The M.S. in Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD, 20814-3449, (phone: 301-652-2682). The PhilaU OT Program was reaccredited for 10 years in 2008.
Professional Certification and Licensure
Graduates of the program are eligible to sit for the national certification examination administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, most states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination.
Eligibility for National Certification and State Licensure
Individuals who have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor may be denied certification or licensure as a health professional. Information regarding individual eligibility may be obtained from the appropriate credentialing bodies.
Participation in clinical experiences and fieldwork are required components of the OT curriculum. Clinical and fieldwork sites may require a criminal background check and/or child abuse history clearance in order to permit participation in the clinical experience. Clinical and fieldwork sites may deny a student's participation in the clinical or fieldwork experience because of a felony or misdemeanor conviction, failure of a required drug test, or inability to produce an appropriate health clearance, all of which would result in delayed graduation or, in the inability to graduate from the program.
NBCOT Certification Exam Pass Rate
The total number of graduates who passed the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certification examination as first-time new graduate test takers for the 3-year period from 2010–2012 was 60 out of 79. This represents a first time pass rate of 76% for that period. The Program's overall pass rate for this time period is 97% (first-time test-takers and test-retakers). For the 2011-2012 graduating year, 32 of 35 graduates passed the exam upon the first attempt, or a 91% first time pass rate.
Retention and Progression
Philadelphia University has an excellent student completion rate. For the 3 most recent graduating cohorts (Class 09-10, Class 10-11, Class 11-12) the average attrition rate for the program was 9%. During this time period 91% of students progressed to graduation (81 of 89).
The maximum time for completion of the degree program is 4.5 years from the date of first enrollment. Students who have not earned the graduate degree during this period will have their academic records reviewed and may be asked to meet additional requirements in order to graduate.
The majority of the 2011-12 graduates who sought employment as occupational therapists began working within three-months of graduation. Many had employment offers prior to graduation.