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The best occupational therapy schools in Florida offer exceptional tips on how to become an Occupational therapist in Florida.
As a result, this article will detail what occupational therapy is, who an occupational therapist or assistant is, their tasks, their payments, and their job prospects.
What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapy is a type of health care that helps to solve the problems that interfere with a person’s ability to do the things that are important – everyday things like:
- Self-care – getting dressed, eating, moving around the house,
- Being productive – going to work or school, participating in the community, and
- Leisure activities – sports, gardening, social activities.
Occupation in occupational therapy refers to the everyday activities that people engage in as individuals, families, and communities to fill their time while also providing meaning and purpose.
Who is an Occupational Therapist?
Occupational therapists (OTs), sometimes known as occupational therapy assistants (OTAs), are the principal providers of occupational therapy services.
The following are the qualifications of occupational therapists (OTs):
- University-educated professionals who apply their specialized knowledge and skills to recommend a preventive or corrective action course that will help people lead more productive and satisfying lives.
- Trained to understand not only the medical and physical limitations of a disability or injury but also the psychosocial factors that affect how well a person functions as a whole – their health and well-being, and
- Occupational therapy is a medical profession that is governed by provincial regulatory bodies.
- Occupational therapists must be registered with their respective provincial regulatory bodies to work lawfully.
Using daily activities as therapeutic interventions, they help persons who have suffered an injury, disease, handicap, or psychological disorder.
Treatment in Occupational therapy:
One of the fundamental goals of occupational therapy is to assist individuals with disabilities in participating in the activities of their daily lives.
Treatment that can assist you if you are experiencing pain, injury, disease, or a disability interfering with your ability to perform your job or studies, care for yourself, conduct home duties, move around or participate in activities can be provided.
Children, just like adults, can benefit from occupational therapy treatments, as we can see from the information provided above.
This is because the primary function is to play and learn.
In this way, occupational therapists can assess children’s skills in playing, school performance, and daily activities and compare them to what is developmentally suitable for their age range.
What is the future employment outlook for occupational therapists (OT)?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of occupational therapists is predicted to expand by 18 percent from 2018 to 2028, which is much faster than the average for all occupations during this period.
Furthermore, occupational therapy will continue to be an important component of treating persons suffering from a variety of illnesses and impairments, such as Alzheimer’s disease, cerebral palsy, autism, or the loss of an amputated limb.
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Occupational Therapy In Florida:
Occupational therapy will continue to be a critical component of the treatment of persons suffering from various illnesses and disabilities in the future.
Based on the data presented above, it can be concluded that occupational therapy is a career that will stand the test of time.
Therefore, you must enroll in occupational therapy (OT) or occupational therapy assistant (OTA) program if you wish to pursue a professional career in occupational therapy.
Most occupational therapy programs are offered at the master’s level in Florida, whereas most occupational therapy assistant programs are offered at the associate level.
Florida Occupational Therapy Association is a professional organization that occupational therapy practitioners and students can join (FOTA).
The Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA) was established on October 7, 1997, as a state-based professional association and public voice for the occupational therapy profession in Florida.
It is a non-profit volunteer organization that exists to provide members with a professional networking environment.
The association’s primary function is to promote the occupational therapy profession, raise public awareness of the profession, assist therapists in their continuing education, and improve and maintain the quality of the occupational therapy profession in the state of Florida, among other things.
The Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA) is an affiliated state body of the American Occupational Therapy Association. Various other major organizations are:
Factors that influence the ranking of occupational therapy programs in Florida:
The following are the factors utilized to determine the top occupational therapy programs in Florida.
- Employability ratio
- Number of programs
- Acceptance rate
- Exam Success rate
- Graduation rate
7 Occupational Therapy Schools in Florida
The following is a list of the top 7 schools offering occupational therapy programs in Florida, based on the ranking variables listed above:
1. AdventHealth University:
Adventhealth University is one of the best occupational therapy schools in Florida.
At the same time, the department of occupational therapy provides an atmosphere where students can develop their spiritual, intellectual, and social skills while pursuing expertise in occupational therapy in a supportive environment.
The university provides recognized master’s and associate’s degree programs in occupational therapy and a certificate program.
Additionally, this OT school provides its students with industry-standard facilities. For example, there are numerous key labs in the department, such as the occupation lab, occupational therapy performance lab, and skills therapy lab.
- Masters – $72,000 (for 7 trimesters)
- Associate Degree – $42,325 (for 3 semesters)
2. The University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences:
The University of St. Augustine is one of the best occupational therapy schools in Florida.
The school offers a master of occupational therapy program at three distinct locations, 2 in Florida and one in Texas. Also, all the MOT programs are accredited by the ACOTE.
USAHS provides two tracks for the MOT: residential and flex (weekends and online)
The residential/full-time programs last for two years, six trimesters. On the contrary, the flex (online/weekend) MOT programs last for three years, with nine trimesters.
In addition, USAHS provides a Ph.D. degree in occupational therapy at the Florida main campus. Additionally, they give their students two alternate paths to achieving their Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree.
Whereas the full-time program lasts for 2.7 years with 117 credit hours over eight trimesters, the flex program lasts for four years with 117 credit hours over 12 trimesters.
- $14,022 per trimester for Full-Time MOT students
- $8,824 per trimester for Flex MOT students.
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3. University of Florida:
The University of Florida’s Occupational Therapy program has been accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE®) since 1961, and it has maintained its status as such.
Beginning with the Fall 2018 semester, the University of Florida Department of Occupational Therapy will be offering an entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (ODT).
In recent months, the ACOTE awarded the program Candidacy Status.
The ACOTE has granted accreditation to the Masters of Occupational Therapy (MOT) Program. For the proper transfer to the Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree, the MOT program has stopped accepting new intake (OTD).
Current students and UF Pre-OT Health Science students, on the other hand, will be permitted to complete their degrees.
4. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University:
The Division of Occupational Therapy, one of five Divisions within the School of Allied Health Sciences, was formed in 1989 as part of the School of Allied Health Sciences’ expansion.
It was previously provided bachelor’s degree programs in occupational therapy, with more than 200 students graduating from the program before it was transformed into an entry-level master’s program in occupational therapy.
In 2006, the last class of students graduated from the program, with the first class of master’s students in the OT program graduating the following year, in 2007.
On the most basic level, a master’s in an occupational degree program is comprised of 81 credit hours, which are divided between two years of academic coursework and six months of fieldwork.
5. Gannon University – Florida Campus:
If you are interested in enrolling in an entry-level Occupational Therapy Doctorate program, Ganon University is one of the best options. It is one of the best occupational therapy schools in the world.
In this Bachelor’s to Doctorate program, students gain in-depth knowledge of, and clinical practice with clients of all ages who have restricted ability to perform to their expectations in their everyday lives or are at risk of developing a limiting condition.
6. Keiser University-Ft. Lauderdale Campus:
Keiser University is considered one of the best occupational therapy schools in the world.
Occupational Therapy Bridge Program (MSOT) for the Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) is available through this institution (COTA).
Additional options for learning are available through the OT program, including both on-campus and online options.
The occupational therapy curriculum also incorporates didactic, face-to-face, and clinical experiences to prepare students for success on the National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapy® (NBCOT®) exam.
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7. Nova Southeastern University:
The Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) and Doctor of Occupational Therapy (DOT) programs at Nova Southeastern University are both entry-level occupational therapy degrees (OTD).
Aside from that, Northern State University provides two post-professional occupational therapy programs: a Clinical Doctorate (Dr.OT) and a Research Doctorate (Dr.RH) (Ph.D.).
The post-professional occupational therapy programs are available online.
Who is an Occupational Therapy Assistant?
Patient development, recovery, improvement, and maintenance of abilities required for everyday living and functioning are all assisted by occupational therapy assistants (OTAs).
Employees in this field can find employment in occupational therapy offices, hospitals, and nursing care facilities.
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the typical annual salary for OTAs is $57,620, with an hourly wage of $27.70.
Additionally, according to the research, the typical annual income for occupational therapy assistants in 2018 was $60,220.
Some accredited Schools for an Associate Degree in Occupational Therapy Programs
Several ACOTE-accredited colleges in Florida offer associate degree programs in occupational therapy.
See the list below for more information. Do well to contact any OT schools listed above for additional information on the program.
Conclusion on occupational therapy schools in Florida
According to a survey by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupational therapy is expected to be one of the fastest-growing professions in the United States in the next years.
To follow this trend, a profession in occupational therapy will almost probably be a good choice.
I hope this information may assist you as you make your decision.
Wishing You Success
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