Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Programs: Online Programs

A certified occupational therapist assistant works in the healthcare field, helping patients who have suffered from illnesses or accidents recover their best level of functioning. Keep reading to find out more about associate's degree programs for aspiring occupational therapist assistants and what courses are involved. Get licensing and certification details and career information, too. Schools offering Occupational Therapy Assistant degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Degree Program Is Required to Become an Occupational Therapist Assistant?

An associate's degree is the most common educational pathway to becoming an occupational therapist assistant. It's recommended that you pursue a program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). Such accredited programs are available from a number of schools, and they're essentially all campus-based. Prospective students are typically required to have high school diplomas or equivalent. Some programs also require college-level prerequisite courses, such as anatomy and physiology.

Study Required Associate's degree most common pathway for career
Common Courses Medical terminology, biomechanics, developmental psychology, pathophysiology
Licenses and Certification Requirements for licensure, certification or registration vary by state; continuing education courses usually required to maintain your license
Job Outlook Opportunities due to rise by 40% between 2014 and 2024

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Courses Will I Take?

Associate's degree programs for occupational therapist assistants offer general education courses, in addition to core courses that cover preventing, treating and managing rehabilitation programs for patients who have suffered from an illnesses or injuries. In addition to coursework, you'll also be required to complete supervised fieldwork to gain hands-on experience working with patients and professionals in the field. Some of the courses you can expect to take in this type of degree program cover the following topics:

  • Medical terminology
  • Biomechanics
  • Developmental psychology
  • Pathophysiology
  • Therapeutic activities

Will I Need a License or Certification?

Most states require either a license, certification or registration to work as an occupational therapist assistant. If you're planning on working in a school setting or an early intervention program, you may need to take additional education courses.

Voluntary certification is also available through the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy. This certification is nationally recognized and generally involves passing an exam, which will give you a designation of Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). You may have to complete continuing education courses in order to maintain your certification and, in some states, to maintain your license to work.

What Is the Job Outlook For This Field?

Employment opportunities for occupational therapist assistants was expected to grow very quickly at a rate of 40% between 2014 and 2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). A growing population of elderly people and an increase in the number of patients who suffer from injuries and disabilities are expected to grow and drive the demand in this field. As of March 24, 2016, the median expected salary for a certified occupational therapist assistant was $54,015, according to Salary.com.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Grand Canyon University

    Grand Canyon University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • The George Washington University

    The George Washington University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at The George Washington University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Colorado State University Global

    Colorado State University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado State University Global:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Regent University

    Regent University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Capella University

    Capella University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Northcentral University

    Northcentral University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Northcentral University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Abilene Christian University

    Abilene Christian University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Abilene Christian University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

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