Occupational Therapy Programs

Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) Program

Our Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) program offers practitioners with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in OT a chance to study in clinical practice, research, leadership, advocacy and education. Designed for those who are practicing or ready to practice, the PPOTD helps OTs stay competitive and up to date.

See Requirements & Program Details

Post-Professional OTD Program at a Glance

Campuses: Distance Learning

Start Dates: Sept., Jan., May

Duration: Bachelor’s-level entry: 6-12 trimesters (2-4 years)
Master’s-level entry: 3-7 trimesters (1-2.3 years)

*Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress, credits transferred and other factors. Please note the bachelor's-level entry program typically takes four years and the master's-level entry program typically takes two years and four months to complete based off the most recent two-year graduate data (2021–2022 and 2022–2023).

Post-Professional OTD Pathways

One Degree, Multiple Pathways

Choose your own journey toward an PPOTD degree, whether it be our Bridge Program or our Professional Certificate route.

  • A prospective student with a Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) from USAHS may transfer up to six credits from this program, leaving 29 credits for USAHS alumni to complete the PPOTD.
  • Candidates with a master’s degree in occupational therapy from another accredited institution (whether entry-level or post-professional) must earn a minimum of 35 credits for the PPOTD.
  • Candidates with a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy must earn a minimum of 60 credits for the PPOTD.

  • Flexible learning platform options to meet each student’s learning styles and needs.
  • Interprofessional education and collaboration course to learn with, from, and about other healthcare professions to solve real-life institutional problems working within an interprofessional group.
  • Options to accelerate through the program using transfer credit, prior learning assessment to gain academic credit for work/life experiences, and assessment-based learning. While USAHS does not offer Title IV for any term in which an accelerated learning course is taken without a full term “Anchor” course, other financing alternatives may be available. Please refer to the Financial Aid webpage for additional information.

PPOTD to EdD Bridge Program

USAHS PPOTD graduates have an opportunity to bridge into the Doctor of Education program to complete both degrees in less time and cost. For those looking to teach in an OT academic program, we offer a bridge program from our PPOTD to our Doctor of Education (EdD) degree. Most students may transfer 24-27 PPOTD credits to the EdD and complete the EdD faster.

Professional Certification Opportunities

We also offer an optional certification track: The ImPACT® Trained Occupational Therapist (ITOT) certification is available for students who first complete the Evidence-Based Concussion Management course as an elective.

By the Numbers

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25+

year legacy of OT education

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4,000+

OT Alumni, largest community of practicing OT alumni Based on total MOT and OTD degrees conferred during 2020-2022, as reported by the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS); data is captured through interrelated surveys conducted annually by the Department of Education’s National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES).

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200+

faculty with expertise in 30+ OT specialties

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1-ON-1

faculty support and mentorship

PPOTD Curriculum

The Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy program includes 7 core courses for master’s-entry students and 12 core courses for bachelor’s-entry students. You will complete the remainder of your coursework with elective courses and seminars. Our exceptionally flexible Post-Professional Doctor of OT program allows you to start with the introductory courses, end with the capstone, and in the meantime take any core or elective course in any order. Your course load may be as small as one course per term or as large as you feel comfortable taking on-provided you continuously enroll.

We offer two optional specializations:

  • Executive Leadership
  • Teaching and Learning

You may choose to earn one of these specializations or to concentrate your electives in another topic area (e.g., pediatrics or orthopedics). Or you may take a variety of electives from our wide selection of courses.

We also offer this optional certification track:

  • The ImPACT® Trained Occupational Therapist (ITOT) certification is available for students who first complete the Evidence-Based Concussion Management course as an elective.

Required Coursework

The courses required to complete the Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree are listed below for students who enter the program with either a master’s or bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy.

Students with Master’s

Master’s-entry students can complete the program as quickly as one year, if enrolled full-time. However, the average student with a master’s degree typically completes the program in 2.3 years.*
MS Level Student Courses

Total Core Credit Hours for MS-Level Student
Credit Hours

21
HSA 7200 Foundations of Healthcare Administration or HSA 7200 B - Foundations of Healthcare Administration (B)3
IPE 7001 Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice or IPE 7001B - Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice (B) 3
IPE 7050 Evidence-Based Practice for Healthcare Professionals** or IPE 7050B - Evidence-Based Practice for Healthcare Professionals (B) 3
IPE 7121 Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare or IPE 7121B – Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare (B)3
OCT 7495 The Science of Occupation3
OCT 7496 Capstone I: Project Proposal and Preparation3
OCT 7499 Capstone II: Project Development and Dissemination 3

Bold courses are a prerequisite for OCT 7495, The Science of Occupation
Italicized courses are taken at the end of the program.
**USAHS MOT alumni may replace IPE 7050 with transfer credits, if criteria are met.

Students with Bachelor’s

Bachelor’s-entry students can complete the program as quickly as two years, if enrolled full-time. However, the average student with a bachelor’s degree typically completes the program in four years and four months.
BS Level Student Courses

Total Core Credits Hours for BS Level Student
Credit Hours

43
IPE 7001 Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice or IPE 7001B - Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice (B)3
IPE 7050 Evidence-Based Practice for Healthcare Professionals or IPE 7050B - Evidence-Based Practice for Healthcare Professionals (B) 3
IPE 7121 Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare or IPE 7121B – Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare (B)3
COM 7130 Healthcare Communication & Collaboration3
HSA 7200 Foundations of Healthcare Administration or HSA 7200 B - Foundations of Healthcare Administration (B)3
HSC 7200 Information Literacy for Evidence-Based Practice1
OCT 7200 Reflective Practice3
OCT 7470 Clinical Integration I7
OCT 7471 Clinical Integration II8
OCT 7495 The Science of Occupation3
OCT 7496 Capstone I: Project Proposal and Preparation3
OCT 7499 Capstone II: Project Development and Dissemination3

Bold courses are a prerequisite for OCT 7495, The Science of Occupation
Italicized courses are taken at the end of the program.

Elective Coursework

Below is a sampling of electives you may take to complete the remaining credits you need for the PPOTD degree. They are clustered according to topic. Again, you may choose to focus in a particular area of practice or select any combination of courses that interest you.

  • USAHS Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) alumni must choose 14 elective credits. They may transfer in 3 credits toward IPE 7050 and 3 credits toward a 3-credit elective, if they meet certain criteria.
  • Students with MOT or other master’s degrees must choose 14 elective credits.
  • Students with BS-OT degrees must choose 17 elective credits.

Teaching & Learning Specialization Elective Courses

Teaching & Learning Specialization Elective CoursesCredit Hours
EDF 7013 Practical Application of Online Teaching**3
EDF 7050 Teaching Methods in Higher Education** or EDF 7050B Teaching Methods in Higher Education (B)**3
EDF 7161 Program and Curricular Design for Health Science Education**3
EDF 7175 Foundational Theories in Education** or EDF 7175B Foundational Theories in Education (B) **3
**Courses required for the Teaching & Learning Specialization

Executive Leadership Specialization (ELS) Elective Courses

Executive Leadership Specialization Elective CoursesCredit Hours
HSA 7200 Foundations of Healthcare Administration** or HSA 7200B Foundations of Healthcare Administration (B)**3
HSA 7236 Accounting, Finance and Economics for the Healthcare Leader**3
HSA 7250 Human Resources Management and Organizational Development in Healthcare**3
HSA 7260 Operations and Quality Management in Healthcare**3
IPE 7133 Strategic Planning in Healthcare Administration**3
IPE 7121 Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare** or IPE 7121B Organizational Leadership & Policy in Healthcare (B)**3
**Courses required for the Executive Leadership Specialization (choose two). HSA7200 and IPE 7121 are core courses that contribute to the Executive Leadership Specialization; therefore, please choose two additional courses.

Orthopedic Elective Courses

Orthopedic Elective CoursesCredit Hours
BSC 7301 Ergonomics2
HSC 7210 Extremity Evaluation and Manipulation (E1)
(seminar plus coursework)
2
HSC 7320 Fundamental Skills for Hand and Upper Extremity Therapy2
HSC 7416 Foundations of Imaging3

Pediatric Elective Courses

Pediatric Elective CoursesCredit Hours
BSC 7101 Application of Motor Control and Motor Learning Theory to Neurologic Interventions2
BSC 7125 The Pediatric Client with Neuromotor Involvement3
BSC 7200 Autism: Evidence, Etiology and Impact3
HSC 6036 Metabolic Disorders1
HSC 7325 School-Based Practice3

General Rehabilitation Elective Courses

General Rehabilitation Elective CoursesCredit Hours
BSC 7101 Application of Motor Control & Motor Learning Theory to Neurologic Interventions
2
BSC 7155 Functional Performance in the Older Adult2
BSC 7301 Ergonomics2
HSC 6036 Metabolic Disorders1
HSC 7401 Pharmacology3
IPE 7025 Psychosocial Strategies for Healthcare or IPE 7025B Psychosocial Strategies for Healthcare (B)3
IPE 7200 Cultural Competence in Healthcare or IPE 7200B Cultural Competence in Healthcare(B)3
IPE 7255 Evidence-Based Concussion Management3

General Elective Courses

General Elective CoursesCredit Hours
COM 7130 Healthcare Communication and Collaboration3
EDF 7111 Research Methods I3
EDF 7121 Research Methods II3
EDF 7171 Motivation Theory in Healthcare Education3
EDF 7181 Technology in Higher Education3
EDF 7235 Ethical Principles in Healthcare3
HSC 7200 Information Literacy for Evidence-Based Practice1
HSC 7416 Foundations of Imaging3
HSC 7470 Legal and Regulatory Issues3
IPE 7100 Ethics in Healthcare3
IPE 7316 Women’s Health and Wellbeing3
IPE 7400 Healthcare Informatics and Technology Management3
IPE 7421 Interprofessional Approaches to Regional and Global Population Health or IPE 7421B Interprofessional Approaches to Regional and Global Population Health3
OCT 7455 Special Topics in Professional PracticeVaries
MHS 7315 Contemporary Trends in Wellness3

ImPACT® Trained Occupational Therapist (ITOT) certification

ImPACT® Trained Occupational Therapist (ITOT) certificationCredit Hours
IPE 7255 Evidence-Based Concussion Management3

The Capstone Project

The capstone project is the final step in your PPOTD program. You will be assigned a faculty advisor who will guide you through systematic development, completion, and documentation of a culminating scholarly project.

*Please note the program typically takes 2 years and 8 months to complete, based off the most recent 2-year graduate data (2019-2020 and 2020-2021); however, individual experiences will vary based on factors including, but not limited to: individual progression, part-time vs. full-time enrollment, credits transferred, changing specializations, unsuccessful course completion, leaves of absence or other personal circumstances.

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PPOTD Admission Requirements

The program has rolling admissions and students can apply at any time. To be considered for admission, all candidates must submit an online application, which includes the following*:

  • A bachelor’s or master’s degree from an accredited institution in occupational therapy.
  • Official transcripts from each degree conferring institution are required and must be submitted to the University directly from the issuing institution.
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Two recommendations from professional colleagues

Applicants should be licensed occupational therapists or be eligible for licensing and should be employed as occupational therapists or have a minimum of one year’s experience as an occupational therapist. USAHS MOT graduates who enter the program within six months of their MOT graduation may enter without a license but must be licensed and employed as an OT by the beginning of the second term of the program.

*USAHS MOT graduates who graduated within six months of starting the PPOTD program only need to submit an online application.

Transfer of Credit

USAHS will consider accepting graduate credits from other accredited institutions (up to 25% of academic credits may be transferred) provided they are consistent with your area of interest and meet USAHS standards. Please contact your enrollment advisor for further details. USAHS MOT graduates may receive 6 (six) credits toward their PPOTD.

Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) program

International Students Applying for Admission

Foreign-trained candidates who do not require a student visa to participate in University courses and/or degrees can be considered for admission. To enter the program the following will apply:

  • The candidate must submit transcripts (original and a translated version, if applicable) and a credentialing evaluation from an agency recognized by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) that provide evidence of training at a level equivalent to that of a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy in the United States
  • Be a graduate of a program in a country that is a member of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists.
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PPOTD Tuition & Fees

The Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy program is flexible and is designed to meet your individual needs. Students with a Bachelor’s degree can complete the program in 3-4 years and students with Masters degrees can complete in as little as 1-2 years, if enrolled full-time*. The program tuition and fees are as follows.

Bachelor’s Level Student

School Expenses60 Credit Hour Program
Tuition$33,324.00
Program & Grad Fees$4,900.00
Books & Associated School Expenses$1,500.00
Total Program Direct Expenses$39,724.00
Students whose address on record is in California at the time tuition is first charged and/or who attend the California campus will be responsible for paying a one-time Student Tuition Recovery Fund non-refundable fee, pursuant to California Code of Regulations §76120.

All tuition and fees are estimates and subject to change.

Master’s Level Student

Students who already have a master’s degree will need to complete 35 credit hours. USAHS MOT graduates can apply six credits from the MOT program toward the PPOTD, reducing the time-to-completion.
School Expenses35 Credit Hour Program
Tuition$25,573.00
Program & Grad Fees$2,900.00
Books & Associated School Expenses$875.00
Total Program Direct Expense$29,348.00
Students whose address on record is in California at the time tuition is first charged and/or who attend the California campus will be responsible for paying a one-time Student Tuition Recovery Fund non-refundable fee, pursuant to California Code of Regulations §76120.

All tuition and fees are estimates and subject to change.

Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) program

Financial Aid

Student loans may be available to assist with funding your PPOTD program. USAHS has financial aid counselors who are available to explain your options.

Financial aid counselors can be reached by email, phone, or on campus. Regular office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday in each time zone. If you are unable to meet during regular office hours, after-hours appointments are available by request.

Please visit our Financial Aid Contact page for more information.

**Please note the program typically takes 2 years and 4 months to complete, based off the most recent 2-year graduate data (2021-2022 and 2022-2023); however, individual experiences will vary based on factors including, but not limited to: individual progression, part-time vs. full-time enrollment, credits transferred, changing specializations, unsuccessful course completion, leaves of absence or other personal circumstances

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PPOTD Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) program, graduates will be able to:

  • Integrate evidence-informed decision making into occupational therapy roles and responsibilities.
  • Integrate ethical and professional standards in occupational therapy.
  • Demonstrate effective communication to promote participation in occupation within the profession and relevant populations.
  • Promote interprofessional relationships through collaboration and communication with members of various professions and relevant populations.
  • Create a plan for professional growth that contributes to the advancement of the profession, as well as the communities in which occupational therapists serve.
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PPOTD Accreditation and State Approvals/Post-Graduation Licensure

Institutional Accreditation

The University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), 1080 Marina Village Parkway, Suite 500, Alameda, CA 94501, (510) 748-9001.

For more information, visit our Accreditation page.

Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (PPOTD) program

State Approvals

PPOTD

USAHS currently is accepting applications for enrollment in the program for residents of the following states:  Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

USAHS is not accepting applications from states where the institution does not have state authorization. However, prospective students are encouraged to check back in the near future as the program may be offered in additional states.  Current and admitted students are also advised to monitor this page for any updates prior to relocating to another state, as this can have an impact on continued enrollment in the program and the ability to conduct on-the-ground activities.

For states denoted with clinical field experience and other on-the-ground activity restrictions, USAHS does not have the necessary state authorization approvals to offer on-the-ground activities of this kind in those states at this time.

Post-Graduation Licensure

USAHS’ PPOTD program is not designed or intended to lead to professional licensure in any state.

 

It remains the student’s responsibility to understand, evaluate, and comply with all requirements relating to authorization or endorsement for the state in which she or he resides.

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Post Professional OTD Program Data

PPOTD Grant

Tuition Savings

PPOTD Grant

USAHS supports your PPOTD journey with Special Tuition Grant savings.Over the life of the program. This offer is not a guarantee that all candidates eligible for the offer will be granted acceptance or admission into USAHS. All prospective students will be subject to the same standard admission and registration process when applying to USAHS. The Grant is applicable to tuition only and does not apply toward books, materials, and other supplies or fees. This offer is only valid for eligible new students who enroll and start classes in the above programs at USAHS for in 2024 only. Please refer to the Financial Aid webpage for additional information.

Master’s Entry (35 credits): $5,000
Bachelor’s Entry (60 credits): $5,000

Criteria
Available to all eligible students
No application is needed

How Our Online Post-Professional OTD Program Stands Apart

We offer specializations.

The Post-Professional OTD program offers two optional specializations: Executive Leadership and Teaching & Learning. You may choose to earn one of these specializations or to concentrate your electives in another topic area, such as pediatrics or orthopedics.

We’re online + interactive.

Our online coursework has both synchronous and asynchronous elements. We also offer optional virtual immersions, a chance to enjoy connections with faculty and fellow students—and complete the course faster.

We offer acceleration options.

Move faster through the PPOTD program so you can apply your knowledge sooner! You can take self-paced courses that award credit according to competency assessmentsWhile USAHS does not offer Title IV for any term in which an accelerated learning course is taken without a full term “Anchor” course, other financing alternatives may be available. Please refer to the Financial Aid webpage for additional information., receive academic credit for your professional experience, and ask to transfer credits from another graduate program.

We’re innovative.

We’ve long been at the forefront of innovative and applied learning methods, such as case-based teaching and realistic, immersive virtual simulations. With the guidance of a faculty advisor, you will develop and complete a capstone project that expands the body of knowledge within occupational therapy.

Getting Started with Your Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate

Whether you’re ready to apply or seek additional information, it’s easy to get started on your path toward advancing your OT career.

Get More Information about our Post-Professional OTD Program

Get More Information about our Post-Professional OTD Program

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