Learn more about Occupational Therapy’s Program Philosophy
The program is designed to produce transformative, competent, entry-level practice scholars who innovatively and skillfully use meaningful occupational therapy as the mediator and facilitator between the person and environment. As practice scholars, graduates will demonstrate the requisite skills and habits of implementation science to use and create evidence to support their practice, as well as think critically and creatively as doctoral-prepared practice innovators to proactively facilitate sustainable change as transformative leaders. Graduates will be empowered as ‘change agents’ and advocates across a variety of health care settings, contexts, and related issues applying interprofessional collaboration and leadership skills.
The curriculum will take 33 months to complete, including fieldwork education and the required capstone experience in the final semester.
The semester matrix identifies the courses and curriculum sequence across each semester leading to graduation with a doctor of occupational therapy (OTD) degree.
Curriculum threads & course sequence
The goal is to provide an educational experience preparing transformative practice-scholars to lead practice and the profession.
To prepare for practitioner excellence, the majority of the courses will have laboratory experiences and community experience in natural context.
Some of the coursework will be web-based, blended learning to maximize student’s hands-on learning under the guidance of faculty supervision and mentoring.
The curriculum is structured into eight major content threads leading to the OTD degree.
- Occupational Performance Perspectives
- Body Functions Supporting Occupational Performance
- Occupational Therapy Toolkit
- Occupational Therapy Process
- Scholarship of Practice
- Practice-Scholar Leadership
- Practice Competence
Requirements to Complete Degree
Students who are admitted to the OTD program with an earned bachelor’s or master’s degree have six years to complete all requirements for the doctoral degree, including all level II fieldwork rotations and capstone. The time limit starts with the student’s first semester of doctoral study at Northern Arizona University. If the student does not complete the degree in the established timeframe, the student may petition the Graduate College for one extension of this time limit (NAU Policy 100815).
Good Academic Standing
All occupational therapy students are subject to the policies and regulations as identified in the NAU Graduate College Policies and the NAU Student Handbook. Graduate students must maintain “Good Academic Standing” to be eligible to continue in the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program, which includes maintaining a cumulative GPA of 3.0, no course grades of “D” or “F”, and no more than 11 credit hours of “C” grades. Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 to enroll in Level II Fieldwork and capstone.