Occupational therapy doctorate verse master's

Are you comparing the occupational therapy doctorate vs. master's?

Occupational therapy doctorate vs master’s

If you are, you’re likely wondering if you should pursue a Master’s in Occupational Therapy (MOT) or a Doctorate in Occupational Therapy (OTD). Both paths work directly with patients who are dealing with an illness, injury, or disability. Patients may have to re-learn everyday activities to improve their quality of life.

In order to make a decision, it is important to understand the similarities and differences. First, both give graduates the ability to practice as an OT. Students learn to evaluate patients, create treatment plans, and document patient progress. On the other hand, an OTD incorporates advanced subjects focused on research and leadership. The length of time to complete the degrees also differ.


What is the benefit of a Master of Occupational Therapy?

  • Gives you a solid grounding in overall practice
  • Less cost upfront
  • Builds potential for going on for advanced degrees, such as a Ph.D., an EdD, or an OTD

What is the benefit of a Doctor of Occupational Therapy?

  • Potential to teach at a university or tech-school level
  • Able to do research in the clinic or academia
  • Possibility to move into a managerial role faster than an MOT in a clinic setting
  • Insight into a specific area of practice during the capstone

How do I decide?

Choosing between a master’s and a doctorate depends on your goals and future outlook. If you are interested in the quickest way to start your career with the option of advancing in the future, an MOT may be a good fit. Otherwise is you are not worried about the time commitment and want the opportunity to participate in research and teaching, an OTD could be your path. No matter if you know what path you want or not, we are here to help guide you in the process.

How do I become an OT?

After researching an occupational therapy doctorate vs master’s, it’s time to find a program. Concordia University offers a Master of Occupational Therapy and a Doctor of Occupational Therapy program. We offer a post-baccalaureate program geared for individuals whose bachelor’s isn’t related to occupational therapy. This allows students of many backgrounds to become an OT.

Program Director Dr. Carrie Bath-Scheel states: “There are many features in our program that stand out. Our MOT and OTD degrees are embedded together. In other words, all students start in the MOT program and choose which program to complete at the end of year one. Furthermore, the entry-level OTD is only one semester longer than the MOT. Our program focuses on how students can change and impact communities in their career”.

Concordia is here to help you succeed in your educational journey.

Ready to start?

If you want to know more about becoming an occupational therapist, you can contact the admission counselor David Hengst at 262.243.4397 or david.hengst@cuw.edu. He is equipped to answer your questions and connect you to the information you need. Otherwise, feel free to visit us here to learn about your options.


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