A Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy

If you intend to develop a career as an occupational therapist then you may want to obtain a masters degree since this is the minimum qualification to practice and admission to the best schools is competitive.

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There are a number of options including combined programs (referred to as 4+1 or 4+2 programs), direct entry master of occupational therapy (for students who already hold bachelors degrees in other subjects) and advanced masters programs for licensed therapists who already hold a bachelors degree in occupational therapy.

Entry Requirements

The normal entry requirement is a bachelor's degree from a college or university and the degree must be accredited. Most bachelor's degrees take 4 years although there are some combined bachelors/masters programs available. Prerequisite work includes human anatomy and physiology, psychology, organic chemistry and biology.

Course Content

Once enrolled, you will study a wide range of subjects which includes mental health, gerontology (the study of the social, psychological and biological aspects of aging) and medical terminology. The courses may also include supervised fieldwork in which the student gains hands on experience over a period of 6 months. The master's degree takes around two and a half years to complete, with the last year being devoted to gaining clinical experience.

Career Prospects Upon Graduation

Prospects for newly qualified therapists are excellent and the demands for the services of a licensed Occupational Therapist are increasing as a direct result of an ageing population and new developments in medicine. These developments mean that people are recovering from previously fatal diseases and therefore they need help and assistance in either recovering lost senses or learning how best to live with a condition that will not improve.

So if you want to work in a career which offers a wide range challenges but many rewards then get yourself trained as an occupational therapist.

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