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Lavanya Khare
Jun 3, 2022

An occupational therapist is a health professional who helps individuals who have mental, emotional, and physical issues. Occupational therapists use everyday activities or occupations to treat their patients. Through these activities, they treat physical, mental, emotional and developmental difficulties. Sometimes, due to these difficulties, their patients are unable to perform everyday tasks. Occupational therapists help their patients perform these tasks through their therapeutic methods.

Who is an Occupational Therapist?

Occupational therapists play an important role in the lives of their patients. They are health professionals who help patients regain or develop the ability to perform certain everyday tasks. Their patients could face these difficulties due to developmental delays, illnesses, accidents or pre-existing conditions. Occupational therapists are tasked with the responsibility of helping their patients rehabilitate by using exercises and day-to-day activities.

Occupational therapists work with a variety of individuals including children and the elderly.

What is the Role of an Occupational Therapist?

The scope of occupational therapy and an effective therapist’s role includes:

  1. Assess their patient’s needs through physical assessments, discussions with their therapists (if needed), and their medical histories.
  2. Understand their patient’s abilities and inabilities to perform certain tasks.
  3. Develop a treatment plan and work with the patient and their care-giver circle.
  4. Educate a patient’s family and friends and help them understand how to help the patient.
  5. Teach the patient exercises and movements and have sessions to work with them.

What Skills are Needed to be an Occupational Therapist?

An occupational therapist should have certain skills including:

1. Good Communication 

An occupational therapist must be a good communicator on many levels. They must be able to effectively verbally guide their patients as well as physically show them how to do their exercises. They must  communicate calmly and clearly.

2. Critical Thinking 

There are many treatment methods available when it comes to occupational therapy. A good occupational therapist must be able to think critically and decide the best course of treatment for their patient.

3. Patience

Patients who require occupational therapists have faced many difficulties in the past and can sometimes be frustrated by treatments. They need a patient occupational therapist who will help them see the bigger picture and have faith in the treatment.

What are the Benefits of Being an Occupational Therapist?

The field of occupational therapy is growing each day. People are growing more aware of the need of such therapists and are willing to pay handsomely for good occupational therapists. This allows for therapists to charge a good fee for their services and have the flexibility to work privately or with an organisation – all of which are lucrative benefits to get into the profession.

How to Become an Occupational Therapist?

There are several levels at which an interested candidate can begin to study occupational therapy. Here are some of the ways in which one can become an occupational therapist:

Undergraduate Level:

Interested aspirants can study a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. Depending on the college, the course is between 3-4.5 years in length. Interested students must have studied Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and English in their 10+2 in order to be eligible for the course. The entrance exams for the course vary from college to college. Some colleges have their own entrance exams, while others accept the NEET NTA and other entrance exams.

Postgraduate Level:

Interested students can also continue their education and study a Masters in Occupational Therapy. It is a two year degree and interested students must have a minimum of 50-55% (varies between colleges) in their Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree. The entrance exams vary between colleges and can include MET, CET, and IPU-CET.

Certificates and Diplomas:

Interested students can apply after completing their graduate degrees. They must have studied Physics, Chemistry, and Biology in their 10+2 and scored a minimum of 50% in their graduate degrees.

What are the Courses Available to Become an Occupational Therapist?

There are many courses available to students who want to become an occupational therapist. 

Undergraduate Courses:

Colleges offering a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree include:

  1. Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal
  2. Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi
  3. ISIC Institute of Rehabilitation Sciences, New Delhi

Postgraduate Courses:

Colleges offering a Master of Occupational Therapy degree include:

  1. Jaipur Occupational Therapy College, Jaipur
  2. Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik
  3. Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi

Certificate and Diploma Degrees:

Colleges offering certificate and diploma degrees include:

  1. Himalayan University, Itanagar
  2. DP Institute of Professional Studies, Moradabad
  3. Aligarh School of Nursing, Aligarh

What are the Entrance Exams Required to Become an Occupational Therapist?

Colleges have varying requirements for entrance exams. Some of the entrance exams required include:

  1. NEET NTA (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test held by the National Testing Agency)
  2. CET (Common Entrance Test)
  3. IPU-CET (Indraprastha University Common Entrance Test)

What Specialisation Can One Do After an Occupational Degree?

Occupational therapy, in itself, is a specialised degree. The highest degree an interested student can receive is a PhD in Occupational Therapy.

What are the Fees of Colleges in India?

Here are the fees for some of the courses to study BUMS:

College Course Course Fees
Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal Bachelor of Occupational Therapy ₹9,78,000
Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik Master of Occupational Therapy ₹92,000
Aligarh School of Nursing, Aligarh Diploma in Occupational Therapy ₹80,000 (est)

Loans for Students

Banks across the country offer students loans for their higher studies with interest rates as low as 7.5%. There are also organisations such as Propelld offering 100% digitised private student loans. 

How to become an occupational therapist

Lavanya Khare
June 3, 2022
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Shivam Bhardwaj
March 15th 2022

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Who is an Occupational Therapist?

Occupational therapists play an important role in the lives of their patients. They are health professionals who help patients regain or develop the ability to perform certain everyday tasks. Their patients could face these difficulties due to developmental delays, illnesses, accidents or pre-existing conditions. Occupational therapists are tasked with the responsibility of helping their patients rehabilitate by using exercises and day-to-day activities.

Occupational therapists work with a variety of individuals including children and the elderly.

What is the Role of an Occupational Therapist?

The scope of occupational therapy and an effective therapist’s role includes:

  1. Assess their patient’s needs through physical assessments, discussions with their therapists (if needed), and their medical histories.
  2. Understand their patient’s abilities and inabilities to perform certain tasks.
  3. Develop a treatment plan and work with the patient and their care-giver circle.
  4. Educate a patient’s family and friends and help them understand how to help the patient.
  5. Teach the patient exercises and movements and have sessions to work with them.

What Skills are Needed to be an Occupational Therapist?

An occupational therapist should have certain skills including:

1. Good Communication 

An occupational therapist must be a good communicator on many levels. They must be able to effectively verbally guide their patients as well as physically show them how to do their exercises. They must  communicate calmly and clearly.

2. Critical Thinking 

There are many treatment methods available when it comes to occupational therapy. A good occupational therapist must be able to think critically and decide the best course of treatment for their patient.

3. Patience

Patients who require occupational therapists have faced many difficulties in the past and can sometimes be frustrated by treatments. They need a patient occupational therapist who will help them see the bigger picture and have faith in the treatment.

What are the Benefits of Being an Occupational Therapist?

The field of occupational therapy is growing each day. People are growing more aware of the need of such therapists and are willing to pay handsomely for good occupational therapists. This allows for therapists to charge a good fee for their services and have the flexibility to work privately or with an organisation – all of which are lucrative benefits to get into the profession.

How to Become an Occupational Therapist?

There are several levels at which an interested candidate can begin to study occupational therapy. Here are some of the ways in which one can become an occupational therapist:

Undergraduate Level:

Interested aspirants can study a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. Depending on the college, the course is between 3-4.5 years in length. Interested students must have studied Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and English in their 10+2 in order to be eligible for the course. The entrance exams for the course vary from college to college. Some colleges have their own entrance exams, while others accept the NEET NTA and other entrance exams.

Postgraduate Level:

Interested students can also continue their education and study a Masters in Occupational Therapy. It is a two year degree and interested students must have a minimum of 50-55% (varies between colleges) in their Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree. The entrance exams vary between colleges and can include MET, CET, and IPU-CET.

Certificates and Diplomas:

Interested students can apply after completing their graduate degrees. They must have studied Physics, Chemistry, and Biology in their 10+2 and scored a minimum of 50% in their graduate degrees.

What are the Courses Available to Become an Occupational Therapist?

There are many courses available to students who want to become an occupational therapist. 

Undergraduate Courses:

Colleges offering a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree include:

  1. Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal
  2. Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi
  3. ISIC Institute of Rehabilitation Sciences, New Delhi

Postgraduate Courses:

Colleges offering a Master of Occupational Therapy degree include:

  1. Jaipur Occupational Therapy College, Jaipur
  2. Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik
  3. Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi

Certificate and Diploma Degrees:

Colleges offering certificate and diploma degrees include:

  1. Himalayan University, Itanagar
  2. DP Institute of Professional Studies, Moradabad
  3. Aligarh School of Nursing, Aligarh

What are the Entrance Exams Required to Become an Occupational Therapist?

Colleges have varying requirements for entrance exams. Some of the entrance exams required include:

  1. NEET NTA (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test held by the National Testing Agency)
  2. CET (Common Entrance Test)
  3. IPU-CET (Indraprastha University Common Entrance Test)

What Specialisation Can One Do After an Occupational Degree?

Occupational therapy, in itself, is a specialised degree. The highest degree an interested student can receive is a PhD in Occupational Therapy.

What are the Fees of Colleges in India?

Here are the fees for some of the courses to study BUMS:

College Course Course Fees
Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal Bachelor of Occupational Therapy ₹9,78,000
Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik Master of Occupational Therapy ₹92,000
Aligarh School of Nursing, Aligarh Diploma in Occupational Therapy ₹80,000 (est)

Loans for Students

Banks across the country offer students loans for their higher studies with interest rates as low as 7.5%. There are also organisations such as Propelld offering 100% digitised private student loans. 

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Some Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming an Occupational Therapist

What are some of the subjects taught in a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy course?

Some of the subjects taught in a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy course are:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Pharmacology
  • Occupational Therapy in Neurology
  • General Medicine

What is an occupational therapist’s salary in India?

An occupation therapist’s salary in India ranges from ₹40,000 to ₹8,10,000 per annum.

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