Hands-on learning is a major part of the entry-level DrOT and MOT programs. You will learn how to be effective in hands-on therapy, provide expert consultation and design home programs for families and caregivers. All students will have the opportunity to participate in an experience-based curriculum at off-campus training sites.
At Saint Joseph's University, you don’t have to wait to begin experiencing what it’s like to be an occupational therapist. From the beginning, classwork is fully blended with hands-on learning. You will be in the field every semester, have valuable opportunities to interact and communicate with nationally and recognized faculty and fellow students, and will learn in a friendly, supportive environment.
Our program emphasizes the multiple ways of learning through experience. Interprofessional education (IPE) opportunities can be found as early as the first year of study. Examples of IPE engagements include working with different healthcare professional students in Saint Joseph's physical therapy, physician assistant and pharmacy programs. Partnerships with other academic institutions allow our students to work with medical and nursing students, as well as students in occupational therapy assistant and public health programs.
To help you implement your classwork, you will have an opportunity to participate in fieldwork experiences beginning the first semester. You are required to complete two 12-week level II fieldworks, working with patients of all ages from infants to the elderly. DrOT students complete an additional 14-week experiential.
During your fieldwork, you may work with clients in a variety of settings, such as:
- Community centers
- Community programs
- Long-term care residences
- Rehabilitation centers
- Home care
- Outpatient therapy settings (hand therapy)
- Pediatric inpatient and outpatient settings
Doctoral Experiential Component
Students in the final year of the DrOT program participate in an in-depth exposure to a focused area of study with clinical practice — through either research or program development — to enhance the practice of occupational therapy.