Top Picks for the Best Entry-Level OT Master’s Degree Programs By Region

Top OT Masters Programs BadgeOccupational therapy remains a profession that offers constant and wide-ranging job opportunities, lucrative pay, and high demand. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, OT jobs are expected to explode between 2016 and 2026, expanding by more than 24 percent. With a median salary of more than $83,000 per year, that’s a lot of well-paying jobs to go around.

The reason for the expanding need is simple: the occupational therapy creed of helping people live meaningful and fulfilling lives has lined up perfectly with trends in population demographics, and with modern healthcare industry concerns about quality of life issues.

Among those demographic trends is an ever growing population of people living to a more advanced age, and dealing with the conditions often associated with it. Combine that with a profusion of new diagnoses of disorders along the autism spectrum and disabilities affecting children, and the OT role has jumped in importance at all ends of the lifespan and in every setting, from schools and physiotherapy clinics to assisted living facilities and gerontology practices.

To get one of these jobs, though, you’re going to need a license, and to get a license, you’re going to need to earn a master’s degree from an ACOTE-accredited degree program. Naturally, you’ll be looking for a program that brings together all the elements that make for an outstanding learning experience and a great value.

We’ve got you covered.

Accreditation Sets the Baseline For the MOT Programs We Considered

With such a wide array of roles in the healthcare field, it’s even more important that every OT graduates from a program with a strong baseline in the fundamental theory and practice of the trade. Program accreditation involves an evaluation process that investigates every aspect of an OT master’s program before giving it the stamp of approval. It’s the standard by which the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT), your state licensing board, and even prospective employers validate your educational credentials.

Without a master’s degree from a program accredited by ACOTE, the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education, you’re going to have a hard time establishing eligibility to take the NBCOT certification exam for your OTR, let alone getting a license to practice in your state.

Formed and run by AOTA, the American Occupational Therapy Association, ACOTE or its predecessors have been in the business of evaluating and affirming the credentials of OT programs since 1923. That’s a lot of experience, and it has paid off in a well-managed, smoothly-operated process that nonetheless is as tough as nails.

ACOTE requires that programs have the right resources to deliver the education required. That means adequate facilities, capable administrators and professors, and dedicated fieldwork coordinators. Faculty have to be currently licensed or credentialed OTs, the school has to demonstrate academic standards in line with professional expectations in the field, and marketing and advertising for the program must be found to be in line with what the school actually offers.

It’s an exhaustive array of details and specifications that some schools take years to meet. And once standards are met, the program will still be re-evaluated every seven years to make sure standards are always up to par.

Those are the exacting standards that every program we reviewed has met, making it the baseline standard for the exceptional programs we ended up selecting for this list.

How We Picked Programs For The List

With ACOTE-accreditation as the starting point, we did one more general filter to be sure we only considered programs with a proven track record for stellar student outcomes before starting in on the more qualitative phase of our assessment process: We looked exclusively at the elite class of schools that produced graduating cohorts with a 100% pass rate on the NBCOT exam in 2017 – the most recent year recorded. It’s a simple way to isolate the best performing schools, but it’s also the clearest indicator of how well a program will prepare you with the kind of skill and knowledge mastery you need to ace the exam and transition confidently into professional practice.

With the baseline established, we then began the more involved task of hand selecting the programs we feel represent the best overall value by creating an exceptional student experience that results in the best possible preparation for professional practice.

We evaluated the schools based on the availability of resources and the quality of their teaching facilities. We looked at faculty qualifications and special educational opportunities that they make available to students, like debates, guest presenters, and extracurricular activities.

Some schools offer exciting overseas study opportunities, which were worth a few extra points in our book. We also gave a second look to schools either co-located or closely affiliated with larger medical schools, which gives you an opportunity to interact with other healthcare professionals during the course of your training and inculcate you in the cross-functional care teams that are becoming standard in American medicine.

We even considered what other evaluators and publishers had to say, such as the Princeton Review and the Carnegie Foundation. If their thinking lines up with ours, it’s a pretty good sign you’re looking at a superlative degree program.

Organized by Region for a Good Reason

There are only 166 ACOTE-accredited master’s programs in the United States and OT is a very hands-on profession, so there’s a good chance you’re going to have to travel to get your degree. But it’s beneficial to both your pocketbook and your career if you can get your education in the same region of the country where you plan to practice.

You’ll encounter graduates of the same program, meet a lot of potential networking contacts in school, and get a first-hand view of a lot of potential employers in the area. Those employers, in turn, will be familiar with the education you got and have a comfort level with you that they might not enjoy with students from outside the region.

Top Picks: Our Favorite OT Master’s Degrees in the U.S. by Region

We’ve weighed the aspects of every program that make it unique, and picked only the very best of the best for this list.


This list features programs that our editorial staff hand selected to present as top recommendations. We believe the many aspects of a program that come together to create an exceptional student experience can’t be reduced to numbers alone, so no formula was used to attempt to score or rank these programs. Instead, they represent our top picks based on a thoughtful review of the things we know mean the most to students. Each one of these programs offers something unique, and all come equally highly recommended. We stand behind the principal of editorial integrity and make these recommendations independently and without compensation.


Midwest Region

Chicago State University
College of Health Sciences
Chicago, IL
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MSOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0 during the final 60 semester credit hours of undergraduate/graduate hours
  • Program boasts a 100% employment rate among graduates
  • Low, student-to-faculty ratio of just 12:1

Chicago State University’s MOT program speaks for itself—after certification and licensing, 100% of graduates of this program are employed in their field. With ACOTE accreditation since 1984, a diverse and dedicated faculty of clinical practitioners and scholars, many of whom have published and presented at national and international conferences, and superb opportunities to work not just in traditional clinical settings but also in innovative community-based programs, the MOT program enjoys a longstanding reputation as a leader in occupational therapy education. Choose Chicago State and you’ll enjoy a low student-to-faculty ratio of just 12:1, opportunities to collaborate on applied research projects with faculty members, and a curriculum that emphasizes active learning experiences both inside and outside the classroom.

Governors State University
College of Health and Human Services
University Park, IL
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: OTD

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Dynamic curriculum emphasizes communication, advocacy, critical reasoning, and lifelong learning
  • Research-focused course of study allows students to explore evidence-based OT practice through research

As a student of the Governors State University MOT program, you’re going to spend plenty of time outside of the classroom, and even outside of labs and clinics. With exciting opportunities like the Master of Occupational Therapy Research Day, students of this program are able to explore evidence-based OT practice through research to realize the best patient outcomes. Recently, MOT students presented their findings from their research projects during a poster presentation and all were accepted for presentation at the Illinois Occupational Therapy Association annual conference. As a student here, your graduate-level course of study in occupational therapy will also emphasize advocacy, communication, critical reasoning, and lifelong learning, all of which are designed to produce successful and highly effective OT professionals.

Indiana State University
College of Health and Human Services
Terre Haute, Indiana
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program focuses on inter-professional collaborations that produce well-rounded OT clinicians, educators, managers, researchers, and advocates

An OT program is only as good as its outcomes, and thanks to a focus on inter-professional collaborative research, the MSOT through Indiana State University produces not just healthcare providers, but educators, managers, researchers, and advocates in the profession. Students here are able to study alongside other professional students and share common experiences, building valuable relationships with other skilled professionals they can consult with for the duration of their careers. Choose this program and you’ll not only enjoy this well-rounded course of study, you’ll also have the opportunity to engage in exciting research activities alongside faculty and peers in settings like the RHIC Simulation Center, which tests new and emerging technologies in OT practice.

Eastern Michigan University
College of Health & Human Services
Ypsilanti, Michigan
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Program emphasizes interprofessional collaboration for a well-rounded course of study
  • Superb hands-on learning through the school’s Occupation and Activity Analysis Lab and the Motor Learning and Movement Assessment Classroom

At Eastern Michigan University, learning is a collaborative process, and its MOT program is no exception. Established in 1941, the program is designed to produce the next generation of successful and effective OT practitioners through interprofessional collaboration. Thanks to this method of study, MOT students learn from and about other professional students to improve patient health outcomes. This environment of teamwork and mutual understanding is at the forefront of the College of Health and Human Services and is supported by the Office for the Advancement of Interprofessional Education, Research, and practice. As a student here, you’ll not only enjoy this unique atmosphere of learning, you’ll have access to superb, hands-on learning through facilities like the Occupation and Activity Analysis Lab, a classroom lab equipped with a small kitchen designed for demonstrations that relate to independent living, and the Motor Learning and Movement Assessment Classroom, a classroom lab equipped with a variety of tools and instruments for testing range of motion, postural stability, and dynamic movement.

Grand Valley State University
Occupational Science & Therapy Department
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Website

MSOT (on-campus, hybrid)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree and at least 50 hours of documented experience under the supervision of an occupational therapist
  • Program offered either as a traditional, on-campus program or as a hybrid program for adult/non-traditional learners
  • Exciting opportunities to study abroad

Convenience is the name of the game in Grand Valley State University’s MSOT program. If you’re a traditional student, complete the on-campus MSOT; if you’re an adult learner or non-traditional student, complete the hybrid MSOT and attend classes just one weekend a month and complete the rest of the coursework through an innovative, distance-learning format. Regardless of which format works best for you, you’ll appreciate the engaging and interactive learning activities afforded to you as an MSOT student, including free form class discussions, panel discussions, formal debates, faculty/guest presentations, group work, and more. Choose the MSOT through Grand Valley State and you’ll also have access to exciting, faculty-led study abroad opportunities to places like Ghana, Africa, where you’ll have the chance to volunteer with the Ghana Health Service System.

Wayne State University
College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Detroit, Michigan
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Excellent resources and facilities available
  • WSU holds the Carnegie Foundation’s RU/VH (Research University, Very High research activity) and Community Engagement classifications

Wayne State University knows a thing or two about what it takes to produce the next generation of OT professionals. After all, founded in 1944, it was one of the first programs of its kind in the country. Along with a rich history of student success, Wayne State is also located on a medical campus of a nationally recognized research institution, so MOT students here have access to the finest in healthcare-focused education, including an exceptional faculty and state-of-the-art teaching and research facilities. In fact, WSU holds the Carnegie Foundation’s RU/VH (Research University, Very High research activity) and Community Engagement classifications. Both as an MOT student here and as an alumnus, you’ll have access to superb resources, just one of the many benefits of attending one of the top 50 largest public universities in the nation.

Maryville University
College of Health Professions
St. Louis, Missouri
Website

MOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Innovative curriculum constantly updated with input from business and professional leaders
  • University recognized among the best values in private colleges by Kiplinger’s, among the top colleges by Forbes, and among the best colleges by Money magazine

Maryville University’s MOT hits all the marks for innovation, quality, and comprehensiveness—a technology-forward learning environment, a curriculum that’s constantly updated with input from business and professional leaders, and an expert faculty who serve as educators and mentors. As an MOT student, you’ll also benefit from the university’s strong relationships with many corporate and civic organizations throughout St. Louis who provide opportunities for exciting, hands-on experiences in real-world projects. Choose Maryville for your MOT and you’ll be part of an esteemed university that’s been recognized as a best value among private colleges by Kiplinger’s… among the top colleges by Forbes… and among the best colleges by Money magazine.

Carroll University
College of Health Sciences
Waukesha, Wisconsin
Website

MOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Exciting experiential learning opportunities through partnerships with other universities and area healthcare providers
  • Program can be combined with the Science and Language Undergraduate Development program, which offers Spanish-focused coursework, cultural events, community service opportunities, and unique international travel programs

Carroll University doesn’t just offer a comprehensive and well-rounded MOT for the aspiring occupational therapist; it offers a host of perks that will make your educational journey a truly rewarding and successful one. For example, you’ll enjoy access to the university’s outstanding partnerships with other universities and area healthcare providers for exciting, hands-on learning opportunities. You’ll also have access to the school’s Health Sciences Bound Initiative, an innovative program that offers health science students like you access to a team of experienced academic advisors who provide you with expert advice and access to a unique peer community that meets for special sessions, events, and networking opportunities. And if you want to add a global element to your MOT, Carroll offers a new interdisciplinary program, the Science and Language Undergraduate Development program, which offers Spanish-focused coursework, cultural events, community service opportunities, and unique international travel programs.

Concordia University Wisconsin
School of Health Professions
Mequon, Wisconsin
Website

MOT (entry-level, hybrid)

MOT (transitional for COTAs with at least one year of experience)

Other Programs: BS/MOT (accelerated)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0 (entry-level MOT)
  • Online support and guidance through tutoring, career assistance, and personalized attention from an Online Student Success Advisor
  • Exciting opportunities to study abroad in Nepal and Nicaragua

For adult learners like you, Concordia University Wisconsin’s MOT checks all the boxes for convenience and flexibility, thanks to the hybrid format that combines an engaging and interactive classroom-based course of study with the convenience and flexibility of an online program. While much of the MOT is completed at a distance, you’ll receive a comprehensive and robust course of education that’s complemented by a faculty with real-world experience…a Christ-centered educational experience…tutoring and career assistance…and personalized attention from an Online Student Success Advisor, your go-to person for all things related to your educational experience. And if your education goals include the addition of international study, consider taking advantage of Concordia University Wisconsin’s exciting global trips to Nepal and Nicaragua.

University of Wisconsin, Lacrosse
College of Science and Health
Lacrosse, Wisconsin
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program boasts a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate in 2015, 2016, and 2017
  • Unique international learning opportunities available with partner schools in Scotland and England

Sure, the University of Wisconsin, Lacrosse MSOT delivers the academic punch you’re looking for (100% NBCOT exam pass rates in 2015, 2016, and 2017), but this program also offers up its share of perks that’ll guarantee you a robust and exciting course of study. The university’s Health Science Center is a complex of clinical lab space, conference rooms, classrooms, and research labs that provides the best in hands-on learning and opportunities to work and cross paths with everyone from professors and fellow OT grad students to students of other health professions. The Occupational Therapy program hosts distinguished lecturers, maintains strong partnerships with area healthcare organizations, and provides the opportunity for students to participate in an international occupational therapy experience, thanks to the school’s relationship with the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen, Scotland, and the University of Brighton in England.

University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
College of Health Sciences
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 during the final 60 semester credit hours of the program
  • One of the largest MSOT programs in Wisconsin and the only public OT program in the Greater Milwaukee area
  • Program boasts partnerships at more than 300 clinical sites

The University of Wisconsin Milwaukee’s reputation as a leading urban health sciences college is supported by its innovative and comprehensive MSOT, one of the largest programs of its kind in Wisconsin and the only public OT program in the Greater Milwaukee area. As a student here, you’ll benefit from an urban location that comes complete with partnerships with more than 300 clinical sites in Milwaukee and throughout the country. You’ll also enjoy access to the school’s Assistive Technology Laboratory, which features state-of-the-art equipment, and the Rehabilitation Design and Disability Center, a multidisciplinary research center where occupational therapy experts explore, develop and implement the latest knowledge in the field. And for a truly personalized learning experience, you can add electives in such areas as hand therapy, low vision, and trauma counseling.

North Region

University of New England
Westbrook College of Health Professions
Biddeford, Maine
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Program boasts a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate from 2015-2018
  • Exciting opportunities to study abroad through the school’s Global Education Program

There are those programs that claim to be the best, and then there are programs like the University of New England’s MSOT that let the numbers speak for themselves. Case in point: This program boasts a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate from 2015-2018. Choose the MSOT here and you’ll enjoy a robust course of study that includes engaging community experiences, a curriculum that emphasizes interprofessional education that puts you side-by-side with healthcare professionals and other therapists providing care as part of a collaborative team. You’ll also have opportunities to participate in simulations, conduct research, and study abroad in places like Ghana, Spain, and the Caribbean through the Global Education Program.

Salem State University
College of Health and Human Services
Salem, Massachusetts
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MSOT (designed for COTAs who have completed an associate’s degree)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Program is delivered in a part-time evening cohort model for adult learners
  • Exciting opportunity for international learning through a faculty-led study-abroad experience in Jamaica

Designed in a part-time evening cohort model, Salem State University’s MOT emphasizes collaboration and communication for the adult learner. Established in 1854, Salem State University has a longstanding reputation for academic excellence and is one of the largest state universities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This university not only provides you with the solid course of study you need to confidently enter professional practice, its location just 15 miles north of Boston and one mile from downtown Salem ensures a variety of diverse clinical experiences. Plus, you’ll enjoy the best in support and guidance through the Career Services office and the Student Navigation Center. And for a unique international learning experience, MOT students have the opportunity to spend a week in Jamaica on a faculty-led study-abroad experience that’s offered in conjunction with the University of West Indies and the Tropical Medicine Research Institute Sickle Cell Unit.

Springfield College
School of Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Studies
Springfield, Massachusetts
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MSOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites, along with proof of work experience/observation/volunteer experience in an occupational therapy setting
  • Program features flexible scheduling designed to accommodate the adult learner
  • Program boasts more than 300 fieldwork sites across the country

There are good occupational therapy programs, and then there are exceptional ones that come with a track record for producing highly respected regional leaders in professional practice. Springfield College’s MSOT is one of those unique programs. It features flexible scheduling for adult learners like you and a number of approaches to learning that encourage interprofessional collaboration and engagement, including group projects, exciting fieldwork experiences, and a mix of classroom and laboratory work. And with more than 300 fieldwork sites across the country, your hands-on learning experiences here will be completely immersive and very diverse in nature.

Stockton University
School of Health Sciences
Galloway, New Jersey
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a cumulative minimum GPA of 3.2
  • University consistently ranked among the nation’s best colleges by esteemed publications like U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review
  • Innovative curriculum features both case-based learning and service learning

With a nearly 50-year track record of academic excellence and a reputation for providing a high-quality, innovative education, Stockton University remains a force to be reckoned with among public institutions, both in New Jersey and across the country. Mirroring the university’s longstanding reputation for excellence, the MSOT is among the most competitive programs the school offers, with a new cohort of applicants accepted just once a year. In addition to this program’s innovative curriculum that features both case-based learning and service learning, this course of study hits the mark for its expert faculty with diverse backgrounds in a variety of clinical areas…its low, student-to-faculty ratio that offers outstanding opportunities for individualized attention…and its state-of-the-art electronic classroom facilities equipped with technology that supports and augments the learning experience.

Ithaca College
School of Health Sciences and Human Performance
Ithaca, New York
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MSOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a cumulative minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program boasts a 100% graduation rate in 2015, 2016, and 2017
  • Hands-on learning opportunities available through the Center for Life Skills, the OT/PT Clinic, and the offsite Ithaca Free Clinic

With a curriculum that’s long on opportunities for academic and experiential learning, it’s easy to see why Ithaca College’s MSOT program stands out from the competition. Choose the MSOT here and you’ll enjoy opportunities for faculty-led collaborative research and hands-on, real-world learning through the Center for Life Skills, a community-based program serving adults with neurological impairments, and through the university’s OT/PT Clinic and the offsite Ithaca Free Clinic. Plus, exploring international issues relevant to occupational therapy and in the process gaining a more global view of OT practice is something that is accessible here, thanks to unique study-abroad opportunities with college-affiliated institutions and through exchange programs.

Le Moyne College
Purcell School of Professional Studies
Syracuse, New York
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and at least 40 hours of clinical observation under the supervision of a licensed OT in multiple settings and with different clients
  • Jesuit program features a commitment to spiritual growth and a commitment to service
  • Program boasts a small cohort of students for the best in cooperative learning and student engagement

Le Moyne College’s MSOT is grounded in the Jesuit traditions of education that recognizes the mind, body, and soul of individuals, instilling a love of learning and spiritual growth, and emphasizing a commitment to service. This trusted foundation serves the MSOT program well, producing a well-rounded interprofessional collaborative curriculum that’s designed to contribute to the profession through service, scholarships, and leadership. What does this mean for you? An engaging, interactive course of study that’s achieved by working with a small cohort of like-minded peers while also collaborating with other professionals in the allied health sciences. Choose Le Moyne for your MSOT and you’ll be part of a university that boasts a low 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio, a 98% employment rate among graduates, and a ranking among the top colleges in the nation by esteemed publications like Forbes and the Princeton Review.

New York University
Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
New York, New York
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: Post-Professional MS; MS/OTD; OTD; PhD in Occupational Therapy

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum B- in all prerequisite courses
  • MSOT ranked among the top OT programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report
  • Home to the NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, one of the oldest, largest, and most highly rated occupational therapy departments in the U.S.

New York University’s MSOT enjoys a unique position within the NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, one of the oldest, largest, and most highly rated occupational therapy departments in the U.S. And while this sort of reputation may be hard to live up to, the MSOT does just that, offering aspiring OTs like you an innovative and dynamic program that’s focused on the role of activities in improving, restoring, and sustaining function. With a location in NYC, this program also offers unparalleled opportunities for clinical practice and collaborative research. In fact, the school has partnerships with more than 200 hospitals, outpatient centers, rehab facilities, community organizations, schools, and private practices not only in NYC but across the country.

The Sage Colleges
School of Health Sciences
Troy, New York
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: BS/MSOT

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.25
  • Program available on a full- and part-time basis
  • Small class sizes delivered in a seminar-style format for the best in personalized learning

There are myriad reasons why the Sages College MSOT should be at the top of your list of potential programs. You’ll love the highly experienced faculty, many of whom hold practice specialties and board certification in pediatrics, psychosocial practice, rehabilitation, and gerontology. The intimate learning environment here is achieved through small classes that are taught in a seminar-style format. And there’s no shortage of opportunities for hands-on learning thanks to well-equipped laboratory spaces and the college’s formal agreements with over 175 clinical sites throughout the country. You’ll also love the opportunities you’ll have to engage in mentored research projects on important topics like post-traumatic stress disorder, post-stroke depression, carpal tunnel syndrome, and pervasive developmental disorders. Whatever your reasons for choosing the MSOT at Sages, you can rest assured knowing you’re choosing a program that will prepare you to make the transition to professional practice, as evidenced by the fact that 100% of graduates who took the NBCOT exam in 2017 passed with flying colors.

Stony Brook University
School of Health Technology and Management
Stony Brook, New York
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program available at the main campus or at the Southampton campus
  • Outstanding faculty mentorship and advisement services

Pursue the Stony Brook University MSOT, either at the main campus or in Southampton, and you’ll engage in student-centered learning experiences that will have you collaborating with your peers on community projects that can have a meaningful impact in the real world. Stony Brook students receive faculty mentorship and advisement throughout their educational journey and even beyond graduation. Interested in OT research? You’ll have plenty of opportunities to study and make contributions to the latest developments in the field through faculty-led research. Other perks of this nationally ranked program include a diverse faculty of experienced researchers, scholars, and practitioners…small class sizes…and plenty of opportunities to apply what you’ve learned in real-world settings through clinical partner sites.

Salus University
College of Education & Rehabilitation
Elkins Park, Pennsylvania
Website

MSOT (on-campus, online)

Other Programs: OTD (online); OT Specialty Track Certificates (low-vision rehab, remedial vision rehab, and health and wellness for occupational therapists)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Outstanding record of success: 100% pass rate on the NBCOT exam from 2014-2017
  • University has been educating health science and rehab professionals since 1919

Salus University’s MSOT program provides students like you with the skills and knowledge you need to serve as a direct care provider, educator, manager, researcher, and advocate for the OT profession, thanks to a commitment to interprofessional education and interdisciplinary training; outstanding clinical training sequences; innovative learning strategies that include small group, interactive, and self-directed learning experiences; and the integration of new technologies. It also comes complete with the kind of proven track record discerning students like you demand—a 100% pass rate on the NBCOT exam from 2014-2017. Choose Salem’s MSOT and you’ll be part of a university that’s been producing competent and effective rehabilitation practitioners since 1919.

Jefferson University
College of Health Professions
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Website

MSOT (on-campus) (City Center Campus)

Other Programs at the City Center Campus: BS/MS; Accelerated BS/MS; OTD; Post-Professional OTD

MSOT (hybrid) (East Falls Campus)

Other Program at East Falls Campus: Accelerated BS/MS

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program boasts a graduation rate of 98% since 2014
  • Hybrid program at East Falls combines online learning and intensive on-campus weekend sessions
  • Exciting opportunities to collaborate with professional organizations on entrepreneurial projects under faculty mentorship

Whether you attend the traditional campus-based program at the City Center Campus in Philadelphia or the hybrid option at East Falls, Jefferson University is where research, discovery, and creativity shine. It’s no surprise the program has earned a reputation for its innovation, receiving top rankings from esteemed publications like U.S. News & World Report. Just a few of the highlights of this program include innovative teaching strategies, simulated patients, targeted interprofessional education opportunities, highly experienced faculty members, and opportunities to collaborate in a variety of faculty-led projects. Choose the MSOT through the East Falls campus and you’ll complete two intensive, on-campus weekend classes each month, with the rest of your coursework completed through online study, which includes both guided and independent learning activities.

South Region

Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale
College of Health Care Sciences
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: OTD; PhD in Occupational Therapy

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites, a minimum GPA of 3.0, and at least 40 volunteer hours in at least two different OT environments
  • Outstanding clinical facilities include high-tech simulation labs
  • Exciting opportunities to engage in community service and participate in faculty-led mission trips

The MOT through Nova Southeastern University enjoys a prime location within the esteemed College of Health Care Sciences, home to a highly experienced faculty; small class sizes that promote one-on-one instruction and a supportive, collaborative environment; high-tech simulation labs designed to immerse students in realistic clinical situations; and an expansive alumni network of accomplished professionals. Because service to the community is a major focus at NSU, you’ll enjoy opportunities to participate in community service activities aimed at helping children, adults, and seniors, and engage in extracurricular experiences through the faculty-led mission trips.

Augusta University
College of Allied Sciences
Augusta, Georgia
Website

Master of Health Science in OT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites, a minimum GPA of 3.0, and at least 60 hours shadowing/volunteering/working alongside an occupational therapist
  • Program boasts a 98% graduation rate
  • Exciting research and training opportunities through the university’s Interdisciplinary Practice and Research Center

The innovative and dynamic Master of Health Science in OT is at home in Augusta University, an institution renowned for its innovative educational programs, high-impact research, and cutting-edge patient-centered clinical expertise. This public research university and medical center produces the next generation of innovators, leaders, and healthcare providers, thanks to programs like the Master of Health Science in OT, which boasts a 98% average graduation rate. Choose this program and you’ll enjoy a well-rounded curriculum that’s complemented with outstanding research and training opportunities through the university’s Interdisciplinary Practice and Research Center, an accomplished faculty of healthcare experts, and an extensive alumni network of more than 56,000.

East Carolina University
College of Allied Health Sciences
Greenville, North Carolina
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Department of Occupational Therapy has been producing the next generation of OT grads since 1974
  • Outstanding record of student success includes a 100% graduation rate since 2013

If you’re looking for a comprehensive OT program that also comes with impressive student outcomes, then look no further than East Carolina University’s MSOT. This program boasts a well-rounded course of study that’s designed to prepare you to meet the needs of patients in a highly complex healthcare environment, along with a superb record of student success that includes a 100% graduation rate since 2013. Much of that can be credited to the many opportunities for faculty-led reflective learning experiences students have access to here. With a longstanding reputation of producing skilled OT practitioners (it graduated its first class in 1974), the Department of Occupational Therapy knows what it takes to produce effective and caring OTs who share the department’s overall vision of promoting excellence in practice.

Lenoir-Rhyne University
College of Health Sciences
Hickory, North Carolina
Website

MSOT (on-campus*)

*Also available on the Columbia campus

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Program features a cohort format that includes a 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio
  • Program based on a strong foundation of religious principles and Christian faith.

The first thing you’ll notice about Lenoir-Rhyne University is its time-honored commitment to religious principles and Christian faith. Since it was first established by four Lutheran pastors in 1891 to today, with its official synodical partnership with the North Carolina Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Lenoir-Rhyne has ensured its students a faith-based education. The second thing you’ll notice is that this esteemed university is also home to relevant and robust programs that boast national accreditation and excellent student outcomes. Its MSOT is no exception, offering aspiring OTs like you an ideal combination of classroom instruction, extensive laboratory experiences, and hands-on learning. This balance between technical skills, theoretical knowledge, service learning, and scientific inquiry produces highly effective graduates who can provide OT services that continue to meet the demands of a constantly evolving profession. Choose Lenoir-Rhyne and you’ll learn in an engaging, interactive cohort format that boasts an impressive student-to-faculty ratio of just 13:1.

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
UNC School of Medicine
Department of Allied Health Sciences
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: PhD in Occupational Science

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Program boasts a 100% NCBOT exam pass rate since 2015
  • Program housed within the School of Medicine, Department of Applied Health Sciences

If you’re looking for an occupational therapy master’s degree that packs a powerful punch, look no further than the MSOT through the UNC Chapel Hill. Along with ACOTE accreditation and a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate since 2015, this program is housed within the School of Medicine, Department of Applied Health Sciences, which enjoys a national reputation for its exemplary degree programs, innovative research initiatives, and patient-centered clinical care for close to 50 years. The Department is also home to the University Occupational Therapy Clinic, which is led by an OT faculty dedicated to client-centered care, education, and research, serving clients with neurologic, orthopedic, and general impairments. As a student here, your education will extend far beyond the classroom. In fact, all OT students undertake a faculty-led research project and are encouraged to engage in community service activities. Some of these contributions to community service have included SOTA-led service projects and Beyond Clinic Walls volunteer projects, which involve interdisciplinary teams of students visiting frail older adults in the community to provide them with ongoing evaluations of their health and social and emotional status.

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
College of Allied Health
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Website

MOT (hybrid)

Other Programs: Doctor of Science in Rehabilitation Sciences; PhD in Allied Health Sciences with a specialization in Rehabilitation Sciences

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 2.75 and documentation of at least 40 hours of observational experience
  • Program boasts state-of-the-art facilities, including cutting-edge distance education technology
  • Just one of a select few ACOTE-accredited OT programs to be located on an Academic Health Sciences Center campus

Every summer, new students enter the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center’s MOT program, a comprehensive course of study that features an interprofessional curriculum model, campus-based courses in Oklahoma City and online courses in Tulsa. It also has the unique distinction of being counted among the few programs in the country located on an Academic Health Sciences Center campus. This unique location provides aspiring OT practitioners like you with outstanding opportunities to work under a team of esteemed healthcare professionals on both campuses. The College of Allied Health’s commitment to interprofessional education, research, care, and community engagement is evident in its service learning and hands-on learning opportunities, as well as its superb research opportunities in faculty labs like the Center for Human Performance, the Motor Speech and Prosody Research Laboratory, the Human Development Research Laboratory, and the Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity Lab.

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
School of Health Professions
Lubbock, Texas
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: PhD in Rehabilitation Science

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0 and documentation of at least 40 hours of observational experience
  • University is home to Texas Tech Physicians
  • Exciting opportunities to engage in faculty-led research

Allied health programs at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center combine cutting-edge theoretical knowledge with laboratory experiences, clinical education, and outstanding opportunities to gain real-world experience in the community. Home to Texas Tech Physicians, a collective of more than 200 physicians who also serve as world-class researchers, scientists, and educators, Texas Tech is able to offer clinical experiences that are simply unmatched. Choose the MOT program here and you’ll engage in an interprofessional curriculum that integrates a variety of learning experiences, including lectures, case studies, concept mapping, and labs that ensure optimal student/instructor ratios for the most comprehensive instructional and clinical experiences. You’ll also have the opportunity to work alongside faculty in research labs like the Center for Rehabilitation Research and enhance your community service experiences with the Student Occupational Therapy Association.

University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, Texas Campus
College of Rehabilitative Sciences
Irving, Texas
Website

MOT (online, hybrid)

Other Programs: OTD; PPOTD

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites
  • Online learning is asynchronous for the best in flexibility and convenience
  • Robust curriculum is complemented with state-of-the-art facilities, career-centered learning technologies, and an esteemed faculty of successful practitioners

The University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences understands that flexibility is on the mind of today’s adult learner, which is why their MOT is offered either as a traditional, on-campus program or as a flex program that combines online study with weekend courses. Largely considered one of the early adopters of the flexible format, the University of St. Augustine has been able to bolster student achievement, learner satisfaction, and career readiness through blended learning. The MOT student experience, both in the residential and the flex program, comes complete with access to state-of-the-art facilities, career-centered learning technologies, and an esteemed faculty of successful practitioners. The online courses of this program are delivered in a variety of formats, including online lectures, video vignettes, and interactive discussions, while the weekend courses feature face-to-face instruction, lab time, and simulation-based learning, which includes the Centers for Innovative Clinical Practice, state-of-the-art learning centers that simulate interprofessional clinical environments and home settings.

University of Texas Medical Branch
School of Health Professions
Galveston, Texas
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: OTD (on-campus), PP-OTD (on-line), PhD in Rehabilitation Science (on-campus)

The UTMB School of Health Professions is excited to announce that the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board has recently given approval for the MOT to be transitioned to an OTD program. The new entry-level OTD will be admitting students in the fall of 2019, at which time the MOT will no longer be active.

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Ranked among the top OT programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report
  • Longstanding reputation for excellence – UTMB was established as the nation’s first public medical school in 1891

Ranked among the top OT programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, the MOT program at the University of Texas, Medical Branch is a proven program designed to produce effective educators, scholars, evidence-based practitioners, and community leaders in OT. And it’s really no surprise considering the reputation for excellence and service UTMB has earned over the generations. Choose the MOT here and you’ll be part of an esteemed university that has long served as a state leader in advancing the understanding and treatment of illness and injury and a major provider of healthcare. Since its creation in 1891 as the nation’s first public medical school, UTMB now holds a reputation as a world-renowned research enterprise and a comprehensive health system that includes hospitals and four campuses. As an MOT student, you’ll benefit from the unsurpassed academic, research, and clinical resources this institution provides.

Radford University
Waldron College of Health and Human Services
Radford, Virginia
Website

MOT (on-campus)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.25 and work or volunteer experiences with children and/or adults with mental health concerns, physical disabilities, or with other types of special populations in a variety of settings
  • Program boasts a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate since 2015
  • University has been recognized among the ‘Best Colleges and Universities in the Southwest’ by the Princeton Review for the past 16 years and among the ‘Best Regional Universities’ in the South by U.S. News & World Report for the past seven years

Radford University has long ago cemented its reputation for excellence and exceptional graduate outcomes. In fact, since 2015, 100% of Radford MOT program graduates have gone on to pass the NBCOT exam. The MOT at Radford is housed in the esteemed Waldron College of Health and Human Services, which provides students access to innovative learning environments, opportunities for engagement, leadership development, and community service, and labs that encourage immersive learning experiences. Choose Radford for your MOT and you’ll be part of a university that’s been recognized among the ‘Best Colleges and Universities in the Southwest’ by the Princeton Review for the past 16 years and among the ‘Best Regional Universities’ in the South by U.S. News & World Report for the past seven years.

Shenandoah University
School of Health Professions
Winchester, Virginia
Website

MSOT (hybrid*)

*Classes also located on the Loudoun campus

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and documentation of at least 40 hours of observational experience under an OT
  • Online content is delivered through podcasts, interactive learning activities, and cutting-edge e-learning platforms

Shenandoah University’s MSOT is proof positive that an OT program can offer both flexibility and a superb course of study. Offered in a flexible, hybrid format, much of which is delivered online through podcasts, interactive learning activities, and cutting-edge e-learning platforms, the MSOT is perfectly suited for the non-traditional, adult learner. As a student of the MSOT, you’ll attend classes one day a week and engage in non-classroom time about 40 hours per week. And thanks to this program’s history of student success and its impressive benefits, including small class sizes, abundant practical learning experiences, and close mentorships with faculty, students of this program are prepared to enter the field as effective practitioners dedicated to service, ethics, and leaderships.

West Region

A.T. Still University of Health Science
Arizona School of Health Sciences
Mesa, Arizona
Website

MSOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: OTD, Post-professional OTD (online), Post-professional advanced MSOT (online)

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 2.75 and documentation of at least 20 hours of observational experience
  • Option to earn a Certificate in Public Health concurrently

ATSU has a longstanding reputation as a leader in multidisciplinary healthcare education, so the MSOT here delivers exactly the robust and well-rounded course of study you’d expect from this institution. The MSOT, along with all of the programs within the Arizona School of Health Sciences, is dedicated to producing competent and effective health professionals who deliver high-quality, compassionate healthcare to communities in need. Taught by an esteemed faculty who are actively practicing in their respective fields, and comprised of a curriculum that seamlessly blends state-of-the-art methods with meaningful, hands-on experiences, the MSOT will prepare you for success on the NBCOT exam and beyond. Plus, choose this program and you’ll have the option of earning a Certificate in Public Health concurrent with your MSOT.

University of Utah
College of Health
Salt Lake City, Utah
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: Post-professional clinical OTD; PhD in Rehabilitation Science

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0 and documentation of at least 50 hours of observational experience with an OT
  • Program boasts a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate since 2013
  • Home to the AHEC Scholars Program, an opportunity for students to work with an interdisciplinary cohort that provides healthcare in rural and underserved areas

With a 100% NBCOT exam pass rate since 2013, there’s little question about the quality of the University of Utah’s MOT. The curriculum features everything you’d expect in a program of this caliber: a focus on occupational therapy skills, professional skills, and research…numerous hands-on learning opportunities in health and community service settings…faculty researchers who collaborate across campus and across the country and promote scholarly activity…and access to no less than 30 laboratories and clinics that perform research and provide services to the community and the university. As a student here, you’ll have access to myriad clinical opportunities like the Utah Area Health Education Center’s AHEC Scholars program, which features an interdisciplinary cohort that provides healthcare in rural and underserved areas.

University of Washington
School of Medicine
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Seattle, Washington
Website

MOT (on-campus)

Other Programs: PhD in Rehabilitation Science

  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in any field with the completion of certain prerequisites and a minimum GPA of 3.0 and a minimum of 40 hours of OT-related work or volunteer experience across two different client or patient populations
  • Program boasts a 100% graduation rate since 2014 and 100% NBCOT exam pass rate for the past three years
  • Program features small, cohort-style classes for the best in personalized learning

An international reputation for excellence in patient care…among the nation’s leading recipients of funding from the NIH, CDC, and more…research centers that provide new knowledge and improved rehab methods…and cutting-edge research studies on a variety of medical conditions, diseases, and treatments. These are just a few of the reasons the University of Washington’s Department of Rehabilitation Medicine has earned a reputation for excellence, standing out as a national leader even among the elite class of schools that made this list. The department’s MOT program contributes significantly to this reputation, providing aspiring OTs like you with small, cohort-style classes, personal attention from an esteemed faculty, an interdisciplinary curriculum, and a year-long graduate project that includes working in small groups to develop and implement programs in occupational therapy.

All schools shown here have been contacted and informed of their inclusion on this list. Schools that do not wish to be featured are immediately removed. School names are the registered trademarks of their original owners. The use of any trade name or trademark does not imply any association with the school.

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