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    Lackawanna CollegeAcademicsHealth Sciences ProgramsAssociate in Science in Occupational Therapy Assistant

    Associate in Science in Occupational Therapy Assistant

    Degree Information

    The occupational therapy assistant (OTA) works under the supervision of an occupational therapist (OT) with a diverse population of people in a variety of settings including hospitals, outpatient clinics, nursing homes, mental health facilities, schools, and the community.

    Guided by the OT’s plan of care, occupational therapy assistants are responsible for providing direct occupational therapy intervention with clients to develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living. Intervention is client-centered and occupation-based, meaning clients play a primary active role in therapy sessions and sessions are designed around the client’s valued daily activities, also known as occupations.

    A student considering entering the field of OTA should demonstrate good communication skills, have the ability to form good relationships with a variety of individuals; have a creative and adaptable approach to work; demonstrate patience, compassion, and empathy; and enjoy a physically active job.

    The two-year program that combines both traditional classroom-based education and fieldwork experiences in preparation for the student to enter the profession as an entry-level, generalist, occupational therapy assistant. The student will graduate with an associate of science degree.

    Download the curriculum guide– PDF

    Accredited Occupational Therapy Assistant Program

    The occupational therapy assistant program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda MD 20852-4929. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its Web address is Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the ACCREDITATION COUNCIL FOR OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY EDUCATION ACCREDITATION MANUAL VI.E. Revised July 2019 Section VI – Page 19 National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). 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.

    NOTE: Students must complete all graduation and fieldwork requirements in a timely manner. All Level II Fieldwork experiences must be completed within 16 months of completion of the didactic portion of the program and must not exceed the overall limit of 36 months required to complete the program.

    Potential impact of a felony conviction on a graduate’s eligibility for certification and credentialing (PDF)

    OTA Program Mission

    The Occupational Therapy Assistant Program strives to prepare students in becoming generalist occupational therapy assistants who value life-long learning, seek evidence to support their practical and clinical decisions, and place their clients at the center of their practice. As a result of completing the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program, these future Occupational Therapy Practitioners will be equipped to work with the supervision of Occupational Therapists in a variety of settings, with a diversity of people, populations, and communities. Confident in their entry-level skills they will make a positive impact on the health, well-being, and quality of life of their clients by increasing their ability to participate as fully as possible in their preferred and needful daily activities, also known as occupations.

    OTA Program Objectives

    The OTA program’s objectives are consistent with curriculum content and expectations as set forth by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). Upon completion of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at Lackawanna College, the student will be able to:

    • Deliver client-centered practice utilizing and evidence-based research to support clinical decisions under the direction and supervision of occupational therapist.
    • Demonstrate the distinctive nature of occupational therapy and the impact occupation has on health, well-being and quality of life.
    • Demonstrate leadership and professional identity through a commitment to lifelong learning, service competency, and advocacy for the profession.
    • Demonstrate mastery of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to pass the NBCOT certification exam.
    OTA Admissions Process and Criteria

    The following items are required in order for an applicant to be considered for admission into the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at Lackawanna College.

    1. Lackawanna College Application (may be completed online or via mail)

    2. Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Application (PDF)

    3. Proof of 20 observation hours total, in at least 2 different settings providing occupational therapy services (PDF)

    Due to COVID 19 restrictions, applicants will not be able to complete observation hours at this time. In lieu of observation hours, applicants are required to complete the tasks outlined in this document.

    Please complete these tasks and/or include these items among your application materials prior to sending them to the following address:

    Lackawanna College – Admissions Department
    Occupational Therapy Assistant Program
    501 Vine Street
    Scranton, PA 18509

    Download the OTA Observation Form (PDF)

    4. Three references are also required for application to the occupational therapy assistant program at Lackawanna College.

    References are to be sent by the reference to the following address:

    Lackawanna College – Admissions Department
    Occupational Therapy Assistant Program
    501 Vine Street
    Scranton, PA 18509

    Download our Professional Reference Form (PDF)

    5. Finally, applicants whose materials are satisfactory will be invited for an interview with the OTA program director and/or the academic fieldwork coordinator. Applicants will be required to complete a writing prompt related to OT during the interview. Applicants will have thirty (30) minutes to complete the writing prompt. Prompt will be scored using a grading rubric.

    Note:  Submitting application materials does not guarantee an interview invitation.  An interview invitation does not guarantee acceptance into the OTA Program. Further, each applicant’s materials, interview, and writing prompt will be assessed using a scoring rubric designed to objectively determine an applicant’s fitness for the OTA program.

    Transfer of College Courses & AP Credits into the OTA Program

    Students may transfer in college credits for the following OTA program courses if the course grade meets the minimum requirements set forth by the OTA Program and only if accepted by the College for direct transfer. Please contact the OTA Program Director for full requirements for transfer of the following courses:

    • College Writing (3 credits)
    • Effective Speaking (3 credits)
    • College Algebra (3 credits)
    • Introduction to Psychology (3 credits)
    • General Biology I with  Lab ( 4 credits)
    • Anatomy & Physiology I with Lab (4 credits)
    • Anatomy & Physiology II with Lab (4 credits)
    • Abnormal Psychology (3 credits)

    All other courses within the OTA program curriculum and designated with the course code initials (OTA) must be taken within the Lackawanna College OTA program and are not eligible for transfer.

    OTA Program Acceptance of AP Credits

    Lackawanna College’s policy on accepting Advanced Placement courses for college credit is as follows:

    AP and CLEP exams will be reviewed for possible transfer credit once the Registrar’s office receives an official score report directly from College Board.

    *Transfer evaluation of Vascular Technology, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Cardiac Sonography, Physical Therapist Assistant, Occupational Therapist Assistant, and Surgical Technology curriculum candidates are based upon criteria specified in program guidelines and according to program-specific accreditation standards.

    If AP scores are accepted by the Registrar for college credit, the OTA Program will accept the credits for the following courses (within the last 3 years):

    • ENG 105 College Writing
    • MAT 120 College Algebra
    • PSY 105 Introduction to Psychology
    • BIO 120 General Biology
    OTA Program Outcomes

    Program Graduates
    *First cohort began January 2018 with a graduation date of December 2019. No Program Graduate or Graduation Rates to report for 2017 and 2018.

    Class of 2017*Class of 2018*Class of 2019Three Year Total

    Graduation Rate
    *First cohort began January 2018 with a graduation date of December 2019. No Program Graduate or Graduation Rates to report for 2017 and 2018.

    Class of 2017*Class of 2018*Class of 2019Three Year Average

    Ultimate Certification Exam Pass Rate

    Please refer to; no data currently available.

    This program is offered exclusively at the Scranton campus.