The Doctor of Occupational Therapy (DrOT) program in the College of Health and Human Services was established 2008 and received approval from the Illinois Board of Education and Higher Learning Commission to grant the degree. The DrOT is a post-professional advanced practice degree. The DrOT program prepares you to evaluate and produce research, collaborate as a leader in the field, prepare to teach, and act as an advocate in healthcare through knowledge building with real-life applications aligned with your current professional roles or anticipated professional desires.

To learn more about our program attend our monthly Information Sessions!

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June 11, 20245:30pmVirtual
July 9, 2024
August 13, 20245:30pmVirtual
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Improving Lives Through Advanced Practice

The dynamic nature of health and human services offers challenging opportunities for advanced and specialized occupational therapy practice. There is a compelling need for the practice scholar – the advanced practice occupational therapist will actively enrich current clinical practice through knowledge building and skill development to aligned with current or anticipated professional desires.

Consider the College of Health and Human Services’ Doctor of Occupational Therapy (DrOT) program if you are ready to take your expertise to the next level. Students in our program explore, apply, and develop the best practice models, knowledge, and expertise they will need to take on Leadership, Education, Research, and Advocacy roles in the profession. The DrOT program will prepare you to be an innovator in both traditional and emerging areas of occupational therapy using real-life applications.

Welcome Enrichment

If you are a certified and licensed occupational therapist with a master’s degree in occupational therapy (or a bachelor’s in occupational therapy and a master’s in another field) and are looking for a way to progress in your field, consider our program. Refine your current clinical practice and begin to welcome new opportunities by further developing your education of occupational therapy.

The Governors State University DrOT sequence of courses provides you with the knowledge and skills that will open opportunities in leadership, education and research.

Reach Your Career Goals

After completing the program, you will have doors open for opportunities through:

  • Enhanced knowledge and ability to evaluate, apply and conduct research in occupational therapy
  • Leadership capabilities developed for today’s healthcare environment
  • Preparation to pursue employment in higher education
  • Advocacy practices

Doors will open for opportunities in Leadership, Education and Research.


The DrOT program has approval from the Illinois Board of Education and Higher Learning Commission to grant the degree of Doctor of Occupational Therapy.

Degree Requirements


Required DrOT Courses (30 credit hours)

OCCT 9205    Advanced OT Models, Concepts, and Application (3)
OCCT 9210    Advanced Research in OT (3)
OCCT 8705    Seminar I (1)
OCCT 9340    Leadership & Advocacy in OT (3)
OCCT 9345    Evidence-based Practice & Innovation (3)
OCCT 8710    Seminar II (1)
ONTL 6101    Introduction to Online Teaching (3)
ONTL 6201    The Role of the Online Instructor (3)
OCCT 8715    Seminar III (1)
OCCT 9992    Applied Scholarship I (3)
OCCT 9995    Applied Scholarship II (3)
OCCT 9999    Applied Scholarship II (3)
OCCT 9997    Applied Scholarship II (3)(if needed

Admission Requirements



  1. Graduation from an occupational therapy program accredited by the American Council on Occupational Therapy Education. International students must have graduated from a World Federation of Occupational Therapy program and have received certification from the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy.
  2. A minimum graduate GPA of 3.0, on a 4.0 point scale.
  3. Evidence of current certification from NBCOT.
  4. Evidence of current state occupational therapy license.
  5. An application essay.
  6. Curriculum vita or resume.
  7. Three letters of recommendation.
  8. A virtual interview with a graduate program faculty advisor/mentor.
  9. Pay the $75 Application Fee.

How to Apply


Application Procedure

Application for admission to the DrOT program is rolling allowing students to apply any time during the year. A cutoff date for applications, allowing for applications to be reviewed for admission, will be November 15. Admission decisions are made by December 1, for entry into the program in the Spring semester.

Interview Procedure

The Program Admission Committee will invite applicants to be interviewed. Committee recommendation will be based on the review of the admission materials, recommendations, essay, and interview. The committee will recommend those candidates who are the best qualified to the DrOT Program Coordinator. Applicants will be notified of the decision.

To apply to the Doctorate in Occupational Therapy program, follow the steps below:

  • Complete the GovState online application Apply Now
  • These items are required to complete your application:
    • NBCOT Certificate (Upload in application portal)
    • State Occupational Therapy License (Upload in application portal)
    • A vitae or resume (Upload in application portal)
    • An application essay: a one-page, double-spaced essay addressing the applicant’s reasons for pursuing the Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree (Upload in application portal)
    • An official transcript indicating a completed master’s degree from an accredited program. 3.0 GPA or higher is required may be sent to
    • Three letters of reference forms (one must be from an employer/supervisor; one from an OT colleague; and one from a person who can attest to your scholarly potential (Upload in application portal)
    • Pay the $75 application fee

Learn More!

DrOT Fact Sheet

If you would like to speak to a program representative to learn more about the DrOT program, contact Dr. Caren Schranz, Department of Occupational Therapy Chair at or (708) 235-7344.