Do you have what it takes to work with individuals who are physically or mentally impaired? Do you also think that you can work to help people who have emotional and developmental disabilities? Do you have the desire to help individuals improve their quality of life in order to function at a higher level? If you said yes to each of these questions, then now is definitely the time for you to consider a career as an occupational therapy assistant. As an occupational therapy assistant you will work under the guidance of an occupational therapist in order to help a patient maintain their mobility and their health.
This may require you to also provide educational instruction and rehabilitative services to your patients. In this profession it will be important that you know your patients well; this will help you know when it is appropriate to challenge them and when they have reached their threshold. As an occupational therapy assistant you will be expected to continually report back to the occupational therapist to ensure that proper practices are always being followed. We have put together all the occupational therapist training and career courses below to help you make your decision.
In order to be properly trained to work as an occupational therapy assistant, you will be well served to complete an associate’s degree program. Generally speaking, you can find this degree program at most community colleges or vocational institutes. You should expect to have to complete classroom based instructional classes, laboratory classes, and clinically based experiences. Each of these components will come together to help you learn what you need to know about chronic illnesses, mental disorders, and physical ailments and how they each relate to your occupational therapy work. It is important to understand that there is a significant difference between an occupational therapy assistant and an occupational therapy aide.
Since an occupational therapy aide doesn’t have to have any level of formal training, certification is not an option. On the contrary, most occupational therapy assistants obtain certification through the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy. Furthermore, if you become employed through a school system or an early intervention program you may have additional educational requirements that you can expect to meet. Take a few minutes and look over the schools that are shown on our site. Feel free to request a complimentary information packet from any of the schools that are particularly appealing to you. This will likely help you to make a more informed educational decision that will coincide with your goals.
As an occupational or rehabiliation therapy assistant you will be qualified to work in a school system, for a home health care agency, or for a privately owned practice.