Those working in or interested in the field of occupational therapy assisting know that it is one of the most critical positions in healthcare today. Occupational Therapy Assistants are dedicated to helping others recover from a variety of health problems – physical injury, developmental disorders, chronic illness – and to helping them regain function in life. This growing career offers rewarding work in many care settings. It is also one of the fastest paths one can take to break into the medical field. Whether you’re just starting out in healthcare or looking for a change in your career, becoming an Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) may be the perfect next step for you.
Like other healthcare professions out there, the role of an OTA is all about helping others. While the Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluates and develops treatment plans for clients/patients, the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) is the person who puts those plans into action, working one-on-one with patients. It is, without a doubt, a fast-growing field with plenty of opportunity. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of OTAs to grow a notable 29 percent over the next several years – much faster than the average for all other occupations.
Occupational therapy assisting is an exciting field to get into, but where do you start? From educational requirements to licensure, Goodwin College has outlined how to become an Occupational Therapist Assistant (OTA) in Connecticut below.
Start with a Great Education
To become an Occupational Therapy Assistant in Connecticut, your first step will be to find a reputable, postsecondary OTA Program, like the one at Goodwin College. OTAs are required to have an associate degree from an accredited Occupational Therapy Assistant program before entering the field.
Goodwin College’s OTA program will prepare you to care for those limited by a physical illness or injury, an emotional disorder, a developmental disability, or the aging process. You’ll gain hands-on experience through clinical training while you are learning. For flexibility, the program at Goodwin offers OTA classes during the evening and on weekends. Students can earn their Occupational Therapy Assistant degrees in just 16 months full-time.
Gain Some Experience
To become an Occupational Therapy Assistant in Connecticut, you will also be required to complete at least 8 weeks of fieldwork in an active OTA setting. Students at Goodwin College gain that much-needed hands-on experience through four sessions of fieldwork, in some of Connecticut’s top care facilities and community settings:
- Alternative Communities
- Assisted Living Facility
- Nursing Homes
- Rehabilitation Centers
Goodwin College maintains close, professional partnerships with leading hospitals and healthcare practices throughout the state. We know the level of experience and skills employers are asking for in the modern OTA job description. That is why, as part of your clinical work at Goodwin, you will gain:
- Vocational training
- Training in activities of daily living
- Understanding and adapting of home, work, and school environments
- Experience in fabricating splints
- Know-how of functional activities for therapeutic use
Pass the Test
No matter where you reside, to become a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) today, you must earn licensure. The right COTA program will prepare you for this step. Upon graduation from Goodwin College, for example, you will be immediately eligible to sit for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) examination, which is a required step in Connecticut’s OTA license requirements.
For those just starting out, note that recent OTA program graduates are eligible for a temporary permit to practice under the supervision of a Connecticut-licensed Occupational Therapist.
OTA applicants in Connecticut must be prepared to submit several documents to prove eligibility for licensing. You should have your official transcript from your Occupational Therapy Assistant School, verifying your degree and date of graduation. You must also submit your official NBCOT exam scores within the past calendar year. There’s also the application and fee to be sure to submit.
Start the path to become an Occupational Therapy Assistant in CT with the Associate Degree program at Goodwin College. Contact us at 1-800-889-3282 or click here to request more information.
Goodwin College is a nonprofit institution of higher education and is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), formerly known as the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Goodwin College was founded in 1999, with the goal of serving a diverse student population with career-focused degree programs that lead to strong employment outcomes.