When you start your search for Occupational therapy Assistant schools in Orinda, CA, you will soon see 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 industry to expand by 43% over the 10 year period 2010-2020, this equals over 12,000 new Occupational Therapy Assistant jobs! The better news is that the median Occupational Therapy Assistant pay is over $53,000 annually making it right there with the highest paying healthcare professions that does not require a Four Year Degree.
Occupational Therapy Schools in Orinda, CA
The initial step toward a career as an OTA is choosing the right Occupational Therapy Program. There are at this time almost 200 accredited occupational therapy schools in the US and Puerto Rico and nearly all 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 jump in to choose a training program, you might want to think about all of the options and make sure you choose an Occupational Therapy school that fulfills all your requirements.
Things You Must Consider When Selecting an Occupational Therapy School
Accreditation by the ACOTE is recommended because you can be reassured that you will learn about the full array of competencies required to be a competent OTA.
Occupational Therapy Assistants work with patients on a wide variety of health conditions and disorders therefore it is really important that your schooling is very wide-ranging instead of too dedicated to one particular discipline.
Another important component you should think about is the clinical education experience. This is the practical training, and this is where you are going to interact with actual patients and put your abilities to use. Some schools commit considerably more time on your actual practical training in comparison to other training programs. In instances where your training program is not spending large amounts of time with clinical instructing, make sure that you find out why.
Another thing to look into is the class size. The size of your class can vary significantly from college to college. Be sure to find out the class sizes at all the schools you are researching. Bear in mind, the smaller the classes , the more one-on-one time that you receive with the professors.
Taking Occupational Therapy Classes Online may not work for each individual student. However, for many people online courses can ease some of the burdens of being a full time student. Jobs and household are sometimes driven aside as students undertake their training and online classes provide a little flexibility to a busy life.
The final item you want to examine prior to selecting an Occupational Therapy School is the graduation rate of the schools you are looking at. Make sure you find out how many students graduate from the program, what their evaluations were, and exactly how many of them have gone on to become OTA’s.
Recommended Occupational Therapy Schools in Orinda, CA
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Since 1996, Southern California Health Institute has been dedicated and committed to helping students achieve their dreams by providing an exceptional education that enables them to become skilled and successful manual therapists. We have graduated over 1,500 students who are now a part of a larger community of wellness and healthcare.
- Physical Therapy Aide/Sports Rehab Program
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- M.A. Clinical Psychology, Marital and Family Therapy Specialization
What to Expect in OTA School
Normally the course work is approximately two years, with the first year consisting of primarily classroom teaching and with the second year spent going through hands on learning in a healthcare facility or private medical practice. Some of the course work a student will need to take involves pediatrics, gerontology, health care jargon, and physical therapy. All States that require licensure simply call for a 2 year degree. A Bachelor’s Degree is required if you intend on becoming a full Occupational Therapist, but you will find that a majority of Occupational Therapist launched their careers as Assistants and obtained their Bachelor’s Degrees some time later.
Following graduation, those prepared to begin their careers need to become certified as an OTA. Each State has its own rules and regulations that will be governed by an occupational therapy board, with some being private and some run by the State exclusively. In California, licensing is administered by the California Board of Occupational Therapy. Even though each State is different, there are a number of requirements which happen to be common among the majority of them and can include the following.
Any person attempting to get an occupational therapy assistant certificate will have to be a U.S. citizen, needs to have a social security number and needs to have taken and completed acceptable college course work as well as taken and passed the NBCOT exam.
Each State requires a federal background check , but convictions are not always automatic grounds for dismissal. A few States may consider approving an occupational therapist license if a written affidavit is turned in to describe the circumstances of the conviction. Additional circumstances including time period and nature of the crime may be examined and be considered to grant licensure .
Every State will provide an Occupational Therapy Assistant licensure package that is going to contain several forms to complete. Do not buy these forms from a third party since they can be found online from many trustworthy sites. It is recommended to take a very comprehensive look through the forms before trying to complete them. There may be official transcripts required; notarized signatures and several States will need you to submit a fingerprint card which may be completed at a local police station.
Work Environment for Occupational Therapy Assistants
An OTA works with a number of different patients which have needs that will be very different in comparison to the previous patient. You may be working for an outpatient clinic with small children that have food or texture aversions or maybe a hospital rehab center working with a middle age man with psychological struggles . Although an occupational therapy assistant possesses a large number of job skills, some of the basics such as following direction, keeping up to date with the most recent techniques and learning and using the available technology are extremely important. Finally, a COTA should also be reasonably physically fit, as you will have numerous instances of transferring patients around, for example from a bed to a wheel chair.
If this sounds like the career for you, then take a few minutes to fill out the search form at the top of this page. You will be shown a list of training programs near Orinda, CA 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 Orinda, CA reviewed by Daniel ANDERSON on June 15.
Very Helpful Site
Thank You for sharing such an informative website. I was able to get more info about the OTA schools in my area and found one that worked for me. I’m now ready to start my training and can’t wait to become an Occupational Therapy Assistant.