Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD)

Program Features

Students in Xavier's occupational therapy doctorate program graduate with an entry-level doctorate degree (OTD), ready to make a difference in the lives of others. Xavier's occupational therapy doctorate program has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education.

Students in the occupational therapy doctorate program gain skills that last a lifetime. Grounded in ethics, students become practitioners, leaders, advocates and scholars. Cincinnati is perfect for hands-on practice through access to hospitals, rehabilitation sites, educational settings, mental health facilities, skilled nursing homes and community-based settings.


Occupational therapists are members of a health care team who care for people, groups, and populations. Occupational therapists help their clients achieve what they need most: the ability to participate in their own lives and communities. 


The Entry-level Occupational Therapy Doctorate Degree Admission Requirements describe the application materials. The proposed application process for initial acceptance into the OTD program includes but is not limited to the following: completion of a minimum of a bachelor's degree with an earned cumulative GPA of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale preferred; completion of all pre-requisite course requirements; meeting competitive GRE score criteria; and submitting an application that is accompanied by documentation of two separate volunteer experiences (waived for program start Fall 2022 due to COVID-19) and three letters of recommendation.

Rolling admission for Fall 2022 is underway until slots are filled. Offers of acceptance will be determined by the following: 1). Applications will be reviewed and accepted as criteria are met; 2). Candidates meeting criteria will be offered acceptance until cap is reached; 3). Remaining applicants who meet criteria will be wait-listed and offered acceptance as slots are available until admissions close.

Submit application via OTCAS, the common online occupational therapy application system.

For students entering Xavier University as freshman, there is the potential for a Direct Admit Pathway. Slots will be held for incoming Xavier University freshman students who are in the upper tier as indicated by high school cumulative GPA and ACT or SAT scores, and continue to meet OTD Admission criteria upon application to the OTD Program.

A diverse applicant pool is encouraged to apply. Student Clubs and University Supports offer encouragement, motivation, and camaraderie for all. Once admitted, off-campus housing can be found in multiple locations near campus.

Occupational Therapy Doctorate Program Information Sessions

Attend a faculty-hosted Information Session to find out more details about the program. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2022 at 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM - In Person 

Tuesday, August 30, 2022 at 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM - In Person

Monday, September 12, 2022 at 6:00 PM-7:00 PM - Zoom

Wednesday, September 21, 2022 at 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM - In Person

Thursday, October 20, 2022 at 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM - In Person

Tuesday, October 25, 2022 at 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM - Zoom

Monday, November 14, 2022 at 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM - In Person




  • 502 Occupational Sciences............ 3cr.
  • 504 Foundations of Occupational Therapy............ 3cr.
  • 506 Occupational Therapy Professional Standards/Ethics............ 3cr.
  • 508 Occupational Therapy Theory............ 3cr.
  • 510 Therapeutic Skills............ 3cr.
  • 512 Therapeutic Skills Lab............ 1cr.


  • 520 Occupational Therapy Measurement and Assessment............ 3cr.
  • 522 Occupational Therapy Quantitative Research Methods............ 3cr.
  • 524 Occupational Justice............ 3cr.
  • 526 Occupational Therapy Process Behavioral Health............ 3cr.
  • 528 Behavioral Health Lab............ 1cr.
  • 530 Focused Topic Grant Writing............ 1cr.
  • 532 Focused Topic Occupational Therapy Evidence-based Practice............ 1cr.
  • 534 Capstone Overview............ 1cr.


  • 600 Occupational Therapy Process Pediatrics............ 3cr.
  • 602 Pediatrics Lab............ 1cr.
  • 604 Capstone Development I............ 3cr.
  • 606 Occupational Therapy Qualitative Research Methods............ 3cr.
  • 608 Environmental Analysis............ 3cr.
  • 610 Focused Topic School-based Practice............ 1cr.
  • 612 Focused Topic Academia............ 1cr.
  • 614 Level I Fieldwork Pediatrics............ 1cr.


  • 620 Occupational Therapy Process Adults............ 3cr.
  • 622 Adults Lab............ 1cr.
  • 624 Capstone Development II............ 3cr.
  • 626 Assistive Technology for Lifespan............ 3cr.
  • 628 Assistive Technology Lab............ 1cr.
  • 630 Occupational Therapy Management and Supervision............ 3cr.
  • 632 Research Project 1............ 1cr.
  • 634 Focused Topic Lab: Prosthetics, PAMs, Splinting............ 1cr.


  • 700 Occupational Therapy Process Geriatrics............ 3cr.
  • 702 Capstone Development III............ 1cr.
  • 704 Research Project II............ 3cr.
  • 706 Advanced Practice: Population Health & Community-Based Practice............ 3cr.
  • 708 Occupational Therapy Leadership & Advocacy............ 3cr.
  • 710 Focused Topic Elective............ 1cr.
  • 712 Level I Fieldwork Adult/Geriatric............ 1cr.
  • 714 Level I TIDE Fieldwork............ 1cr.


  • 720 Level II Fieldwork A............ 6cr.
  • 722 Level II Fieldwork B............ 6cr.


  • 800 Capstone Practicum............ 6cr.
  • 802 Capstone Dissemination............ 3cr.

Sample Courses

OCTD 510 Therapeutic Skills (3)
Overview of intervention skills to include therapeutic use of self; teaching-learning process; standard and electronic documentation; safety standards and procedures (HIPAA/BBP, vitals); functional mobility (wheelchairs, transfers); assistive devices; and select strength and movement assessments.

OCTD 524 Occupational Justice (3)
Exploration of justice theories; diversity factors; contexts and culture; power structures associated with life participation for marginalized persons, groups, and populations. Includes national and international policies as well as human rights' advocacy. 

OCTD 600 Occupational Therapy Process: Pediatrics (3)
Implementation of occupational therapy process with pediatric populations using rehabilitative approach. Includes overview of common developmental, neurological, and orthopedic conditions served, evidence-based evaluation and interventions, and dynamics of hospital and community-based practice, including teaming and documentation.

OCTD 706 Advanced Practice: Population Health & Community-Based Practice (3)
Course content relates to evidence-based interventions and consultative services related to health and wellness occupational needs using community and population-based approaches. Interprofessional teaming, care coordination and transition services using local, state, regional, national, and international resources are also emphasized.

Program Costs

Type Fall 2021 Semester Spring 2022 Semester 2021-2022 Academic Year Program Total (3.5yr 2021-2024)
Tuition $13,600 $13,600 $27,200 $85,850
Lab Fee $90 $175 $265 $729
Liability Insuranceb $18 $18 $36 $126
Booksc $583 $419 $1,002 $2,651
OOTA Membershipb $25 n/a $25 $100
AOTA Membershipb $75 n/a $75 $300
Graduate Student Associationb $8 n/a $8 $32
Repositoryd $35 n/a n/a $35
Total $14,434 $14,194 $28,593 $89,769

aAll costs including tuition and fees are subject to change.
bItems listed as n/a during Sping reflect an annual only fee.
cBook amount reflects average cost of purchasing 'new' with some books available via 'rent' or 'used'.
dA one-time fee to maintain a lifetime record of all required documents, e.g. immunizations, CPR Certification, criminal background check.

The amounts listed are for the 2021-2023 academic year, and include classes from Fall 2021 through Spring 2023.

Xavier University reserves the right to correct andy computational or clerical errors.


Occupational therapy is a rewarding and satisfying career that requires a high level of skill and expertise. The occupational therapy doctoral degree provides “opportunities for the occupational therapist to possess the necessary knowledge and skills as a direct care provider, consultant, educator, manager, leader, researcher, and advocate for the profession and the consumer (ACOTE Standards, 2018).” Future graduates of Xavier’s OTD program will have many exciting and promising opportunities for a fulfilling career.

Explore Xavier Alumni Outcomes

OTD Mission

Our Mission is to educate and prepare future occupational therapists who respond to the occupational needs of a diverse, complex, interdependent, and ever-changing global society. Xavier University OTD graduates will practice as ethical, competent, and caring professionals using critical, creative, and reflective thinking and habits of lifelong learning. As professionals, Xavier University graduates will balance autonomous and collaborative decision-making to successfully navigate a variety of delivery systems in traditional and emerging practice areas where they implement theory-driven and evidence-based practice.  Xavier University graduates will be leaders who model and advocate for justice for people, populations, and communities. To promote occupational participation and advance the profession, our graduates will utilize, produce, and disseminate scholarly works.

Fieldwork and Capstone Experiences for Occupational Therapy Students

Students in the occupational therapy Doctorate program working together on a capstone project

Cincinnati is the perfect classroom for hands-on practice through hospitals, rehabilitation sites, school settings, mental health facilities and skilled nursing homes. Additionally, long-lasting professional partnerships offer students opportunities to complete the Doctoral Capstone Project and Doctoral Capstone Experience in areas of leadership, advocacy, program and policy development, education or research.

Brand New Lab Facilities for Occupational Therapy Students

Exterior of the Health United Building, home to Xavier's occupational therapy doctorate program

Our on-site, clinical, daily living, and technology labs allow for assessment, intervention and research using the latest tools and techniques. These three dedicated labs, along with new classrooms, are housed in the Health United Building. The building also houses student health and counseling services and a recreational center.

Facilities for Occupational Therapy Students

International Experience Opportunities for Occupational Therapy Students

Students in the occupational therapy doctorate program on an international trip to Peru.

All students have the opportunity to complete an international Level I fieldwork experience, gaining skills to last a lifetime. As our world is ever inter-connected, inter-related, and inter-dependent, your worldview and skill set will expand exponentially.

Experience the World

Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) logo


MOT Program accredited and OTD Program granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). 

Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE)
National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) logo


For National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certification exam pass rates, please visit:


Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Program at Xavier University

Students in the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program become leaders in the effort to improve health-care outcomes by using occupation or meaningful activity to address physical, emotional or educational needs. Students graduate with an entry-level Occupational Therapy doctoral degree, ready to make a difference in the lives of others. Xavier University is now accepting students into the entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program for fall 2022 enrollment.

Xavier University's College of Professional Sciences prepares undergraduate and graduate students intellectually, morally and spiritually for careers and professions of service. CPS challenges students to strive for academic excellence and life-long learning through promoting collaboration and community partnerships, and incorporating research, scholarship and innovation.

Xavier University is a private university located in Cincinnati, Ohio, providing a liberal arts education in the Jesuit Catholic tradition. Founded in 1831, the University is the sixth-oldest Catholic university in the nation. It has been ranked among the top 10 master's-level universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report for the past two decades. The Princeton Review names it one of the "Best 385 Colleges in America."