Occupational Therapy School
What Can I expect from occupational therapy schools?
Knowing what to expect from a career in occupational therapy will help set the expectation for what Master’s and Doctorate level degree programs will involve. These advanced programs function as the final preparation for entering the practice professionally, and as such they place rigorous academic demands on the students who are disciplined enough to pursue them.
Occupational therapy schools work to prepare graduates for an extraordinary career full of unique challenges and unmatched rewards. These educational programs are structured around the science and psychology of how environmental, emotional, and mental factors affect a limitedly able person’s ability to acclimate to performing daily tasks. Even more importantly, these programs are concerned with how to work within the confines of these factors when overcoming them is not an option so as to help give clients the dignity that comes form being able to function independently.
What is the ICF?
Communication is of paramount importance in this profession. This would be obvious in the context of a therapist-client relationship, but it is also imperative that those within the OT community speak the same language when describing a client’s degree of impairment, as well as their level of capability and functionality. A common language eliminates the potential for any subjective interpretation and allows for clear and unbiased descriptions of a client’s specific issues among occupational therapists, physical therapists, and physicians.
The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) was created as a universal language within the medical and therapeutic communities to resolve issues with subjectivity in diagnosis and treatment needs. The ICF is standard curriculum through all occupational therapy schools.
What are my online options for an occupational therapy education?
Because a great deal of the training an occupational therapist goes through is academic in nature, there is no longer a need to attend conventional brick and mortar campus based occupational therapy schools. Significant portions of the post-graduate Master’s-level occupational therapy training can be done as distance learning through online schools. Virtually all aspects of occupational therapy training not associated with the specific techniques of facilitating movement and general activity can be accommodated through online occupational therapy schools. These courses would include behavioral and environmental psychology, the physical sciences related to occupational therapy that do not have a lab based component, and the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health system of communication.
Online schools are held to the same standard of accreditation as their campus based counterparts. In fact, most online programs are actually offered by institutions with one or many conventional campus locations across the country. These well established accredited institutions have simply taken the inevitable step to make medical training widely available by offering options for pursing academia for those who may otherwise have very limited access.