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Accelerated A.S. in Occupational Therapy Assistant Studies


This 69-credit program prepares individuals to practice as an occupational therapy assistant in a variety of settings with people of all ages. The program features accelerated 8-week academic terms, five clinical fieldwork experiences, and intensive guidance by faculty and mentors. Lecture and laboratory classes are scheduled two evenings per week and Saturdays. The program uses a hybrid distance learning model. Students attend bi-weekly, on-campus class sessions and participate in electronically mediated learning experiences during those times when they are not on campus. Students complete the program in 24 months. Curricular themes permeate all courses, and key professional concepts are continually reinforced.

Candidates for admission are required to submit an application that includes a resume, personal statement and evidence of two OT site visits (forms included in application packet) as well as participate in an in-person interview.

The occupational therapy assistant studies program at Thomas Jefferson University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA, www.acoteonline.org. Graduates are eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the graduate will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, all 50 states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

Program Learning Outcomes

The overall goal of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Studies program is to graduate competent and caring occupational therapy assistants who are grounded in theory and models of practice, educated as generalists, prepared to work in a variety of settings with a variety of clients and committed to lifelong learning.

Upon completion of the program, the occupational therapy assistant will be able to:

  • Describe the P-E-O model as a foundation for analyzing the impact of environments and contexts on occupational performance.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the power of occupation as the primary intervention tool.
  • Design occupation-based interventions that support occupational performance in the client’s environment guided by evidence and principles of best practice.
  • Demonstrate professional behaviors and conduct self in a therapeutic manner.
  • Collaborate with the occupational therapist in screening, assessment and provision of OT services and with team members, families and clients to work toward the client’s goals.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to lifelong learning that includes an understanding of how to use critical thinking and the supervisory process for professional and personal growth.
  • Demonstrate cultural awareness and understand and value cultural and ethnic diversity locally and in the global environment.
  • Utilize information technology effectively, responsibly, and creatively.
  • Demonstrate effective verbal, written and electronic communication skills.


(33 credits)
IT-201 Learning with Technology 3
WRTG-105 Writing about Workplace Culture 3
BIOL-101ACC Current Topics in Biology 3
HIST-232 History and Philosophy of OTA Practice 3
OTA-300 Anatomy, Physiology and Biomechanics 6
PSYCH-101ACC   Introduction to Psychology 3
OTA-302 Occupations across the Lifespan: Infancy through Adolescence 3
OTA-306 Conditions I: Infancy through Adolescence 3
OTA-304 Occupations across the Lifespan: Adulthood 3
OTA-308 Conditions II: Adulthood 3


(36 credits)
OTA-310 Environments and Contexts of Occupation 3
OTA-410 Interventions I: Infancy through Adolescence  4
OTA-412 Interventions II: Young through middle Adulthood 4
MATH-215 College Algebra 3
OTA-414 Interventions III: Late Adulthood 4
OTA-400 Leadership and Human Service Systems 3
OTA-406 Fieldwork II A 6
OTA-402 Ethics and Critical Thinking I 2
OTA-408 Fieldwork II B 6
OTA-404 Ethics and Critical Thinking II 1