Occupational Therapy (O.T.D)

Occupational Therapy (O.T.D)

OT grad student working with members of a stroke survivors group

WHY GET YOUR CLINICAL DOCTORAL DEGREE IN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY?

An entry level doctoral degree in occupational therapy will prepare students to enter the profession with strong foundational skills in occupational therapy assessment and intervention, advanced training in clinical skills, leadership, clinical research, and program development. Throughout the doctoral program, students will be challenged to learn and apply occupational therapy principles to traditional and emerging areas of practice, in hospital and community-based settings and for individual clients and population groups. Graduates gain valuable skills to become leaders in their field, advance in their careers, and position themselves as agents of change to influence policy and practice.

WHY CHOOSE UNH’S OTD PROGRAM?

UNH's OTD program is designed for students who are on an accelerated trajectory for advanced practice. The OTD program can be completed in three years (nine semesters and one January term) for students who enter with a bachelor’s degree in a related field. Students in the UNH BS/OTD program enter the OTD program with advanced standing to complete both degrees in six years (14 semesters and one January term). Our courses will be offered using a mix of face-to-face, hybrid and online delivery methods to maximize and enhance learning. Students will be mentored one-on-one by faculty who have expertise in clinical and evidence-based practice. Students tailor their educational experience to match their career goals within practice areas such as school-based practice, mental health, geriatric practice or musculoskeletal disorders.

POTENTIAL CAREER AREAS

  • Administration
  • Early intervention programs
  • Hospitals
  • In-patient rehabilitation centers
  • Mental health and substance abuse programs
  • Primary care settings
  • School settings
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • OT clinical researcher
  • OT educator

Contact

Department of Occupational Therapy
Hewitt Hall, 4 Library Way
Durham, NH 03824

Phone: (603) 862-3221

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Curriculum & Requirements

An entry level doctoral degree in occupational therapy will prepare students to enter the profession with strong foundational skills in occupational therapy assessment and intervention, advanced training in clinical skills, leadership and advocacy, clinical research, and program development. Throughout the doctoral program, students will be challenged to learn and apply occupational therapy principles to traditional and emerging areas of practice, in hospital and community-based settings and for individual clients and population groups. Graduates gain valuable skills to become leaders in their field, advance in their careers, and position themselves as agents of change to influence policy and practice.

Students entering the OTD Program complete 3 years (9 semesters) of professional courses to prepare them for all areas of occupational therapy practice. The curriculum includes 24 weeks of full-time fieldwork experiences. Students may choose to complete a graduate certificate to focus their preparation for a specific area of practice. OTD students conclude their education with a 14-week doctoral capstone where they apply and expand their knowledge and take on leadership roles to develop a new program addressing specific client needs, conduct research, promote policy changes, or provide education.

OT 810OT Practice and Professional Roles3
OT 815Introduction to Group Process: Theory and Application2
OT 830
830L
Assistive Technology for Enhancing Occupational Performance
and Assistive Technology for Enhancing Occupational Performance Lab
4
OT 841Human Occupation4
OT 844Fieldwork and Professionalism - Level 11
OT 845Administration and Management for Occupational Therapy Practice3
OT 846Fieldwork and Professionalism-Level II1
OT #851Mind Body Systems/Neurologically-based Function and Dysfunction3
OT 850Neuro-Occupation: The Relationship Between Occupation and the Brain3
OT 852
852L
Human Movement and Environmental Effects on Everyday Occupations
and Human Movement and Environmental Effects on Everyday Occupations Lab
4
OT 854Level II Fieldwork, I8
OT 855Level II Fieldwork Discussion1
OT 856Level II Fieldwork, II8
OT 860
860L
860R
Psychosocial Evaluation and Intervention
and Psychosocial Evaluation and Intervention Lab
and Psychosocial Evaluation & Intervention Recitation
4
OT 862
862L
862R
OT Evaluation and Intervention for Children
and OT Evaluation and Intervention for Children - Lab
and OT Evaluation and Intervention for Children Recitation
4
OT 863
863L
863R
Occupational Therapy Intervention for Adults
and Occupational Therapy Evaluation and Intervention for Adults - Lab
and Adult Evaluation and Intervention Recitation
4
OT 865Occupational Therapy Practice and Professional Reasoning3
OT 871
871L
Enabling Participation in Community Groups
and Enabling Participation in Community Groups Lab
5
OT 881Introduction to Research and Evidence-Based Practice3
OT 882Research Methods and Application3
OT 892Level I Fieldwork1
OT 964Age Well: Occupational Therapy with Older Adults3
OT 998Recent Advances in Neurological Evaluation and Intervention3
OT 983Engagement in Research3
OT 965Occupational Therapy Practice and Professional Reasoning3
OT 975Leadership in OT Systems of Practice3
OT 901Introduction to Capstone2
OT 902Capstone Preparation3
OT 903Capstone: Project Implementation, Evaluation and Dissemination12
Elective or Graduate Certificate Course3-4

Occupational Therapy OTD Entry-level Program Student Outcomes at the completion of the professional entry-level OTD Program, our graduates will:

Demonstrate commitment and ability to use meaningful occupation for promoting health and well-being.

  • Our curriculum emphasizes the idea that engagement in everyday occupations will lead to fulfillment of life roles and the promotion of health and well-being of individuals, communities, and populations. Our graduates are ready and dedicated to apply occupation-based evaluation and intervention techniques, and to share and expand authentic occupational therapy practice.

Demonstrate professional attitudes and behaviors in their interactions with clients and others.

  • Our graduates will be dedicated to ethical, client-driven practice demonstrating cultural sensitivity, integrity, honesty, compassion, and fairness. They will demonstrate respect for all persons with whom they work, appreciating and considering individual identities, priorities, abilities, and life experiences. They will be able to collaborate in intraprofessional and interdisciplinary teams within various settings, understanding the roles and expertise of other occupational therapists and other professionals.

Demonstrate entry-level competencies as OT practitioners across diverse practice settings, skilled in the delivery evidence-based, occupation–centered evaluation and intervention techniques.

  • Our graduates develop critical thinking skills and the capacity for creative clinical reasoning for providing client-centered, occupation-centered services. Graduates will apply a variety of evaluation methods for understanding a person’s occupational history, abilities, challenges and goals. They will apply occupation-centered intervention approaches and innovative technologies to address the needs of individuals and populations in traditional and emerging medical, educational, and other community-based practice settings.

Demonstrate skills for translating research-to-practice and generating new knowledge grounded in occupational therapy practice.

  • Our graduates will be skilled in identifying, critiquing, and synthesizing relevant research for delivering evidence-based services. Graduates will demonstrate capacity to translate research evidence to influence practice. They will have skills for contributing to the body of knowledge that supports and advances the profession.

Demonstrate skills to become leaders and innovators as practitioners, researchers, advocates, educators, administrators, policy-makers, and entrepreneurs.

  • Our graduates will apply leadership knowledge and skills, ethical reasoning, knowledge of policy and systems to be agents of change in diverse settings. Our graduates will be life-long learners and innovative thinkers committed to ongoing professional development. Our graduates will support and promote occupational justice for individuals, communities, and populations.

Deadlines

Important Note: The UNH Occupational Therapy Department will accept applications from interested students with a baccalaureate degree for entry into the OTD Program in the Fall 2022 to begin courses in the Summer 2023.

Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: Jan. 15 regular program; March 1 for Advanced Standing (UNH B.S./M.S. Students)
  • Spring: N/A
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Durham

New England Regional: No

Accelerated Masters Eligible: No

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.

Transcripts

If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must request one official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. International transcripts must be translated into English. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to grad.school@unh.edu. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Transcripts are required for any school you earned a degree from, attended for at least one year, or attended for 2 or more semesters. Exceptions to this rule may be approved at the discretion of the program you are applying to and the UNH Graduate School Admission’s office.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

Two letters of recommendation should address the applicant’s educational abilities and performance, while the third letter should address the applicant’s interpersonal and communication skills as observed in a volunteer or paid work setting.

Note: If applying to the Occupational Therapy: Advanced Standing (M.S.) program you only need to submit two letters, the third is waived.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

Essays should integrate a discussion of the applicant’s experience working with people as a volunteer or employee, demonstration of a broad understanding of occupational therapy, and an explanation of personal interest and match for the profession.

Statements must be included with your submitted application.

Note: If applying to the Advanced Standing version of the program your personal statement simply needs to be a statement indicating you are an existing UNH student applying to the advanced standing program.

Resume

A current resume is required with your submitted application.

Additional Department Requirements

Prerequisite Course Verification Form (required): The regular program requires that all applicants print and complete the OT Prerequisite Course Verification Form. All prerequisites must be completed at the time of application. Please email the form to the UNH Graduate School. If you have questions about using the form, please contact the OT program. Those applying to the Advanced Standing program, or current and recently graduated UNH B.S. in Occupational Therapy students, do not have to submit the prerequisite verification form.

Students who are currently in the UNH BS Occupational Therapy Program and applying to the Occupational Therapy Advanced Standing OTD Program should talk with their academic advisor in the Occupational Therapy Department regarding any questions on the application process.

 

The Occupational Therapy Department at UNH has applied for accreditation for an entry-level occupational therapy doctoral degree program and has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTAand its Web address is www.acoteonline.org. The program must have a preaccreditation review, complete an on-site evaluation, and be granted Accreditation Status before its graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). The UNH Program is scheduled for on-site evaluation in the fall of 2025, prior to a May 2026 graduation. 

Students must complete 24 weeks of Level II fieldwork within two years of completing professional program academic coursework. They must also complete an individual 14-week doctoral capstone experience within 12 months following the completion of all required coursework and Level II fieldwork as well as completion of preparatory capstone activities.

After completing all program requirements, students are eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist, administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of the NBCOT exam, the individual will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, all 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. 

The UNH Occupational Therapy Department will accept applications from interested students with a baccalaureate degree for entry into the OTD Program in the Fall 2022 to begin courses in the Summer 2023.

UNH students enrolled in the BS/OTD Program will begin taking professional level courses as part of their BS degree and enter the OTD Program with advanced standing in Summer of 2024.  

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program specific application questions.

International Applicants

The University of New Hampshire recommends that international applicants who are living outside of the United States, and are planning on pursuing a research based degree, submit a preapplication form before submitting a full application. Your preapplication request will be carefully reviewed and a decision usually provided within 3 weeks. If your preapplication is approved then it is recommended you then submit a full application. If you are currently living in the United States (on a H1B visa, etc.), or you plan on pursuing a professional master’s degree, then you do not need to submit a preapplication.

Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.

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