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Home >   Academics > Degree & Certificates

NOVA 2012-2013 College Catalog: Programs of Study

OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY ASSISTANT  
Associate of Applied Science Degree MEC


Purpose:  This curriculum is designed to prepare students to assist occupational therapists in providing occupational therapy treatments and procedures. Graduates may, in accordance with state laws, assist in development of treatment plans; carry out routine functions, direct activity programs, and document the progress of treatments.

Transfer Information:  Transfer is not the primary purpose of an A.A.S. program, but NOVA has articulation agreements that facilitate the transfer of this and other career-oriented programs to selected senior institutions. Students interested in transfer should contact a counselor or their academic advisor early in their program.

Admission Requirements: 

Students must:

  • Comply with all General Admission Requirements for Allied Health Programs.
  • Attend an in-person Occupational Therapy Assistant Information Session. Visit the Web site at http://www.nvcc.edu/campuses-and-centers/medical/academic-divisions/allied-health.
  • Be a high school graduate or have obtained a GED.
  • Complete ENG 111 College Composition I, HLT 141 Introduction to Medical Terminology and SDV 101 Orientation to Health Care Careers with a "C" or higher.
  • Qualify for MTH 151 or higher on the NOVA Math Placement test. This requirement must be met prior to applying to the OTA Program.
  • Complete BIO 141-142 Human Anatomy and Physiology I-II with a grade of "C" or higher.
  • Maintain a curricular GPA of 2.5 or higher at the last school or college attended (with a minimum of 13 credits.
  • Complete at least 16 hours of observation time with an occupational therapist (OTR) or a certified occupational therapy assistant (COTA). Observation hours must be documented and signed by the OTR or COTA who is supervising the applying student on a form found on the website at: http://www.nvcc.edu/campuses-and-centers/medical/academic-divisions/allied-health/occupational-therapy-assistant/index.html
  • Complete a video interview for an interview committee.
  • Assure that all previous transcripts are accounted for and are on file at NOVA prior to the program application deadline date. These transfer credits must be evaluated before any transfer credit is granted. Application acceptance dates will be posted on the website once established. Admission will be on a competitive placement basis of fully-qualified candidates. Students will also receive special consideration if they have earned the Health Science Career Studies Certificate, if over 25 hours of observation are accumulated, and/or if documented work experience as a rehabilitation technician or an OT aide is provided.
  • Students are notified in writing of acceptance into the program following the timely submission of a completed application. Once accepted, students must have current CPR certification, must complete a basic First Aid course, a documented medical examination, criminal background check, a 12-panel drug screen, and must maintain a 2.5 GPA or higher to remain in good standing.

Continuation Requirement: Students must comply with all Continuation Requirements for Allied Health and Occupational Therapy Assistant students.

Transfer Placement:OTA credits earned at other institutions will be reviewed by the Assistant Dean of the OTA Program to determine if any course substitutions may be warranted within the curriculum. Students wishing to transfer into the NVCC OTA program will be required to satisfactorily complete a skill competency assessment before being accepted into the OTA program. Transfer students must additionally be in good academic standing and must provide a written reference from the Program Director of the previous institution as well as from a clinical educator as applicable. All transfer students must meet all of the OTA program application and admission requirements before being considered in the competitive admissions process.

Accreditation Pending The occupational therapy assistant program at Northern Virginia Community College has attained Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Education (ACOTE®) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, P.O. Box 31220, Bethesda, MD 20824–1220. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is 301–652–AOTA and online at: www.acoteonline.org. Once full accreditation of the OTA program at NOVA is obtained, graduates must have successfully completed all coursework and fieldwork requirements of the program as outlined in the policies of the program. Upon graduation, students 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 individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, most 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 could affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

Highly competitive students can apply during the next application period. In the meantime, students interested in the OTA program are encouraged to attend an information session. You can find the dates at: http://www.nvcc.edu/campuses-and-centers/medical/academic-divisions/info-session/occupational-therapy-assistant.html, and follow the steps in preparation for competitive placement into the OTA Program. Competitive eligibility for OTA does not guarantee admission.

The Occupational Therapy Assistant A.A.S. degree will begin enrollment for Spring 2013 as permitted by ACOTE.

  Credits
Prerequisites
1BIO 141 Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4
1BIO 142 Human Anatomy and Physiology II 4
ENG 111 College Composition I 3
HLT 141 Introduction to Medical Terminology 1
SDV 101 Orientation to Health Care Careers 1
Total   13
Two Years Credits
1st Semester
2___ Humanities/Fine Arts Elective 3
OCT 100 Intro. to Occupational Therapy 3
OCT 205 Therapeutic Media 2
OCT 225 Neurological Concept for OCT Assistant 4
PED 116 Lifetime Fitness and Welness 1
PSY 200 Principles of Psychology 3
Total   16
2nd Semester
OCT 190 Coordinated Internship in OT (Pediatrics) 1
OCT 203 Occupational Therapy with Developmental Disabilities 4
OCT 207 Therapeutic Skills 3
PSY 231 Life Span Human Development I 3
PSY 232 Life Span Human Development II 3
Total   14
3rd Semester
OCT 190 Coordinated Internship in OT (Psychosocial Dysfunction) 1
OCT 195 Topics in Evidence Based Practice in Occupational Therapy 1
OCT 201 Occupational Therapy with Psychosocial Dysfunction 3
Total   5
4th Semester
HIM 130 Health Information System 3
OCT 190 Coordinated Internship in OT (Physical Dysfunction) 1
OCT 202 Occupational Therapy with Physical Disabilities 4
OCT 208 Occupational Therapy Service Management 3
OCT 210 Assistive Technology in Occupational Therapy 2
Total   13
5th Semester
OCT 290 Coordinated Internship in OT 4
OCT 290 Coordinated Internship in OT 4
OCT 295 Trends in Professional Issues in Occupational Therapy Practice 1
Total   9
Total credits for the Occupational Therapy Assistant A.A.S.=70 (includes 13 prerequisite credits)

1 Although students who have graduated with a transfer-oriented A.A., A.S., or A.A. & S. degree or any baccalaureate or higher degree from a regionally accredited United States institution of higher education will have most of their general education considered as met, they must meet the math and science requirements specified for this program. Exceptions must be approved by the division dean responsible for the student’s curriculum.

1 Humanities/fine arts elective may be selected from the humanities/fine arts courses listed under General Education Electives.