UNLV School of Integrated Health Sciences offers an Occupational Therapy Doctorate degree program. The program has a cohort size of 36 students and comprises 120 credit hours of graduate-level classroom, fieldwork, and research learning activities. The coursework will be offered during three consecutive semesters each year for three years. Students will be eligible to take the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) exam after successfully completing all coursework and fieldwork.

The Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education of the American Occupational Therapy Association has granted pre-accreditation status to the Occupational Therapy Program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.


The UNLV Occupational Therapy Doctorate Program has been granted pre-accreditation status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE®) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA®). ACOTE® is the accrediting agency for occupational therapy education and oversees the accreditation process for all new occupational therapy programs.

Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE)
6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200
North Bethesda, Maryland 20852-4929
Phone: 301-652-6611 x2042

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) degree, students should be prepared to:

  • Demonstrate professional behaviors on Level I fieldwork as measured by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Level I Fieldwork Competency Evaluation for OT and OTA Students (2017) and as outlined in the Program Handbook of the UNLV OTD Program.
  • Engage in the ethical practice of occupational therapy as outlined by the AOTA Code of Ethics (2015) as measured on the Self-Assessment of Professional Behavior during each Professional Development Seminar class.
  • Achieve entry-level competence in clinical practice as measured by achieving a score of at least 122 points on the AOTA Fieldwork Performance Evaluation (2002).
  • Select and pursue leadership and advocacy activities through the use of an annual Professional Development Plan.
  • Utilize evidence-based occupational therapy interventions to address the physical, cognitive, functional, psychosocial, sensory, and other aspects of performance in a variety of contexts and environments to support engagement in everyday life activities that affect health, wellbeing, and quality of life in individuals across the lifespan.
  • Demonstrate competence in critically evaluating research in each of the three research and evidence-based practice courses in the OTD curriculum, as evidenced by completing Critical Reviews of Research Studies assignments in each course.
  • Achieve entry-level competence in evaluating patient performance through performing standardized and non-standardized assessments in classroom and clinical observations.

Career Possibilities

The occupational therapy profession has been growing steadily since its inception in 1917. In the past few years there has been increased demand for occupational therapists due to the changing demographics in the country and changes in the healthcare delivery system. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook states that employment of occupational therapists is projected to grow 17% from 2020 to 2030, which is faster than the average for all occupations. It also states that about 10,000 openings for occupational therapists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace current workers. Occupational therapists work in many areas of practice with populations across the lifespan in various settings such as:

  • Hospitals – general, psychiatric, pediatric, cancer, neurologic, orthopedic
  • Schools providing K – 12 education
  • Private practice agencies
  • Home health agencies, mobile outpatient care
  • Outpatient rehabilitation clinics
  • Hand therapy clinics
  • Skilled nursing facilities and other residential care settings
  • Correctional facilities
  • Industrial settings
  • Academic institutions
  • Research


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Occupational Therapy Doctorate


Graduate Coordinator

Donna Costa, DHS, OTR/L, FAOTA

Program Director and Associate Professor-in-Residence

SLC-F - 112

Department of Brain Health

The UNLV Department of Brain Health will advance research, education, and practice to benefit brain health and the care and treatment of people with brain disorders across the life span. Our faculty specialize in several areas that range from basic and clinical research in neurodegenerative disease, neuropsychology, and occupational therapy.