Best occupational therapy in Florida

Today, we will be looking at occupational therapy in Florida and every essential thing you ought to about occupational therapy in general.

What is occupational therapy? Occupational therapy is a healthcare profession that assesses and intervenes in patients’ daily activities and vocations to improve their well-being.

To put it another way, it seeks to improve people’s health and well-being while allowing them to work.

The goal of occupational therapy (OT) is to help people with physical, sensory, or cognitive disabilities become as self-sufficient as possible.

In occupational therapy, a person’s daily activities, whether done alone, with family or as part of a larger group, are considered occupations.

It includes tasks that people must, want to, and are obligated to complete daily. This profession is unique in that it allows people of all ages to do what they want and need to do by utilizing everyday activities as a therapeutic tool (occupations).

Who is an Occupational Therapist?

An occupational therapist (OT) uses evidence-based practice, research, and scientific evidence to help patients achieve their goals of self-reliance, meaningful work, and functional capacity in their daily lives.

In Florida, how long does it take to become an Occupational Therapist?

In occupational therapy, both the occupational therapist and the occupational therapy assistant perform treatments.

There are two ways to enter the field of occupational therapy: formal education as an occupational therapist (OT) or as a certified occupational therapy assistant (COTA) (OTA).

The majority of occupational therapy (OT) and occupational therapy assistant (OTA) programs in Florida are at the master’s level, while the majority of OTA programs are at the associate’s level.

As a result, becoming a certified occupational therapist typically takes five to six years. To gain the necessary experience, an undergraduate degree is required before pursuing graduate study or fieldwork.

FOTA is the state association for occupational therapists, occupational therapy assistants, and OT/OTA students (Florida Occupational Therapy Association).

The FOTA is a non-profit volunteer organization that provides its members with a professional community. The FOTA is a professional organization based in Florida that serves as a public voice for the occupational therapy profession.

The association’s primary role is to promote the occupational therapy profession, raise public awareness, assist therapists in continuing education, and improve and maintain the quality of the occupational therapy profession in the state of Florida. The FOTA is a state affiliate of the American Occupational Therapy Association.

Occupational Therapy License in Florida

The Florida Board of Occupational Therapy requires occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants to obtain a license.

The license’s minimum requirements are –

  1. Passing certificate for the NBCOT exam at the entry-level master’s degree or OTD degree.
  2. Application fee of $180.
  3. Temporary OT/OTA Certification:

People who have completed the educational and experience requirements for licensure and are awaiting the results of the certification examination may be granted a limited permit to practice as an occupational therapist (OT) or as an occupational therapy assistant (OTA).

The limited permit is valid for 12 months or until the certification examination results are made available.

Florida Occupational Therapy Schools

The state of Florida has ten ACOTE-accredited Occupational Therapy Schools that offer an entry-level master’s degree or a Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.

In addition, the state has 11 ACOTE-accredited Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Schools that offer an associate degree. The license is required to practice as an OT or OTA in the state of Florida, and graduates of OT schools are required to apply for it.

The following are the top ten occupational therapy schools in Florida:

  1. Adventist University of Health Sciences-
  2. Barry University
  3. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
  4. Florida Gulf Coast University
  5. Florida International University
  6. Keiser University-Ft. Lauderdale Campus
  7. Nova Southeastern University
  8. University of Florida
  9. The University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences – Florida & Miami Campus
  10. Gannon University – Florida Campus
  • Adventist University of Health Sciences

Adventist stands among the top occupational therapy schools in Florida. Students at the OT school have access to cutting-edge technology. Many important labs are available at the OT school, including The Occupations Lab, The Occupational Therapy Performance Lab, and The Occupational Therapy Skills Lab.

The Occupations lab includes simulated living areas such as a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and laundry area, giving students real-life problem-solving scenarios. Hands-on techniques for kinesiology and biomechanical treatments are available in the Occupational Therapy Performance Lab.

Specialty classes such as orthotics, physical agent modalities, sensory integration, and wheelchair management are available in the Occupational Therapy Skills lab.

  • Barry University

The school of occupational therapy offers an entry-level Master of Science in Occupational Therapy. The program combines in-person and online learning.

In the fall, spring, and summer semesters, on-campus occupational therapy courses are scheduled on two weekends per month, allowing adults to continue working or raising their families while preparing for the occupational therapy profession. This institution is among the outstanding occupational therapy schools in Florida.

The OT school also offers a post-professional online Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD). This adaptable, distance-learning program is designed for registered occupational therapists who want to further their education beyond the master’s level.

  • Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU)

The Probationary Accreditation for ACOTE was effective from April 1, 2017. The course offered is Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (MSOT) with a duration of 2-5 years.

First, submit an online application through OTCAS; second, submit an online application to FAMU.

Requirement Minimum (MOT)

  1. A bachelor’s degree is required.
  2. GPA of 3.0 or better in all college coursework;
  3. GRE score (300 overall, 3.5 in the writing section);
  4. TOEFL iBT score of at least 80 (for international candidates);
  5. three letters of recommendation;
  6. 40 hours of observation or volunteer work in two different OT settings;
  7. A personal declaration.
  • University of Florida Gulf Coast

The OT school has cutting-edge laboratories and classrooms with small class sizes. From 2014 to 2016, the school had a perfect overall pass rate on the NBCOT certification examination.

  • University of Florida International

In comparison to private universities, the OT school offers low, in-state tuition. The OT school offers opportunities to participate in research with nationally recognized faculty members.

  • Keiser University-Ft. Lauderdale

The Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (MSOT) Bridge Program for Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants is available at this occupational therapy school (COTA). The OT program offers both on-campus and online learning options.

To prepare students for success on the NBCOT® exam, the occupational therapy program integrates didactic, face-to-face, and clinical experiences.

The Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education has granted “Candidacy Status” to the Keiser University Occupational Therapy Bridged Program (ACOTE).

  • NSU (Nova Southeastern University)-

It is one of the top occupational therapy schools in Florida. NSU offers two entry-level occupational therapy programs: Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) and Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD); in addition, NSU offers two post-professional occupational therapy programs: Clinical Doctorate (Dr.OT) and Research Doctorate (Ph.D.).

  • Florida State University

Beginning in the Fall semester of 2018, the University of Florida Department of Occupational Therapy offers an entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD). The ACOTE recently granted the program Candidacy Status.

Except for UF Pre-OT Health Science students graduating in May 2018, the MOT Program is now closed. The program has been renamed Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD).

  • Florida Campus of the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

The University of St. Augustine has three campuses, two in Florida and one in Texas, where students can pursue a master’s degree in occupational therapy. The ACOTE has accredited all MOT programs. It is one of the top occupational therapy schools in Florida.

The various entry-level options provided by OT schools are as follows:

  1. Flex MOT (Online/Weekend) in Miami and St. Augustine- 9 trimesters, 3-year MOT program, online/alternating weekends.
  2. Weekdays, 6 trimesters, 2-year MOT program in Miami, FL, St. Augustine, FL, and Austin, TX.
  3. Residential Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) programs are available in Austin, TX, San Marcos, CA, and St. Augustine, FL.
  4. The OT program has ACOTE status at St. Augustine, Florida campus. Miami campus OTD- Candidacy status MS- Candidacy status
  5. Entry-level OTD- Applicant at the Miami campus
  • Florida Occupational Therapy Jobs

In Florida, the job outlook for occupational therapists is very promising. Occupational therapy in Florida is one of the fastest-growing occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with registered occupational therapists expected to grow faster than the average (21- 36 percent ).

Many healthcare recruitment companies in Florida have reported a shortage of occupational therapists and OTA.

In May 2016, there were approximately 6,140 employed and licensed occupational therapists in Florida, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And the need for licensed practitioners is growing. There are numerous opportunities in Florida for occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants.

  • Occupational Therapy Salary in Florida

According to, the average annual salary for an occupational therapist in Florida in 2016 was $85,000, and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual and hourly income of occupational therapy professionals in May 2016 was $84,150 and $40.46, respectively.

FAQs about the occupational therapy in Florida

See below for the answers to the most asked questions about occupational therapy in Florida;

  • In Florida, how long does it take to become an occupational therapist?

To become an occupational therapist, you must first obtain an undergraduate and graduate degree, as well as pass the necessary licensure exams.

Expect to be in school for six to seven years: four years for an undergraduate degree and two to three years for a graduate degree (if you are attending school full-time).

  • In Florida, how do I become an occupational therapist?

The following are the specifics on how to become an Occupational Therapy Assistant or Registered Occupational Therapist.

Step One: Complete an Accredited Occupational Therapy Degree Program.

Step 2: Participate in an Internship or Practicum.

Step 3: Get National Certification.

Step 4: Apply for a license.

  • In Florida, how many occupational therapy schools are there?

The state of Florida has ten ACOTE-accredited Occupational Therapy Schools that offer an entry-level master’s degree or a Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.

  • What is the cost of a Florida occupational therapy license?

Application Fee: $100.00 (non-refundable)

The initial license fee is $75.00, and the unlicensed activity fee is $5.00.

The total application fee is $.

  • How long does it take to train as an occupational therapist?

Requirements for Entry

A degree in occupational therapy is required to become an occupational therapist, which typically takes three years full-time or up to six years part-time. A Master’s degree can be obtained in one to two years of postgraduate studies.

A final thought on the occupational therapy in Florida

After reviewing all information on occupational therapy in Florida, we’ve come to realize that it is rewarding to work as an Occupational Therapy Assistant because you can help people and build relationships with your patients.

Working as an OTA allows you to help others while also expanding the healthcare industry. I hope this article has answered every question you have on occupational therapy in Florida.

See your opinion counts on our platform, feel free to air your view in the comment box.


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