Occupational Therapy Doctorate Program

Admission Requirements

OT main
Main Campus - University Hall

Due to the sequential nature of the curriculum, students start the Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) degree program in FALL SEMESTER ONLY.  We evaluate applications and we accept candidates into the program beginning in October and continue until the class is filled. The Occupational Therapy Program admits students for one admission cycle only. Applicants who request deferred admissions must reapply and compete with the new applicant pool.

Please read all of the following instructions before beginning your application.

We require all applicants to submit their applications via the Occupational Therapy Centralized Application System (OTCAS) at https://portal.otcas.org/ and complete the UToledo Supplemental Application.

Opening of Admissions -
The 2022 Admission cycle begins July 22, 2021 when the OTCAS application and the UToledo Supplemental Application open. We begin reviewing completed and verified applications in October.

Closing of Admissions -
The 2022 Admission cycle closes February 1, 2022. ONLY applicants whose OTCAS application is completed and verified, and who have submitted their completed UToledo Supplemental Application by February 1, 2022 will be considered for admission.

Admission Criteria -
The following requirements are essential in determining a candidate's potential for success in this program. To be considered for acceptance into the OTD program, a candidate must:

  1. Complete a Bachelor's degree before entering the program, from an accredited college or university with a minimum 3.0 undergraduate grade point average (GPA).  We consider applicants whose degrees are in progress for admission. UToledo requires official college transcripts verifying degree once an applicant has been accepted to the program.  During the application process, all official transcripts should be sent directly to OTCAS.

    It is our policy to use the cumulative GPA calculated by OTCAS when assigning admission points. This applies to those who have completed their bachelor’s degrees and to those who have degrees in progress. OTCAS calculates GPAs based on all academic coursework completed.  For more information on how OTCAS calculates GPAs, please read the OTCAS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on the OTCAS website.

  2. Submit the official results of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), general test. All three sections must be completed. We award admission points for each section (verbal, quantitative, and analytical) using a sliding scale.  Applicants begin receiving points once a percentile rank reaches 33%. GRE scores should be submitted to OTCAS with the Utoledo school code 4801.

  3. Show completion of, or a plan for completing, the designated prerequisites at the College level with a grade of B- or better.  If accepted, we will require official transcripts showing prerequisite completion prior to beginning the program. Prerequisite courses must be completed prior to starting the program, NOT prior to application.

    UT Pre-requisite Courses:

    • Introductory Biology (3 semester or 4 quarter credits). Lab not required
    • Human Anatomy and Physiology (6 semester or 8 quarter credits). Lab required.  If Anatomy and Physiology are taken as separate courses, we require a lab for Anatomy but not for Physiology.
    • Introduction to Psychology (3 semester or 4 quarter credits)
    • Abnormal Psychology (3 semester or 4 quarter credits)
    • Introductory Sociology OR Anthropology (3 semester or 4 quarter credits)
    • Lifespan Human Development. You may meet this requirement by either 1) obtaining a B- or better in a Lifespan Human Development course (3 semester or 4 quarter credits) that covers human development from birth to death OR 2) obtaining a B- or better in BOTH a Child Development course (3 semester or 4 quarter credits) AND a Gerontology/Psychology of Aging course (3 semester or 4 quarter credits).
    • Statistics (3 semester or 4 quarter credits) 
    • Medical Terminology (2 semester credits) 

    Applicants can count an AP course from high school for an OTD program pre-requisite if the following criteria are met:

    • The AP course must appear on the applicant's college transcript
    • The AP course must result in college credit
    • The AP test associated with the course must have been taken and the test score must be documented either on the college transcript or in an official letter from the testing agency. The applicant must have received a score of 4 or better on the AP course test.
  4. Submit three letters of recommendation via OTCAS, each from a person with authority regarding your work and assessing your qualification for graduate education, ability to complete graduate work, and/or your qualifications for a professional career.  Suggestions include, but are not limited to, college advisors, professors, occupational therapists, work and/or volunteer managers or supervisors. OTCAS cannot accept paper references.  UToledo does not require documentation of work and/or volunteer experiences.

  5. Submit the OTCAS application and the UToledo supplemental application and associated fees. Once OTCAS has received your application, references, and official transcripts, they will process your application and verify your documents before releasing them to UToledo.  Please note that UToledo cannot access uncompleted and unverified applications. 

International Applicants Must:

  1. Meet the Admission Criteria described above.
  2. Submit official GRE scores, regardless of GPA.
  3. Submit TOEFL scores.
  4. Possess a degree equivalent to a 4-year US bachelor’s degree in a major other than occupational therapy.  International students must have their foreign transcripts evaluated for equivalence to US academic credentials.  Click here to go to NACES (the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) to find an acceptable member list of foreign educational credential evaluation services.

Exceptions - TOEFL scores are not required if the student has earned a US degree or has attended a regionally accredited US institution for one, full-time academic year and earned a minimum 3.0 GPA.  This exception does not include those who have attended a US institution for the purpose of English language instruction.

For questions regarding UToledo International student admissions please contact the UToledo College of Graduate Studies at 419-530-4723 or graduateonlineapplication@utoledo.edu

Application Process - You must complete the OTCAS online application AND the UToledo Supplemental Application before your application is complete. 

Based upon the total score an applicant receives, the Admissions Committee will take one of three actions:

Automatic Acceptance - Applicants whose total scores meet or exceed the annually adjusted, predetermined minimum score for automatic admission will be recommended for immediate admission to the College of Graduate Studies.

Admission via the Wait List -
 Applicants whose total scores fall below the  annually adjusted, predetermined score for automatic admission or, who apply after the program is full will be rank ordered on the wait list.  Throughout the admission cycle, when seats become available, we will call applicants from the wait list in order of admission points.  Admission from the ranked wait list will continue until the class is filled.

Candidates who remain on the wait list and who wish to reapply for the next admissions cycle will be required to submit a new OTCAS application and fee. They also need to complete a new UToledo supplemental application and fee. The Admissions Committee encourages those reapplying to strengthen their applications by 1) revising and enhancing their writing sample; 2) taking or re-taking courses to improve their GPA; and 3) re-taking the GRE. If admission criteria change, the most recent criteria must be met.

Admission  Declined -
 Applicants whose total admission scores fall below the annually adjusted predetermined score for placement on the wait list will receive a letter stating that they will not be placed on the wait list.

Admission Criteria for Provisional Status - An applicant must complete the general admission requirements as specified under “Admission Process”.  For example, an applicant who does not meet the minimum GPA or GRE requirements may be considered for provisional acceptance if the overall application provides evidence that the applicant has potential to succeed in the program. The student must achieve a 3.0 GPA within the first semester to progress in the program.

Admission Criteria for Contingent Admission - An applicant must complete the general admission requirements specified under “Admission Process”.  Examples of circumstances which may result in a contingent admission and must be fulfilled prior to the term of admission (these may occur singularly or together) are:

An applicant with a bachelor's degree in progress.

An applicant who has any prerequisite courses to complete at the time of application may be admitted with contingent status, with the clear understanding that all remaining prerequisite courses will be completed with a B- or better prior to registering for Fall courses.

Electives - Occasionally, applicants ask if we have suggestions for courses or course content that would be valuable for the study of occupational therapy in addition to the required pre-requisite courses.  The following list of content areas may be helpful to you in your study of occupational therapy and you may consider such content if you have electives you need to satisfy; however, courses with this content are not required for admission to the program, nor does taking them confer an advantage during the application process. The only courses required for admission are the pre-requisite courses listed above.

Biomechanics/kinesiology: for those who want a stronger foundation for orthopedics

Business: for those who are interested in starting their own therapy business

Composition/writing: for those who want to strengthen their writing skills

Contemporary office software: for those who need to enhance skills with Power Point, Word, Excel, etc.

Marketing: for those interested in program development

Neurosciences: for those who want a stronger foundation for providing therapy to those who have neurological conditions

Public speaking: for those who need to enhance their ability to speak in front of groups

Sign language: for those interested in working with persons with hearing impairments

Do you have Questions?
For questions about your OTCAS application, please contact OTCAS Customer Service at 617-612-2860 or otcasinfo@otcas.org

For questions about submitting your UToledo Supplemental Application, contact the UToledo College of Graduate Studies at graduateonlineapplication@utoledo.edu or 419-530-4723.

For questions about the OT program or admission requirements contact the OT program at 419-530-6691 or OccTherapyDoctorate@utoledo.edu

Information Sessions -  The Admissions Committee invites interested applicants to attend one of the informal information sessions held throughout the year. This is an opportunity to see the UToledo campus and ask questions about the OTD Program. Please email us at https://www.utoledo.edu/hhs/ot/contactvisit.html to register for an information session and campus visit.

Last Updated: 5/14/21