Occupational Therapy Assistant, Associate in Science
An Associate in Science Degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant is offered in cooperation with the School of Health Professions at Rutgers University. A degree is awarded simultaneously by Ocean County College and Rutgers.
32 of the 35 General Education credits must be taken at Ocean County College; transfer credits cannot be considered. All occupational therapy assistant courses are taken at Rutgers’ Piscataway campus.
Prospective students must apply for admission to this program which has limited and competitive enrollment. To qualify for consideration for admission, a student must be matriculated at OCC, a resident of Ocean County, have a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average in the core requirements, have two letters of recommendation (from a faculty member and an Occupational Therapist or OT Assistant), have completed a required 20 hour observation in the field in a clinical setting under the supervision of a licensed Occupational Therapist or Occupational Therapy Assistant, submit an essay, and have a personal interview with the OTA admissions committee at Rutgers.
Interested students must complete a Student Information Sheet and submit it to the Ocean County College School of Nursing & Health Sciences.
Graduates of this program will be able to:
1. Become a COTA (Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant) by successfully passing the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy Assistant (NBCOT) exam within six months of graduation.
2. Demonstrate the roles and responsibilities of the OTA as defined by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), consistent with the licensure regulations for an OTA in New Jersey.
3. Communicate effectively in an understandable and professional manner with clients, families, colleagues, and the public.
4. Produce clear and understandable documentation according to the requirements of the facility, federal and state laws, regulatory and payer requirements, and AOTA documents.
5. Deliver occupational therapy services under the supervision of an occupational therapist (OT) in accordance with the AOTA Practice Framework.
- Practice in a safe, ethical, and collaborative manner under the supervision of an occupational therapist in accordance with the regulations of the healthcare, educational, or community setting.
- Provide occupational therapy services to persons, groups, and populations from diverse experiences and cultures in health care, educational and community settings.
- Contribute to the evaluation process of the person, group, or population, by gathering information, implementing assigned assessments, and reporting results to the OT and treatment team.
- Provide occupational therapy interventions under the guidance of an occupational therapist in accordance with evidence-based OT practice models, and that support the philosophy and values of the profession.
- Encourage, advise, and coach persons, caregivers, groups, and populations affected by physical, psychosocial, cognitive, and developmental disorders or delays, and the aging process, to choose and practice occupations and skills that support adaptation to such life circumstances.
- Problem-solve to devise, in collaboration with the client, OT, and team, alternative contexts, environmental adaptations, and/or task modifications to support participation in valued occupations, routines, and roles.
- Teach individuals, groups, and populations about the health promoting associations between meaningful occupation and healthy development, positive health outcomes, and well-being; and advocate for the provision of occupational therapy services.
- Exhibit and commit to refining client centered practices including the therapeutic use of occupation, interpersonal, communication, and teaching-learning tactics that consider the interests, values, and needs of diverse individuals, caregivers, groups and populations.
6. Contribute to the delivery of high-quality, cost-effective and integrated care as a team member in health, education, and community settings.
- Maintain, organize, and prioritize workload to meet the requirements of the practice setting.
- Participate in ongoing quality improvement and implement changes as needed to ensure quality services are delivered and outcomes are measured.
7. Participate as an occupational therapy professional in local, state, and national organizations.
- Advocate for occupational therapy services.
- Comply with requirements for continued competence through formal and/or continuing education, and by actively seeking and participating in regular supervision.
- Uphold the ethical standards, values, and attitudes of the occupational therapy profession.
Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Sequence
The following sequence is an example of how this degree can be completed. This sequence is based on satisfaction of all Basic Skills requirements and pre-requisites. An individual’s sequence at OCC may vary. See your counselor for options and to monitor your progress. Students must satisfy specific requirements in order to be admitted to this program. This degree will take longer than two years to complete. Some general education courses must be taken prior to starting clinical courses.
OCC courses taken as prerequisites prior to admission at Rutgers:
|First Semester||Credit Hours|
|ENGL 151||English I||3|
|MATH 156||Introduction to Statistics||3|
|PSYC 172||General Psychology||3|
|Diversity Gen. Ed. Requirement||3|
|BIOL 130||Human Anatomy and Physiology I||4|
|Technology Gen. Ed. Requirement (or waiver through exam)||3|
|ENGL 152||English II||3|
|SOCI 181||Introduction to Sociology||3|
|PSYC 278||Life Span Development||3|
|PHIL 192||Contemporary Ethical Issues||3|
|BIOL 131||Human Anatomy & Physiology II||4|
|Total Credit Hours||35|
Career Studies Courses Taken at Rutgers (Full Time, Fall Entry)
|Fall One||Credit Hours|
|OCTH 1010||Occupational Therapy Foundations for the OTA||3|
|PSRT 1102||Communication Techniques||3|
|OCTH 1020||Occupational Performance & Participation: Skills & Client Factors||3|
|OCTH 1031||Conditions Impacting Occupation, Participation & Health I: Adult/Older Adult||2|
|OCTH 1019||Level I Fieldwork A: Integration & Practice Applications||1|
|PSRT 1103||Group Dynamics||3|
|OCTH 1051||Principles & Practices I: Wellness & Mental Health||2|
|OCTH 1040||Occupational Performance & Participation: Therapeutic Applications||3|
|OCTH 1052||Principles & Practices II: Rehabilitation, Disability, Aging & Participation||3|
|OCTH 1029||Level I Fieldwork B: Integration & Practice Applications||1|
|OCTH 1032||Conditions Impacting Occupation, Participation & Health II: Child/Adolescent||2|
|OCTH 1053||Principles & Practices III: Children & Youth||2|
|OCTH 1071||Professional Seminar I||1|
|OCTH 1039||Level I Fieldwork C: Integration & Practice||1|
|OCTH 2019||OTA Practices: Fieldwork II, Adult/Older Adult||5|
|OCTH 2029||OTA Practice: Fieldwork II, Child/Adolescent||5|
|OCTH 2072||Professional Seminar II||2|
|Total Credit Hours||42|