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Doctor of Occupational Therapy for Practicing Occupational Therapists

Graduation requirements for the doctor of occupational therapy (OTD) are:

  1. Successful completion of 27–36 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)

  • OT-GE 2762 Theoretical Foundations for Intervention (3). How theoretical information is formulated, refined, tested, and assessed relative to its suitability for use in sets of guidelines for occupational therapy practice.

  • OT-GE 2763 Developing a Guideline for Intervention (3). This course aims to teach students how to use theoretical information to develop a set of guidelines for intervention for a specific clinical problem they are interested in. Students begin by identifying the problem and then finding appropriate theoretical information to write a guideline. Students also examine other perspectives that guide practice.
  • OT-GE 2764 Ethics and Analytic Reasoning (3). Analysis of philosophical issues in therapy with an emphasis on considering ethical dilemmas and sound arguments. Characteristics of analytic philosophy and techniques are explored.

Program Requirements (12 Credits)

  • OT-GE 2038 Leadership in Occupational Therapy (3). This course explores occupational therapy leadership in complex and diverse health care environments and integrates leadership theory with practice through topical readings, discussion, and guest presentations.  Leadership theory, leadership competencies and the identification of emerging leadership opportunities and the development of a personal leadership philosophy and skills will be emphasized throughout the course.
  • OT-GE 2815 Teaching for the Health Professions (3). This course focuses on examining a research-driven approach to pedagogy utilizing the principles of adult learning theory and best practices related to teaching and learning in the health professions.  The course will allow for the development and improvement of the students' instructional skills from both a theoretical and practice-based understanding of excellences in teaching.  All educational topics are considered through the lens of teaching as a scholarly practice as students develop a teaching portfolio that encompasses their teaching philosophy and practices.
  • OT-GE 3301 Evidence-based Practice (3). Students will evaluate clinical literature and determine the evidence level of a clinical study, appraise the feasibility or application in everyday practice, and design a program evaluation of their own practice using evidence-based approach. The course will emphasize the need for evidence based occupational therapy practice.
  • OT-GE 3306 Advanced Assessments for the Practicing Therapist (3). The course focuses on the selection and use of an evidence-based evaluation system to measure practice outcomes and interpret clinical change. This process requires selecting the tools for assessment of function based on achieved validity and to accurately interpret observations and measurements.

Clinical Specializations/Electives (3–12 Credits)

Students who graduate from ACOTE entry-level masters programs will be eligible for consideration for advanced standing and reduced credits. These students must demonstrate that they completed courses equivalent to NYU MS OT program’s specialized courses to be eligible for this reduced credits option. Students will be instructed to submit a list of specialized courses along with the courses’ syllabi. The syllabi will be reviewed by the admissions committee for potential advanced standing.

In collaboration with their advisers, 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, students will defend an evidence-based professional electronic portfolio (ePortfolio). The ePortfolio will document how the student has integrated knowledge and skills learned in the curriculum to his/her specialty practice area.

Students take Professional Portfolio courses: Introduction to Professional Portfolio: Advanced Practice OT-GE 3310 (1 credit), Professional Portfolio: Advanced Practice II OT-GE 3311 (1 credit), Professional Portfolio Advanced III OT-GE 3312 (1 credit), and Professional Portfolio Defense OT-GE 3313 (0 credit). Students learn about the ePortfolio 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 ePortfolio based on their professional development plan and its consistency with the evidence-based knowledge in the field of inquiry.

The ePortfolio is then presented and defended in an open forum.