There are three items to consider when looking for the best occupational health courses: accreditation, faculty qualifications, and job placement opportunities. Occupational health courses are available from universities, community, and career colleges. The types of course available and the depth of material covered vary widely. A university course typically requires a large amount of reading and theoretical information. A college course may cover the same material, but makes it relevant to current issues or challenges.
People who report the highest level of satisfaction with occupational health courses enjoy working with people, are naturally outgoing, and have a high degree of emotional maturity. Most occupational health education and training programs have a psychological testing requirement as part of the admissions process. Occupational health professionals work closely with people who are mentally, emotionally, or physically fragile and personal maturity can be very helpful.
When looking for occupational health courses, the first item to check is the accreditation status of the school. An accredited school has been reviewed by an independent third party, and the academic and administrative policies are reviewed. Courses from an accredited school can be transferred to other post-secondary institutions and are accepted by government agencies. In addition, accredited schools are able to offer students access to government student aid programs.
Review the qualifications of the faculty or course instructors. Most schools publish biographies of their faculty, listing their academic credentials, experience, publications, and areas of expertise. Take the time to review this information to obtain valuable background on their areas of expertise, expectations, and focus. The educational backgrounds can vary widely, and may include psychiatrists, nurses, and other mental health professionals.
Job placement opportunities are critical when taking occupational health courses. There are very few opportunities to gain experience in occupational health, outside of a formal educational program. Take full advantage by carefully observing the interaction between the therapist and the client. It is not unusual to require all students to complete a confidentiality agreement and criminal record check as part of the application process for occupational health courses. Take this into consideration before applying.
To prepare for occupational health courses, many people invest in speed-reading and typing classes. The volume of materials is quite heavy at the university level. Speed-reading can reduce the amount of time required to cover the material. Typing classes are also very helpful, as there are a number of reports, papers, and projects in occupational health courses.