3 Best Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago

The Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago are one of the best in Illinois and in the country.

The third-most populated city in the country, behind New York City and Los Angeles, is Chicago. It is also the most populous city in the U.S. state of Illinois.

Also, it is the most populated city in the Midwest with 2,746,388 residents as of the 2020 Census.  Chicago, the county seat of Cook County (the second-most populous U.S. county), is the center of the Chicago metropolitan area, one of the largest in the world.

Six occupational therapy schools in the state of Illinois are ACOTE-accredited and provide entry-level master’s or doctoral programs in occupational therapy.

Additionally, the state has 9 Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Schools that are approved by ACOTE and offer an associate degree. It is mandatory for graduates of OT schools to apply for the license.  This is because it is necessary to practice as an OT or OTA in the state of Illinois.

However, there are 3 Accredited Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago. Keep reading.

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Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago

Here are the best Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago:

Chicago State University (CSU)

Website: Visit here

Address: 9501 S King Dr, Chicago, IL 60628, United States

Phone: +1 773-995-2000


One of the oldest universities in the USA is the Chicago State University, which was established in 1867. Since 1984, the CSU’s occupational therapy program has been in operation. Students can attend the OT school for reasonable tuition costs.

It has some of the best Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago.

CSU presently provides two OT programs at the entrance level.

The regular graduate program is meant for students who have previously received a baccalaureate degree.

Furthermore, the combined program allows students to finish their senior year of their undergraduate program in the department. This is possible before entering the graduate program.

Graduates get a Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) degree at the conclusion of either program.

Rush University

Website: Visit here

Address: 1653 W Congress Pkwy #12, Chicago, IL 60612, United States


Chicago, Illinois’s Rush University is a private research university. The academic division of Rush University Medical Center was established in 1972.

Rush encompasses, the 61-bed Johnston R. Bowman Health Center, and a 664-bed hospital that treats both adults and children. The campus is located on Chicago’s Near West Side in the Illinois Medical District.

Rush University also houses Rush University Medical Center. This is the school’s teaching hospital.

Prior to its creation as a standalone academic division in January 1981, the Graduate College was structured as the Graduate School. It is located inside the College of Health Sciences.

Additionally, the Graduate College awards master’s and doctoral degrees in eleven fields. And it is in charge of basic science education programs.

Since 2007, the graduate college has also offered doctoral degrees in nursing and basic sciences. This is in addition to a Master of Science in Clinical Research and Biotechnology.

Each division in the Graduate College represents a different discipline and is connected to its parent academic department.

It has some of the best Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago.

University of Illinois at Chicago

Website: Visit here

Address: 1200 W Harrison St, Chicago, IL 60607, United States

Phone: +1 312-996-7000


Since 1943, the University of Illinois’ OT program has played a significant part in the growth of the occupational therapy profession. In order to fulfill its mission of “Creating Tomorrow’s Practice,” the occupational therapy school has integrated research, instruction, and clinical practice.

The OT school supports research in the area of occupational therapy. Over 290 publications have been made there in the past five years. It has some of the best Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago.

MOHO(model of human occupation) considers the University of Illinois at Chicago to be its home. The occupation-focused practice model known as MOHO is the most extensively used and cited one worldwide.

Read also :  11 Top Therapists in Chicago

Occupational therapy License in Chicago, Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation(IDFPR) is the organization that issues licenses to occupational therapists in Chicago. This license is important after completing Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago.

The following are the prerequisites for the license:

  • OTD degree or entry-level master’s degree
  • Certificate of passing the NBCOT exam.
  • $25 application costs.

Temporary OT/OTA Permit:

The applicant may be given a short-term license to practice as an occupational therapist (OT) or occupational therapy assistant (OTA). The applicant will be given a letter of authorisation allowing them to practice under supervision.

This letter will be given if they are found to be eligible for licensing with the exception of passing the examination. A qualified occupational therapist must be on-site for at least 75% of the employee’s working hours to qualify.

Occupational therapy in Illinois

The state association for occupational therapists, occupational therapy assistants, and OT/OTA students is called ILOTA (Illinois Occupational Therapy Association).

The ILOTA is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization that offers its members a professional network. In Chicago, the occupational therapy profession is represented by the ILOTA, a state-based professional organization.

Furthermore, the association’s primary duties include:

  • advancing occupational therapy as a profession, raising public knowledge of it,
  • supporting therapists in their pursuit of continuing education,
  • and enhancing and maintaining occupational therapy’s standing in the state of Illinois.

The American Occupational Therapy Association is linked with the ILOTA, a state organization.

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Occupational Therapy jobs in Chicago

After completing any of the Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago and getting licensed, then feel free to apply for jobs.

In Chicago, the employment chances for occupational therapists is excellent. Occupational therapy is one of the fastest-growing professions, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. With registered occupational therapists expected to have growth that is faster than average (21–36%).

Also, in Illinois, there is a scarcity of occupational therapists and OTAs, according to many health care recruitment companies.

Furthermore, in Illinois, there were around 4,800 licensed and employed occupational therapists in May 2016. This is according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Additionally, the demand for licensed practitioners is rising. For occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants,Chicago offers a wealth of opportunities.

Conclusion on Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago

We hope this article on Occupational Therapy Programs in Chicago will be of help.

However, according to Indeed.com, the average annual wage for occupational therapists in Illinois was $83,800 in 2021. The average hourly wage for occupational therapy professionals in May 2021 was $39.54, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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