Postprofessional Doctorate in Occupational Therapy

The postprofessional Doctorate in Occupational Therapy (Dr.O.T.) at Grand Valley State University is designed for practicing occupational therapists who have a desire to expand knowledge and advance practice skills in the areas of policy, advocacy, leadership, and education. The program provides practitioners the opportunity to explore innovative and emerging topics in chosen areas.

Students will develop knowledge and skills directed toward enhancing leadership and advocacy, participating in public policy activities, dealing with social determinants of health, providing research-based interventions, and educating new therapists. The program will serve only master's degree credentialed students and qualifies graduates to hold advanced administrative positions in clinic or government settings and to teach at the university level.


CAREER OUTLOOK AND OPPORTUNITIES

33% JOB GROWTH BY 2020

25-30% OF SCHOOLS HIRE OT PROFESSIONALS

NATIONWIDE NEED FOR OT EDUCATORS

AVERAGE SALARY OF $75,400

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupational therapists pulled in an average of $75,400 per year. Occupational therapists working in the school system have an average salary of $68,440. The highest average salary, $86,850, was reported in the home health care industry. Medical and health services managers, on the other hand, have a median annual income of $84,270, which means it is possible to earn a higher salary in leadership. As with many jobs in health care, occupational therapy jobs are expected to grow quickly over the next decade. By the year 2020, it is expected that there will be 33 percent more jobs in the field. Occupational therapy has been described as "recession-proof" and was rated one of America's best jobs by Forbes, Wall Street Journal, CNN Money and U.S. News and World Report. Rewarding work, high salaries, and excellent growth potential make this a promising option for those interested in a health care career. GVSU occupational therapy graduates become occupational therapists and work in the following areas:

  • Hospitals/acute care
  • School systems
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • Mental health facilities
  • Private practice
  • Rehabilitation centers
  • Vocational rehabilitation

WHY PURSUE THE OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY DR.O.T. AT GRAND VALLEY?

THE ONLY CLINICAL O.T. DOCTORATE

OFFERED IN MICHIGAN

RESIDENT TUITION

FOR NON-RESIDENT STUDENTS

HYBRID FORMAT

STUDENTS TRAVEL TO THE GRAND RAPIDS CAMPUS 2 TIMES

  • You only need to come to campus twice a year: The Dr.O.T. program is taught in a hybrid format. Students are required to travel to GVSU’s Grand Rapids campus a total of 2 times during the program, minimizing travel expenses.
  • The only clinical degree like it in Michigan: GVSU is the only public university in Michigan to offer a postprofessional O.T. clinical doctorate degree.
  • In-state tuition for non-residence: Grand Valley offers the same graduate tuition rate for in and out of state students.
  • Best practice: The program focuses on critical thinking and the use of occupation in treatment and supports a client-centered, evidenced-based approach to therapy.
  • 25-30% of high schools employ O.T. professionals: There is a nationwide need for O.T. educators. You can teach while you practice.
  • Advancement opportunities: Occupational therapists with a clinical doctorate are more likely to advance in their field.

COURSEWORK

The curriculum offers an online postprofessional doctorate in occupational therapy across six semesters totaling 36 credits. All Dr.O.T. students will be required to have completed a Master’s degree with a minimum of 75 credits beyond the B.S. degree for the Dr.O.T. degree to be conferred. The Master’s degree does not need to be in Occupational Therapy. Any student with a Master’s degree of less than 36 credits will be required to complete additional coursework.

Dr.O.T. students will study a variety of topics, including:

  • Occupational science
  • Public policy, advocacy, and leadership
  • Education
  • Advanced practice

Click Here To See The Course Listing

Occupational therapy students at graduate poster day.


ADMISSIONS REQUIREMENTS

The admissions requirements for the Dr.O.T. program can be found below. Contact us at ostgrad@gvsu.edu for equivalent qualifications.

  • Two years of practice experience as an OTR.
  • GPA of 3.25 over the last 60 credit hours.
  • Critical evaluation of an occupational therapy article.
  • Personal statement, including identification of specific goals and timelines in completing Dr.O.T. program.
  • Personal interview with two OST department faculty members.
  • Three letters of support from professional colleagues, supervisors, or department heads.
  • Professional resume outlining work history and continuing education experiences.

 

The $30 application fee is waived if you’ve already applied to Grand Valley.


COST

For more information on tuition and fees, please visit the costs portion of the GVSU Financial Aid website. For financial support, scholarship search, and filing for FAFSA, please visit the GVSU Financial Support website.

Note: Grand Valley does not charge a higher tuition rate based on residency. Tuition is based on the program in which you chose to enroll and is subject to change 2019-2020.


The admissions deadline for the Dr.O.T. program is September 15. The $30 application fee is waived for alumni to Grand Valley. Please visit gvsu.edu/gradapply/.


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