Occupational Therapy M.S.

Degree: Master of Science
https://www.towson.edu/chp/departments/occutherapy/programs/gradoccutherapy/

Program Director: Amanda Jozkowski, PhD, OTR/L
Phone: 410-704-2272
Email: ajozkowski@towson.edu

This program admits fall term only.

The entry-level Master of Science degree in Occupational Therapy is designed to prepare graduates to assume key roles in practice, research, education or administration. Occupational therapists’ responsibilities in these roles are to assure high-quality services for client groups and to advance the practice of occupational therapy.

NOTE: Applicants for the entry-level master’s degree in Occupational Therapy follow procedures for submitting their application materials through the Occupational Therapy Centralized Admission Service (OTCAS). ALL applicants for the master’s degree program in Occupational Therapy must complete the Graduate application and supplemental forms. Contact the Occupational Therapy Admissions Counselor at 410-704-2653 or OTadmissions@towson.edu for questions regarding the application process.

Program Accreditation

Towson University's entry-level master's degree program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association located at 6116 Executive Boulevard Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE's telephone number, c/o AOTA, is (301) 652-AOTA.

Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist, administered by the National Board for Certification of Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this examination, the individual will be an occupational therapist, registered (OTR). In addition, most states require licensure to practice; however, licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT certification examination. (Persons convicted of felonies may be unable to sit for the Certification Examination and should inquire in advance of program entry regarding eligibility.)

For more information about occupational therapy, visit the AOTA website.

Course Fees

A course fee will be applied to select courses to cover course materials and supplies.

Admission Requirements

All of the following criteria must be met for admission.

  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university** with a minimum GPA of 3.25 is required for full admission. (All GPA calculations for admission are based upon the last 60 units of undergraduate and post-baccalaureate study.) The bachelor’s degree must be indicated on the transcript by August 1 in order to begin the program.
  • Complete 8 prerequisite courses prior to entering the Professional M.S. Program. Five of the eight prerequisites must be completed at the time of application. One must be in Anatomy and Physiology I or Anatomy and Physiology II. Any outstanding prerequisites must be completed with qualifying grades prior to beginning the program. CLEP and/or AP scores may not be used for non-science prerequisites; please see our Application Process and Criteria page for more information.
  • The following prerequisite courses must be completed with a “B-” or better:
    1. Introduction to Sociology or Introduction to Anthropology
    2. Abnormal Psychology
    3. Basic Statistics
    4. Human Anatomy and Physiology I with a lab (taken within the last five years)
    5. Human Anatomy and Physiology II with lab (taken within the last five years)
    6. Human Growth and Development (must cover development across the entire lifespan)
    7. Medical Terminology
  • The following prerequisite course must be completed with a “C” or better:
    1. Introduction to Physics with a lab (must include mechanics, heat, energy, and light. Biomechanics does not qualify)
  • Three OTCAS References: One must be a professional reference -- any person with whom you interacted where professional expectations existed. This can be a paid or volunteer position, so long as the relationship was professional in nature. The other two may be professional or academic. No personal references are accepted.
  • Graduate occupational therapy admission essay/personal statement (follow guidelines outlined on our Application Process and Criteria page).

  • Resume containing work and leadership experience.

  • Complete a group interview and guidedwriting sample (by invitation only).

  • Complete Graduate Application (submitted by invitation after initial review of all applicants).

Please review our Admission Requirements and Deadlines for a full explanation of our most current admission procedures and deadlines.

Non-immigrant International Students

Program Enrollment: F-1 and J-1 students are required to be enrolled full-time. The majority of their classes must be in-person and on campus. See the list of programs that satisfy these requirements, and contact the International Student and Scholars Office with questions.

Admission Procedures: See additional information regarding Graduate Admission policies and International Graduate Application online.

**See Exceptions to Policy in Graduate Admissions.

Application Procedure and Guidelines 

A complete application must be submitted through OTCAS by October 1, and we will only include materials verified by November 1 in our review. OTCAS indicates a 4-6 week window for transcript verification; therefore, it will be necessary to submit materials as early as possible. A Towson University graduate application will be required as part of the admission process, and is completed by invitation only.

For questions about our Admissions Requirements and Deadlines, contact:

Admissions & Clinical Placement Coordinator
Department of Occupational Therapy & Occupational Science
Towson University
8000 York Rd, 
Linthicum Hall Room 235
Towson, MD 21252

410-704-2653
OTadmissions@towson.edu

Submit all application materials through the OTCAS. Selected applicants will be invited to apply to the Graduate School to complete their application. 

Academic Standards

  • Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.00 for all courses in the major.
  • Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.00 in 500- to 800-level course work.
  • Students may receive a maximum of two “C” grades (including “C” and “C+” grades), and are dismissed from the program upon receipt of a third grade of C or lower (or "unsatisfactory"), regardless of whether a grade was replaced if a course was repeated.
  • Students may repeat a maximum of one course, including Level II Fieldwork.
  • A withdrawal for academic reasons is considered a failure.

Degree Requirements

The professional Master of Science Degree in Occupational Therapy is 28 months completed over 2.5 years and consists of 76 units of graduate course work, which includes a graduate research project. All students complete two 12-week, 480-hour, full-time Level II Fieldwork experiences: one in physical disabilities and one in psycho-social practice (either may be with a children and youth focus), where they apply theoretical knowledge and demonstrate entry-level competence for a licensed occupational therapist. Level II Fieldwork is a full-time commitment often requiring additional time for preparation on the evenings and weekends. Students are advised to eliminate employment during this time. While local sites (within 90 miles of the university) are available, students may need to be assigned out of the local area or out of the state for one or both of the fieldwork experiences. All Level II Fieldwork must be completed within 24 months of completion of academic course preparation.

All students must complete the Occupational Therapy Knowledge Exam (OTKE) as a degree requirement and are billed for the discounted fee associated with this exam.

Completion of an online exit survey is required for graduation clearance in addition to successful completion of all other program requirements.

Required Graduate Courses

Students must complete required graduate course work.

OCTH 521KINESIOLOGY OF OCCUPATION3
OCTH 600
600L
FOUNDATIONS OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY
and FOUNDATIONS OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY - APPLICATIONS [LAB]
4
OCTH 601GROUP DYNAMICS IN DIVERSE CONTEXTS3
OCTH 603ISSUES IN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY3
OCTH 606ADULT AND OLDER ADULT NEUROLOGICAL OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY3
OCTH 607ADULT AND OLDER ADULT MUSCULOSKELETAL OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY3
OCTH 609ADVANCED RESEARCH METHODS AND DATA ANALYSIS IN OCCUPATION BASED PRACTICE3
OCTH 611ADVANCED THEORY AND PHILOSOPHY OF OCCUPATION3
OCTH 612OT HEALTH PROMOTION INITIATIVES IN THE COMMUNITY3
OCTH 614PRINCIPLES OF PSYCHOSOCIAL OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE5
OCTH 619ADULT PHYSICAL REHABILITATION LEVEL I FIELDWORK3
OCTH 620PSYCHOSOCIAL LEVEL I FIELDWORK3
OCTH 624OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE WITH CHILDREN AND YOUTH5
OCTH 626OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY FIELDWORK FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH3
OCTH 627ADMINISTRATION AND ORGANIZATION OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY SERVICES3
OCTH 635LEVEL II FIELDWORK I9
OCTH 636LEVEL II FIELDWORK II9
OCTH 678ASSESSMENT THROUGHOUT THE LIFESPAN3
OCTH 782RESEARCH PRACTICUM3
BIOL 527NEUROMUSCULAR MECHANISMS OF THE UPPER BODY2
Total Units76

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

Annual Health, Insurance and CPR Requirements

All students in entry-level clinical OT programs must submit and maintain the health documentation as detailed in the Department of Occupational Therapy and Occupational Science Policy for Health, Insurance, and CPR Requirements to maintain good standing in the program and be eligible for fieldwork. Students who do not remain compliant with the requirements as outlined in the full policy will fall out of good standing in the program and may be prohibited from enrolling in course work and participating in fieldwork placements. The full policy is provided upon admission to an entry-level clinical OT program and available by request.

Abbreviated Departmental Health-related Documentation Policy

  • Secure and maintain a CastleBranch account (instructions provided upon admission)
  • Annual PPD, Tspot, or Quantiferon Gold Blood Test required for duration of program
  • Adult Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap) vaccination must remain current for duration of program
  • Positive Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) Titer
  • Positive Varicella Titer
  • Positive Hepatitis B Titer OR Hepatitis B Declination Waiver
  • A Physical Examination (may be requested annually)
  • Annual Seasonal Influenza Vaccine for duration of program
  • Current American Heart Association CPR Certification for Healthcare Providers for duration of program (Instructor-Led and Blended courses accepted; fully online courses are not permitted)
  • Proof of Health Insurance Coverage for duration of program
  • Covid-19 Vaccination, including any subsequent boosters

  • Criminal Background Check(s) and/or Drug Test(s) as required for fieldwork

Suggested Plan of Study

First Year
First Term (Fall)UnitsSecond Term (Spring)UnitsSummerUnits
OCTH 6003OCTH 6145OCTH 6273
OCTH 600L1OCTH 6203OCTH 6113
OCTH 6013BIOL 5272 
OCTH 6093OCTH 5213 
 10 13 6
Second Year
First Term (Fall)UnitsSecond Term (Spring)UnitsSummerUnits
OCTH 6063OCTH 6245OCTH 6359
OCTH 6073OCTH 6263 
OCTH 6193OCTH 6123 
OCTH 6033OCTH 7823 
OCTH 6783  
 15 14 9
Third Year
First Term (Fall)Units  
OCTH 6369  
 9  
Total Units 76
  1. Develop and modify occupational therapy evaluation and intervention processes and occupational therapy programs using theoretical models and research evidence.
  2. Facilitate the ability of clients to lead their lives with meaning and balance by analyzing, adapting, and applying purposeful activities and other modalities in areas of human occupation.
  3. Use knowledge of health care systems, organizations, and management principles to fulfil an occupational therapist's role as a member of the service delivery team.