Occupational therapy is based on the use of everyday activities as the means of helping people with physical and/or mental disabilities to achieve independence.
To prepare for a career as an occupational therapist, you may choose one of three routes: a bachelor’s degree, a post-baccalaureate certificate program or a master’s degree program.
The baccalaureate (bachelor’s) degree program is four years of study: two years (60-semester hours) of pre-professional courses followed by entrance to a professional occupational therapy program in the junior year. The post-baccalaureate certificate program and the master’s degree program are available to individuals who have earned a college degree in a field other than occupational therapy. Both take approximately two years to complete.
Employers do not necessarily differentiate between the various entry degrees when hiring new graduates. The following courses are prerequisites to most of the three types of professional programs.