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Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)
Occupational Therapy Assistant student

About this program

Occupational therapy assistants help people with physical, developmental and psychosocial challenges learn how to use adaptive techniques and equipment to participate in the daily activities they need and want to do. At Penn College, you’ll learn how to inspire independence and promote quality of life in the occupational therapy setting. Training with knowledgeable faculty who bring years of experience in diverse specialties, students build real-world skills in modern labs and clinical experiences that go above and beyond our program’s accreditation requirements.

Acceptance in this major is based upon additional requirements beyond College admission.

Next steps...

You're on your way to becoming a tomorrow maker.

NBCOT Exam Pass Rates Exceed National Average


Clinical Hours

Integrated Classroom & Clinical Experiences


Careers in a wide variety of settings including:

  • Acute care
  • Inpatient rehabilitation
  • Long-term care
  • Home care/hospice
  • Outpatient care
  • Behavioral health
  • Primary, secondary, and higher education
  • Correctional systems

License/Certification Disclosure Information →


At Penn College, we believe your educational experience should go beyond specialized skills. Real-world ready means taking a broader approach that builds communication skills, inspires collaboration, and encourages exploration of arts, history, and science.

​​Specialization requires in-depth knowledge and high-level proficiency. Students learn and apply major-specific concepts, skills, and methods.

  • Foundations of Occupational Therapy (OCT100)
  • Human Occupations (OCT101)
  • Medical Terminology Survey (MTR100)
  • Analysis of Movement (OCT121)
  • Developmental Habilitation Theory (OCT122)
  • Developmental Habilitation: Level I Fieldwork (OCT124)
  • Clinical Conditions (OCT203)
  • Physical Rehabilitation Methods (OCT201)
  • OT Practice Skills (OCT204)
  • Physical Rehabilitation Theory (OCT205)
  • Physical Rehabilitation: Level 1 Fieldwork (OCT206)
  • Psychosocial Rehabilitation Methods (OCT221)
  • Clinical Reasoning in Occupational Therapy (OCT224)
  • Psychosocial Rehabilitation Theory (OCT226)
  • Psychosocial Rehabilitation: Level I Fieldwork (OCT227)
  • Occupational Therapy Management Issues (OCT228)
  • Professional Issues in Occupational Therapy (OCT229)
  • Level II-A Fieldwork (OCT251)
  • Level II-B Fieldwork (OCT252)

​Perspectives are points of view, offering a variety of ways of understanding, interacting, and influencing the world. Students identify, explain, and utilize the approaches used by academics and professionals to study, analyze, or understand problems, and offer solutions.

  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I (BIO115)
  • General Psychology (PSY111)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology II (BIO125)
  • Developmental Psychology (PSY203)
  • Abnormal Psychology (PSY201)

​​Foundations are the practical, intellectual, and social skills: communication, collaboration, critical and ethical thinking, quantitative thinking, and technological literacy that are crucial to every student at every stage of education and at every stage of life.

  • English Composition I (ENL111)
  • Information, Technology, and Society (CSC124)
  • Fundamentals of Speech (SPC101)
  • Math Elective (MTH151 or Higher) (MMM)
Occupational Therapy Lab

Occupational Therapy Lab

Gain real-world experience in our newly renovated lab that includes a fully functional, universally designed kitchen, simulated bedroom and bathroom, an acute care hospital unit with headboard simulator, and ADA-accessible outpatient clinic area.

Student Experience

“Fieldwork during the semester gives me the opportunity to apply my knowledge in an actual work setting alongside licensed professionals. I’ll be prepared to work in a variety of settings after graduation with confidence in my abilities to treat clients.”

Daphnide St Vil

Occupational Therapy Assistant Student

Clinical Experience

Your knowledge in practice

Two sets of clinicals are folded into this comprehensive curriculum. These are designed to complement academic coursework and introduce a real-world component to the learning experience.

Industry Partners

Work with experts to become an expert

Penn College's strong partnerships impact every step of your journey – from your first day in the classroom and labs, to career placement (oftentimes before graduation) and beyond.

UPMC Susquehanna New
Selinsgrove Center
Danville State Hospital
Wellspan Health
Related Programs

Follow your passion

Physical Therapist Assistant

Physical Therapist Assistant

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)

Paramedic Science

Paramedic Science

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)

Applied Health Studies

Applied Health Studies

Bachelor of Science Degree (B.S.) 

Student Life

Lead and put your skills to the test

Penn College Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA)

Penn College Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA)

Collaborate with fellow OTA students to increase awareness of the various practices areas and enhance the overall experience of OTA education at Penn College.

Student Organizations at Penn College

Student Organizations at Penn College

Your college experience is about more than the classroom. Join one of 65+ clubs and organizations, or create your own.


Program director named accreditation evaluator

Jeanne M. Kerschner, director of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s occupational therapy assistant program, was appointed to ...


Award-winning aviation graduate, faculty member dies at age 90

Robert L. Norton – an alumnus, retired faculty member and father of a program director in the School of Nursing & Health ...


Nonprofit’s event indicative of college role as community resource

The Pennsylvania Association for Infant Mental Health’s Central Region members held a networking breakfast on Friday in Penn ...

Gain global experience
Study Abroad

Gain global experience

See the world via Williamsport. Take your education abroad and get hands-on experience learning about your industry on a global scale.

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Dual Degree

Take two

Applied Health Studies

Applied Health Studies

Students who have earned an associate’s degree from Penn College in occupational therapy assistant are eligible to pursue a bachelor’s degree in applied health studies: occupational therapy assistant concentration. Students may work with their adviser to declare this major as dual degree, taking both occupational therapy assistant courses and applied health courses simultaneously. Proof of the appropriate credential will be required to be eligible for graduation in the applied health studies major.

Learn more

Student Experience

The community as their classroom

OTA majors broaden understanding through service, hands-on learning

OTA majors broaden understanding through service, hands-on learning

Exploration of unique clinical settings beyond the lab and classroom lend valuable insight to the student experience. 

Read more


The Occupational Therapy Assistant major is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). For further information, contact: ACOTE, c/o Accreditation Department, American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. Telephone c/o AOTA 301-652-AOTA. 

More Information

The Occupational Therapy Assistant major is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). For further information, contact: ACOTE, c/o Accreditation Department, American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. Telephone c/o AOTA 301-652-AOTA.

Acceptance into this competitive major is based on an admissions ranking process. Students accepted to Penn College will take related courses, earning points that will be applied toward the selective admissions process. Completion of related courses does not guarantee acceptance into the major. To be eligible for selections into the professional level of the program, students are required to complete BIO115 and BIO125 OR BIO115 and MTH151 (or higher) with a grade of C or better. Selections for the professional level of the program are made in June for the following fall. For details, see the OTA Admissions Ranking System information.

Graduates will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Exam that is administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). For further information, contact: NBCOT, One Bank Street, Suite 300, Gaithersburg, MD 20878, (301) 990-7979, Following successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). Most states, including Pennsylvania, require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on results of the NBCOT Certification Exam. Students interested in pursuing the bachelor degree should refer to the Applied Health Studies information listed in the bachelor's degree section of the catalog. In addition, it is advised that a meeting be arranged with the occupational therapy assistant program director to discuss this option. For further information, refer to the OTA website.

Students enrolled in the major must earn a minimum final grade of "C" in BIO115, BIO125, and in each of their occupational therapy assistant courses. Failure to do so will result in the inability to continue in the program. See the program manual for details. The grading scale for OCT courses is A, B, C, F.

Child abuse clearance and criminal background checks are required by some agencies involved in fieldwork and/or capstones. Agencies can bar students from their sites if a criminal record exists or a positive drug test is noted. By virtue of contract for Penn College students to be at clinical sites, drug testing is required for admission and students will be subject to drug testing while in program. The Pennsylvania State Board of Education and Licensure and NBCOT advise that a drug-related conviction and/or conviction of a felonious act may result in denial and/or revocation of a license to practice occupational therapy. Inability to gain clinical or fieldwork or intern education experiences results in inability to meet program objectives and outcomes. For additional clarification, students can speak with their program director.

Transfer students must have their transcripts submitted by June 1 to be ranked for selection.

Graduates of this associate degree major are also eligible for admission to the College's Applied Health Studies (BAH) program. See the program director for details.

International health credentials/licensure, sciences courses, and most math courses will not be accepted to satisfy requirements of this major. Please see additional information for international students applying to Health Sciences majors.

View general transfer information

Alternative Credit refers to academic credits earned through means other than traditional college course completion, including: credit by exam, articulation, proof of competency gained in high school, work/life experience, and advanced placement.

Visit the Alternative Credit Options page for requirements and procedures and for information on credit through Advanced Placement.

The occupational therapy assistant program at Pennsylvania College of Technology satisfies the states’ educational requirements in all states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico. As an Accreditation Council for Occupational Education (ACOTE) accredited program, students who successfully complete their academic and clinical coursework are eligible to take the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certification exam and apply for licensure in all states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico. For more information regarding state qualifications and licensure requirements, please refer to the AOTA State Licensure webpage.

  • Ms. Lynn Fatool, '95, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Commonwealth of PA, Danville State Hospital
  • Mr. Steve Gallik, OTR/L, Selinsgrove Center
  • Ms. Tina Hauck, COTA/L, '98, Community Services Group
  • Mr. Shaun Smith, OTR/L, Albright Care Services
  • Ms. Mindy Tedesco, '88, OTR/L, Susquehanna Home Health