Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online

Occupational Therapy Doctorate Online

This Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online is a post-professional online healthcare degree program for those already holding an entry-level, professional degree in occupational therapy.

The mission of the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree is to enable occupational therapists to develop roles and skills beyond that of the therapist-clinician, to educate them to become practitioner-scholars who can translate knowledge (including cross-disciplinary theories and research) into practice and who are capable of serving as agents of change in new and expanded arenas.

In just two years, Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online graduates advance beyond the role of clinician to become leaders who create visionary new community-based health and wellness programs.

Read More

The primary focus of the curriculum is on program development and evaluation and the role of occupational therapy in prevention and in the promotion of health and wellness. In addition to coursework, the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree requirements include completion of a doctoral project and submission of a professional portfolio representing the attainment of advanced core competencies.

If you have been looking for an online healthcare degree program that balances your busy schedule with continuing your education in occupational therapy, ASHS is the right place for you. Offered entirely via an online format, our Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree allows working professionals to complete their studies at their convenience in the place of their choice – including the comfort of their homes. The program fosters valuable interaction among students and faculty by providing access to a virtual community of practicing occupational therapists from across the country and around the globe.

Post-Professional OTD Online students will:

  • Self-select a focus of a passion of yours in the area of health and wellness.
  • Complete a needs assessment with a community-based agency that you identify.
  • Develop your community-focused program and evaluate program outcomes.

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program requires a minimum of 48 quarter credit hours beyond the master’s degree. Developed for the practicing occupational therapist, the program is designed to be completed in two years based upon a part-time plan of study and includes the following coursework requirements:

  • Occupational Therapy Doctoral Seminars (24 credits required)
  • Electives (8 credits required)
  • Doctoral Project (16 credits)

What makes this Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree unique?

The entire Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program of study is conducted online. The occupational therapy doctorate degree program is integrally tied to both AOTA’s Centennial Vision for 2017 and the nation’s first ever National Health Prevention initiative (through the Affordable Care Act).


Related Videos

  • Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online Program Guide+

    • For answers to many questions regarding the ATSU Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree, turn here for more specifics. This post-professional degree program fosters valuable interaction among students and faculty by providing access to a virtual community of practicing occupational therapists from across the country and around the globe. The OTD program is achievable in two years and offers the unique advantage of being entirely online.

  • Accreditation +

    • Higher Learning Commission Mark of Affiliation

      A.T. Still University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, 230 S. LaSalle Street; Suite 7-500; Chicago, IL 60604, Phone: 800.621.7440, Fax: 312.263.7492, Email:,

      Degree-granting authority for ASHS has been given by the Arizona State Board for Private Postsecondary Education, 1400 West Washington Rd., Room 260, Phoenix, AZ 85007. Phone 602.542.5709.

  • Career Advancement+

    • The Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program is competency-based. OTD graduates will develop the following core competencies:
      • Identify, locate, critically analyze and implement the best available evidence for practice
      • Design, implement, and evaluate a new program
      • Assess and document program outcomes
      • Identify and analyze theories from disciplines outside of OT as well as within the profession’s body of knowledge; translate applicable theories to promote change in regards to some aspect of their present or future practice.
      • Identify models of change and act as a change agent or leader in at least two of the following roles:
        • manager
        • supervisor
        • care coordinator
        • program developer
        • entrepreneur
        • consultant
        • advocate
        • mediator
        • mentor
        • policy infuser
        • liaison
        • community organizer
        • committee chair or officer in a professional organization or community group

      • Participate in dissemination of knowledge through preparation of professional presentations, posters, and manuscripts for publication
      • Apply concepts of health and wellness through design and/or implementation of programs for individuals, groups and populations
      • Identify partnership opportunities with community and/or education-based groups for program development and support
      • Demonstrate knowledge of strategic and financial planning
      • Demonstrate professional commitment through membership in at least two professional Organizations

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online Faculty

Dedicated to your success, faculty members provide expert online instruction to Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online degree students. Interaction with a variety of instructors offers students exposure to a variety of teaching styles, healthcare- and education-related backgrounds and experiences that contribute to a well-rounded education fostering personal and professional growth.

  • Dean +

      • Randy D. Danielsen, PhD, PA-C, DFAAPA

        Dr. Danielsen is Dean of the Arizona School of Health Sciences. Since graduating from the University of Utah Physician Assistant (PA) Program in 1974, Dr. Danielsen has distinguished himself as a clinician, PA educator, author, and editor. He received his BS in Health Science (cum laude) from the University of Utah in 1978, his Masters in PA Studies (MPAS) from the University of Nebraska with an emphasis on Internal Medicine in 1997, and his PhD from the Union Institute & University in 2003 with an emphasis on Medical Education. He completed sixteen years with A.T. Still University as academic coordinator (1995-1997), chair of physician assistant studies (1997-2004), and as dean of the Arizona School of Health Sciences (2004-2010) and recently returned as Dean of ASHS. He was honored in 2010 by A.T. Still University with Emeritus Professor status. He has served on the board of directors of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) and as a board member and chairman for National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants.

        Earlier in his career, Dr. Danielsen served as president of the Utah Academy of Physician Assistants, the Arizona State Association of PAs, and as chair of the Arizona Regulatory Board for PAs. Retired after 28 years of service in the US Air Force and Army National Guard with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, Dr. Danielsen also is a former president of the Veterans Caucus of the AAPA and was honored with the Caucus’ Civilian PA of the Year Award in 2003.

        Dr. Danielsen was named Outstanding PA of the Year by the AAPA in 1993 and by the Arizona State Association of Physician Assistants in 2011. He currently serves as PA editor-in-chief for Clinician Review. Dr. Danielsen has published over sixteen peer-reviewed articles, eighteen journal editorials, two book chapters, and most recently his first book, entitled The Preceptor’s Handbook for Supervising Physician Assistants, published by Jones & Bartlett Learning. Recently he was selected as a Senior Consultant with the Academy for Academic Leadership.

  • Vice Dean +

      • Annlee Burch, PT, MPH, EdD

        Dr. Burch is Vice Dean of the Arizona School of Health Sciences. Her primary responsibility is to serve as Chief Operating Officer of the School under the direction of the Dean. In addition, she leads several University or School wide initiatives including the Diversity Initiative Task Force and the ASHS Adelante Project. In her role, Dr. Burch represents the School in the Dean’s absence.

        Dr. Burch received her Doctor of Education (EdD) from Columbia University, Teachers College in 2005. She received her Masters of Public Health (MPH) from Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health in 2002 and her Masters of Physical Therapy (MS) from Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1989. She was a postdoctoral fellow with the Research Group on Health Disparities at Teachers College, Columbia University.

        Dr. Burch received her BA is in Psychology from the University of Rochester. Prior to her appointment as Vice Dean, Dr. Burch served as the Chair of Physical Therapy from 2008-January 2012. Prior to coming to ATSU, Dr. Burch was the Director of Physical Therapy at the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She has held administrative and/or faculty positions at the International Center for the Disabled in NY, NY, Mercy College in NY, and Long Island University in Brooklyn, NY.

  • Chair +

      • Rachel Diamant, PhD, OTR/L, B.C.P
        Professor, Acting OT Department Chair, Entry-level Occupational Therapy Program Director

        Dr. Diamant has been part of the occupational therapy program faculty at ATSU since 1998. She teaches courses related to pediatric practice for the residential OT program and for the online advanced masters in occupational therapy program. Prior to teaching, Dr. Diamant has been an occupational therapy practitioner for over 25 years with a work focus on children with disabilities and their families. She is Board Certified in Pediatrics as recognized by the American Occupational Therapy Association. Dr. Diamant is pediatric NDT certified and has done research projects in the areas of sensory processing, autism, and movement disorders. She is the co-author of Positioning for Play: Interactive Activities to Enhance Movement and Sensory Exploration, an activity text for therapists working with young children and their families. Ms Diamant received her masters of science degree in occupational therapy from Boston University and her doctorate degree in health psychology/behavioral medicine through Northcentral University.

  • Program Management and Administration +

      • Bernadette Mineo, PhD, OTR/L
        Professor and Online Program Director
        Read Bio
      • Michelle A. Zacofsky, B.A.
        Administrative Coordinator
        Read Bio

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online Admissions

  • Requirements +

    • Application requirements for the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program include:

      A master’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university. Applicants who have graduated from a non-U.S. college or university must submit acceptable evidence of U.S. degree/course equivalency and must have foreign transcripts evaluated by an evaluation service specializing in foreign transcript evaluation. The evaluation must state that the transcript(s) reflects equivalency of a U.S. degree.
      Initial certification as an occupational therapist from NBCOT. International applicants are eligible to apply but must show proof of certification or eligibility to practice as an occupational therapist that is equivalent to OT certification and licensure in the United States and have earned an OT degree from an OT program recognized by WFOT.
      Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 for all prior undergraduate and graduate level coursework and degrees completed; minimum Occupational Therapy Program GPA of 3.25 (on a 4.00 scale.)
      An up-to-date resume or curriculum vitae.
      A letter of intent providing a description of why the ATSU-ASHS Occupational Therapy doctorate program was chosen by the applicant and how the program aligns with the applicant’s intended career goals. The letter of intent should be a minimum of two pages and maximum of four pages in length and preferably will include a one-paragraph description of a prevention/health promotion program the applicant might be interested in developing for a particular population.

      Two letters of reference – one from someone who can attest to the applicant’s ability to be successful in doctoral level academic work (i.e. a former faculty member, academic adviser, or employer) and a second one from a reference who can attest to the quality of applicant’s professional work as an occupational therapist.
      Interview (conducted via phone) to identify the goodness of fit of the program for the applicant.
      Completion of all prerequisite coursework prior to program matriculation.
      Official sealed transcripts from all institutions attended.
      All students are required to demonstrate proficiency in English when applying to ATSU-ASHS. Written and spoken proficiency in the English language may be demonstrated by one of the following options:
      • Option 1 - English is your first language.
      • Option 2 - Graduated from a regionally accredited four year university or college in the United States (minimum BA or BS).
      • Option 3 - You are demonstrating your English proficiency by submitting acceptable scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Testing Service (IELTS).

      Acceptable minimal scores for ASHS applications are:

      • Internet based total score = 80
      • Acceptable IELTS score are an overall band score of 6.5

      For additional information contact the OTD Program Coordinator, Michelle Zacofsky at 480.219.6070 or

      Review a complete list of technology requirements.

      Foreign Credential Evaluation

      Applicants who have graduated from a foreign college or university must submit acceptable evidence of U.S. degree/course equivalency. All coursework taken at the foreign institution must be evaluated for American institution equivalence by one of the following services:

      • World Education Services P.O. Box 5087 Bowling Green Station New York, NY 10274-5087 phone: 212. 966.6311 fax: 212.739.6139
      • Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. P.O. Box 514070 Milwaukee, WI 53203-3470 414.289.3400
      • American Assn. of Collegiate Registrars & Admissions Officers One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 520 Washington, DC 20036-1135 202.293-9161
      • FCCPT - Foreign Credentialing Commission on Physical Therapy (PT Applicants only) p: 703.684.8406
      • Josef Silny & Associates, Inc. International Education Consultants 7101 SW 102 Avenue Miami FL 33173 p: 305.273.1616 f: 305.273.1338
      • ICD - International Consultants of Delaware (General) p: 215.222.8454
  • Tuition and Financial Services+

    • Application Fee: $70
      Tuition: $495 per credit hour (2014-2015 school year)
      Note: All fees and tuition are subject to change.

      Most courses are four credit hours. Each Residential Learning Institute is two credit hours. There are additional fees for books, reference materials, Residential Learning Institute travel and accommodations.

      Federal financial assistance is available for qualifying students. For information on financial aid, please visit ATSU’s Financial Services department online or contact them at 866.626.2878 or by email at

  • Financial Aid+

    • Investing in your future as a student is one of the most important steps you will take in your life. ATSU can help you put together a financially sound aid package that will let you focus on your education instead of worrying about how you will finance it.

      Students must be registered at least half-time to receive financial aid. Half time is defined as taking five credits each block. Financial Aid also is available to students who are dual enrolled at KCOM and ASHS. Contact the Student Financial Services at 866.626.2878, ext. 2529 for further information. All students receiving financial aid, whether through ATSU’s Student Financial Services or at other institutions, must notify our office of their status.


      The student completes the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FASFA) or a Renewal FAFSA by going to and following the instructions on the website. ATSU’s school code is G02477.

      The Central Processing System (CPS) performs matches and edits, calculates a student contribution, and sends the data back to the processor.

      ATSU receives the information electronically (ISIR) within three to five business days.

      The student looks over the Student Aid Report (SAR) and, if accurate, keeps it for his/her records. If any corrections are needed, the student contacts the Financial Assistance Office.

      Student Financial Services performs verification and then sends an electronic award letter to the student’s ATSU email address, along with instructions for completing the loan applications and other required forms.

      The student accepts, refuses, or modifies the award letter and submits all required forms to the Financial Assistance Office.

      Student Financial Services looks over the required forms and transmits the loan data to Sallie Mae

      The lender wires the funds by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) to the school or sends the institution a loan check.

      If by EFT, all funds will be applied to the student’s account. The refund will be directly deposited to the student’s bank account if so desired by the student and proper documentation is on file.

      Eligibility for Financial Assistance

      Eligibility or unmet financial need is determined by subtracting a student’s expected contribution from the student budget. The student’s expected contribution is listed on the Student Aid Report (SAR) and is based on the student’s financial strength. Students may choose to receive financial assistance up to their unmet financial need. For example, if a student’s budget is $9,000 and the expected contribution is $5,000, the student’s unmet financial need is $4,000. The student may receive financial aid through scholarships, loans, etc., to arrive at this figure. (Note: Students may use the Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan or any private loan to replace their expected contribution.) Every effort will be made to meet the student’s need, but in some instances, the student may have to rely on other outside resources. It is of critical importance to be creditworthy, as most private loans require a credit check.

      Satisfactory Academic Progress for Federal Financial Aid

      According to the United States Department of Education regulations, (34CRF 668/16 and 668.34 and October 29, 2010 Final Federal Register), all students receiving federal financial assistance must meet and maintain satisfactory academic progress. Student Financial Services will review the academic progress of financial aid recipients after each payment period. Satisfactory academic progress (SAP) is measured in terms of qualitative and quantitative standards.

      Qualitative Measure

      The qualitative measure of a student’s progress is measured by cumulative grade point average. The minimum cumulative GPA students must maintain for financial aid is as follows:

      Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average at A.T. Still University of Health Sciences
      2.0 for all programs on 4.0 scale
      70% for all programs on 100% scale

      Quantitative Measure

      Maximum Time Frame

      Financial aid recipients must complete an educational program within a time frame no longer than 150% of the published length of the educational program. All attempted withdrawn, failed, repeated, and/or transferred credits that apply to a student’s program count toward this maximum time limit. For example, a student pursuing a doctorate degree requiring 120 credit hours may attempt up to 180 credit hours before financial aid eligibility is suspended (120 x 150% = 180). A student pursuing a doctorate degree requiring 5100 contact hours may attempt up to 7650 contact hours before financial aid eligibility is suspended (5100 x 150% = 7650).

      Pace of Progression

      Pace of progression is required to ensure students complete within a maximum time frame and that the pace is measured at each standard review time. Financial aid recipients must maintain a 67% minimum completion rate for attempted credit hours or contact hours. For example, a student pursuing a doctorate degree requiring 120 credit hours may attempt up to 180 hours before financial aid eligibility is suspended (120 divided by 180 = 67%). A student pursuing a doctorate degree requiring 5100 contact hours may attempt up to 7650 contact hours before financial aid eligibility is suspended (5100 divided by 7650 = 67%).

      Dropped, failed, and remedial courses for which no credit is received do not count towards credit hours earned. Credit hours for a course are earned by completing and passing the class.

      Financial Aid Warning

      Failure to meet the minimum academic progress requirements will result in a student being issued a financial aid warning. Students issued a financial aid warning will have one payment period to correct a progress problem due to qualitative or quantitative standards. Students will be notified of their status in writing via ATSU email. Students issued a financial aid warning will have an opportunity to file an appeal to request financial aid probation prior to the upcoming standard review time, which is at the end of each payment period.

      Financial Aid Probation

      If a student appeals their financial aid probation status and the appeal is approved, that student is put on financial aid probation for one payment period. Students may receive federal financial aid while on financial aid probation if he/she meets the terms of his/her appeal decision. If a student fails to meet SAP standards during the term of financial aid probation, he/she may request an additional appeal.

      Financial Aid Suspension

      Students who fail to meet the requirements of the financial aid warning or do not appeal their financial aid probation status are placed on financial aid suspension and are not eligible for federal financial aid. These students will receive written notification to their ATSU email account of their failure to comply and that future federal aid will be canceled.

      Appeal Procedure

      Students who have been issued a financial aid warning may submit a written appeal for reinstatement of eligibility prior to the start of the next payment period. Occasionally, extenuating circumstances contribute to their inability to meet the requirements for satisfactory progress. Extenuating circumstances include, but are not limited to, the following:

      • Death of an immediate family member
      • Severe injury or illness of the student or an immediate family member
      • Emergency situations such as fire or flood
      • Legal separation from spouse or divorce
      • Military reassignment or required job transfers or shift changes

      Students whose appeal is denied must establish eligibility by completing courses without federal aid in one or more payment periods at ATSU until the cumulative GPA and/or completion rate meet the required standard before any additional federal aid will be disbursed.

      Students who have extenuating circumstances may appeal by submitting a completed Appeal form. They will be notified if additional supporting documentation is required.

      The Appeal packet is presented to the SAP Committee for consideration. Students are notified via ATSU email of the SAP Committee’s decision and recommendations.


      Federal financial aid may be reinstated when one of the following conditions has been met:

      The student completes courses without federal aid in one or more payment periods at A.T. Still University of Health Sciences until the cumulative GPA and/or completion rate meet the required standard.
      - OR -

      The student files an appeal and the SAP Committee approves the appeal. It is the student’s responsibility to notify Student Financial Services when reinstatement conditions have been met.

      Enrollment Status Policy

      Full-time enrollment definition

      Students enrolled in the Doctor of Dental Medicine and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine are always defined as full-time.

      Full-time enrollment requires enrollment in a minimum of nine (9) quarter credit hours, or six (6) semester hours.

      Half-time enrollment definition

      Half-time enrollment is defined by enrollment in a minimum of five (5) quarter credit hours or three (3) semester hours.

      Enrollment Status Definitions 1 Quarter Credit = .67 semester credit
      Program Minimum # of Credit Hours Minimum # of Credit Hours
      Full-Time Half-Time
      Osteopathic Medicine and Dental Enrollment is always full-time
      All other programs 9/quarter, 6/semester 5/quarter, 3/semester

      Student Budget Determination

      The student expense budget is determined each year by the director of Student Financial Services. Every effort is made to ensure that allowances in each category are realistic and fair. Although the director determines the average student budget, students having credit history difficulties may not be able to borrow the full budgeted amount, due to the private loans being based on creditworthiness.


      Verification is the process by which Student Financial Services checks the accuracy of the information submitted by the student when applying for federal financial aid. It is intended to reduce errors in the financial information that students submit so eligible applicants can receive the correct amount of financial assistance.

      ATSU will verify all applicants who are selected for verification from the federally approved edits. If selected, students will need to submit a signed copy of their federal income tax return from the prior calendar year along with a verification worksheet. ATSU will compare the tax return and the verification worksheet to the Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) to verify required items. Financial aid will not be awarded until the verification is complete.

      Special Conditions

      Professional judgment allows the Director and Assistant Director the flexibility to handle individual students with extenuating circumstances on a case-by-case basis. This authority is clearly stated in the regulations and is used as needed. The adjustments may be made in the cost of attendance, expected family contribution, or satisfactory academic progress.

      Although every effort is made to meet a student’s financial need, financial assistance is not an entitlement and, in some instances, not all of a student’s need will be met.

      Financial Planning

      Setting Goals

      Financing your health professions education is an investment in your future. As a major investment, it should be entered into with conscientious planning. Setting goals and establishing a game plan are essential in order to minimize your debt.

      A simple financial plan begins with the establishment of a long-term goal. As an APA, MI, HM or AOT student, for example, your long-term goal might be to set up a private practice in your home town. As you plan your strategies to reach this end, keep in mind that your short- and mid-term goals should be consistent with and built upon this long-term goal. To help keep you on track, it is important to develop a budget.

      A budget lists all sources of income, as well as all estimated expenditures. To make a budget work for you, keep the following points in mind:

      Have a written plan
      Set realistic goals
      Establish priorities
      Keep expenditures below income
      Stick to your game plan

      It is important for you to determine your needs so that you will borrow only the amount necessary, rather than the amount for which you are eligible. In the end, you may pay back 2-3 times the amount you borrowed. Therefore, the less debt you accrue in school, the more financially secure you will be later.


      Online programs’ tuition is due 14 calendar days prior to the first day of class. For programs with payment per credit or course, the tuition covers the payment for the coming quarter. For programs that have payment per program, payment in full is due prior to the start of the program or per their admissions agreement on a quarterly payment schedule. The Controller’s Office will receive tuition payments and make refunds as necessary. Delinquent tuition penalties accrue at 1 1/2% per month, which is 18% per year.

      Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Policy

      The Department of Education is encouraging and, at times, requiring educational institutions to become paperless. Therefore, funds received through federal and private loans will normally be transferred electronically to a student’s account at ATSU. Students will receive a receipt itemizing the type of loan and amount credited to their account at the institution. Funds electronically transferred above what is owed for tuition and fees will promptly be refunded to the student by check or deposited directly to the student’s bank account. (Students that have lenders that do not wire money to ATSU will receive their financial aid through a co-payable check.) Generally, funds are available when tuition is due.

      Direct Deposit

      Many banks in states outside of Missouri make students wait 10 business days to tap their loan funds when deposited by check. Therefore, we require all students to use direct deposit where ATSU wires money to the student’s bank account. This way, the money is available on the day it is wired to the bank.

The Family and Culture

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate Image


  • Blackboard Demo Course +

    • ATSU has set up a demo course of our Blackboard
      Learning Management System for interested students.

      Please go to our guest demo site, and login with:

      Username: OTDdemo
      Password: atsudemo

      Connect Now

Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online Overview

ATSU Arizona School of Health Sciences students are admitted to the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program each fall and participate with a cohort of peers throughout. Developed for the practicing occupational therapist, the program is designed to be completed in two years based upon a part-time plan of study.

For the doctoral project, each student will address at least one of the four strategic directions and one of the seven priorities from the first National Prevention Strategy. Read more

  • OTDP 9300: OTD Seminar I - The Role of OT in Health Promotion & Wellness+

    • This course will explore the myriad of opportunities for OTs to influence the health and/or wellbeing of individuals and populations. Students will examine topics within public health and epidemiology while furthering their knowledge of OT’s capacity to prevent disease, disability, and activity limitations and to promote health and participation. Upon completion of this course, students will be expected to identify a target population and/or an agency or community partner that could benefit from an occupation-based health promotion and/or wellness initiative and should have a proposed program idea that could be explored for further development. Includes a focus on literature from positive psychology and exploration of the relevancy of this body of work for occupational therapy practitioner-scholars. Co-requisite: OTDP 9910. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9400: OTD Seminar II - Program Development and Evaluation, Part I+

    • First course in a series of two on this topic, during this seminar, students will be exposed to different methods of conducting a needs assessment and how to use the information obtained from a needs assessment to plan for and develop a program for a specific targeted population. By the end of the course students will be expected to complete a needs assessment and plan a program relevant to meeting an identified need at their practice site or with a community partner. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9300. Co-requisite: OTDP 9920. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9500: OTD Seminar III - Program Development and Evaluation, Part II+

    • Second course in a series of two on this topic, during this seminar students will be introduced to and explore different methods of program evaluation and outcomes assessment. As part of the seminar, they will be expected to complete an IRB application to assess outcomes associated with a program they will develop. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9400. Co-requisite: OTDP 9930. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9600: OTD Seminar IV – Strategic and Financial Planning+

    • During this seminar, students will learn about the combined strategic and financial planning that is necessary to sustain a program’s feasibility and long-term viability. Through case study examples, students will examine the relationship between organizational and programmatic priorities and the allocation and deployment of resources. By the end of the course students will be able to create a business unit plan that includes a market analysis, budget (start-up and/or operational, as well as human resource and facility planning), financial projections, and measurement of performance in relation to expenditures. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9700: OTD Seminar V – Opportunities, Roles, & Responsibilities in Leadership and Advocacy Arenas+

    • This course will explore avenues of leadership for the practicing occupational therapist, as well as teach advocacy skills needed to represent individual, community, and population-based concerns. Students will be exposed to verbal and written advocacy strategies necessary to influence current policy/legislation or that can be used for the development of new policies. At the end of the course students will demonstrate their ability to be a change agent in at least one of the following new roles: manager, supervisor, care coordinator, program developer, entrepreneur, consultant, advocate, mediator, policy infuser, liaison, community partner/organizer, or committee chair or officer in a professional organization or community group. In order to complete the OTD program, the student will be required to demonstrate one additional leadership role. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9800: OTD Seminar VI - Professional Writing and Dissemination of Practice-Based Scholarship+

    • Conducted using a writing workshop format, this course will focus on how to write a scholarly article from beginning to end, how to find appropriate publication avenues for scholarly writing and conference forums for dissemination of practice-based scholarship, how to prepare proposals for a presenting at conferences, and how to prepare presentations and posters. By the end of this course, students will be expected to submit a written article using author’s guidelines from a peer-reviewed journal and a proposal for presenting at a suitable conference venue using “Call For Papers” guidelines. (4 credits)


Students will be required to take eight credits of electives in subject areas of interest to them and related to the overall intent and design of the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program. Students will be able to select from the following course offerings, two of which will be scheduled for each summer. In addition, students may elect to pursue selected course offerings from ATSU’s College of Graduate Health Studies programs and/or the ATSU-ASHS Doctor of Health Sciences program subject to respective program director permission as well as OTD program adviser approval. Should the electives available at ATSU not match a students’ needs and interests, a student may elect to take and transfer up to eight credits of graduate-level coursework from another regionally accredited institution but is required to consult with his/her OTD program adviser and obtain approval prior to pursuing this option.

  • OTDP 9010: Disabilities Studies*+

    • This course will focus on the experience of living with a disability from the perspective of those with disabilities. Includes reading of works written or otherwise authored by persons with disabilities and provides a historical perspective on the disability and independent living movements in the U.S. and internationally. The use of person-first language, the World Health Organization Classification of International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health, principles of universal design, models of empowerment, strengths development, the value of collaboration, and promoting health and wellness within the disability community will be some of the topics addressed during this course. (4 credits) *Open to all ATSU students.

  • OTDP 9020: Organizational Behavior+

    • Survey of theories about how individuals and groups act in organizations and the applicability of these to maximize activity participation, promote targeted behavior change and health related outcomes. Includes an examination of a strengths-based approach to leadership and management and a focus on identifying aspects of an organization’s culture and how such cultural dimensions of organizations can influence leadership, communication, and group dynamics. (4 credits)

  • OTDP 9030: Policy Analysis+

    • An introduction to policy analysis including the application of analytical techniques through case study examples, with a particular focus on selected health policies. (4 credits)


Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program requires the completion of a Doctoral Project which entails an integral and interwoven set of learning experiences designed to promote students’ development and refinement of skills in program design, development, implementation, evaluation, and dissemination of this work. The required course sequence includes eight two-credit courses that are taken over the duration of the student’s progression through the doctor of occupational therapy program.* The student must complete all the assigned tasks of each course to enroll in each subsequent course in the series.** Optimally, a student will proceed through the Doctoral Project eight-course sequence with the peer cohort group the student started the Post-Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Online program with so as to benefit from the peer support and review process that will be built into the design of each of the courses in this sequence. OTD Resources For the doctoral project, each student will address at least one of the four strategic directions and one of the seven priorities from the first National Prevention Strategy. Read more

Strategic Directions:
  • Healthy and Safe Community Environments
  • Clinical and Community Preventive Services
  • Empowered People
  • Elimination of Health Disparities
  • Tobacco Free Living
  • Preventing Drug Abuse and Excessive Alcohol Use
  • Healthy Eating
  • Active Living
  • Injury and Violence Free Living
  • Reproductive and Sexual Health
  • Mental and Emotional Well-Being
  • OTDP 9910: OT Doctoral Project I+

    • Introduction to and comparison of forms of scholarship with particular emphasis on practice-based scholarship. Students will be expected to identify a theoretical body of work or conceptual framework and examine how this work applies to some aspect of their present or future practice area of interest. Co-requisite: OTDP 9300. (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9920: OT Doctoral Project II+

    • Building upon OT 9910, students will identify a project idea and conduct a review of literature incorporating works from within and outside the body of OT literature. During this second course in the OTD Doctoral Project sequence, students collaborate with the course instructor to identify an OTD project adviser (who must be selected from a designated list of OT department faculty) and a project mentor from outside the OT department (might come from other departments or schools within the University or from the community). Pre-requisite: OTDP 9910. Co-requisite: OTDP 9400. (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9930: OT Doctoral Project III+

    • Students work with their project advisers and project mentors to develop a full proposal treatment for the project idea approved by their primary OTD project advisers. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9920. Co-requisite: OTDP 9500. (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9940: OT Doctoral Project IV+

    • Upon completion of their OTD project proposals, students submit and defend their proposal to their OTD Project Committee (consisting of their OT 9910 course instructor, their primary project adviser, and their project mentor). Following committee approval, students complete and submit an IRB application to the ATSU Mesa IRB committee as appropriate. Pre-requisite: OT 9930 and OTDP 9500.* (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9950: OT Doctoral Project V+

    • Following their successful proposal defense and IRB submission, students enter the implementation phase of their OTD projects, identifying at the beginning of the quarter the end point they intend to achieve. Students are required to provide progress reports to and receive feedback from their project advisers and mentors at least two-three times during the quarter. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9940.** (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9960: OT Doctoral Project VI+

    • Students continue with and complete the implementation phase of their OTD projects. Students are required to provide progress reports to and receive feedback from their project advisers and mentors at least two-three times during the quarter. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9950. (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9970: OT Doctoral Project VII+

    • Students will complete their program evaluations and document their results, completing at least a full first draft of an article for future publication as per author guidelines for a peer reviewed (online or print) journal and a proposal for a conference submission. Pre-requisite: OTDP 9960. Co-requisite or pre-requisite: OTDP 9800 (2 credits)

  • OTDP 9980: OT Doctoral Project VIII+

    • Upon completion of their coursework and all their OTD project requirements, students formally petition to present and defend their projects to their project committee members and an additional outside reviewer. Upon their successful defense, they will be invited to present their projects to their peers in an online or in-person conference forum.* (2 credits)
      *Should a student in the OTD program be unable to complete the requirements for OTDP 9940 or OTDP 9980 by the end of the quarter in which it is taken, the student will be given an incomplete for the course, will have one additional quarter to complete the associated tasks required, and will also be required to register for the following coursework. (Note: The specific number of additional credits required will be determined on a case-by-case basis, upon the recommendation of the student’s doctoral project adviser and/or committee.)

Learn More


Community Health Center

Waianae, Hawaii

As a leading provider of quality healthcare for area residents, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center also provides community employment and health education. More than 80% of the staff are local residents, and many were trained at the affiliated Waianae Health Academy. Find out more.


From public health centers located in communities where services are needed most, to research and other leading edge whole person healthcare initiatives, you can create your own legacy by contributing to the specific cause that moves you most. Find out more.


When you give to A.T. Still University, you're not only supporting whole person healthcare education, you're also helping deliver it to where the care is needed most. Through our legacy program, we send students to underserved communities nationwide and conduct healthcare clinics at the university on occasion. Find out more.


Whole person healthcare takes an integrated approach that addresses body, mind and spirit as one. Students are encouraged to participate in wellness programs and study areas including nutrition and psychology to gain a more comprehensive understanding. Find out more.


Keep up with the latest developments in whole person healthcare at A.T. Still University with our complimentary newsletter and other publications. From scholarly inquiry and research to alumni activities and more. Sign up today.


Let your light shine at A.T. Still University. Combining leading-edge whole person healthcare with a commitment to serving those communities where needs are greatest, we provide students the opportunity to truly excel as doctors, dentists, healthcare providers and healthcare leaders. Apply now; click here.