Occupational Therapy Doctorate


RU’s occupational therapy doctorate program helps you contribute to the health and wellness of your community.

Earn an Occupational Therapy Doctorate at RU

Now Accepting Applications!

Contribute to your community’s health and wellness by earning a Doctorate of Occupational Therapy degree from Rockhurst University. Our occupational therapy program creates an atmosphere that is friendly, challenging, interactive and diverse. The comprehensive occupational therapy doctorate curriculum is presented in an educational climate that mimics real-world therapy practices.

As an occupational therapist, you’ll enable people of all ages to live life to the fullest. Within our program, you’ll have opportunities to conduct research under the guidance of a mentor, present findings at state and national conferences, and help lead student-run select community clinics.

About the OT Degree Programs


What does an occupational therapist do?

Here, it’s about more than earning a degree. It’s about preparing you to become an ethical practitioner and a thoughtful leader in occupational therapy. It’s a chance to challenge yourself, interact in a diverse environment and serve others.

You could become an occupational therapist, providing therapy to injured, ill or disabled indviduals in facilities both large and small. Become a clinician in an emerging and exciting area, an administrator within a health system, a leader of public policy, a researcher for better solutions, an instructor to continue your impact, and so much more.



Occupational Therapy Salary

  • The median annual salary for an occupational therapist with experience is $81,690.
  • We are No. 18 in the U.S. in OT program rankings for career support, per graduateprograms.com.
  • Rockhurst University's occupational therapy program consistently produces high graduation rates.
  • Nearly 100% of our program grads have OT jobs within six months of graduation.

With Rockhurst's 2.5-year curriculum, our occupational therapy graduate program gets graduates into the job market as soon as they're ready.

Occupational Therapy Student Grateful for Blessings

Elhonei, a Rockhurst University occupational therapy student from Ethiopia, talks about giving back to children and patients because of the blessings she received. Elhonei and her family were able to come to the U.S. thanks to the DV lottery, which enabled Elhonei to eventually end up in Kansas City, Missouri, at Rockhurst.

Why the Rockhurst Occupational Therapy Doctorate?

World-Class Faculty

Our professors give specialized attention to all students and have experience in pediatrics, hand therapy, adult rehabilitation, neurorehabilitation, mental health, geriatrics, assistive technology, community practice, and research.

Experience Jesuit Values

Students gain real-world clinical skills and enhance ethical development by participating in service learning and authentic, practical opportunities in the community. Our Jesuit foundation makes Rockhurst a unique choice in the occupational therapy school landscape.

Gain Practical Experience Through Service Learning Already Integrated into the Curriculum

Throughout the program, you'll participate in service learning related to OT and have the opportunity to engage in numerous local and international service opportunities.

Do Meaningful Research

Rockhurst occupational therapy students conduct research under the guidance of a mentor and present their findings at state and national conferences.

Enhance Leadership Skills

Students develop leadership skills as they provide services alongside community partners, collaborate with other healthcare disciplines and participate in departmental and university committees.

RU Occupational Therapy Alum Leads Self-Help Skill Programs for Kids

Dr. Katie Ryan-Bloomer, a Rockhurst University alum and assistant professor of occupational therapy, helps conduct programs for children undergoing constraint-induced movement therapy. Ryan-Bloomer and others at Ability KC work with kids through play therapy and additional occupational activities to help improve the kids’ self-help skills.


Apply for the OT program at a point that works best for you.

Freshman Pre-Admission

A program for exceptional students. Admission is based on a combination of your ACT or SAT scores, high school GPA and prerequisite courses.

Regular Admittance

Apply during your final year of undergraduate work. Post-baccalaureate students apply the summer prior to the selection of a new class.

OT Scholars Program

An advanced admission program for outstanding current RU students. Apply by submitting a letter of intent to the OT office at the beginning of your sophomore year.

Transfer Pre-Admission

Apply for pre-admission if you have completed two years of undergraduate courses at another school.

Accelerated Program

Early entrance into the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program is available to students consecutively enrolled at RU since their freshman year. Contact the OT Program Advisor to determine eligibility.

Saint Luke's College of Nursing and Health Sciences

Exam Pass Rates

NBCOT logo


Rockhurst occupational therapy graduates consistently have a high success rate in passing the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) exam.

For most recent pass rates for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy exam, please visit  NBCOT.org.

NBCOT, National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy
One Bank Street Suite 300
Gaithersburg, MD 20878
Phone: 301-990-7979


The OTD program has reached Candidacy Status through ACOTE. The program must complete an on-site evaluation and be granted full Accreditation Status before its graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapist administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT).

ACOTE c/o AOTA, The American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.
6116 Executive Blvd Ste 200
North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929
Phone (members): 800-SAY-AOTA (729-2682)
Phone (non-members): 301-652-6611


Gain a competitive edge in today’s health care industry by earning two degrees at once: an Occupational Therapy Doctorate, along with either an MBA or an MA in Organizational Leadership.

A dual-degree program offers:

  • A balanced mix of OT and business classes to create a manageable course load.
  • Faculty and staff who work together to support you throughout the program.
  • A potential completion time of two years.
  • Business classes on weeknights so they do not conflict with your daytime OT schedule.
  • An opportunity to strengthen your professional readiness.

Connect With Us

The official Facebook and Twitter accounts for the Department of Occupational Therapy Education at Rockhurst University.