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Occupational Therapy Assistant, O.T.A- B (Pre-Health Professions)

58 Credits  |   Main Campus

Occupational therapy helps people across the lifespan engage in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities.

Want to help people live happy and productive lives despite physical limitations? Trinity’s Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA-B) degree educates students to work under the supervision and in collaboration with an occupational therapist (OT) to help people across the lifespan engage in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities called occupations.

This major prepares students to work in various settings that include hospitals, rehabilitation centers, schools, sub-acute facilities, psychiatric and community-based programs, schools, nursing homes, private practice and other emerging practice areas.

General Education and Prerequisite Requirements

Students complete general education and pre-requisite courses before beginning the OTA-B program. These can be taken at Trinity in the College of Arts and Sciences or credits can be transferred from another accredited institution. Students complete OTA-B-specific courses after formal acceptance into the OTA-B program.

Special Features

  • Complete in 2 years, after pre-requisites and includes 2 full-time rotations of 8-week fieldwork level II requirements (40 hours a week)
  • 58 core OTA-B program credits
  • 1 to 15 student: faculty ratio for laboratory learning
  • Laboratory activities are supervised by experienced clinicians
  • Classrooms and Labs are equipped with multimedia to facilitate learning
  • Fieldwork Level I experiences in pediatrics, mental/behavioral health, and physical rehabilitation

Student Outcomes: What You’ll Learn

  • Analyze, direct, guide and design individualized treatment plans using the principles and knowledge of occupational therapy
  • How to work with clients across the lifespan to engage in activities of daily living in order to live productive lives.

The expected student outcomes reflect Trinity’s vision and mission, Occupational Therapy Code of Ethics and Ethics Standards, AOTA Occupational Therapy Practice Framework: Domain & Process as well as AOTA Blueprint for Education.

Following completion of the OTA program in Trinity Washington University School of Nursing and Health Professions, the OTA graduate will:

  1. Use professional literature to make evidence based practice decisions in collaboration with other healthcare professionals (2011 ACOTE Standards; B.8.3)
  2. Demonstrate clinical skills and professional behaviors of an entry level OTA that reflect the standards and ethics of the OT profession
  3. Identify, adapt and modify activities and interventions that support the needs and wants of the client in their pursuit to master occupations and their environments.
  4. Be able to gather information about patients, populations and organizations and effectively communicate their occupational needs to the OTR, healthcare team, family and/or community
  5. Identify legal and ethical aspects of the OTA’s role in the supervision of healthcare personnel
  6. Successfully pass the NBCOT OTA exam

Local Internships

  • Kipp Charter School
  • Mosaic Health
  • Burke Rehab
  • National Rehabilitation Hospital
  • St. Coletta

Global Careers

  • Occupational Therapy Assistant

Master’s Degree
Occupational Therapy

Bachelor’s Degree

Bachelor’s Degree
Public Health

Applying to the Occupational Therapy Assistant, O.T.A- B (Pre-Health Professions) Program

Applying to Trinity is free, and Trinity reviews each application as soon as it is complete: you’ll get our decision right away.

We’re here to help at 202-884-9400 or

Apply Now

General Education and Pre-Requisite Requirements: Students must complete general education and  pre-requisite courses before beginning the OTA-B program. Pre-requisite and general education courses may be completed at Trinity or at another college/university.  Those seeking the OTA-B degree will be eligible to enroll in OTA-B specific courses after submitting a special application to NHP and are formally admitted into the program.

Admissions FAQs

How do I schedule an appointment with an Academic Advisor?

Students should call or email their CAS, SPS, or NHP academic advisor to make an appointment.

What other information is attached to the OTA application?

  1. Student Information Form
  2. Signed Student Acknowledgement Form
  3. Signed Form A: Time Sheet (10 observation hours)
  4. Form B: Journal Reflections

What is an OTA Essay?

The OTA Essay is a one page, double-spaced document designed to “let us know more about you”!  Please respond to the following questions citing references using APA style.

Why you are interested in studying occupational therapy at Trinity Washington University?  How does your interest in OT relate to your future goals?  What experiences or ideas shaped your decision to pursue a career as an occupational therapy assistant and how will your career decision advance the principles of social or occupational justice?

Where should I obtain OT observation hours?

You may observe an OT or an OTA in any type of facility in the Washington Metro Area to include private or public schools, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, acute care hospitals, private practice.  Below are a few suggestions for facilities in Washington, DC, but there are many more in surrounding states such as Virginia and Maryland.

*Please remember your observation must be with an occupational therapist or occupational therapy assistant not an occupational therapy aide or rehabilitation aide.

Area hospitals include:

  • Washington Hospital Center
  • Sibley Hospital
  • Howard University Hospital
  • Providence Hospital
  • Georgetown Hospital
  • George Washington Hospital
  • The Nation’s Children’s Hospital: Children’s National Medical Center
  • Area Rehabilitation Centers include:
  • National Rehabilitation Hospital
  • Hospital for Sick Children
  • Area Sub-Acute Facilities include:
  • The Washington Home
  • Area Skilled Nursing Facilities include:
  • Hadley Hospital Skilled Nursing
  • Rock Creek Manor
  • Stoddard Baptist Nursing Home
  • Area Nursing Homes include:
  • Knoll wood Nursing Home
  • Lisner-Louise- Dickson-Hurt Home
  • Capitol Hill Nursing Center
  • Carroll Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation
  • Health and Rehabilitation Center at Thomas Circle
  • Ingleside at Rock Creek
  • Methodist Home
  • Specialty Hospital of Washington- Hadley Skilled Nursing Facility
  • United Medical Nursing Home

What is the purpose of the OTA clinical observations?

Observations will introduce you to OT practitioners in the DC area as well as help you understand the occupational therapy profession.


Trinity Washington University’s baccalaureate-degree-level occupational therapy assistant program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 7501 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 510E, Bethesda, MD 20814. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA, and its web address is Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, all states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

At its meeting on April 22-23, 2023, ACOTE reviewed the Report of On-Site Evaluation (ROSE) regarding the Occupational Therapy Assistant Baccalaureate Program at Trinity Washington University, Washington, DC. All Standards were found to be compliant and ACOTE voted to Grant a Status of Accreditation for a period of 7 years. The Report of the Accreditation Council (RAC) is viewable at


College of Arts & Sciences Admissions Requirements

Applying to the College of Arts & Sciences is a 5-step process:

  • Step One: Apply to Trinity
  • Step Two: Have your School Administrator submit your Official Transcripts (High School/College/Home School/GED) – International Transcripts must be evaluated prior to submission
  • Step Three: Submit Essay “Where do I see myself after obtaining a TWU degree?”
  • Step Four:  Submit your Recommendation Letter(s) (Teacher/Guidance Counselor/Mentor)
  • Step Five: Once your application is submitted, use your log-in credentials to check your status

Admissions Criteria:

  • First-Time Freshman candidates for admission should complete a secondary school program that includes 16 academic units: English, Mathematics (algebra, geometry, and trigonometry), Science to include Lab work (biology, chemistry, and physics), History, Foreign Language, and Social Science.
  • Transfer candidates must submit official college transcripts from each previously attended college or university.
  • Optional Standardized tests such as the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT I) and/or the American College Test (ACT) can be submitted.  To have your scores sent to us use SAT code 5796 and ACT code 0696.
  • Minimum cumulative grade point average 2.0 (on 4.0 Scale).

OTA-B Prerequisites

OTA admission requirements include the successful completion of the following courses with a grade of “C” or better.  Applicants MUST have an overall gpa of 2.75 and at least a 2.5 gpa in the sciences and math.  Trinity pre-requisites (25 credits) include:

  • BIOL 121 – Anatomy and Physiology I
  • BIOL 122 – Anatomy and Physiology II
  • ENGL 107 – College Composition
  • PSYC 101 – Intro to Psychology
  • SOCY 100 – Intro to Sociology
  • HPNU 120 – Medical Terminology
  • MATH 110 – Statistics
  • PSYC 243 – Lifespan Development
  • SNHP 224 – Global Health

OTA-B Program Policies

Required Documentation:  Prior to enrolling in any OTA fieldwork course, students are required to present documentation of the following:

  • Current immunization or titers for: DPT; MMR; Hepatitis B (3 doses); Tetanus; Influenza (annual); TB (annual).
  • National criminal background check
  • Current major medical health insurance

As part of professional behavior and professionalism on Fieldwork I and II as well as community learning experiences, students in the OTA program should expect to incur additional expenses beyond tuition and fees.


2022-23 Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Additional Expenses
Uniform  – OT Polo Shirt $21
Local Travel and Transportation Variable based on car or public transportation
Books ~$1000
Annual Health Insurance: Please see website for specific fee structure
EXXAT and Universal Screening: General Clinical Requirements $110

Fieldwork Resources



Fieldwork Manual 

Level I Fieldwork

Student Performance Evaluation Level I : Performance
• Student Evaluation of the Fieldwork experience Level I Student Performance Evaluation: Level I Student Evaluation
• Fieldwork Criteria Form Level I Fieldwork Criteria Form : Criteria
• Fieldwork Objectives Collaboration Level I FW Objectives Collaboration Form : Collaboration

Level II Fieldwork

AOTA Performance Evaluation AOTA FW Performance Evaluation
• Student Evaluation of the Fieldwork Experience
• Supervisor Qualifications : Qualifications
• COE Guidelines for an Occupational Therapy Fieldwork Experience Guidelines

AOTA website has an abundance of resources to help program coordinators and clinicians develop education programs and the necessary skills to provide fieldwork education and supervision. We encourage fieldwork educators to review and utilize the many tools available.


  • Steps to Starting a Fieldwork ProgramStarting a Fieldwork Program
  • Recommended Content for a Student Fieldwork ManualContent
  • Sample Level II Site Specific ObjectivesObjectives
  • Incorporating EBP into Fieldwork EducationEBP
  • Fieldwork Educator Self-Assessment – Self Assessment Tool for Fieldwork Educator CompetencyCompetency
  • Understanding the OT/OTA Fieldwork Performance Evaluation (FWPE)Understanding

Student Supervision

  1. OT/OTA Student Supervision and Medicare Requirements – must log in as a member, to AOTA website to access this content Supervision
  2. Fieldwork Educator Certificate WorkshopWorkshop


  1. Fieldwork Resources : Resources
  2. Student Supervision : Student Supervision
  3. Site Specific Objectives : Site Objectives
  4. Time Sheet : Timesheet

Graduation Rates and NCBOT Pass Rates

At its meeting on April 22-23, 2023, ACOTE reviewed the Report of On-Site Evaluation (ROSE) regarding the Occupational Therapy Assistant Baccalaureate Program at Trinity Washington University, Washington, DC. All Standards were found to be compliant and ACOTE voted to Grant a Status of Accreditation for a period of 7 years. The Report of the Accreditation Council (RAC) is viewable at

Occupational Therapy Assistant Bachelor’s Degree Program Graduation Rates

 Entering Year Number of Students Retention # Graduation Year Number of Graduating Students
 2021  6/3 2023 50%
 2022 2024
2023 2025

This chart indicates students who graduated within the program’s published academic terms of four semesters.

NBCOT Pass Rates
Trinity Occupational Therapy Assistant program results from the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) can be found online at

OTA-B Mission and Philosophy

Trinity Washington University’s Occupational Therapy Assistant Program strives to educate students to be competent, ethical, and committed occupational therapy practitioners who promote health and well-being of all people as they engage in everyday activities called occupations.  Through dynamic classroom, clinical and community experiences, OTA students graduate prepared to meet the ever-changing occupational needs of society and address social justice and occupational justice issues locally and globally.

Within Trinity’s founding traditions, we envision the occupational therapy assistant program as a center where the occupational therapy assistant and the occupational therapist can study the process of adaptation and its effect on occupational performance as it relates to the person’s search for meaning and fulfillment as occupational-beings.

Occupational Therapy Program Philosophy
The OTA program’s philosophy reflects occupational therapy fundamental ideals in that it is based on the profession’s belief that humans are complex beings who are continuously engaged in their environment. Learning is an active and social process where learners discover principles, concepts, and facts through interactions with each other and with their environment.  The Philosophical Base of Occupational Therapy (AOTA, 2011) provides the foundation for the Trinity Washington University OTA Program.  The organizing philosophical framework of the OTA curriculum is derived from the belief that engagement in occupations can positively influence the health and well-being of individuals and populations. Through engagement in occupations, we can find meaning and balance in our lives.

The OTA Program philosophy is guided by two major areas: occupation and the process of occupational adaptation, and the professional curriculum and teaching-learning style.

Our Fundamental Beliefs about Human Beings: Humans are complex beings that are constantly interacting with the physical, social, temporal, cultural, psychological, spiritual and virtual environment through their actions. We are active beings who have the ability to adapt, modify and affect the quality of our life by engaging in the things we want and need to do called occupations. “Participation in these occupations influences their development, health, and well-being across the lifespan. “ (AOTA Commission on Education, 2011, p. S65) However, when a person is faced with an occupational challenge because of impairment, disability or a stressful event, the innate process of human adaptation may become impaired (Schultz, 1992 and Schultz & Schkade, 1992). Through occupational therapy intervention, the occupational therapy practitioner’s “therapeutic use of self”, management of the environment and use of “occupations as tools” promote the client’s ability to adapt to life’s challenges for successful occupational performance.

Our View of Learning: Learning is an active and social process in which learners learn to discover principles, concepts, and facts through interactions with each other and with the environment in which they live (Brown 1989; Ackerman 1996). Trinity acknowledges learners are unique individuals with unique needs and diverse backgrounds while being complex and multidimensional. Using a constructivist viewpoint to guide the learning process, we see that the responsibility for learning resides with the learner; motivation for learning strongly depends on the learner’s confidence in his or her potential to learn (Prawat and Floden 1994); and instructors are facilitators that create guidelines and set the stage within the environment for learning. The learning experience is shaped by the instructor’s as well as by the learners’ values; culture and background are shared and respected (Ernest 1991; Prawat et al. 1994). The faculty of Trinity’s OTA program demonstrate support for students to become effective and critical thinkers through the “beyond the comfort zone” academic challenge (Vygotsky 1978) that will also translate into critical thinking and reasoning skills in the OT practice setting through use of activities as interventions.

Cost of Attendance

2023-24 Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Cost of Attendance
Please note, these rates are updated each summer.

Lab Fees (per semester)


Uniform – OT Polo Shirt


Local Travel and Transportation

Variable based on car or public transportation



Annual Health Insurance:

Please see website for specific fee structure

General Clinical Requirements

EXXAT: $35

Universal Screening: $68


$26,945/year in 2023-24
See current Trinity tuition

Total cost of attendance


*The above tuition and fees are subject to change