Minnesota Occupational Therapy Degrees
Minnesota Occupational Therapists Education/Courses/Schools
The state of Minnesota requires that all practicing occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants be licensed by the state. Anyone who practices without a license is subject to sanctions from the state. An exception is made for a person employed by the United States government working in his or her official capacity with the government.
To become an occupational therapist (OTR) or certified occupational therapy assistant (COTA), a person must complete the educational requirements of coursework and fieldwork through a program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education.
OTR education is a Master of Science degree, usually 77-79 credits, and takes approximately five semesters to complete. Some programs incorporate the Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees into one program, granting an undergraduate program after completing the first year of the Masters portion of the program. Others will accept qualified students who have an undergraduate degree and meet pre-requisites. Students are advised to look closely into the various programs available and plan ahead to ensure meeting all qualifications.
Several schools offer Occupational Therapy programs that are accredited by the Accreditation Council of Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) and offer both online and on campus programs. When researching programs, it is critical to have one that has ACOTE accreditation. An accredited program allows graduates to be eligible for the national certification examination administered by National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapist (NBCOT). A state license is dependent on the results of the NBCOT exam.
To apply for most Minnesota Occupational Therapy courses, applicants must have a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA, and have taken all pre-requisite courses. Typically, these courses include Human Anatomy, Statistics, Introduction to Sociology, General Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Human Development, Medical Terminology and Orientation to Occupational Therapy. Many students prefer to apply for a program that combines the Bachelor of Science and Masters program.
Not all Minnesota universities require practical experience before admission to the Master’s Degree program in Occupational Therapy, but it is recommended. The practical experience can include work, volunteer hours or observation. Students should check out the specific requirements for the intended university.