The Ins & Outs of OTA Training

Occupational Therapy Assistants, commonly known as OTAs, are some of the most vital members of the medical field. Every day, these professionals help patients in need develop (or re-develop) the motor skills needed for daily living. As an OTA, you may work with patients who are recovering from injuries. You may work with people who have and live with special prosthetics. You may work with elderly folks who struggle with routine tasks, or in schools with children who are experiencing developmental delays. An OTA career is a multifaceted one, and therefore requires sufficient training to get the job done.

In Connecticut, Occupational Therapy Assistants must be certified in order to practice in an active health care setting. And in order to obtain licensure, OTAs must hold an associate degree from an accredited Occupational Therapy Assistant school. In addition, Connecticut OTAs must have at least eight (8) weeks of supervised field work experience at a recognized educational institution or OTA training program, before they can be eligible to take their certification exam.

If you are an aspiring OTA looking to make a difference in the lives of others, your timing couldn’t be more right. Employment of Occupational Therapy Assistants is expected to grow 29 percent by 2026— more than four times faster than the average for all other occupations! Not to mention, Occupational Therapy Assistants have been ranked the #1 health care support job, having comfortable salaries, great reward and stability, and much room for career growth.

Ready to start your path to an OTA career? As a recognized OTA college in Connecticut, Goodwin can help you prepare for your future in this in-demand field. We’ll start with the basics – here is exactly what to expect from a career-focused OTA training program.

Classroom Learnings

Occupational Therapy Assistant training typically takes about two years to complete. One portion of your program will be dedicated to classroom learning. OTA classes cover an array of different topics, which range from biology and anatomy to oral communication and medical terminology.

As part of Goodwin’s OTA curriculum, for example, students can look forward to classes in the Foundations of Movement and Function, as well as OTA Case Studies and Practice Applications. In addition, Goodwin students take specific courses covering the principles of working with adult, pediatric, and geriatric populations.

Hands-On Clinical Experiences

If you aren’t much of a sit-in-class, lecture kind of person, rest assured – OTA classes are very active and hands-on. Plus, a major and emphasized portion of OTA programs is fieldwork experience – in which students work alongside experienced Occupational Therapists (OTs) and OTAs in an active, practical care facility. Clinical fieldwork allows you to put your classroom learnings into action and show what you can do in real world situations that require an OTA.

OTA training gives you hands-on experience in tasks such as fabricating splints, therapeutic stretches and activities, as well as other patient exercises. You will also learn how to use special equipment and devices (that will benefit your patients) and carry out treatment plans tailored to patient needs.

In Goodwin’s OTA training program, students earn 14 credits through fieldwork, and can look forward to fieldwork experiences three out of four semesters. In their final semester, they spend most of their hours in an active health care setting, advancing and honing their OTA skills with real patients in need.

Goodwin College has professional relationships with health care facilities throughout the state of Connecticut. Upon graduation, our students can look forward to careers and on-the-job training in:

  • Alternative Communities
  • Assisted Living Facility
  • Geriatrics
  • Homes
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing Homes
  • Pediatrics
  • Rehabilitation Centers
  • Schools

What Comes After OTA Training?

Completing an accredited OTA program in Connecticut makes you eligible to sit for the national certification examination, administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After passing this exam, you will officially become a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant!

Start your OTA training right here at Goodwin College. Call 800-889-3282 or visit us online to learn more about earning your OTA degree with us.