Online OTA Associate Curriculum

As a student in St. Kate’s online Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) associate degree program, you will complete a total of 71 credit hours. You’ll start by taking 1-3 semesters of Liberal Arts and Sciences courses (Phase 1), followed by the 4-semester OTA professional course sequence (Phase 2). You’ll receive a well-rounded education that allows you to earn a degree and sit for the NBCOT® Exam, which is necessary to pass to become a certified occupational therapy assistant (COTA).

Courses are offered year-round in Winter, Summer and Fall semesters. You may apply for admission to start in any term.

Blended Learning Model

Approved by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE), our OTA degree program features a unique blend of online and on-site curriculum that must be completed in-person. The online learning component, which represents 80% of the program, establishes the foundation you need to complete your in-person skills labs and fieldwork.

Phase 1: Liberal Arts and Sciences Sequence

You’ll start by taking 1-3 semesters of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) courses. All LAS courses are offered 100% online – even those with labs! The number of semesters students take during the LAS sequence varies, depending on how many previous courses they transfer in, their personal preferences, and availability of spaces in the OTA Professional Sequence (Phase 2, below).

Contact your admissions counselor to learn more about your timeline. They can review your previous college transcripts to make a preliminary plan.

Prerequisites for OTA Professional Sequence

Before progressing into the OTA Professional Sequence courses, you must (a) have a 2.5 grade point average across the four LAS prerequisite courses listed below, and (b) complete each prerequisite course with a grade of C or better. Earning a C in all courses will not meet the 2.5 prerequisite GPA requirement.

Prerequisite Courses

BIOL 2400General Anatomy and Physiology with Lab*4 credits
IPE 1020Medical Terminology1 credit
PSYC 1000General Psychology4 credits
PSYC 2020Lifespan Developmental Psychology*4 credits

*If taken at another college, these courses must have been completed no more than five years prior to the start of the OTA Professional Sequence.

Other LAS course requirements

These courses must also be completed before students start the OTA Professional Sequence:

LAS Course Requirements

CORE 1000WThe Reflective Woman4 credits
ECOL 2000Human Ecology (or any LAS course)2 credits
ENGL 2100 or ENGL 2500Prose and Poetry, Short Story (or any literature course)2 credits
PHIL 2030WHealthcare Ethics3 credits
SSCS 2040WPower, Inequality and Social Change4 credits
THEO 2040WThe Sacramental Life3 credits

“RTW” requirements

Strong scholarly writing is an essential element of success in your studies and profession. As part of our commitment to educate to lead and influence, St. Kate’s associate degree programs use a system to teach and learn writing entitled RTW. This system connects critical reading, thinking and writing in order to achieve excellent scholarly and professional communication.

Students must complete two Reading, Thinking and Writing (RTW) courses. You’ll satisfy the RTW requirement by taking CORE 1000W and Theology 2040W (or one additional RTW course, if you’ve already taken Theology). All students must take two RTW credits with St. Kate’s – regardless of the number of transfer credits accepted.

Transfer credits

St. Kate’s welcomes students with prior college experience. Contact your admission advisor to find out how your previous college credits may transfer in to meet LAS course requirements. Courses taken at other colleges may not be used to satisfy the CORE 1000W requirement. After first enrolling at St. Kate’s, however, you should plan on taking all remaining LAS courses at St. Kate’s.

Students with previous bachelor’s degrees

Students with bachelor’s degrees need only complete two LAS courses, CORE 1000W and THEO 2040W, and must meet the two-course RTW requirement.

Phase 2: OTA Professional Course Sequence

After you’ve completed your LAS courses and met all prerequisite requirements, you’ll progress into phase two of your degree program, the OTA Professional Sequence. OTA courses are offered in a “cohort” format, meaning you’ll take a series of predetermined courses in a fixed, four-semester sequence.

During the OTA Professional Course Sequence, you will be expected to attend and participate in a total of 12 skills labs. These labs take place once per month over each of the first 3 semesters of the sequence.

During the last semester of the sequence, you will participate in 2 8-week long Fieldwork experiences. These experiences are full-time, in-person experiences.

OTA Professional Sequence: First Semester

OTA 1100Foundations of Human Occupation with Lab2 credits1st half of semester
OTA 1120Role of the OTA2 credits1st half of semester
OTA 1140Psychosocial Approaches 1 with Lab2 credits2nd half of semester
OTA 1150Professional Growth and Community Engagement2 credits2nd half of semester
OTA 1280Level 1 Fieldwork; Experience 11 credit2nd half of semester

OTA Professional Sequence: Second Semester

OTA 1290Level 1 Fieldwork; Experience 21 credit1st half of semester
OTA 2240Psychosocial Approaches 22 credits1st half of semester
OTA 2250Rehabilitation Practice 1 with Lab2 credits1st half of semester
OTA 2260Rehabilitation Practice 23 credits2nd half of semester
OTA 2270Pediatric Practice 1 with Lab3 credits2nd half of semester

OTA Professional Sequence: Third Semester

OTA 2370Pediatric Practice 22 credits1st half of semester
OTA 2380Aging with Lab2 credits1st half of semester
OTA 2390Primary Care and OT2 credits2nd half of semester
OTA 2420Applied Skills with Lab2 credits2nd half of semester

OTA Professional Sequence: Fourth Semester

OTA 2355Level II Fieldwork, Experience 16 credits1st half of semester
OTA 2365Level II Fieldwork, Experience 26 credits2nd half of semester

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