The Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA).

4720 Montgomery Lane
Suite 200
Bethesda, MD 20814-3449

(301) 652-AOTA

Admissions Requirements and Checklist

Pencil Sharpener

1. Preparation

The OT program uses the Occupational Therapy Centralized Application Service (OTCAS). To learn more about the application process and schedule, visit the OTCAS website. You'll find information specific to our program listed under the Participating Programs link on the left side of the page, then select College of St. Scholastica.

All St. Scholastica students who apply to the Occupational Therapy Program will be given priority review. Priority review means that applicants who have earned a degree (or will earn a degree prior to starting the OT Program) from St. Scholastica will be reviewed prior to applicants with degrees from other colleges or universities. Priority review does not mean guaranteed admission.

Minimum Eligibility for Admission

All applicants to the Occupational Therapy Program at The College of St. Scholastica must meet the following minimum eligibility criteria in order for their application to be considered:

  • B.A./B.S. degree from a regionally accredited institution. No specific baccalaureate major is required
  • achieve a minimum cumulative and prerequisite GPA of 3.0
  • complete all prerequisites with a grade of 2.7 or better and within 10 years of application
  • submit GRE scores obtained within the 5 years prior to application and sent to the CSS OTCAS code of 1995
  • submit three letters of recommendation
  • complete a minimum of 40 hours of observation with an occupational therapist

Note: meeting minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission. Exceptions to minimum criteria may be made at the discretion of the admissions committee. Interviews are not typically part of the admission process for the Occupational Therapy Program.

Scoring of Admission Criteria

Applications that meet the above minimum eligibility criteria will be reviewed and scored by members of the admissions committee using a rubric. Applicants are ranked based on both quantitative and qualitative criteria.  Quantitative measures include GRE scores (analytic writing, quantitative reasoning, verbal reasoning) and computed grade point average for all undergraduate work and prerequisite course work. Qualitative aspects of the application are scored by members of the admission committee.  Areas that receive scoring include:

  • letters of recommendation: provide three recommendation letters. It is suggested that at least one of the three letters of recommendation be from a professor who knows the applicant well enough to speak to her/his qualification for graduate school. It is also recommended that one or more letters of recommendation come from an occupational therapist or employer who can speak about the applicant's work or volunteering experience with individuals who have a disability
  • observation hours: all applicants must have a minimum of 40 observation hours (additional points are awarded for greater than 40 hours).  Applicants should consider the following when planning observations: observe various practice settings with distinctly different client populations (e.g., pediatrics and adult rehabilitation); all observations must be completed within two years before applying; all observations must be in a setting that offers the student the opportunity to shadow a registered/licensed occupational therapist
  • previous experiences: applicants should provide details about their work history, community service, honors/recognitions, leadership, teaching, and participation in research activities as these are awarded additional points
  • personal essays: essays that follow the prompts with clear expression of ideas, good organization, and absence of writing errors are awarded additional points

Additional Information about Becoming an Occupational Therapy Student

  • A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure. An individual, who has a felony background and is considering entering an occupational therapy program, can have his or her background reviewed prior to actually applying for the exam by requesting an Early Determination Review
  • Students who apply to the MS in OT program will be expected to perform a minimum number of Technical Standards and Essential Requirements.

The 2015/2016 academic year will mark the end of the FACT admission option to the Occupational Therapy Program.

FACT is a criterion based, early admission program for the graduate Occupational Therapy Program. The program is available for first-year students at The College of St. Scholastica. Students who declare their intent to pursue a master's degree in occupational therapy will be guaranteed admission to that program after completion of their baccalaureate degree if they meet the plan criteria. 

Applicants applying by the November 15, 2016, deadline for the summer 2017 entry must meet these prerequisites:

For applicants planning a June 2017 start, please note the following change: all but two prerequisite courses must be complete (with grades on transcripts) at the time of application. The remaining two prerequisites must be completed and grades submitted by June 6, 2017.

  • General Psychology
  • Lifespan Development Psychology
  • Anatomy & Physiology I and II (or human anatomy and human physiology courses), labs preferred
  • An introductory Sociology or Anthropology course
  • Medical Terminology
  • Statistics
  • Research Methods
  • Introduction to Occupational Therapy (required for students applying for June 2018 and beyond)
  • Courses in physics, pathophysiology, and abnormal psychology are recommended

Advanced Placement (AP) Credit will not be accepted for prerequisite courses. The OT Program does not give credit for work experience or credits taken while enrolled in another OT Program toward prerequisite or in-program courses.

Due to the high volume of interest in the Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program at The College of St. Scholastica, the Office of Graduate Admissions does not review unofficial transcripts to determine the completion of prerequisite coursework. In most cases, course titles match. If you have specific questions about a particular course, please reference our transfer credit center to determine if the course meets the stated requirement.


2. Application

Official transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended or where credit was earned must be sent to OTCAS. Instructions are indicated on the OTCAS application.

  1. Submit an OTCAS application (reference OTCAS for application instructions/requirements)
  2. In the OTCAS application, submit contact information for three people to submit recommendation information/letters on your behalf.
  3. Applications completed by the Nov. 15 deadline will be forwarded to the Admissions Committee for review and an admissions decision.
  4. The Occupational Therapy Admissions Committee may request interviews.

If you have international transcripts or non-citizen status, you will need to complete the online program application and send additional documentation. Please see the International Admissions Policy for complete details.

There are many financial aid options available to help you pay for your education. Contact the OneStop Student Services office early in the application process at (877) 287-8716 or


3. Post-Completion

  • After you are emailed a decision regarding your application, please inform us of your decision (accept or decline the offer, if one is made) via the Intent to Enroll form linked in the email.
  • Submit $500 non-refundable deposit
  • Submit Student Health Services forms, including the immunization form, through the COR student portal/My Health/Forms.

As a college student at St. Scholastica, you get to take the lead in your own education and assume responsibility for your success. Please use our accepted students information page to help you along the way, and remember, your advisors and instructors are here to guide and support you as you proceed through your journey toward a degree.

Application Deadline

Applications will be accepted via OTCAS July 19 - November 15 for the following summer enrollment.

Next Steps...

Receive Program Info and Financial Aid Options
  • Detailed program overview
  • Personalized financial aid
  • Individual admissions support

Apply Now

Contact Us

Courtney EickmanCourtney Eickman
Admissions Counselor, Duluth Campus
(877) 287-8731