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Doctor of Occupational Therapy

Graduate Center


The Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) Program has been granted CANDIDACY STATUS by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) and is now accepting applications for fall 2017. Occupational Therapy is a growing and evolving field. With a Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) degree from Western New England University, you can become a practitioner and a transformative leader. Occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants help people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations). Western New England University offers an Entry-level Graduate Degree program, meaning that students do not need to earn a master’s degree before applying (a bachelor’s degree is among program requirements). It also means that graduates of this program will be prepared to immediately take on positions of leadership in the field.

Why Choose Doctor of Occupational Therapy ?

Now accepting fall 2017 applications for the Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) program.

Now is the time to be a part of the evolving field of Occupational Therapy (OT). At present, OTs have new tools to help their clients perform daily routines; recover functional abilities following injury; and live fuller, more productive lives that include:

  • breakthroughs in information technologies such as telehealth, to remotely provide therapy to people in their homes;
  • advancements in assistive technologies for enhancing mobility or improving performance at home, school, or work; and
  • research-based innovations for improving health outcomes by working in collaborative interprofessional practice teams.

As an occupational therapist, you will have an impact on the lives of individual clients, with or without disabilities, by improving functional performance. As a professional leader who is equipped with research evidence and global health policy perspectives, you will be more broadly positioned to: impact populations with or without disabilities; advance community health outcomes; and influence the development of future occupational therapists as members of collaborative interprofessional practice teams in current healthcare settings and emerging practice areas.

What Will You Learn

Program Emphasis

The OTD program is a three-year program completed over 9 consecutive semesters, including summers. The 109-credit curriculum will include:

  • Level I Fieldwork (70-140 hours)
  • Level II Fieldwork (960 hours)
  • Doctoral Experiential Residency (640 hours)

Admissions Requirements

Admissions Requirements

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education
  • An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 (4.0 scale) is required for admission. Candidates with a lower GPA will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • The GRE is not required for admission, however, GRE scores for testing that occurred within the last five years will be considered in admission decisions if submitted.
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0, for courses completed within 5 years of applying, with no grade below a "C" be required for the following prerequisite courses (25 credits):
    • Human Anatomy and Physiology (8 credits)
    • Physics or Chemistry (4 credits)
    • Biological, Psychological, or Educational Statistics (3 credits)
    • Introduction to Sociology or Social Psychology (3 credits)
    • Development Psychology (3 credits)
    • Abnormal Psychology (3 credits)
    • Medical Terminology (1 credit)*
  • Documented volunteer/observation hours--candidates will be required to complete two observations, in two different settings, consisting of a minimum of 14 hours in total. Please have your supervisors complete our Observation Form. There is also a form that you will complete. You can download a copy of the forms here.
  • Two recommendations, preferably from individuals with whom you have a a professional or academic history (the supervisors for the volunteer/observation hours cannot provide recommendations).
  • Composite TOEFL score of 80 (internet-based) for non-native English speakers
  • A one-page, typed personal statement highlighting why you wish to pursue an OTD degree, the impact of the current healthcare environment on your decision, and how you will benefit both personally and professionally from a career in occupational therapy.

* Candidates who need to satisfy the Medical Terminology prerequisite have the option to complete this requirement online through Caduceus International Publishing. The cost of the course starts at $129.95. For additional details and to register, visit: https://wne.cipcourses.com.

 

Applying for Admission

Applying for Admission

Candidates seeking entry for the Fall 2017 may submit an application for admission via the OTCAS Application (OT Centralized Application Service): http://portal.otcas.org. All applications for the inaugural fall 2017 cohort will be reviewed on a rolling basis and decisions will be released until the class is full.  

Tuition

Tuition

Invest now, save later. The Entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy is designed for students who will have a bachelor’s degree prior to beginning the program. This is the fast track to entering the field with a doctoral degree.

Tuition
Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Consult our FAQ to learn more about the OTD degree and what makes our program distinctive.

FAQ
Program Emphasis

Program Emphasis

The OTD program at Western New England University is responding‚ to the national and international call for changing the way healthcare is delivered, and the way healthcare professionals‚ are educated by emphasizing:

  • population health perspectives that focus on community‚ health, wellness and prevention, and health literacy;
  • innovative interprofessional practice models in traditional‚ and community-based health settings that focus on‚ collaborative teams;
  • interprofessional education/practice research applications‚ that permit faculty and students to develop as‚ applied scholars of teaching and practice; and
  • practitioner, leader, and scholar roles and competencies‚ to revolutionize the delivery of inclusive, equitable, client-centered, evidence-based, culturally-competent, and‚ distinctive occupational therapy.
Program Structure

Program Structure

Rapidly changing healthcare systems are demanding more of‚ entry-level practitioners. The OTD curriculum is meeting this call‚ by providing academic preparation beyond a generalist level‚ including advanced graduate knowledge, skills and fieldwork/‚ experiential opportunities. The OTD program is a three-year program completed over 9 consecutive semesters, including summers. The 109 credit curriculum will include:

  • Level I Fieldwork (70-140 hours)
  • Level II Fieldwork (960 hours)
  • Doctoral Experiential Residency (640 hours)

The program combines opportunities for classroom learning, the development of performance laboratory skills, and on-site practice experience (i.e. Level I & Level II Fieldwork). The program integrates sequential course content with a series of 5 Level I Fieldwork experiences (Year One and Two), providing a strong foundation for Level II Fieldwork (Semester 6, 7, & 8), and the Doctoral Experiential Residency (Semester 9).

The curriculum design includes four primary professional themes: Leadership; Scholarship; Clinical Excellence; and Autonomy/Identity. Evolving from these broad themes are the core interwoven threads upon which the curriculum is built. The threads are: Interprofessional Education/Practice; Information/Assistive Technology; Health‚ Literacy, Diversity, and Cultural Competence; and Population/Community‚ Based Health Practices.

The structure and content of the OTD curriculum fosters an‚ understanding of the development of occupations across the lifespan and in a variety of contexts, e.g., environmental, virtual, and spiritual. Woven throughout the curriculum are components of‚ the occupational therapy process, including occupation, research‚ and evidence based practice, client centered practice, ethics, cultural competence, evaluation, treatment, management of OT services, service delivery, and clinical skills. In addition, a series of course sequences are designed to tie the threads into a complete doctoral curriculum. The course sequences include: Adult and Aging Practice 1 through 4; Children and Youth Practice 1 and 2; Population Health and Interprofessional Practice 1 through 4; Research Process/Evidence-Based Practice 1 and 2; Level I fieldwork 1 through 5; Level II Fieldwork 1 and 2; and  Doctoral Residency Development and Mentorship 1 through 4.

Faculty

Faculty

Our outstanding faculty includes:

Cathy A. Dow-Royer, Ed.D., OTR/L
Professor, Founding Chair, and Program Director

Ellen Berger Rainville, O.T.D., OTR/L
Professor, Assistant Program Director

Joan Sauvigne-Kirsch, Ed.D., OTR/L 
Clinical Associate Professor
Director of Fieldwork/Experiential Education

Minna Levine, Ph.D., OTR/L
Assistant Professor

Brittany Adams, O.T.D., OTR/L
Clinical Assistant Professor

Debra Latour, M.Ed., OTR/L
Assistant Professor of Practice

Susan Rivelli, M.B.A., O.T.D., OTR/L
Assistant Professor

Laura Graves, O.T.D., OTR/L
Clinical Assistant Professor

Staff

Staff

Instructional Staff:

Justin R. Eck, M.Ed.
Instructional Technologist/Designer

Administrative Staff:

Judy Anderson
Executive Administrative Assistant

David Atsales
Administrative Assistant for Fieldwork/Experiential Education

Accreditation Status

Accreditation Status

The entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program has been granted candidacy status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its Web address is www.acoteonline.org.

In addition to holding Candidacy Status (December, 2016), the program must complete a Pre-accreditation Review (March, 2019), an On-Site Evaluation (August-November, 2019), and be granted Accreditation Status (December, 2019) prior to the graduation of the first class of students (September, 2020), to secure student eligibility to sit for the National Certification Examination administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Certification/Licensure Program graduates who successfully pass the certification examination for the occupational therapist administered by the NBCOT, will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, all states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

Housing

Housing

Western New England University is pleased to offer campus housing for graduate students in the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.
Learn More

Learn More

  • Kodiak Online Learning

    Kodiak Online Learning

    Our User-friendly Virtual Classroom Desire2Learn is a state-of-the Learning Management System used by major universities and colleges around the world. At Western New England, we call it KODIAK after the University's mascot. KODIAK makes it easy for you to participate in class discussions, view calendars, communicate with faculty and classmates, post assignments, and view grades.

  • Questions?

    Let's talk.

    For questions regarding the OTD program, email the Division of Occupational Therapy at OTD@wne.edu. To speak with a graduate admissions representative, call 413-782-1517 or email study@wne.edu