Post Professional Post Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy

Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy

In New York University’s Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) Program, motivated, disciplined, and creative OTs delve deeply into their area of specialization to build their competence and expertise as clinicians and leaders in the field. Graduates will have advanced competence that fosters excellence in practice.

In response to changes in the profession, the New York University Department of Occupational Therapy launched a practice doctoral degree program in 2007. Prior to 2016, students were awarded the Doctoral of Professional Studies (DPS) degree. In 2016, the New York State Education Department approved a new Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) degree for the state of New York. The practice doctoral degree in OT has subsequently changed its name to a Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD).

Graduates will be prepared to 1) make use of clinical and functional outcome measures; 2) assess the adequacy of existing measurement tools; 3) assess the effectiveness of selected intervention principles and approaches; 4) collaborate with other professionals within practice settings to deliver high quality client cares; and 5) interpret research findings in the context of broader sociocultural issues related to interdisciplinary practice and functional outcomes.

Candidates for the degree must complete 36 credits of coursework and defend their professional portfolios.  The Program can be completed in two years on a full time basis. Part time study is also an option.

Graduation requirements for the OTD degree are:

  1. Successful completion of 36 credits of approved coursework with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00,
  2. Presentation and successful defense of evidence-based professional portfolio,
  3. Completion of all requirements for the OTD within eight years. 

Department Core Courses (9 credits)

  • Theoretical Foundations for Intervention OT-GE 2762
  • Developing a Guideline for Intervention OT-GE 2763
  • Ethics and Analytical Reasoning OT-GE 2764

Program Requirements (6 credits)

  • Evidence-Based Practice OT-GE 3301
  • Advanced Assessments for the Practicing Therapist OT-GE 3306

Electives (6 credits)

Students complete six credits of elective courses in related fields to support their studies. Students may take courses offered by the Department of Occupational Therapy and other Schools and Institutes in the University.

Clinical Specializations (12 credits)

In collaboration with their advisors, students select courses that support their clinical specialization. Students may take courses offered by the Department of Occupational Therapy and other Schools and Institutes in the University.

Terminal Project: Professional Portfolio (3 credits)

At the completion of the OTD degree, students will defend an evidence-based professional electronic portfolio (e-portfolio). The e-portfolio will document how the student has integrated knowledge and skills learned in the curriculum to his/her specialty practice area.

Students take Professional Portfolio: Advanced Practice OT-GE 3310 to learn about the e-portfolio in their first semester. Students continue participating in this course through their tenure in the program, working on their portfolio as they build the evidence of their competence in knowledge and skills in the selected area of specialization.

This professional portfolio involves three steps:

  1. Students complete an analysis of their current practices to determine career goals consistent with their area of specialization. Students then develop their professional development plan.
  2. Students use their academic coursework and clinical experience to collect, organize catalog “artifacts” that demonstrate advancement of knowledge, skills, and abilities gained through the integrated academic and clinical work within their program. Students reflect on their artifacts and explain how each artifact provides evidence of their advance knowledge.
  3. A panel of three faculty members review the e-portfolio based on their professional development plan and its consistency with the evidence-based knowledge in the field of inquiry.

The e-portfolio is then presented and defended in an open forum.