Copyright

Associates Degree Programs in Occupational Therapy

Learn about associate's degree programs in occupational therapy. See educational prerequisites and the typical curriculum, along with employment prospects and continuing education options after graduation.

View 2 Popular Schools »

Essential Information

The occupational therapy field involves helping patients improve their lives as they deal with chronic illnesses, injuries, mental impairment or genetic disorders. Associate's degree programs in occupational therapy qualify graduates for work as occupational therapy assistants. These professionals work with supervising occupational therapists.

Along with general education courses, students take core courses in occupational therapy, such as physical rehabilitation techniques and patient assessment. Students learn how to employ various types of equipment and tools in the treatment of patients. Such programs also include internships which allow students to gain practical experience in clinics, hospitals or community-based centers. Earning an accredited associate's degree in this field can prepare students for state licensure as occupational therapy assistants.

Educational Prerequisites

A high school diploma or equivalent is required for admission to the associate's program. Students are expected to be competent in English, reading and math, and admission exams in these subjects may be required. In addition, high school biology is highly recommended.

Program Coursework

Curricula are designed to prepare students to work one-on-one with individuals in a variety of settings. Students learn how to recognize a patient's needs, how to do a patient assessments and how to setup a plan, with goals, for treatment. A program's curriculum may include the following courses:

  • Psychology
  • Human occupations
  • Physical rehabilitation theory
  • Anatomy
  • Theory of developmental rehabilitation
  • Speech fundamentals
  • Clinical or internship

Popular Career Options

Most jobs within this field involve assisting occupational therapists with a range of rehabilitation activities. These include properly moving a patient from a bed to a wheelchair, monitoring a patient's' activities and recording a client's progress. Assistants may also perform clerical tasks, including paperwork, answering phones and scheduling appointments. Occupational therapy assistants may pursue positions in:

  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Nursing homes
  • Acute care
  • Ergonomics consulting
  • Services for individuals with low vision
  • Development of assistive devices
  • Consulting in wellness and health

Continuing Education and Certification

Students can move onto bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs in occupational therapy after completing the associate's degree program. Completion of these programs may allow graduates to work as occupational therapists and in supervisory positions. The doctoral degree programs are intended for individuals who want to teach at the university level or conduct research.

Associate's degree graduates may sit for the National Certification Exam administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy. Most states require completion and passing of this exam in order to practice as an occupational therapy assistant.

Show me popular schools

Related to Occupational Therapy Associate Degree Program

  • Related
  • Recently Updated
  • Popular
Master of Science (MS): Occupational Therapy Degree Overview

Occupational therapists help people to recover basic motor functions, cognitive abilities and mobility so they can return to...

Online Associate's Degree in Occupational Therapy: Program Overview

Occupational therapy degree programs at the associate's level prepare students to become occupational therapy assistants. The...

Overview of Occupational Therapy Specializations

Occupational therapists (OTs) help the injured, elderly and disabled rehabilitate and adapt to physical and cognitive...

Best Schools with Occupational Therapy Graduate Programs

See what the top occupational therapy schools have to offer below. Find out more about program options and why these schools...

Occupational Therapy Majors: Information and Requirements

Popular Schools

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must live within close proximity to school locations
    • Must be graduated from high school by 2011
    School locations:
    • Florida (2 campuses)
    • Texas (3 campuses)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    What is your highest level of education completed?

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • California (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Stanford University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Informatics and Illustration
      • Medical Residency Programs
  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Harvard University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Dental
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Public Health and Safety
  • School locations:
    • Pennsylvania (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Pennsylvania include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Dental
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Ethics and Bioethics
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Mental Health Services
      • Nursing Professions
      • Public Health and Safety
      • Veterinary Medicine and Clinical Sciences
  • School locations:
    • Rhode Island (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Brown University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical Ethics and Bioethics
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Public Health and Safety
  • School locations:
    • North Carolina (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Duke University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Nursing Professions
      • Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Professions
        • Physical Therapy
  • School locations:
    • Indiana (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Notre Dame include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
  • School locations:
    • Columbia (D.C.) (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Georgetown University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Nursing Professions
      • Optometric and Ophthalmic Services
      • Public Health and Safety
  • School locations:
    • Tennessee (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Vanderbilt University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Communication Disorders Sciences
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Nursing Professions
      • Public Health and Safety

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics