Donna Mann, Chair
Health Sciences Bldg.
310 North Riverpoint Blvd, Box R
Spokane, WA 99202-1675
Pedro Ashford, Susan C. Burwash, Robert B. Krueger, Donna P. Mann, Diane Norell, Roberta L. Snover.
Majors in Exercise Science or Interdisciplinary Studies leading to a Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)
The Advanced Standing Master of Occupational Therapy program will allow a student to complete the requirements for an undergraduate degree while enrolled in courses required for the first year of the professional Occupational Therapy program. The student begins the occupational therapy track in the senior year, earns a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies or a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science, and applies to the Advanced Standing MOT program, which can be completed over the next one and half years. This program will introduce occupational therapy to undergraduate students early in their career development.
Admission to Combined Bachelor’s and Master of Occupational Therapy Program
The student first meets with the Admissions Coordinator of the Occupational Therapy Department for review of prerequisites, the course of study and a discussion of occupational therapy as a profession. A student pursing a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies will be referred to the director of Interdisciplinary Studies for formal application, and the students working toward a degree in Exercise Science will work a program advisor from that respective program.
Students interested in working toward a combined Bachelor’s and Master of Occupational Therapy should contact the admissions coordinator, Department of Occupational Therapy, Eastern Washington University, 310 N. Riverpoint Blvd., Box R, Spokane WA 99202-1675 or call 509.828.1344 or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
During the first three years of the Exercise Science degree with an emphasis in occupational therapy, the student develops a solid foundation in exercise science, as well as meets all university graduation requirements. Additionally, during this time, the student fulfills the prerequisite requirements for the Master of Occupational Therapy.
Students who require advising in the Exercise Science degree with an emphasis in Occupational Therapy should contact Wendy Repovich, PhD, Exercise Science director, PEHR Dept., 200 Physical Education Building, Cheney, WA, 99004-2476, or call 509.359.7960 or contact .
Students interested in the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies major are encouraged to meet with an advisor from the Department of Occupational Therapy during the sophomore year and no later than the spring of the junior year. During the first three years of the Interdisciplinary Studies major with an emphasis in Occupational Therapy, the student develops a course of study to address his or her interests, as well as meet university and interdisciplinary studies’ major requirements. Additionally, during this time, the student fulfills the prerequisite requirements for the Advanced Standing MOT.
Students who require advising in the Interdisciplinary Studies major with an emphasis in Occupational Therapy should contact John Neace, Director, Interdisciplinary Studies, 300 Senior Hall, Cheney, WA, 99004-2414 or call 509.359.6524 or email@example.com.
Admission into the occupational therapy track is offered only one time per year with students beginning the program summer semester . A personal interview may be required for admission into the occupational therapy track. The deadline for applications is the January 1 prior to the expected summer semester admission. The department admission committee will review and evaluate all applicants’ admission materials and prerequisites. Check with the department for exact admission deadlines: 509.828.1344.
Occupational Therapy Track Admission Criteria
Completion of 122 or more undergraduate credits and all general education requirements for EWU.
Completion of all prerequisite courses for application to the occupational therapy track. All of the prerequisite courses must be completed prior to admission into the occupational therapy track.
Numbers in parentheses indicate the number of quarter credits required.
The admissions process in occupational therapy is highly competitive. The requirements listed below are the minimum acceptable requirements to apply to the program and are not indicative of the competitive range of students generally accepted into the program. The following are the minimum acceptable requirements:
1. minimum cumulative GPA ≥3.0 in the last 60 graded quarter hours;
2. minimum cumulative GPA ≥3.0 of all prerequisite courses with no course <2.0.
During the senior year, the student begins a series of required courses listed below.
Students enrolled in the Occupational Therapy Track must complete the schedule of courses in the MOT curriculum toward completion of a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies, or BS in Exercise Science, Occupational Therapy Track.
- a student may elect to discontinue the occupational therapy track and decide not to pursue the Master of Occupational Therapy;
- the student may complete the remaining 180 credits toward graduation in courses outside the occupational therapy curriculum and meet the graduation requirements for a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies or Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science;
- two years of a single high school foreign language or one year of a single college-level foreign language is required for a Bachelor of Arts degree;
- applications for admission into the combined bachelor’s programs with the MOT program are available on the Occupational Therapy Department website or upon request.
Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)
Occupational Therapy will be taught on the semester system starting fall 2015.
The Profession: Occupational Therapy (OT) is a health and rehabilitation profession that helps people of all ages to participate more fully in their day-to-day lives. Occupational therapists assist persons who are experiencing a physical, cognitive or emotional is) recover to their maximum level of independence. Occupational therapists help people take care of themselves and their families, enjoy life and contribute to the social and economic fabric of the community.
- To develop person-centered occupational therapists of the highest integrity who practice with a strong occupation-based foundation from which they support and promote quality of life and full participation.
- To prepare students for a broad scope of practice with consideration for addressing the needs of the under served.
- To deliver an academic program which meets a spectrum of educational needs for students and professionals, in collaboration with community partners, while demonstrating teaching and learning excellence.
- To advance the profession with new, innovative and cost effective services for current and future practice opportunities.
- We envision a globally active community of students, faculty and community partners who demonstrate a respect for diversity, a passion for learning and a commitment to person-centered, occupation-focused and evidence-based practice.
Accreditation: the Occupational Therapy Program at Eastern Washington University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, STE 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is 301.652.AOTA. www.aota.org
Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Examination for the Occupational Therapist administered by the National Board for Certification of Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be an occupational therapist, registered (OTR). In addition, most states require licensure to practice. However, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT certification examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure. Students must complete Level II Fieldwork within 24 months following completion of the didactic portion of the program.
General Admission Requirements:
Eastern provides two methods for students seeking entry into the profession of occupational therapy:
1.Combined Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Interdisciplinary Studies, Bachelor of Science (BS) in Exercise Science degree programs available at EWU or
2. Completed bachelor’s degree in any discipline ready to pursue graduate studies immediately. General admission requirements to both are each described below.
Complete the prerequisite courses listed:
Chemistry: any college-level course 5 English Composition or Technical Writing (200-level or above) 5 Human Anatomy (200-level or above) 1 5 Human Physiology (200-level or above) 1 5 Introduction to Occupational Therapy 2 2 Medical Terminology 3 2 Psychology 100 General (or Human) Psychology 5 Abnormal Psychology (200-level or above) 5 Introduction to Sociology or Cultural Anthropology 5 Human Development through the Life Span (200-level or above) 4-5 Statistics 5 Total Credits 48-49 1 2
It is highly recommended that students take OCTH 101 at EWU (offered fall quarter and online every quarter). However, if this is not possible, the course is available online. Contact EWU Online Learning at 509.359.2268
OCTH 292 can also be taken online at EWU. Contact EWU Online Learning at 509.359.2268.
Public Speaking–candidates are expected to be proficient in public speaking;
Computer Competency–candidates are expected to be proficient with and have access to a computer;
Students are required to have an email address during the program.
- Complete the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) by January 1 of the year of application. Successful candidates are expected to perform a score greater than three (3) on the written section of the examination. GRE scores are valid for five years after test date.
- Complete a minimum of 40 hours work/observation/volunteer experience with persons who have disabilities. Ten of the 40 hours must be in at least two different types of practice settings (e.g., acute care institutions, rehabilitation centers, pediatric centers, residential facilities, nursing homes, schools or mental health settings) under the supervision of a licensed occupational therapist.
- Three original letters of recommendation;
- One letter of recommendation must come from the supervising occupational therapist of the volunteer experience.
- One letter of recommendation from an instructor/teacher who taught any college-level academic courses taken by the applicant in the areas of: a) Mathematics, or b) Science or c) English, or d) Psychology.
- One letter of recommendation from a person (unrelated) who can provide a character reference.
- Personal Essay
- Successful completion of a group interview.
- Formal application is made online to OTCAS .
Final Comprehensive Examination
The final comprehensive examination for the Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) Degree includes a research seminar and oral defense of the master’s research project presented to the department and graduate committee. Immediately following the oral defense of the research project, the student is given an oral examination administered by the student’s graduate committee which is composed of two–three departmental faculty members and a faculty member appointed by the Graduate Office. The focus of the examination is the student’s research and general questions related to the profession of occupational therapy and its practice. Successful completion of the comprehensive examination is required before enrollment in OCTH 695S.
Occupational Therapy Courses
Note: OCTH 101 and OCTH 292 are quarter based courses. All graduate level courses are semester based.
OCTH 101. INTRODUCTION TO OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY. 2 Credits.
This course is to provide an overview of occupation, the practice of occupational therapy, disability awareness, and community supports for individuals with disabilities. The students will become aware of the diversity of occupational therapy practice, practice environments, and occupational therapy practitioners.
OCTH 292. FOUNDATIONS OF DOCUMENTATION AND MEDICAL TERMINOLOGY FOR THE REHABILITATION PROFESSIONAL. 2 Credits.
This is a self-paced course designed for the student to acquire a foundational knowledge of medical terminology and professional documentation and their applications within the rehabilitation professions. This is accomplished by examining the processes of basic word-building skills and definitions including word roots, prefixes, suffixes and combining forms. Students will apply these concepts and skills to basic medical chart review and professional documentation.
OCTH 501S. APPLIED HUMAN ANATOMY FOR OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY. 4 Credits.
This course is an intensive review of human anatomy and physiology as it pertains to the practice of occupational therapy. It is designed to provide the student with an opportunity to learn anatomical structures and the functional relationships of these structures to each other. Cadaver dissection is a critical component of all labs.
OCTH 502S. CLINICAL KINESIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS. 3 Credits.
This course is an overview study of human movement in a person/environment context. The study of the normal biomechanics and kinesiology of the musculoskeletal system is seen as a prerequisite to the application of assessment procedures, data collection, and assessment interpretation for the planning of therapeutic interventions in occupational therapy. Incorporation of clinical problems and pathokinesiology are also included through a structured inquiry-based case-study process. The lab portion of the class also trains students in the basic principles and application of manual muscle testing, goniometry, and principles that enhance strength and activity tolerance. To enhance student learning, designated assignments, and course laboratory activities. Application of content knowledge and a synthesis of how it relates to occupational performance will be emphasized. Students will be expected to use the Occupational Therapy Practice Framework: Domain and Process as a mechanism for expressing physical performance elements in the practice of occupational therapy.
OCTH 503S. APPLIED NEUROLOGY FOR OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY. 3 Credits.
This course is an overview of the neurological function and process in the human body. Normal neurologic development throughout the life span will be the primary focus. Application of knowledge concerning neurological process and occupational performance will be emphasized.
OCTH 504S. OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY THEORY AND FOUNDATIONS. 4 Credits.
This course introduces students to the current occupational therapy practice framework, which defines domain and process. It provides opportunities to understand the historical and current evolution of occupational therapy’s philosophy and theory development, along with the contributions of theorists within the profession. Students will learn the process of theory development and analyze selected practice models and frames of reference for application to occupational therapy evaluation and intervention. The course will also explore the application and importance of occupational therapy practice models and frames of reference to the development of new knowledge, ongoing research, and the advancement of the profession.
OCTH 505S. IMPACT OF HUMAN DISEASE ON OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE. 1 Credit.
This course provides an overview of human disease and injury processes occurring throughout the lifespan. The etiology, course, prognosis, treatment and management of each condition will be explored. The course is designed to introduce the student to a variety of injuries and disease processes encountered in the field of occupational therapy. Emphasis will be placed on providing necessary, precautionary and practical information of each disease within a framework of group process and problem solving related skills. Further, the impact of disease and injury on occupational performance and quality of life will be explored. Considerations for the practice of occupational therapy will be discussed with a focus on clinical judgment, team collaboration and global treatment interventions.
OCTH 506S. PRACTICE SKILLS AND ETHICS. 1 Credit.
Notes: graded Pass/Fail.
This course is designed to provide entry level occupational therapy students’ knowledge and skills in practice skills and policy. The course will focus on four main elements of practice including basic clinical skills, clinical writing and documentation, professional roles and policy, and ethics. The intent is for the student to establish basic skills that can be further developed in practice specific courses to enable them to demonstrate entry-level practice competencies.
OCTH 507S. ACTIVITY ANALYSIS. 1 Credit.
This course is the first of a two part series, OCTH 507S Activity Analysis and OCTH 508S Occupational Synthesis. The Activity Analysis course will provide the students with a method, structure, and process on how to analyze daily life activities and discover the therapeutic values that are inherent in all activities. Students will gain the knowledge and skills to analyze daily life activities and discover the potential therapeutic values in daily life activities that support the intervention strategies with persons who are experiencing dysfunction in occupational performance. This course will introduce students to the relationship between activity analysis, theories of occupation, and the development of intervention strategies for clients.
OCTH 508S. OCCUPATIONAL SYNTHESIS. 3 Credits.
This course will provide the learner with opportunities to develop the knowledge and skills for the in-depth evaluation and analysis of occupational performance through the process of task analysis, the lens of the Occupational Therapy Framework, and the concepts of occupational justice, identity, and meaning as related to occupation. The relationship between the assessment of occupational performance and the conceptualization of grading and adapting occupations coupled with the importance of the personal meaning of occupation for those engaged in them will be critically examined. Students will learn and apply the process of activity synthesis to occupational therapy interventions for individuals across the lifespan with cognitive, physical, and/or emotional conditions or aspects of their occupational needs or who they are as occupational beings. The development of science and social based observational, organizational and problem-solving skills for analysis and activity adaptation will be integral to the course activities. The course content is offered through lecture, discussion, case studies, readings and interactive laboratory activities.
OCTH 510S. GROUP PROCESS. 3 Credits.
This course focuses on developing several advanced skills of professional communication and behaviors. Emphasis is on: a) intentional use of self; b) group facilitation, b) group process, c) interpersonal communication, d) skills in motivational interviewing, and e) a reflective evaluation process used for building interpersonal communication skills. Advanced professional communication skills and group design/process skills are necessary tools for emerging and traditional practice arenas in occupational therapy.
OCTH 512S. FIELDWORK SEMINAR. 1 Credit.
This course will focus on preparation for the transition from classroom to Fieldwork Level II (FW II) experiences. Students will have the opportunity to identify and analyze the Level II fieldwork expectations, explore the supervisory and interdisciplinary team relationships, review professional and ethical behavior, develop a Level II Fieldwork Portfolio, review AOTA, NBCOT and the state of Washington licensure requirements and begin preparation for job searches.
OCTH 520S. PRINCIPLES OF EVIDENCE BASED PRACTICE. 1 Credit.
Notes: graded Pass/Fail.
This is the first of two courses designed to introduce the student to evidence based practice and the process of critical inquiry. This course will be offered in an interdisciplinary format with the Department of Physical Therapy. These courses will prepare the student to become a knowledgeable consumer of research and the professional literature as it relates to the practice of occupational therapy. In this course the student will develop competence in identifying, locating, retrieving, understanding and applying the principles of research to the practice of occupational therapy.
OCTH 522S. RESEARCH METHODS IN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY. 3 Credits.
Satisfies: Senior capstone university graduation requirement for students pursuing the Interdisciplinary BA Occupational Therapy Track. Students pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science need to complete the senior capstone university graduation requirements specific to those programs.
This course is designed to introduce the student to the process of critical inquiry regarding a broad spectrum of research methods across the quantitative and qualitative spectrum. This course will prepare the student to be a knowledgeable consumer of research and the professional literature as it relates to the practice of occupational therapy. In this course, the student will develop competence in critiquing and applying various research methods and designs to the application of evidence based practice in occupational therapy. This course serves as the capstone for the Interdisciplinary Studies, Occupational Therapy Track. The Capstone Project will require the completion of either a case study based on current evidence or a research proposal.
OCTH 523S. ASSESSMENTAND EVALUATION OF OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE. 3 Credits.
This course will provide you with the opportunity to identify, evaluate, and critically analyze the psychometric properties and application of several of the most commonly used evaluation and assessment tools in the profession of occupational therapy. The course offers learners the following information and experiences: 1) knowledge of the psychometrics for standardized assessment tools, 2) analysis of the assessment need, 3) critical selection of appropriate evaluation tools to address the assessment need, 4) pragmatic application of the tools on a human subject whenever possible, and 5) interpretation of data.
OCTH 530S. OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE AND MENTAL HEALTH. 4 Credits.
The goal of this course is to provide the learner with the foundations of service provision for working with individuals with mental illness. Varying roles for the occupational therapist will be explored in this practice arena. The lived experience of mental illness and recovery is highlighted. This course is paired with a Level I fieldwork experience which will allow students to apply what they are learning in OCTH 530S in a variety of settings within the community that offer services to persons experiencing mental illness and/or addiction.
OCTH 531S. OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE AND ADULTS. 4 Credits.
This course provides the learner with the knowledge and skills for assessment, intervention, planning, provision of intervention and outcome analysis related dysfunction in occupational performance in adults. The course will focus on the provision of occupational therapy services from young adulthood through geriatrics. Students will learn about disabling conditions, documentation, use of assessment tools/procedures (e.g., evaluation of muscle strength, ROM, ADL/IADL, soft tissue dysfunction, etc.), evidence-based practice, frames of reference and service implementation throughout the continuum of care for this population. Occupational therapy principles and theories will be applied through case studies, classroom discussion laboratory exercises and fieldwork experiences.
OCTH 532S. OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE AND PEDIATRICS. 4 Credits.
This course provides the learner with theories, knowledge and application opportunities related to evaluation, analysis and intervention planning for children with special needs in a variety of pediatric occupational therapy practice settings. The course will focus on the provision of occupational therapy services with infants, children and adolescents. Specific skill building will also focus on evaluation, interpreting evaluation information and designing evidence-based intervention. The analysis of childhood occupations, disabling conditions, documentation, analysis and application of frames of reference and issues of practice leadership will be examined. Occupational therapy principles and theories will be applied to case studies and through analysis and discussion of Fieldwork Level I (FWI) experiences.
OCTH 540S. HEALTH AND WELLNESS. 3 Credits.
This course provides an overview of occupational performance within a health promotion, wellness and lifestyle medicine framework for both mental and physical wellness. Students will explore opportunities for occupational therapists to promote health and wellness through participation in occupations. Course assignments will highlight traditional and contemporary approaches occupational therapists can use with individual clients and in population health settings. Selected occupational therapy theories and health promotion models will be presented and discussed, including their application to the practice of occupational therapy. Course written assignments will incorporate principles of clinical reasoning, practical clinical applications and professional documentation. Students will explore and evaluate tools and approaches to health and wellness and contribute to creating an online professional resource.
OCTH 541S. TECHNOLOGIES FOR ENABLING OCCUPATIONAL PERFORMANCE. 3 Credits.
This course is designed to help occupational therapy students integrate occupational assessments, needs identification, selection and design of both high and low technology devices to maximize client independence in their occupational performance areas. Additionally, the course incorporates interprofessional experiences with senior students from the Department of Engineering and Design in creating products and providing technology services to consumers.
OCTH 542S. LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT IN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE. 3 Credits.
This course focuses on leadership and management. The course will provide a foundation for understanding leadership theories, strategies and styles. It will cover topical areas related to the management of occupational therapy services in both traditional and emerging areas of practice. Opportunities will be offered to explore learners’ current leadership style and to apply concepts of leadership through community experience. Comparisons between leadership and management will be discussed with the underlying concept being that strong leadership foundation is critical to successful management. Current themes, opportunities and challenges for both leadership and management will be explored.
OCTH 543S. EMERGING PRACTICE. 3 Credits.
This course is designed to explore the provision of occupational therapy services within community-based and emerging settings and roles. This course is organized into three areas of content: 1) a focus on the context and theoretical foundations for emerging and community-based practices in the profession of occupational therapy both nationally and internationally, 2) an examination of the processes of program and community development for community-based and emerging roles and services, and 3) an overview of the occupational therapy evaluation and intervention processes for selected practice settings and roles. The course will also include information and discussion about strategies to gain skills relevant to the challenge of developing and delivering services in expanded practice contexts and roles. Diverse professional roles and activities within the occupational therapy scope of practice will be presented.
OCTH 595S. CLINICAL FIELDWORK I. 1 Credit.
Notes: must be repeated four times for a total of 4 credits and is graded Pass/Fail.
The Clinical Fieldwork Level 1 introduces students to the fieldwork experience, integrates application of classroom knowledge to the clinical setting and offers opportunities in developing a therapeutic rapport and understanding the needs of client.
OCTH 599S. DIRECTED STUDY. 1-4 Credits.
Independent and directed study.
OCTH 601S. PROFESSIONAL PROJECT I. 3 Credits.
Notes: graded Pass/Fail.
This is the first in a series of two capstone/research project courses in which students work on projects established in OCTH 522S Research Methods. This is the first in a series of two capstone/research project courses in which students are introduced to research methods and design. This course will also serve as the mechanism by which students select their capstone/research project to be addressed in OCTH 601 and OCTH 602. Students will establish timelines for completion of the capstone/research project which may be done in either group or individual formats.
OCTH 602S. PROFESSIONAL PROJECT II. 3 Credits.
Notes: graded Pass/Fail.
This is the second of two courses in which students will continue to develop and will complete and present their graduate capstone project. In this course students will continue to work with their Graduate Faculty Committee Chair, either individually or in small groups as determined by their capstone/research project selection, to synthesize the ideas and concepts relevant to the capstone/research project. All projects will require the completion of a scholarly report demonstrating effective communication for professional writing. Publication of the reports is highly encouraged. The assignment is to be completed as partial completion of the requirements for the degree of Master of Occupational Therapy.
OCTH 695. OT FIELDWORK LEVEL II EDUC. 6,12 Credits.
Notes: graded Pass/No Credit.
Pre-requisites: admission to the MOT program and successful completion of all coursework in the professional curriculum to this point.
This experience is done either on a part time (20 hrs per wk for 12 mos with permission from the Academic FW Coordinator) or fulltime basis (40 hrs per wk for 6 mos). The advanced internship experience is conducted at a clinical and/or community site in which treatment for persons of all ages with physical dysfunction, behavioral and/or mental health disorders affecting occupational performance occurs. The student must complete 2 qtrs (24 wks or 960 hrs) of FW II within 24 mos of completing their professional OT academic program before graduating. The student may elect to enroll in one or two additional quarters of FW II for further experience in an area of special interest. Upon successful completion of the required FW II experience, and graduation with a (MOT), the student will be eligibile to sit for the National Certification Examination for the Occupational Therapist administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Graduates must inititally pass the NBCOT exam befre practicing as an occupational therapist in the United States. Most states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to sit for the NBCOT Certification Examiniation or attain state licensure.
OCTH 695S. CLINICAL FIELDWORK LEVEL II. 8 Credits.
Notes: must be repeated twice for a total of 16 credits and is graded Pass/Fail.
This experience is done on a full-time basis (40 hours per week for six months). The advanced internship experience is conducted at a clinical and/or community site in which treatment for persons of all ages with physical dysfunction, and behavioral and/or mental health disorders affecting occupational performance occurs. The student must complete two semesters (24 weeks or 960 hours) of Fieldwork Level II within 24 months of completing their professional OT academic program before graduating. The student may elect to enroll in one or two additional semesters of FW II for further experience in an area of special interest. Upon successful completion of the required FW II experience and graduation with a Master of Occupational Therapy Degree (MOT), the student will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Examination for the Occupational Therapist administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT).Graduates must initially pass the NBCOT exam before practicing as an occupational therapist in the United States. Most states require licensure in order to practice however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination.