Doctor of Occupational Therapy

OTD Admission Requirements

See all Doctor of Occupational Therapy admission requirements below.

Candidates must meet the following admission requirements in order to be considered for the occupational therapy doctorate program.

Requirements Starting Fall 2022

Bachelor’s Degree: Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. You can apply while you are still enrolled in an undergraduate degree program or while you are completing prerequisite coursework. You should submit a plan of study with your application that indicates all remaining courses that will be completed prior to program enrollment.

GRE: The GRE is no longer required for admission to USAHS Occupational Therapy Program.

Resume: Include a current resume with your application.

Statement of Purpose: Include a short statement of why you wish to pursue occupational therapy as a career and what attracts you to the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.

OT Supplemental Questions: Provide five short answers to help us learn more about you.

  1. An Occupational Therapist enables people to engage in occupations they want to do, need to do, or are expected to do. What is an occupation you enjoy engaging in, and what positive impact does this have on you? (200 words max)
  2. Occupational Therapists enable people to do what they want to do. Can you explain when you have enabled others through occupation?  (200 words max)
  3. Please share how you have participated in volunteerism to be a force for good in your community. (200 words max)
  4. List two attributes you have which you consider crucial to being an effective Occupational Therapist. (200 words max)
  5. How would your former professors describe you? (200 words max)

Letters of Recommendation: Applicants are required to submit two recommendations. One recommendation must be from an instructor or Occupational Therapy Practitioner.

Observation Hours: The Occupational Therapy Department does not require observation hours to apply for our graduate programs, however, it is highly recommended that all applicants observe occupational therapy in at least two areas of practice. This will not only support your submission essays; it will also help to ensure that you are well suited for this field of study.

OTD Essay: Please select one the topics listed below and write a succinct (800-1000 word, double spaced) essay that exhibits your understanding of the issue and its potential impact on occupational therapy practice. Be sure to support your assertions and show your sources of information (use at least 3 sources) using in-text citations and include a reference list of cited sources.
The essay will be evaluated by the faculty admissions committee to assess preparedness for graduate studies and to identify the assistance needed for success in the program.

Essay topic options (select one)

  • Working with marginalized populations in healthcare
  • Working with other professions as an occupational therapist
  • Telehealth and occupational therapy
  • The rising cost of healthcare and access to occupational therapy
  • Healthcare disparities and access to occupational therapy
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion in healthcare
  • Ethical dilemmas in the rehabilitation fields
  • US health trends that will impact occupation in the future
  • Addressing the needs of vulnerable populations in occupational therapy
  • The use of technologies in the delivery of occupational therapy

Prerequisites: Admissions recommends that all prerequisite coursework be no more than 5 years old. This is a recommendation and is preferred, it is not a requirement to apply. You will be asked to provide official transcripts during the application process.

Prerequisite Check

All prerequisite courses must be completed with a grade of “C” (2.0) or better. You can find our OT prerequisite form here. Evidence of successful completion of the following prerequisites is required:

Required Prerequisite Courses
Anatomy and Physiology with Lab
Acceptable course titles to fulfill this requirement include:

Human Anatomy and Physiology I & II-Topics covered are: cell physiology, histology, integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous and sensory systems. Emphasis is on the interaction of structure and function and the mechanisms which maintain homeostasis in the human body.

General Human Anatomy-In its broadest sense, anatomy is the study of the structure of an object, in this case the human body. Human anatomy deals with the way the parts of humans, from molecules to bones, interact to form a functional unit. The study of anatomy is distinct from the study of physiology, although the two are often paired.

General Human Physiology– is the study of how the human body functions. This includes the mechanical, physical, bioelectrical, and biochemical functions of humans in good health, from organs to the cells of which they are composed.
Not Acceptable: Animal Physiology (must be human), Exercise Physiology, or Clinical Physiology

Sociology or Anthropology
Acceptable course titles to fulfill this requirement include:

Sociology – Sociology is the study of human social relationships and institutions. Sociology’s subject matter is diverse, ranging from crime to religion, from the family to the state, from the divisions of race and social class to the shared beliefs of a common culture, and from social stability to radical change in whole societies. Unifying the study of these diverse subjects is sociology’s purpose of understanding how human action and consciousness both shape and are shaped by surrounding cultural and social structures.

Anthropology – Anthropology is the systematic study of humanity, with the goal of understanding our evolutionary origins, our distinctiveness as a species, and the great diversity in our forms of social existence across the world and through time. The focus of Anthropology is on understanding both our shared humanity and diversity and engaging with diverse ways of being in the world. Anthropology is divided into three subfields: sociocultural, biological, and archaeology. USAHS will accept sociocultural and biological anthropology subjects in fulfillment of their prerequisite, but not archeology.

Sociocultural Anthropology – Sociocultural anthropologists interpret the content of particular cultures, explain variation among cultures, and study processes of cultural change and social transformation. Common topics include human ecology; gender relations; culture and ideology; demography and family systems; race, class and gender inequality; resistance movements; colonialism, neocolonialism, and development; and cultural politics.

Biological Anthropology – Biological anthropologists study a variety of aspects of human evolutionary biology. Some examine fossils and apply their observations to understanding human evolution; others compare morphological, biochemical, genetic, and physiological adaptations of living humans to their environments; still others observe behavior of human and nonhuman primates (monkeys and apes) to understand the roots of human behavior.

Human Growth and Development (Lifespan) – This course must cover the life stages from birth to death, including the psychological aspect of growth and development. It must include both physical and biological development.

Common Courses: Human Development and Developmental Psychology

Abnormal Psychology
Abnormal psychology is a branch of psychology that studies unusual patterns of behavior, emotion and thought, which could possibly be understood as a mental disorder. It involves the study, assessment, treatment, and prevention of maladaptive behavior.
Statistics is the study of the collection, analysis, interpretation, presentation, and organization of data. This course includes measures of central tendency and variability, probability, random variables, normal and binomial distributions, confidence intervals, tests of hypotheses, correlation and simple linear regression, descriptive and inferential techniques and concepts which apply to sample data which has been gathered from a population.
Medical Terminology
Medical terminology is language used to precisely describe the human body including its components, processes, conditions affecting it, and procedures performed upon it. Medical terminology is used in the field of medicine and other health professions.
*Applicants may complete the requirement through CEU credit with certificate of completion or transcript, standard credit bearing course with transcript, CLEP with official score report or course completed through USAHS and provide evidence of completion.

Doctor of Occupational Therapy Degree Program

Misrepresentation of Academic Credentials

Misrepresentation of academic credentials includes presenting information known as false and with the intent of obtaining employment or admission to an educational program at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences. Statements made and documents supplied by the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences applicants and students must be complete and accurate. The university will not tolerate any misrepresentation by a student or applicant of past or current academic programs, degrees, or professional accomplishments. If unexplained discrepancies appear between statements or documents provided to the University of St. Augustine and information obtained otherwise, except in the case of misspellings and other such inadvertent errors, applicants may be rejected for admission and enrolled students may be dismissed.

Additional Information

  • A comprehensive background check, fingerprints and drug screen at the applicant’s expense must be completed upon acceptance into the program prior to matriculation. A felony charge and or conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or to attain state licensure.
  • This is a hybrid program requiring both virtual (distance education) and face-to-face class participation. Online learners need access to/use of a computer/word processor and basic technical skills to succeed. These skills include the ability to create new documents, use a word processing program, navigate the Internet, and download software. Attendance requirements are enforced.

OTD Program Page

Let's Connect

We're here to support you on your educational journey.

Please complete our contact form. An enrollment advisor will reach out to provide information and answer your questions.