After you commence your search for Occupational therapy Assistant schools in Mercedes, TX, you will probably quickly learn that there has never been a better time to go after a career as an Occupational Therapy Assistant. The United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics is expecting jobs in this field to grow by 43% over the ten year period 2010-2020, this means over 12,000 new Occupational Therapy Assistant jobs! The better news is the fact that the average Occupational Therapy Assistant pay is over $53,000 per year which makes it right there with the highest paying healthcare professions that does not require a Four Year Degree.
Occupational Therapy Schools in Mercedes, TX
The initial step toward a career as an OTA is selecting the best Occupational Therapy Training Program. There are currently just about 200 accredited occupational therapy schools in the United States and Puerto Rico and almost all of the schools accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) offer Occupational Therapist Assistant degrees and Master’s Degrees, with many also offering Doctoral degrees. Before you decide to jump in and select a training program, it is very important to think about all of your alternatives and make sure you choose an Occupational Therapy training program that meets all your needs.
Things You Should Consider When Picking an Occupational Therapy School
Accreditation by the ACOTE is essential because you can be reassured you will be taught the full range of skills necessary to be a qualified OTA.
Occupational Therapy Assistants assist patients on a wide variety of health problems and disorders so it is imperative that your schooling is very extensive instead of too focused on one particular discipline.
Another really important variable you should consider is the clinical learning experience. This is the hands-on training, and this is where you actually interact with actual patients and put your knowledge to use. Some schools designate significantly more time on your actual laboratory training in comparison with other schools. In situations where your training program is not devoting a large amount of time with clinical teaching, be sure that you find out why.
Something else to consider is the class size. The size of the classes may vary significantly from school to school. Make sure to find out the class sizes at all of schools you are researching. Try to remember, the smaller the class size , the more one-on-one time you will get with the professors.
Taking Occupational Therapy Classes Online might not work for each individual student. Yet, for many people online training courses can relieve some of the burdens of being a full time student. Work and family members are sometimes driven aside while students carry on their education and online classes can provide some flexibility to a busy life.
The final item that you should evaluate before selecting an Occupational Therapy School is the rate of the schools you are evaluating. Make sure to find out how many people finish the program, what their evaluations were, and exactly how many of them have gone to become OTA’s.
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What to Expect in OTA School
Normally the course work is approximately 24 months, with the first year consisting of mostly classroom training and with the second year spent carrying out hands on lessons in a hospital or private care office. Some of the course work a student will need to take includes pediatrics, gerontology, health care jargon, and physical therapy. All States that require licensure only call for a 2 year degree. A Bachelor’s Degree is going to be needed if you plan on becoming a full Occupational Therapist, however you will find that a majority of Occupational Therapist started their careers as Assistants and earned their Bachelor’s Degrees several years later.
Following graduation, those prepared to begin their careers will have to become certified as an OTA. Every State has its own rules and regulations which are governed by an occupational therapy board, with many being private while others are run by the State exclusively. In Texas, licensing is administered by the Texas Executive Council of PT & OT Examiners. While every State is different, there are a number of requirements which are common among the majority of them and can include the following.
Any individual attempting to get an occupational therapy assistant license is required to be a U.S. citizen, needs to have a social security number and must have taken and completed applicable college course work in addition to having taken and passed the NBCOT exam.
Each State requires a federal background check , although convictions are not necessarily automatic grounds for dismissal. Some States may consider approving an occupational therapist license in a case where a written affidavit is filed to explain the circumstances of the conviction. Additional factors including time and nature of the criminal offense may be evaluated and be taken into consideration to grant licensure .
Every State will have an Occupational Therapy Assistant licensing kit that will include several forms to fill out. Never pay for these forms from a third party since they can be accessed online from many legitimate sites. It is recommended to take a very detailed look through the paper work before attempting to complete them. You might have official transcripts required; notarized signatures and many States will need you to complete a fingerprint card which may be completed at a local police station.
Workplace for Occupational Therapy Assistants
An OTA works with an assortment of patients that have needs that will be very different than from the previous patient. You might be working in an outpatient clinic with infants that happen to have food or texture aversions or a hospital rehabilitation facility working with a middle age woman with psychological and mental struggles . Even though an occupational therapy assistant has many job skills, a few of the basics including following direction, keeping up to date with the most up to date techniques and learning and using the available technologies are extremely important. Finally, a COTA also needs to be reasonably physically fit, since there will be several instances of shifting patients around, such as from a bed to a wheel chair.
If this sounds like the career for you, then take a few minutes and visit the search form at the top of this page. You will be shown a list of training programs near Mercedes, TX that offer Occupational Therapy Assistant classes. Request information from as many schools as you’d like, and good luck in your future career!
Occupational Therapy Schools in Mercedes, TX reviewed by Sarah SHAW on June 11.
Very Helpful Site
Thank You for creating such an informative website. I was able to get a lot of info about the OTA schools in my area and chose one that worked for me. I’m now ready to start my training and can’t wait to become an OTA.