2015-2016 Academic Catalog 
    
    Jan 26, 2022  
2015-2016 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Occupational Therapy


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Occupational therapists’ expertise lies in their knowledge of human occupation and how engaging in occupations can be used to impact human performance and the effects of disease and disability. Since engaging in occupation includes emotional aspects as well as the physically observable aspects of performance, occupational therapists approach their interactions with clients from a holistic perspective that addresses the physical, cognitive, psychosocial and contextual aspects of performance.

Occupational therapists direct their interventions toward helping individuals engage in meaningful occupations that contribute to their health, well-being and life satisfaction. By linking the ability of individuals to perform daily life activities with meaningful occupations, occupational therapists promote the individual’s participation in desired roles and life situations in the home, school, workplace and community.

Occupational therapists assist individuals in identifying goals and performing the activities needed to function in their home, school, community or work environments. By restoring, reinforcing, or enhancing an individual’s ability to perform daily activities, occupational therapists help that person adapt to limitations or reshape their lives to become more productive and meaningful. By addressing problems that threaten individuals’ quality of life, occupational therapists promote and maintain health, diminish or correct pathology, facilitate satisfaction and develop abilities to perform tasks essential to productive living.

Occupational therapy is a challenging profession that provides services to individuals of all ages in a variety of health care and community settings. Occupational therapists often work in institutional settings such as hospitals, rehabilitation centers and school systems as members of interdisciplinary teams. While many occupational therapists continue to work in these settings, occupational therapists are also working with community businesses and agencies to bring occupational therapy services to a variety of places where people live, play and work. These include: community-based health care systems (home care), corporate environments, physicians’ offices, correctional institutions, hospice programs, specialized day care and day treatment programs, residences for persons with developmental or mental health disabilities and retirement communities.

Currently, the Occupational Therapy Program at Maryville is a graduate degree program for students who enter as freshmen and progress toward an MOT (Master of Occupational Therapy) degree in 5 academic years. The last cohort of students will be admitted to the freshman entry program in Fall 2014.

Accepted students entering in the Fall 2016 will enroll in the new graduate curriculum after completing a baccalaureate degree. The re-designed curriculum will continue the community-based focus and its emphasis on the development of professional behaviors and clinical reasoning skills prepare our students to practice in a variety of clinical and community settings.

Curriculum Design

Throughout the academic program, you will gain the knowledge, skills and clinical reasoning strategies needed for entry-level practice as an occupational therapist. Additionally, you will learn to achieve and maintain an acceptable level of professional behavior integral to clinical practice.

Freshman Entry Admission (Fall 2014)

Through the combination of general education, liberal arts, and professional education, you’ll become a practitioner who is culturally sensitive and well-rounded in your knowledge and interests. During the first two academic years you will enroll in some foundational occupational therapy courses while you focus on general education classes. Your third, fourth and fifth years of the Program are composed primarily of occupational therapy coursework, including fieldwork experiences in a variety of health care and community settings. Fieldwork placements are offered as two 12-week placements and may be assigned anywhere in the United States. International fieldwork placements may be possible provided the site and country meet the guidelines of the American Occupational Therapy Association.

Graduate Admissions (Fall 2016)

Students will enter this curriculum after completing a baccalaureate degree that includes prerequisite foundational coursework in biological and social sciences. During the post-baccalaureate program you will complete courses that emphasize foundational knowledge, develop practice skills and instill professional behaviors required for entering occupational therapy practice. Fieldwork experiences in a variety of health care and community settings.  Fieldwork placements are offered as two 12-week placements and may be assigned anywhere in the United States. International fieldwork placements may be possible provided the site and country meet the guidelines of the American Occupational Therapy Association.

The Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) www.acoteonline.org of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, P.O. Box 31220 Bethesda, MD 20824 (telephone number: (301) 652-AOTA). Graduation from an ACOTE accredited program is required to sit for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) examination. Having been charged with or convicted of a felony; having any professional license, registration or certificate revoked, suspended or subject to probationary conditions; or being found to have committed negligence, malpractice, recklessness or willful or intentional misconduct may result in the graduate being barred from sitting for the certification examination. The graduate will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR) after successful completion of the exam.

The total number of program graduates between 2011 and 2013 was 59. The number of student who graduated from the program within 150% of the published length of the program was 75%. The 2013 pass rate data is available online at https://secure.nbcot.org/data/schoolstats.aspx

Health and Other Special Requirements

The following requirements must be met prior to participating in required Level I and Level II fieldwork:

  • Physical Examination
  • Documentation of Immunization and Titer Immunity 
    • Measles/Rubeola, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)
    • Tetanus, Diphtheria and Acellular Pertussis (Tdap)
    • Polio series completed
    • Varicella titer or Varicella vaccinations
    • Hepatitis B Vaccine Series or Declination
      (Students may not be able to go to certain fieldwork sites if they do not receive the vaccine)
    • Flu Vaccine annual
    • TB-Tuberculin PPD test (documented 2-step initially, then annual)
  • Health Insurance (copy of card annually)
  • CPR Certification-American Heart Association Basic Life Support for the Health Care Provider required
  • Current First Aid certification
  • Urine Drug Screen
  • Criminal Record Background check from Maryville University’s authorized agency and signed release to clinical sites (possible checks include:  state criminal checks, disqualification lists, sex offender lists, social security number, address and alias)
  • Fitting for a respiratory isolation device (i.e. N95 Mask) may be required by some clinical sites
  • A few hospitals in Missouri now require nicotine screenings for all new employees.  Therefore it is anticipated that students may be excluded from some clinical sites based upon their use of nicotine
  • Malpractice insurance
  • Signed release of information forms to allow Criminal Record Background Check, Urine Drug Screen, health and other pertinent data to be provided to the Clinical Education Program and to facilities where the student completes fieldwork experiences.

Progression in the Occupational Therapy Program

Society has high expectations regarding the education and training of health professionals. These are the expectations of consistent levels of personal responsibility, professionalism and integrity. The profession of occupational therapy has the same type of expectations of its members. Students are responsible for maintaining the high standard of academic and personal performance established for each course and fieldwork experience in which they are enrolled.

Academic Standards

Freshman Entry Curriculum (for students entering before 2015)

The following standards related to continuation in the freshman entry occupational therapy curriculum are stated below. To remain in good standing for continuation through the OT Program, students must:

  • Maintain minimum full-time enrollment status (12 credit hours). Part-time enrollment status may be requested, in writing, on an individual basis. Written requests for part-time status must reviewed by the student’s academic advisor and OT Program Director prior to submission to the Dean of the School of Health Professions.
  • Meet the academic/grading standards necessary to enter the occupational therapy profession.
  • Students in the Occupational Therapy Program must earn no less than a “C” in all required undergraduate courses (100-400 level). Students earning below a “C” (C- or below) in any required undergraduate level course will automatically be placed on probation and will not be permitted to progress to subsequent coursework until the course is retaken when it is next offered and passed with a grade “C” or better.
  • Students in the Occupational Therapy Program must earn no less than a “B-” in all required graduate courses (500 & 600 level). Students earning below a “B-” (C+ or below) in any required graduate level course will automatically be placed on probation and will not be permitted to progress to subsequent coursework until the course is retaken when it is next offered and passed with a grade “B-” or better.
  • Required courses within the OT curriculum may be repeated only once and failure to achieve the minimum accepted letter grade on the second course attempt will result in dismissal from the OT Program. Failure to meet the minimum grade standards in any required course for a second consecutive or non-consecutive semester will result in dismissal from the OT Program.
  • A semester AND cumulative GPA of 3.0 or greater must be maintained throughout the entirety of the program. Failure to achieve this minimum grade point average will result in probation. Failure to meet the minimum 3.0 semester AND cumulative GPA for a second consecutive or nonconsecutive semester will result in dismissal from the OT Program.
  • Students completing the freshman entry program must also:
  • Successfully complete all general education requirements by the Spring semester of the third year in the Occupational Therapy program
  • Successfully complete all Level II fieldwork prior to enrollment in courses for the final semester
  • Complete all academic and fieldwork requirements within five calendar years after beginning the second year of the Occupational Therapy program

Graduate Curriculum (beginning in 2016)

The following standards related to continuation in the post-baccalaureate occupational therapy curriculum are stated below. To remain in good standing for continuation through the OT Program, students must:

  • Students in the Occupational Therapy Program must earn no less than a “B-” in all required graduate courses. Students earning below a “B-” (C+ or below) in any required graduate level course will automatically be placed on probation and will not be permitted to progress to subsequent coursework until the course is retaken when it is next offered and passed with a grade “B-” or better.
  • Required courses within the OT curriculum may be repeated only once and failure to achieve the minimum accepted letter grade on the second course attempt will result in dismissal from the OT Program. Failure to meet the minimum grade standards in any required course for a second consecutive or non-consecutive semester will result in dismissal from the OT Program.
  • A semester AND cumulative GPA of 3.0 or greater must be maintained throughout the entirety of the program. Failure to achieve this minimum grade point average will result in probation. Failure to meet the minimum 3.0 semester AND cumulative GPA for a second consecutive or nonconsecutive semester will result in dismissal from the OT Program.

Professional Behavior Standards

To progress in the Occupational Therapy, students must meet the professional behavior standards necessary to enter the profession of Occupational Therapy. Students must achieve and maintain a satisfactory level of professional behavior each semester in the areas of time management, organization, engagement in academic and fieldwork experiences, self-directed learning, reasoning/problem solving, written communication, initiative, observation skills, participation in the education process, verbal communication/interpersonal skills, professional boundaries and use of professional terminology. Failing to achieve expected levels of professional behavior will delay scheduling of fieldwork experiences and may result in the student being placed on probation or being terminated from the program.

Students are expected to:

  • Comply with University Academic Integrity Policy and Occupational Therapy Code of Ethics
  • Pass background checks and urine drug screen. Failure to pass either of these screenings may result in dismissal from the Occupational Therapy Program
  • Successfully complete all required courses prior to enrollment in Level II fieldwork
  • Successfully complete all Level I and Level II fieldwork.

Graduation

Students must successfully complete all curriculum requirements (academic coursework and fieldwork) prior to graduation. Degree candidates must complete an application for graduation prior to the final semester that the degree will be completed. Students are encouraged to participate in commencement.

Occupational Therapy Program Expenses

Students also can expect to pay additional expenses associated with the experiential portion of the program - such fees for attending professional conferences, professional attire for fieldwork, lab fees for selected courses, fieldwork required insurance coverage, health tests, CPR & First Aid certification, immunizations, background checks, drug screens and living and transportation expenses during fieldwork. Other expenses include AOTA membership and textbooks that are used across the Program and as professional references once in the field.

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