Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD)

Program Location
Center for Graduate Studies
Program Credits
120 Credits
Program Length
8 Trimesters, 120 Weeks
Time to Complete
32 Months
*Program length may vary.

The philosophy of the Department of Occupational Therapy at WCU reflects the mission statement and values of West Coast University, the values of the occupational therapy profession, and the mission and values of the faculty of the Occupational Therapy Doctorate program. Some of the themes that these entities share are: student-centricity; commitment to the communities served; innovation and creativity; and the efficient use of resources. The occupational therapy curriculum incorporates beliefs about health and well-being, occupation, and teaching and learning. Education is focused on preparing the student to emerge as a “scholar of practice” with advance skill above those of a generalist as a direct care provider, consultant, educator, manager, researcher, and advocate for the professions and the consumer (ACOTE Preamble, p.1)

West Coast University’s Occupational Therapy Program is based on the belief that all humans are occupational beings in nature, and in the healing power of occupation whereby humans can influence their own health status. Occupational engagement and thus occupation-based interventions are therefore the central theme of the curriculum.

Our mission is to provide doctoral-level education to develop caring and competent Occupational Therapy practitioners through the integration of theory, research and practice. These scholars of practice will be lifelong learners and can develop into advocates and leaders for the Occupational Therapy profession in diverse local and global communities. Through a student-centric and interprofessional curriculum, the students will be prepared to be reflective practitioners by applying principles of evidence-based practice, research, and critical thinking to facilitate the well-being of consumers through engagement in valued occupations and as it relates to health promotion, prevention, and wellness.



Program Learning Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of the program the Occupational Therapy Doctorate students will be able to:

  1. Design and implement client centered care that is inclusive of cultural values, beliefs and needs.
  2. Demonstrate effective communication skills to function effectively as a member of an inter-professional health care team.
  3. Apply critical analysis of evidence during the occupational therapy process and participate to increase the body of knowledge of the profession through the preparation and dissemination of scholarship.
  4. Design and implement interventions with a central focus on occupation as the means and end of therapeutic process, in line with the professions philosophy.
  5. Integrate health promotion and wellness in interventions with individuals, communities and populations.
  6. Model leadership and advocacy for occupational therapy in the full range of service areas.



Admission Requirements

A student applying for admission to the OTD program at West Coast University must:

  1. Submit a completed application for admission and pay application fee through WCU and OTCAS and submit transcripts by the deadline.  
  2. Meet the program admissions requirements.
  3. Submit a copy of official transcripts through OTCAS.
  4. Participate in a qualitative admissions interview arranged by a University Admissions Advisor.  
  5. Complete and enrollment agreement if accepted into the program.  

International students - Due to the fieldwork requirements of the OTD program, the program can only admit students who are US citizens or Permanent Residents.  

Program specific application requirements and prerequisites:

  1. Have obtained a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution. Overall Last 60 unit requirement must meet a 3.0 minimum GPA
  2. Application can be submitted during enrollment in an undergraduate degree program or during completion of prerequisite course work.  Note: In order to be considered for admissions all course work must be completed and final documentation must be submitted by the May 1st  deadline.
  3. Medical terminology course required. (1-2 credits)
  4. Applicants who earned a bachelor’s degree in a non-English speaking country must have verification of the following scores within two years of intended enrollment:  
  5. An Internet Based TOEFL (iBT) score of 90 with no less than 20 on each sub-score; or 
    1. An IELTS of 6.5 with no less than 6 on each band score.  
    2. Students whose native language is English and/or students with a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. college or university are exempted from this examination.  
  1. Applicants must have obtained an overall 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA) of program prerequisite courses (from accredited universities) within the last ten years.  
  1. Required prerequisite courses:
  • Two (2) courses in the humanities or social sciences (Anthropology; Philosophy; Religion; Ethics; Cultural studies; Group dynamics) (3 credits each)
  • One (1) Statistics course (3 credits)
  • One (1) courses in Human Anatomy plus lab (3 credits)
  • One (1) course in Physiology plus lab (3 credits)
  • One (1) course in Human Development or Lifespan (3 credits)
  • One (1) course in Abnormal or Behavioral Psychology (3 credits)

 

  1. Student should have:
    1. Basic computer skills in Microsoft Word and PowerPoint
    2. Three (3) references: Two (2) occupational therapists;1 faculty member/advisor
    3. A minimum of 40 volunteer or observation
      hours obtained from an occupational
      setting of choice

In order to be considered, all program specific admissions requirements & prerequisites must be met by following deadlines:

  1. Fall class (OTD only begins in September): May 1st
  2. The University reserves the right to deny admission to applicants if the admissions requirements are not successfully met.  The denial of admissions is final and may not be appealed. No reasons for denial will be provided to applicants.

Fulltime devotion to this program is highly recommended; any employment can interfere
with the successful completion of this program

  • The University reserves the right to deny admission to applicants if the admissions requirements are not successfully met.  The denial of admissions is final and may not be appealed.
  • Candidates - Once the applicant becomes an eligible candidate, a $500 deposit (Cashier’s Check or Money Order only) is required as part of the acceptance to the OTD program offered at WCU.  This requirement will also be mentioned in the acceptance letter from the Occupational Therapy Department. 

Health Insurance Requirement - Students enrolled in the OTD program will be required to provide evidence of health insurance prior to participation in fieldwork.  Participation in fieldwork is required to complete the program. 

OTD Transfer Credit Evaluation

Transfers of credits within the university will be considered on a case by case basis. Students wanting to transfer credits from other Occupational Therapy programs are allowed a maximum of 18 transfer credits for the WCU OTD degree.

OTD Candidate Deposit

Applicants that are conditionally accepted to the OTD program will be required to submit a $500.00 good faith payment for a Seat Deposit. The Seat Deposit will be credited to your program costs. The University will retain a maximum of $175.00 of this deposit should you cancel your enrollment within seven calendar days (excluding holidays) of enrollment or by the seventh calendar day of the first term, whichever is later. The seat deposit is fully refundable if you are not admitted as a result of your background check. Deposits may be paid by money order or cashier's check made out to West Coast University.


For specific graduation requirements, please see the OTD Graduation Requirements.

Program Information and Disclosures

Program Information and  Disclosure

West Coast University’s Occupational Therapy Doctorate program has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449.  Upon receiving full accreditation, this program’s graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT), Inc.  An individual will be considered an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR) following successful completion of the abovementioned exam.  Though most states require licensure in order to practice, the state licenses are usually contingent on successful passage of the NBCOT Certification Examination.  A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination as well as eligibility to obtain state licensure.   For further questions, one may reach ACOTE by phone c/o AOTA, at (301) 652-AOTA.  The National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) can be reached at www.nbcot.org.

More information about the NBCOT examination process is available at: www.nbcot.org.

California Board of Occupational Therapy (CBOT) Disclosure

Graduates who wish to practice in California must apply with the California Board of Occupational Therapy to be issued licensure to practice in the state of California.

For more information about OTR license application requirements, please visit the California Board of Occupational Therapy at www.bot.ca.gov/.

Health Insurance Requirement

Students enrolled in the OTD program will be required to provide evidence of health insurance prior to participation in fieldwork.  Participation in fieldwork is required to complete the program.


OTD Curriculum

The Occupational Therapy Doctorate program is offered on a Trimester system, with 3 trimesters a year.  Students may complete the OTD program in a total of 8 trimesters over 32 months.  

Core Occupational Therapy Courses

OCC 710Foundations of Occupational Therapy Practice

3.0

OCC 711Occupations across the Lifespan

2.0

OCC 712Introduction to Fieldwork I

1.0

OCC 713OT Evaluation and Screening I

3.0

OCC 718Introduction to Scholarship and Research

5.0

OCC 515Basic Patient Care Skills

2.0

OCC 716Integrated Physiology and Anatomy

5.0

OCC 720AOccupational Performance in the Older Adult

5.0

OCC 720BSkills Lab Occupational Performance in the Older Adult Population

2.0

OCC 721Fieldwork I – Older Adult

1.0

OCC 722OT Evaluation and Screening II

2.0

OCC 723Brain, Behavior and Occupation

3.0

OCC 724Movement Analysis in Occupation

3.0

OCC 725Scholarship & Evidence-Based Practice I

3.0

OCC 726Occupations in Practice

2.0

OCC 729Introduction to Doctoral Studies

1.0

OCC 731AOccupational Performance in the Adult Population

5.0

OCC 731BSkills Lab Occupational Performance in the Adult

2.0

OCC 732Fieldwork I – Adults

1.0

OCC 733Scholarship & Evidence-Based Practice II

3.0

OCC 734Preparatory Methods I

3.0

OCC 735Assistive Technology

4.0

OCC 741AOccupational Performance in the Child and Adolescents Population

5.0

OCC 741BSkills Lab Occupational Performance in the Child and Adolescents Population

2.0

OCC 742Fieldwork I – Children and Adolescents

1.0

OCC 743Introduction to Doctoral Fieldwork

1.0

OCC 744Preparatory Methods II

4.0

OCC 745Occupational Wellness

4.0

OCC 746Leadership & Advancement in Occupational Therapy Practice

4.0

OCC 751Preparation for Doctoral Professional Practice (1st 2 weeks)

1.0

OCC 752Fieldwork II-A

12.0

OCC 761Preparation for Capstone I

1.0

OCC 771Preparation for Capstone II

2.0

OCC 772Doctoral Experiential Internship

5.0

OCC 781Doctoral Experiential Internship II

6.0

OCC 782Capstone

2.0

Total Credit Hours:120.0

OTD Program Costs

For program costs, please see the Graduate Tuition and Fees section.