Program Expectations

Our Entry-Level Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) requires the completion of 96 units of program coursework over three years.

The Entry-Level OTD is a professional, full-time, year-round commitment with a structured course sequence. Students move through the program as a cohort, completing foundational coursework, four Level I Fieldwork experiences, two Level II Fieldwork experiences, a Capstone Research Project, and a Doctoral Experiential Practicum. Coursework is completed in a combination of on-campus, online, and hybrid formats.

Technology Requirements

Some portions of our program are completed using online and hybrid teaching methods. These courses require that students have access to a working computer, the internet, and a webcam. Blackboard and WebEx are the online platforms used most often throughout the program. Student Computing Services is available to all TU students for technical support. The department does not have any preference or recommendation regarding computer brands or operating systems.

Courses and Course Sequence

Students admitted to the program follow a prescribed course sequence. Students are assigned a schedule each semester and coursework must be taken in the order and semesters designated in the course sequence; in extreme circumstances, students with a demonstrable need may seek approval to adjust their plan of study. View degree requirements and course sequence, as well as course descriptions, in the Graduate Catalog.

NOTE: Students have the option of earning a graduate certificate in Autism Studies, Gerontology, or in Family-Professional Collaboration. Students who elect to earn a certificate will be required to extend the length of the OTD program in order to complete the entire certificate program.


Level I Fieldwork

Each Level I Fieldwork experience is completed as part of a concurrently with associated theory coursework. Students to the practice of occupational therapy by exposing them to a variety of occupational therapy settings and roles. Under the supervision of licensed practitioners, and with the support of faculty, students complete four required Level I fieldwork experiences: one in mental health, one in adult physical dysfunction, one in child and youth practice, and one in community-based programs.

Level II Fieldwork

Each Level II Fieldwork experience is a 12-week, 480-hour, full-time commitment often requiring additional time for preparation on the evenings and weekends; students are advised to eliminate employment during that time. Under the supervision of a licensed occupational therapist, and with the support of a faculty supervisor, students complete two required Level II fieldwork experiences in one or more of the following areas: adult physical dysfunction, mental health, and children & youth.

Capstone Project

Through a two-course sequence, the student will design, propose, implement, document, defend, and disseminate an independent, evidence-based project related to their area of focus and addressing the priorities of the assigned community program/agency. Common areas of focus include: clinical practice, research, administration, leadership, program and policy development, advocacy, education development, and theory development.

Doctoral Experiential Practicum

The DEP experience is a 16-week, 640-hour, full-time commitment often requiring additional time outside of the on-site schedule for planning, review, and other related responsibilities; students are advised to eliminate employment during that time. Students must gain DEP approval and successfully complete the Occupational Therapy Knowledge Exam (OTKE) prior to site placement and DEP enrollment.

The Doctoral Experiential Practicum (DEP) provides an in-depth experience that dovetails with the Capstone Research Project. It focuses on refining skills in the student’s area of focus beyond the generalist level in a community program/agency. While completing their first several semesters of coursework, students work under a faculty advisor and the Doctoral Capstone Coordinator to design a DEP plan with individualized objectives.