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Christine Gunnigle

Admissions Questions

Dorothy Yates
Limited Enrollment Specialist
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* This program is financial aid eligible.

Occupational Therapy Assistant

Long Term

The Occupational Therapy Assistant curriculum prepares individuals to work under the supervision of a registered/licensed occupational therapist in screening, assessing, planning, and implementing treatment and documenting progress for clients receiving occupational therapy services.

Course work includes human growth and development, conditions which interfere with activities of daily living, theory and process of occupational therapy, individual/group treatment activities, therapeutic use of self, activity analysis, and grading/adapting activities and environments.

Graduates may be eligible to take the national certification examination for practice as a certified occupational therapy assistant. Employment opportunities include hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, long-term/extended care facilities, sheltered workshops, schools, home health programs, and community programs.

The Occupational Therapy Assistant program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE's telephone number, c/o AOTA, is 301-652-AOTA and its web address is

Program Costs

Occupational Therapy Assistant program estimated costs are listed below. Tuition is based on in-state residency. Out-of-state residency tuition can be found on the Tuition and Fees webpage.

Tuition (69 credits) $5,244 ($76 per credit) 
Textbooks $600 per program 
OTA Student Fees (OTA uniforms, lab fees for OTA courses, liability insurance, background check, drug screen, and Castlebranch health tracker) $338 per program 
Student Administrative Fess (Computer Use and Technology, Student Activity Fee, College Access, Parking and security Fee) $418 per program 
Distance Education0
Total $6,600 

Fees are subject to change  


Program Outcomes

The total number of graduates from the Occupational Therapy Assistant program during the 3-year period of 2020–2022 was 67 with an overall graduation rate of 83.6 percent.

Results for First-time Test Takers
YearNumber of Students Accepted into ProgramNumber of Program GraduatesProgram Graduation RatesNumber of Test TakersNumber who Passed the ExamPercentage who Passed the Exam








Three-Year Total







Note: Program graduates may sit for the exam whenever they choose, so the number of first-time test takers does not always match the number of graduates in a given year. The number of first- time test takers may also include graduates from the previous year.

Program results from the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) can be found on the NBCOT website.

Graduation Requirements

For additional information about requirements and graduation, please refer to the Curriculum Program Completion and Graduation policy. Students enrolled in the OTA program must be able to demonstrate competency in theory, laboratory, and clinical work by meeting Durham Tech’s academic standards and by maintaining a grade of ‘C’ or better in ALL curriculum courses (OTA, BIO, PSY, and ENG prefix codes, as well as the humanities elective). Please refer to the plan of study for the required courses. Due to the dynamic nature of the OT profession, students are required to complete the program within four years of their enrollment in OTA 110. This time frame is the equivalent of 12 semesters. Additionally, OTA students must maintain the required records and insurance coverage necessary for clinical placement. For questions about this program, consult the Program Director or an advisor for assistance.


The national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant is administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) at After successful completion of this exam, the graduate will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, most states, including North Carolina, require licensure to practice as a COTA; licensure in North Carolina is based on results of the NBCOT certification examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure. These processes are separate from the college’s program and graduation requirements. Students are encouraged to contact NBCOT for additional information.

Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA)

SOTA is a non-profit, student-run organization that promotes occupational therapy through community service, public relations, fundraising, and campus activities. SOTA provides fellowship among students and faculty, educational opportunities through community service activities, and leadership opportunities within the organization.

Membership is a great opportunity to meet current OTA students in the program, learn more about OT and get involved in community. The SOTA membership fee is $5 for current OTA students and $2 for prospective OTA students per semester.

How to Apply

Program applications are accepted until April 1 for a Summer start.

Before you Apply

View the Admissions Checklist. Students are required to attend an information session (recommended). The are listed in the Upcoming Events section below.

Apply to the College

New students who are not currently enrolled at Durham Tech should apply to the College using the Health Tech Students then Steps to Apply.

Apply to the Program

Prerequisites must be completed before applying to the program. Review the Admissions Checklist. Apply to the OTA program during the application period using the online Health and Wellness Admissions Application.

Estimated Tuition & Fees

$6,600 (includes textbooks)

Degree Type

Associate in Applied Science (AAS)

Minimum Credit Hours



Main Campus

First-Semester Courses

Course Number Title Credit Hours
ACA-122 College Transfer Success 1
BIO-168 Anatomy and Physiology I 4
ENG-111 Writing and Inquiry 3
OTA-110 Fundamentals of Occupational Therapy 3
PSY-150 General Psychology 3

Suggested Paths

headshot of Hanna Robinson

“I moved from Asheville just to come to this program because Durham Tech has one of the best Occupational Therapy Assistant programs in the state. Our instructors stress the fact that the OT field is a very close knit community and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know my classmates. The instructors are really incredible. They provide a vast amount of information that you don’t typically see at community colleges.”

—Hanna Robinson