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Occupational Therapy Assistant, AS (OTA)

Keiser University’s Associate of Science degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant prepares students to work as occupational therapy assistants under direct supervision of a licensed occupational therapist. Occupational therapy is the art and science of helping people gain skills needed to become independent in daily living activities. Students learn the therapeutic use of occupations which include self-care, work and play/leisure activities in order to maximize independent function, enhance development, prevent disability and maintain health. Intervention strategies may include adaptations to a task or environment or compensatory approaches in order to facilitate clients’ achievement of maximum independence.

Click here to see Keiser University OTA Program Performance Data on the NBCOT® National Certification Examination. When you get to the site, select ‘Florida’ for the state and ‘OTA Level Program’ for the program type and choose the year you’d like the view the results for.

Keiser University’s Occupational Therapy Assistant program, Ft. Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Miami, Pembroke Pines, Jacksonville, Daytona, Tallahassee, Tampa and West Palm Beach campuses, are fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). ACOTE can be reached at ACOTE c/o Accreditation Department American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929  Office phone: (301) 652-AOTA

The occupational therapy assistant program at Keiser University-Melbourne, Melbourne, Florida, was placed on Probationary Accreditation effective April 22, 2023, because the area of noncompliance related to 2018 Standard A.6.4 (certification exam pass rate) is so serious that the capability of the program to provide acceptable educational experiences for the students is threatened. ACOTE voted to grant the program’s request to extend the time frame for compliance with 2018 Standard A.6.4 until August 2024.

The occupational therapy assistant program at Keiser University-Orlando, Orlando, Florida, was placed on Probationary Accreditation effective April 22, 2023, because the area of noncompliance related to 2018 Standard A.6.4 (certification exam pass rate) is so serious that the capability of the program to provide acceptable educational experiences for the students is threatened. ACOTE voted to grant the program’s request to extend the time frame for compliance with 2018 Standard A.6.4 until August 2024.

Program Objectives

The following objectives are designed to meet Keiser University’s mission and its objectives.

  • To provide an environment in which students demonstrate ethical behaviors, critical thinking skills and commitment to lifelong learning as required of a competent healthcare professional;
  • Students demonstrate emerging clinical skills in treatment techniques, methodology and rationale for implementation, including clinical documentation and reasoning skills as an entry-level professional;
  • Students demonstrate an academic foundation that clearly evidences occupational therapy’s unique focus on daily living activities and interventions that promote clients’ participation within a social/cultural context.

Program Goals

The program’s mission is further defined in the following goals:

  • Students will demonstrate critical thinking, communication skills and a commitment to lifelong learning;
  • Students will possess employable entry-level skills required for the profession;
  • Students will demonstrate ethical behavior that promotes client participation within a social/cultural context.

Occupational Therapy Assistant Testimonial

Prerequisites for Major Courses

  • Satisfactory background check and drug screening (for information on graduate’s eligibility for certification and credentialing click here). Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant, administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the graduate will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). 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;
  • Completion of general education courses with a minimum grade of ―”C” for each course.  Successful completion of the following prerequisite courses: BSC2085C, BSC2086C, MAT1033 and PSY1012;
  • Cumulative grade average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

Cost of Attendance

Program Outline

To receive an Associate of Science degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant, students must earn 83 credit hours. Program requirements are as follows.

Each course in the Occupational Therapy Assistant major is a prerequisite for the subsequent course and therefore must be passed with a minimum “C” grade in order to proceed successfully through the program.

Lower Division Courses

Occupational Therapy Assistant Major Courses (57.0 credit hours)
Introduction to Occupational Therapy 4.0 credit hours
Human Occupation and Development Across the Life Span 4.0 credit hours
Kinesiology for Occupational Therapy Assistants 4.0 credit hours
Musculoskeletal System Disorders/Assessment and Treatment Strategies 4.0 credit hours
Neurological Disorders/Assessment and Treatment Strategies 4.0 credit hours
Psychiatric Disorders, Assessment and Treatment Strategies 4.0 credit hours
Therapeutic Interventions for Individuals, Groups, and Populations 4.0 credit hours
Fieldwork I 2.0 credit hours
Occupational Therapy for the Physically Disabled 4.0 credit hours
Pediatric Occupational Therapy 4.0 credit hours
Aging and Performance Skills 4.0 credit hours
Occupational Therapy Pre-clinical Practicum 3.0 credit hours
Fieldwork II 12.0 credit hours
Behavioral/Social Science (3.0 credit hours)
PSY1012 - Introduction to Psychology 3.0 credit hours
SGY1000 - Introduction to Sociology 3.0 credit hours
Communications (3.0 credit hours)
SPC1017 - Speech 3.0 credit hours
Computers (3.0 credit hours)
CGS1000C - Introduction to Computers 3.0 credit hours
English (3.0 credit hours)
ENC1101 - English Composition I 3.0 credit hours
ENC2102 - English Composition II 3.0 credit hours
Humanities/Fine Arts (3.0 credit hours)
AML1000 - American Literature 3.0 credit hours
ENL1000 - English Literature 3.0 credit hours
CWL1000 - Contemporary World Literature 3.0 credit hours
Mathematics (3.0 credit hours)
MAC2105 - College Algebra 3.0 credit hours
MAT1033 - Intermediate Algebra 3.0 credit hours
Natural Science (8.0 credit hours)
BSC2085C - Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4.0 credit hours
BSC2086C - Human Anatomy and Physiology II 4.0 credit hours

Note: Each course in the Occupational Therapy Assistant major is a prerequisite for the subsequent course and therefore must be passed with a minimum "C" grade in order to proceed successfully through the program.

Program Outcomes

State Licensure Disclosure

My instructors believed in me. They were more than instructors, they tried to get to know you as a person and tried to understand your goals so they could push you towards them. Student services helped me find a job before I even graduated. Everyone was dedicated to my overall success.

Jessica Kircher

Going to Keiser University was one of the greatest experiences in my life. All of my deans, professors, and staff made me feel that I was a part of something very special, and I am. I would recommend for anyone to get their education at Keiser University.

Belinda Haney

The instructors at Keiser University impacted my life. They believed in my ability to become a great graphic designer, regardless of how I felt about my skills. KU helped to prepare me for the real world and got me to where I am today.

Justin Pugh

If not for my education at Keiser I probably would not be where I am today, in both life and career. It is because of going to Keiser and the instructors I had that I joined a club started by Mr. Williams, The Lakeland Shooters Photography Group, which allowed me to venture into an amazing and very creative field that I use to enhance all aspects of my life.

Anthony Sassano

The Design program at Keiser University was filled with real world learning and hands on instruction… Based on the portfolio I created while a student at Keiser University, I landed a job in Graphic Design for a major online retailer immediately after graduation.

Ty Fitzgerald

The year and a half I spent in the program better prepared me for attaining a job in the field…As a hands-on learner, the project-centered teaching was perfect for me.

Jackson Tejada

Keiser University has given me the opportunity to embrace a career change… It has opened the door for a timely graduation and quick return to the work force…

Dale Caverly

Without the education I received at Keiser University, I would not be where I am today!

Meisha Ebanks, R.N.

I not only received an excellent education but also encouragement and training that built my self-confidence every day.

Nidia Barrios

I realize the amount of knowledge I gained and feel that the educational experiences have developed me in to a person who can move higher up the career ladder.

Carlos Ramirez Flores

Keiser University’s MBA program has renewed my mind, changed the way I think, and given me a new sense of purpose.  The professors transformed my attitude and behavior, gave me the self-confidence I was lacking, and restored my energy.

Connie Sue Centrella

It has been great attending and graduating from Keiser University.  Because of the small class sizes, I was able to build good relationships with classmates and professors.  The PA professors care very much about the progress and success of the students and have been great advisors every step of the way through the program.

Annelise Merriner, PA-C

Attending Keiser University and getting my degree was the best decision I have ever made.  The small class sizes and personalized attention helped me get my degree quickly.  The hands-on experience and the education landed me a job at a neighboring law firm.

Dedrick Saxon

I chose Keiser because it had everything—small classes, caring professors, hands-on learning, and counselors that are really there for you.  I feel like I’m part of a family here, not just a number.

Natalie Dou

After being denied for several promotions at my current employer, I decided that I needed to further my education.  Since graduating from Keiser with my bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, I have been promoted and I am able to obtain positions that weren’t available to me before.

Laurie Williams

Beyond the curriculum of the courses, the lessons the instructors have taught me have paid dividends in my real work experiences. How to respond to criticisms, project and time management, interview skills, the list goes on and on. At the end of the day, they not only showed me how to design, but they taught me how to be a professional.

Ryan Bushey

Keiser helped change my life by getting my education at the right school! I had been going to another school before, I dropped out because I felt that I was not getting enough information. When I found out about Keiser, I was pleased because the instructors were great.

Nadege Dor

My decision to attend Keiser University has been one of the best decisions I’ve made. I chose to enroll in the Information Technology program… The one-class-a-month pace helped incredibly with my self-discipline.

Marla Hadley

The BA for Business Administration at Keiser has to be one of the best in the nation. Keiser takes the basics that are taught at the Associates level and uses them to strengthen your skills and knowledge.

Vivian R. Howard, BA in Business Administration Graduate

I found that Keiser University’s Nuclear Medicine program of advanced studies and small class size was a perfect fit. I never came across a faculty member who wasn’t truly interested.

Gustavo Gonzalez, Nuclear Medicine Technology Graduate