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Did you know our admissions requirements have changed for 2022 and that the GRE is not required? Do you want to learn more about the Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.) program from behind the scenes? Join a small group of students to meet with the OTD admissions counselor and an OT faculty member, attend an occupational therapy class, and discuss the educational program with current students.

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The O.T. Fast Track: Graduate in Just Three Years

If you strive to be a standout O.T. practitioner, NSU’s rigorous Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.) program is designed with you in mind. Your face-to-face didactic, research and clinical training prepares you to excel as a skilled interdisciplinary health care team contributor across diverse practice settings.

You’ll not only graduate sooner with our accelerated 3 ⅓ year curriculum – you’ll also have the opportunity to learn from professors considered by many O.T.s and other medical professionals as leaders in the profession.

NSU O.T. Faculty: Globally Known and Respected

NSU O.T. professors have specialized expertise that keeps them in high demand as keynote speakers, consultants, thought leaders and published authors in the U.S. and abroad. You’ll gain valuable insights on specific O.T. topics and have the chance to explore those areas more deeply than in many O.T.D. programs.

Our Face-to-Face Format


Class Format Face-to-Face (100%)
On-Campus Requirement

Monday-Friday primarily daytime

Location Fort Lauderdale, FL

The Fort Lauderdale Doctor of Occupational Therapy program is offered in a face-to-face format with classes taught primarily during the day Monday – Friday at NSU’s Fort Lauderdale-Davie Campus.

Embrace the challenge of NSU’s O.T.D. degree program — and emerge a confident, standout O.T. practitioner.

Apply Now Request Info

 

Quick Facts

Delivery Options

Fort Lauderdale: Face-to-face, Monday-Friday primarily during the day

Start Dates
Classes start each May.
Tuition
Tuition is $37,139 per year.
Credit Hours
NSU's O.T.D. degree is a three and one third year program: 122 credit hours total.

M.O.T. to O.T.D.

For over 25 years, NSU has provided students and alumni with the NSU Edge and education to become exceptional occupational therapists. With diverse faculty and their vast clinical experiences, we are excited to expand from the entry-level Master of OT (M.O.T.) program to the entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.) program at the Fort Lauderdale/Davie Campus and look forward to many more years of educating exceptional OT graduates as they become part of the work force and an addition to our great profession.

Earning Potential

Average OT Salary by Facility

Facility Salary

Nursing care facilities (skilled nursing facilities)

$90,830

Home health care services

$89,220

Offices of physical, occupational and speech therapists, and audiologists

$87,190

Hospitals; state, local, and private

$85,510

Elementary and secondary schools; state, local, and private

$74,670

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Occupational Therapists (visited April 22, 2020).

Health professional supporting woman on round platform

Train with OT Leaders Known and Respected Worldwide

NSU’s O.T. faculty are well-known throughout the profession and hold specialized expertise, which keeps them in top demand as keynote speakers, consultants, and thought leaders.

Topics and areas of focus include:

  • sensory processing theory, practice, research, and education
  • patient and family engaged care
  • neuromotor interventions, brain injury, and aquatic therapy
  • occupational science; sexuality in occupation
  • international certification and assessment standardization initiatives
  • international O.T. practice in areas such as Central America, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, North America, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, and South America

Accomplishments and responsibilities include:

  • scientific journal reviewer and editor for national and international journals
  • ad-hoc reviewer for the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) autism scientific panels
  • published works (chapters, books, and scientific articles) addressing topics on the marketing and business of health care, blended education, wellness and therapeutic use of self, and hand therapy
  • leadership positions within the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
  • diverse post-professional doctoral degrees and national/international scholarships for continuing education

Important Tips Before You Apply

Please note that there are two different applications you’ll need to submit as part of the OTD program admissions process.

  1. Submit your OTCAS application.
  2. Within a couple of weeks of NSU receiving your verified OTCAS application, you’ll get a link to the supplemental NSU application.

Doctor of Occupational Therapy Program Details

Learn more about the Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.) program in Fort Lauderdale from behind the scenes! Join a small group of students to meet with the OTD admissions counselor and an OT faculty member, attend an occupational therapy class, and discuss the educational program with current students.  RSVP by clicking your desired date below. If you have issues registering please reach out to pchcsinfo@nova.edu.

Sample Agenda:
10:00 a.m. - Meet Admissions Counselor and Program Director
10:30 a.m. - Discuss Curriculum and Q&A
11:30 a.m. - Attend OT Class Session
12:00 p.m. - Meet Ambassadors/Student Leaders
12:30 p.m. - Wrap Up
*Daily schedule subject to change based on class activities.

Nova Southeastern University participates in the Occupational Therapy Centralized Application Service, known as  OTCAS . OTCAS may take up to six weeks verifying supporting documents. Therefore, early application is highly recommended.

IMPORTANT DATES
OTCAS Application Opens July 21
OTCAS Application Deadline April 15
NSU Supplemental Application Deadline April 30

Note:  NSU’s O.T.D. program uses a rolling admissions model where applicants are reviewed in the order that their completed application packets and supporting documents are received. As a result, applicants are encouraged to submit their application as early in the application cycle as reasonable.

  • Two-Part Application Process
    • Once your OTCAS application has been verified and received by Nova Southeastern University, an e-mail with a link to the NSU supplemental application will be sent to you. Please follow the instructions to complete and submit the NSU supplemental application and fee by the specific deadline. Please note, applications cannot be reviewed until   both  the OTCAS application and the NSU supplemental application have been completed and received. All data submitted in support of this application become the property of the university and cannot be returned. It is your responsibility to inform the university of any changes in address or telephone number.
  • Video Essay
    • Upon receipt of the verified application packet from OTCAS, the NSU supplemental application, and applicable fees, the Committee on Admissions will review the applicant's file and select applicants for a video essay. Those selected will be notified in writing with instructions for submission of a video essay. An invitation to complete the video essay should not be construed by the applicant as evidence of acceptance. Notice of acceptance or other action by the Committee on Admissions will be on a "rolling" or periodic schedule. 
  • Character Review/Early Determination
    • Graduates of the Nova Southeastern University entry-level  Doctor   of Occupational Therapy Program are eligible to apply to take the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy Board Exam ® (NBCOT). Applicants should be aware that a character review is part of the certification process .  Prospective or enrolled   students who have a disciplinary record with law enforcement are encouraged to utilize the Early Determination review to learn if they will be eligible to sit for the exam once they have completed all other   eligibility requirements. Please go to   NBCOT Early Determination Review  for more information on how to request a review.  A felony conviction/charge may affect a  graduate’s eligibility to sit for the NBCOT exam and/or apply for state licensure. 
  • Additional Information 
    • Completion of a NSU supplemental application is required in order to be considered for admission. After NSU receives the verified OTCAS application, a link is emailed to prospective students within 5 business days inviting them to complete the NSU supplemental application and pay the $50 fee.  Please check your junk/spam folder for the application link and if you do not receive it, please email James Redding at jredding@nova.edu.

The entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.)   Program  selects students based on grade point average (GPA), a written essay, letters of recommendation, and an interview.

Please note for summer 2023 the GRE is not required.

All applicants must:

  1. Complete an undergraduate or graduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
  2. Have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale for the last two years of study.
  3. Have a grade of 2.0 or better in prerequisite courses.  Furthermore, applicants must have a Social Sciences, Humanities, Math and Med Terminology combined prerequisite course GPA of 3.0 or better and a combined Natural Science prerequisite course GPA of 2.75 or higher.
    COURSE PREREQUISITE NAME/SUBJECT SEMESTER
    HOURS
    LAB REQUIRED ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
    Biology with lab (introduction, general, or principles of) 3-4 Yes  
    Human Anatomy and Physiology with lab
    OR Human Anatomy with lab
    AND Physiology with lab
    4

    3-4
    Yes If Anatomy taken  separately from Physiology, Anatomy with lab should be 4 credits & Physiology with   lab  will be 3-4 credits.
    Physics with lab (general, college) OR Kinesiology 3-4 Yes for Physics,
    No for Kinesiology
    Psychology 6 No Must include 3 credits of Introduction to Psychology and 3 credits of an upper-level psychology course—Abnormal Psychology, Social Psychology, Substance Abuse, etc.
    Human Growth and Development OR Developmental Psychology 3 No Must cover infancy through aging.
    Other Social Sciences 3 No Examples are ethnic studies, anthropology, sociology, ethics
    English Composition 6 No  
    Other humanities 9 No Examples are art, communications, literature, foreign language, history, philosophy, logic, or humanities
    Statistics 3 No
    Medical terminology (college) 1 No Minimum of 1 credit, college level
    RECOMMENDED COURSES - NOT REQUIRED SEMESTER
    HOURS
    Ethics 3
    Public Speaking 3
    Theories of Personality 3
    Intensive Writing Course 3
    Logic/Philosophy 3
  4. Complete a minimum of 40 observation hours in at least two different occupational therapy settings that provide services related to children and youth, work and industry, rehabilitation, health and wellness, mental health, productive aging, or another specified facility (or graduation from an accredited occupational therapy assistant program).  Applicants will enter the observation hours completed in the OTCAS application.
  5. Submit a personal statement in the OTCAS system.
  6. Submit three letters of recommendation in OTCAS.  At least one of them must be from a licensed Occupational Therapist.
  7. Have completed the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or Pearson Test of English-Academic (PTE-Academic), if applicable.

Still have courses or requirements in progress?  Prospective students who have not yet met all admissions requirements can apply and  may be  reviewed pending completion of some of these requirements.  Individuals in this situation must have no more than two prerequisite courses in progress during the Spring semester.  Additionally, all coursework, observation hours, and other admission requirements must be completed prior to the start of the Summer semester.

Throughout the program, students must have access to and use computer skills such as word processing, spreadsheets, and presentation software. It is recommended that students have coursework or self-study to meet these needs. 

*Given the pandemic impact, Nova Southeastern University's O.T.D. program has provided information on mechanisms that may be helpful to applicants in satisfying requirements: 

  • Official TOEFL Scores (If applicable): We will accept the "TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition" option that ETS currently provides
  • Observation/Volunteer Hours Requirement: If you have not fully completed your volunteer hours, we have developed an alternative, virtual mechanism to help you satisfy this requirement. For additional information, please go to the "Program Materials" section of your OTCAS application, select Nova Southeastern University, and click on the "Documents" tab
  • Letter of Recommendation from an Occupational Therapist: Recommendation letters should minimally state how the person knows you (relationship), how long they have known you and direct contact time the person has had with you. If you are unable to obtain a letter of recommendation from an Occupational Therapist due to the impact of COVID-19, a letter of recommendation from the following sources may be substituted:
    • Professor within your undergraduate degree program
    • Lab Instructor from a course within your undergraduate degree program
    • Employer or supervisor for whom you have worked for
    • Representative from an organization for whom you completed volunteer work with

Additional Information

If you have any questions about NSU's entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.) program or application process, please contact:

O.T.D.  Fort Lauderdale  - James Redding at (954) 262-1124 or jredding@nova.edu 

First Year Courses

Course #

Course Title

Credit Hours

Summer Semester

 

 

OTD 8121

Introduction to Didactic, Clinical & Research Experiences

3

OTD 8122

Development of Occupation and Participation throughout the Lifespan

3

OTD 8111

Movement in Occupation Lecture

3

OTD 8111L

Movement in Occupation Lab

2

TOTAL

 

11

Fall Semester

 

 

OTD 8123

Theoretical Foundations of Occupational Therapy Practice

4

OTD 8132

Occupational & Contextual Analysis

2

OTD 8132L

Occupational & Contextual Analysis Lab

1

OTD 8124

Effects of Human Conditions on Occupation I

4

OTD 8154

Quantitative Evidence in Occupational Therapy

3

TOTAL

 

14

Winter Semester

 

 

OTD 8125

Effects of Human Conditions on Occupation II

4

OTD 8133

Therapeutic Use of Self in Human Interactions

3

OTD 8112

Neuroscience and Occupation Lecture

2

OTD 8112L

Neuroscience and Occupation Lab

1

OTD 8151

Qualitative Evidence in Occupational Therapy

3

TOTAL

 

13

Second Year Courses

Course #

Course Title

Credit Hours

Summer Semester

 

 

OTD 8241

Occupational Therapy Interventions I: Mental Health, Wellness, & Community Lecture

6

OTD 8241L

Occupational Therapy Interventions I: Mental Health, Wellness, & Community Lab

2

OTD 8274

Level I Fieldwork, Mental Health, Wellness, & Community

1

OTD 8234

Innovations and Technology as it Relates to Context & Environment Lecture

2

OTD 8234L

Innovations and Technology as it Relates to Context & Environment Lab

1

OTD 8255

Research Proposal & IRB

2

TOTAL

 

14

Fall Semester

 

 

OTD 8242

Occupational Therapy Interventions, Children & Youth Lecture

6

OTD 8242L

Occupational Therapy Interventions, Children & Youth Lab

2

OTD 8275

Level I Fieldwork, Occupational Therapy Interventions, Children & Youth

1

OTD 8256

Research Implementation –Data Collection

2

OTD 8264

Business of Practice & Management

3

TOTAL

 

14

Winter Semester

 

 

OTD 8243

Occupational Therapy Interventions, Adults Lecture

6

OTD 8243L

Occupational Therapy Interventions, Adults Lab

2

OTD 8276

Level I Fieldwork, Occupational Therapy Interventions, Adults

1

OTD 8265

Professional Leadership

3

OTD 8257

Research Implementation, Data Analysis & Interpretation

2

TOTAL

 

14

Third Year Courses

Course #

Course Title

Credit Hours

Summer Semester

 

 

OTD 8371

Level II Fieldwork Experience A

9

TOTAL

 

9

Fall Semester

 

 

OTD 8372

Doctoral Certification & Introduction to Doctoral Capstone

3

OTD 8381

or

OTD 8382

Occupational Science

or

Wellness in Occupational Therapy

3

OTD 8383

or

OTD 8384

Applying Measurement Theory to Evaluation

or

Sensory Processing Basis of Occupational Performance

3

OTD 8385

Topics in Contemporary and Emerging Practice

3

OTD 8358

Research Dissemination

2

TOTAL

 

14

Winter Semester

 

 

OTD 8373

Level II Fieldwork Experience B

9

TOTAL

 

9

Fourth Year Courses

Course #

Course Title

Credit Hours

Summer Semester

 

 

OTD 8474

Doctoral Capstone Experience, Reflections & Exit Colloquium

10

TOTAL

 

10

Students must complete 24 weeks of Level II fieldwork as well as an individual 16-week capstone experience within 24 months following the completion of the didactic portion of the program. The doctoral capstone experience must be started after completion of all coursework and Level II fieldwork as well as completion of preparatory activities defined in 2018 ACOTE OTD Standard D.1.3.

  • Tuition for 2022-2023 is $37,139. All tuition and fees are subject to change by the Board of Trustees without notice.
  • A Health Professions Division General Access Fee of $145 is required each year. An NSU student services fee of $1800 is also required annually.
  • Acceptance Fee is $400. This fee is required to reserve the accepted applicant's place in the entering first year class. This advance payment will be deducted from the tuition payment due on registration day, but is not refundable in the event of a withdrawal. It is payable within two weeks of an applicant's acceptance.
  • Pre-registration Fee is $600. This fee is due eight weeks after acceptance or by April 15, whichever comes first, under the same terms as the Acceptance Fee.

The first semester's tuition and fees, less the $1000 previously paid, are due on or before registration day. Tuition for each subsequent semester is due on or before the appropriate registration day. Students will not be admitted until their financial obligations have been met.

The financial ability of applicants to complete their training at the university is important because of the limited number of positions available in each class. Applicants should have specific plan for financing three and a half years of professional education. This should include tuition, living expenses, book equipment, fieldwork, residency, travel, and miscellaneous expenses.

NSU requires all students to carry adequate health insurance coverage. Therefore, students will automatically be enrolled in the NSU Student Health Insurance Plan, and their student accounts will be charged when they register for classes. Students who already have health insurance must opt out of the NSU Student Health Insurance Plan each academic year by the given waiver deadline for their program. For detailed information, including waiver deadlines, access to the online waiver, NSU Student Health Insurance Plan features, costs, and more, students should visit the Bursar’s website.

For more information, please call (954) 262-1101 or 877-640-0218.

Undergraduate and graduate course work taken at a foreign institution must be evaluated for U.S. institution equivalency. Please refer to the OTCAS Foreign and French-Canadian Transcripts page for more information.

NSU's entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program in Fort Lauderdale has applied for accreditation and has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its web address is www.acoteonline.org. The program must have a preaccreditation review, complete an on-site evaluation, and be granted Accreditation Status before its graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, all states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.  Students must complete 24 weeks of Level II fieldwork as well as an individual 14-16 week capstone experience within 24 months following the completion of the didactic portion of the program. The doctoral capstone experience must be started after completion of all coursework and Level II fieldwork as well as completion of preparatory activities defined in 2018 ACOTE OTD Standard D.1.3.

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Handbook

OTD Fort Lauderdale Info Sheet

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