Occupational Therapy, M.S.

Lewis University will begin accepting applications for Fall 2018 in July 2017.

Help individuals maximize their independence, satisfaction, and participation in everyday life activities at home, work, school and in the community.

Many individuals of all ages experience difficulties with daily life performance due to developmental or acquired medical conditions and disabilities, mental health concerns, social disadvantages or aging – but occupational therapy services can help them achieve their goals. If you are a solution-oriented critical thinker who enjoys working collaboratively, occupational therapy may be a rewarding career choice.

Curriculum Combines Education and Fieldwork
The Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program provides students with the knowledge, skills and experience necessary to assist those with developmental, physical, cognitive, psychological, and sensory performance issues. Students who complete the program will be able to:
  • Describe delivery models and systems used in settings where occupational therapy is currently practiced and where it is emerging as a service
  • Effectively communicate and work with professionals who provide care for individuals and populations
  • Apply therapeutic methods to help individuals participate in meaningful life roles and occupations at home, school, workplace, community, and other settings
  • Plan occupational therapy interventions to address performance issues in a variety of contexts and environments to support engagement in everyday life activities that affect physical and mental health, well-being, and quality of life
  • Apply occupational therapy theory and evidence to all aspects of client care
  • Demonstrate the ability to uphold ethical standards, values, and attitudes of the occupational theory profession while being intellectually engaged, ethically grounded, and socially responsible
  • Assume the distinct roles and responsibilities of the occupational therapist as an evidence-based practitioner, coordinator of care, supervisor, consultant, practice leader, and advocate
The coursework and fieldwork requirements provide opportunities for students to experience working with a range of ages in a wide variety of conditions and settings.

Market Demand
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program, career opportunities for occupational therapists are expected to rise 27% by the year 2024.

It is predicted that occupational therapy will continue to be an important part of treatment for people with various medical conditions and disabilities, such as Alzheimer’s disease, autism, cerebral palsy, post-traumatic stress disorder, the loss of a limb, or stroke.

Why Lewis for Your Master of Science in Occupational Therapy Degree?
  • Ranked as one of U.S. News & World Report’s “Top Tier Colleges”
  • Small class sizes allows for high interaction with our experienced faculty
  • Strong relationships with local agencies for fieldwork experiences
  • Affordable program tuition compared to top competing schools
  • Opportunity to develop OT practice skills in mental health, rehabilitation, pediatrics, and older adult care
Life after Lewis
Graduates of the M.S. in Occupational Therapy program at Lewis University are qualified to work in various medical and non-medical settings, including:
  • Hospitals
  • Rehabilitation Facilities
  • Schools
  • In-Home Patient Care
  • Private Clinics
  • Community-Based Organizations
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the median salary for occupational therapists is $80,150 per year and the annual mean wage in Illinois is between $74,000-79,000.

Admission Requirements
To be accepted for admission in the M.S. in Occupational Therapy program at Lewis University, candidates must meet the following credentials:
  • Baccalaureate degree in any field from a regionally-accredited institution of higher education; common majors include psychology, sociology, exercise science, education and biology.
  • Minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Prerequisite coursework with grade C or above completed within the last seven years in the following subjects: human anatomy & human physiology with lab, general psychology, lifespan development psychology, abnormal psychology, sociology, and statistics. An anatomy course with a cadaver lab and a course in medical terminology are preferred.
  • GRE score of 300 (150 each for the verbal and quantitative sections); writing score of 4 or above preferred
  • A minimum of 40 hours of volunteer or observation experience with an occupational therapist or occupational therapy assistant prior to application
  • Three recommendations (one recommendation must be from a supervisor in a work, internship, or volunteer setting; the remaining two should be from professional and/or academic references)
  • Application for graduate admission to Lewis University submitted via the OT Centralized Application Service (OTCAS) and paid application fee
Students must complete Level II fieldwork within 18 months following completion of the didactic portion of the program.

For more information e-mail the Office of Graduate Admission at grad@lewisu.edu or contact us at (815) 836-5610.

The entry-level occupational therapy master’s degree program at Lewis University has applied for accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA):

American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
c/o Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE)
4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200
Bethesda, MD 20814-3449
(301) 652-AOTA

The program must be granted Candidacy Status, have a preaccreditation review, complete an on-site evaluation, and be granted Accreditation Status before its graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist 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, all states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.