Online Doctorate in Occupational Therapy Programs (OTD)

Occupational therapy is the field of healthcare that blends the knowledge, skills and techniques of occupational science, physical therapy and rehabilitation medicine in a systematic way to promote occupation within a person’s everyday life according to their individual needs. If you are interested in this field but are not sure where to start, keep reading for more information on occupational therapy and how you can learn more about it. Doctors of occupational therapy perform many different tasks, depending on the type of healthcare facility and place they are working. Below are some examples of what a doctorate in occupational therapy can lead to:

  • 1. Designing creative therapeutic solutions that enable patients to improve their overall quality of life through participation in meaningful activities within their community, whether at home or work
  • 2. Working with patients and their families to help them overcome negative experiences or disabilities that prevent them from achieving desired outcomes and interacting fully within their community
  • 3. Helping older adults age in place by developing plans for living safely at home, maintaining functional independence where possible, staying active and engaged while reducing the risk of harm due to falls
  • 4. Ensuring patients who are in physical therapy can recover to their maximum activity level while improving their quality of life
  • 5. Helping patients, especially children and adolescents, recover from a mental illness or behavioural challenge
  • 6. Helping individuals with cognitive impairment overcome barriers to social participation 

Can You Earn Your Occupational Therapy Doctorate Online?

Online occupational therapy programs are a growing field of study. Online courses platform offers flexibility, convenience, and various options for earning an education that has a high value in the job market. Many people earn their doctorate in occupational therapy online because it is the most convenient way to make that degree. 

Many occupational therapists are employed by state and local government agencies, requiring their employees to have a master’s or doctoral degree. Some people choose this path because it is less expensive than traditional schools, giving them more time to earn their degree without impacting their family’s budget. 

How Long Does it Take to Complete an OTD?

Students who enroll in an online occupational therapy program may choose either a full-time or part-time program. If you decide to pursue your doctorate online full-time, you need about four years to complete the degree and any additional clinical requirements required by your institution. However, this can be accelerated to allow students to graduate in four years if they manage their time to complete their program satisfactorily. 

This depends on how efficiently you manage your time and the intensity of the coursework required by your institution. Completing your degree quickly will give students the edge they need when finding full-time employment after graduation since job offers frequently require a master’s or doctoral degree.

Do I Need a Degree for an OTD?

Some students who sign up for online occupational therapy programs do so without a degree. On the other hand, some people who have a bachelor’s degree or even an associate’s degree from another field are eager to earn their occupational therapy doctorate online. 

Others choose this path because they already have a doctorate in another health field like physical rehabilitation therapy or occupational science. A degree is not required for employment in those fields. Yet, they see value in earning the OTD designation from their designating institution. 

What Does the OTD Program Cover?

Online course app occupational therapy programs involve a lot of coursework. The courses you take will depend on the program format you choose, but it may include the following subjects: 

– Occupational and social sciences

– Health policies and administration

– Psychology and counselling

– Rehabilitation science and technology 

Some programs also require students to take additional electives in community mental health, cultural competence and health systems management. 

There are many ways to become an occupational therapist through distance learning programs. Online occupational therapy degrees have increased in popularity because they provide flexibility and convenience for potential students. Some schools offer online doctoral degrees requiring clinical work requirements, while others offer online master’s degrees in occupational therapy that do not require supervised clinical work. A few schools offer both as well as part-time degree options.

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What are the advantages of earning an OTD online?

  1. Online OT diplomas are fully accredited by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). This means that the degree received is 100% accepted by employers and licensing entities. The accreditation assures you that all coursework, fieldwork and testing requirements will be covered to get your degree. AOTA accreditation also means that the courses you take while earning your degree will be a good fit for your future career as an occupational therapist. 
  2. Online OTDs are flexible for adults with families and full-time jobs. Many people choose to earn their doctoral degrees from home, saving them time and money on transportation. This means that earning a doctorate in occupational therapy from home is convenient and cheaper than taking classes at a brick and mortar institution. 

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