Getting the Most Out of Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant Schools

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According to the US Department of Labor, demand is growing on a yearly basis for medical professionals in the rehabilitation field, especially in occupational and physical therapy.
Employment in these fields is expected to increase substantially, especially, with an expected job rate increase of up to 40%.
Those interested in taking advantage of this positive growth by becoming an OTA will need to attend one of the chools in order to do so, but the personal and professional benefits to be gained in this interesting career are many.
Educational Programs In order for someone to become employed as an OTA in the US, they must first graduate from one of over the 200 schools.
It is extremely important that prospective students attend only accredited courses as well, since by doing so they can not only be confident their program has received the necessary approvals to give them the vital information and training necessary to succeed, but they will be eligible to become certified and licensed to seek employment.
Although there are a few non-accredited OTA learning programs, Association (AOTA) recommends that any students wishing to gain certification, licensure and employment in any state in the US attend only programs that Therapy Education (ACOTE).
They also caution that while there are some programs under probationary accreditation, students be aware that if that program does not receive full accreditation, it will be closed, meaning students partway through their education will have to transfer to a different program in order to finish their educational requirements.
In this manner, only the best occupational therapy assistant schools become accredited, to the benefit of students and working occupational therapy assistants everywhere.
About Schools In keeping up with accreditation qualifications, recognized as being able to prepare students for the demands of employment as an OTA are important for a number of reasons.
Not only will they ensure students have access to the most current teachings in the field, but they also provide clinical experience opportunities so that students can learn on the job, and know what to expect once graduating college.
Both in class work and clinical experience will be essential in order for students to pass their NBCOT national certification exam as well, which is created in accordance with professional medical and occupational therapy requirements to make sure that all OTAs in training have the tools necessary for them to succeed in their careers.
Also of note, due to the very hands on nature of the profession, as well as the many recognized teaching programs, online learning is limited.
While there are a few accredited programs that offer some general courses online, the majority of courses are usually taught only in class on campus, or in lab classes, in order for students to gain the required knowledge and be able to practice using their newly learned skills.
Post-Graduation Requirements for the OTA After graduating from accredited schools, OTAs are then eligible to take given Therapy (NBCOT), which will award the title of (COTA).
Once having earned their certification, COTAs may then take their state licensing examination to receive their license to practice.
In the US, most states do require occupational therapy assistants to be licensed.
While there are a few states where certification and licensure is not required, most employers still prefer to hire a COTA; failure to obtain certification by attending accredited occupational therapy assistant schools can be professionally limiting, especially for those who may wish to specialize later on.
Currently, certification is not required in Canada or the UK, which consider OTAs to be non-titled occupational therapy support staff.
However, in Canada there is effort underway by the Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant Education Accreditation Program (OTA & PTA EAP) to begin governing schools, certification testing and licensing.
In the UK, recommended courses are overseen by the British Association of Occupational Therapists (BAOT), and students graduating from an advanced, recognized program can gain the title of Assistant Practitioner in Occupational Therapy.
For these numerous outlined reasons, any prospective students should do some research on schools to ensure they apply to the right ones.
Only by meeting educational and professional requirements will have the best employment opportunities available to them.
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