Therapists
Located just 15 minutes from downtown Phoenix. Students can study and live on our sprawling 143-acre campus and practice at our University-owned clinics located just across the street.