Occupational Therapy Assistant
Do you like helping people?
Occupational therapy is a health and rehabilitation profession that provides services to “enable people of all ages to engage in the activities that are meaningful to their lives” (AOTA). Hands on application of Occupational Therapy interventions are only one aspect of this rewarding career. The occupational therapy assistant is called on to instruct and motivate clients and their families through the use of therapeutic use of self, task analysis, environmental adaptation, wellness promotion and functional activities. The OTA is a problem solver, critical thinker and productive member of a healthcare team.
A Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) works under the supervision of an Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR). The COTA provides intervention for the client according to a plan of intervention and documents the client’s progress in the medical record. An experience COTA may supervise students in clinical fieldwork experiences. Students seeking admission to the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program should enjoy close contact with all types of people and be comfortable with working in and around medical facilities and/or aspects of care giving. For additional career information see www.aota.org.
Occupational Therapy Assistant students study in classroom, laboratory and clinical settings. The on-site OTA lab is designed to provide students with a realistic opportunity to experience a range of hands on skills and gain basic competencies in the skills required of an entry level occupational therapy assistant.
The Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at Macomb Community College is a two-year competency based program awarding the Associates of Applied Science Degree. Graduates of the program will be able to sit for the national certification examination for Occupational Therapy Assistants administered by the National Board for certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). To review the Macomb OTA program's NBCOT examination results please go to https://secure.nbcot.org/data/schoolstats.aspx Selective admissions applicants for the OTA program should note that NBCOT may deny certification to occupational therapy assistant graduates in violation of ethical and legal standards including felony convictions. Information may be obtained at www.nbcot.org. After successful completion of the NBCOT examination, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). Most states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT certification examination. Michigan requires state licensure. Visit www.michigan.gov/healthlicense for details.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics with the U.S. Department of Labor indicates the job outlook for Occupational Therapy Assistants is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations. It is recommended that individuals seeking earnings information go to the link provided for the Occupational Handbook by the Bureau of Labor for the national salary averages.