What is an Occupational Therapist?
Occupational Therapists (O.T.) treat injured, ill, or disabled patients through the therapeutic use of everyday activities. They help these patients develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living and working.
Occupational therapists typically do the following:
- Review patients’ medical history, ask the patients questions, and observe them doing tasks
- Evaluate a patient’s condition and needs
- Develop a treatment plan for patients, identifying specific goals and the types of activities that will be used to help the patient work toward those goals
- Help people with various disabilities with different tasks, such as teaching a stroke victim how to get dressed
- Demonstrate exercises—for example, stretching the joints for arthritis relief—that can help relieve pain in people with chronic conditions
- Evaluate a patient’s home or workplace and, on the basis of the patient’s health needs, identify potential improvements, such as labeling kitchen cabinets for an older person with poor memory
- Educate a patient’s family and employer about how to accommodate and care for the patient
- Recommend special equipment, such as wheelchairs and eating aids, and instruct patients on how to use that equipment
- Assess and record patients’ activities and progress for patient evaluations, for billing, and for reporting to physicians and other healthcare providers
Application process for Occupational Therapy programs vary by school. It is important for students to be aware of the specific process of the schools to which they may apply.
There are many factors that are evaluated throughout the application process.
- Academic Record
- The Standardized Test – The General Record Exam (GRE)
- Letters of Evaluation
- The Interview
- Extracurricular Activities and Work Experience
- The Application Service – Occupational Therapy Centralized Application Service (OTCAS).
Please visit the Center for Health Sciences and Student Success in the College of Sciences and Engineering at Wilkes University for more information on the application process.
Application timeline for OT programs vary by school. It is important for students to be aware of the specific process of the schools to which they may apply.
Pre-Occupational Therapy students are encouraged to apply early and to work with the Center for Health Sciences and Student Success in the College of Science and Engineering at Wilkes University in preparation of the application process.
Admission requirements to the Occupational Therapy programs vary by school. It is important for students to be aware of the specific requirements of the schools to which they may apply.
Professional programs typically require courses concentrating on the biology, anatomy, physiology, psychology, sociology, human development and statistics. In addition, students must take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), as well as some experience in working with people in a health or OT setting.