How do I Choose the Best Occupational Therapy College?

Carol Francois

There are four items to consider when choosing the best occupational therapy college: admissions requirements, accreditation, job placement opportunities, and faculty. Occupational therapy college is usually part of the Faculty of Health Sciences or may be organized as an independent school. An occupational therapist works with people who have disabilities or are recovering from a long illness, helping them to recover through daily work.

Occupational therapists may provide out-patient rehabilitation to patients suffering with physical disabilities.
Occupational therapists may provide out-patient rehabilitation to patients suffering with physical disabilities.

In order to qualify for admission to occupational therapy college, a combination of high marks in high school courses and a very good personal interview are required. The best programs often require candidates to have been out of formal school for at least two years, and have relevant work experience. Look for the best programs that you qualify for at this stage of your career. Many schools that offer advanced programs use the same instructors for the standard courses. This increased exposure to additional expertise enriches your educational experience at that school.

The accreditation of the school is important when choosing an occupational therapy program.
The accreditation of the school is important when choosing an occupational therapy program.

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If you are looking at the best occupational therapy college in the country or state, take note that the admissions standard is higher to reflect the increased demand. Only students with the very best combination of marks and personal interviews are offered admissions. If you do not have the very best marks in your class, think about applying to schools that offer programs that you are interested in or will help your career later on.

When looking for occupational therapy college, check the accreditation status. An accredited school has been reviewed by an independent third party. Courses from an accredited school can be transferred to other post-secondary institutions. This is very important, as more than 20 percent of all students transfer schools. Accredited schools are able to offer students access to government student aid programs.

Schools that have connections to industry and job placement programs provide the best combination of education and experience. The best programs have a range of placement positions in different areas and settings. The broader the experience, the better it will appear on your resume. Make sure to ask for letters of recommendations from each placement. The staff members at that institution may have moved on to other employment when you are looking for work. A written letter will give future employers an idea what their comments would have been.

Most occupational therapy colleges provide the biographies of their faculty or instructors on their websites. The information provided typically includes the academic credentials, research focus, publications, and any awards they have received. Look at the type of experience they have and the range of settings. Many professional occupational therapists go into teaching at the middle or later stages of their career.

An occupational therapist may help a patient deal with mobility issues.
An occupational therapist may help a patient deal with mobility issues.

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