Also, you need to pass the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT®) examination to be able to practice as a certified OTA. When a client or family member asks a question, having to run every answer through your OT supervisor can be difficult. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. St. Catherine University’s Online OTA program, your state’s occupational therapy regulatory body, Skills labs held about once a month on Sundays, Two, three-day Level I Fieldwork sessions, Two, 320-hour Level II Fieldwork sessions. Pros. Some jobs, like those in nursing homes and hospitals, may offer fixed schedules, while others vary based on the setting, and needs and schedules of their clients. © 2021 St. Catherine University | Privacy Policy, The Pros and Cons of an Occupational Therapy Assistant Career. Our program is open to students of all educational backgrounds (so long as you meet the GPA requirements), whether you are fresh out of high school or have an existing bachelor’s degree. Obviously, a registered occupational therapist (OTR) holding a master’s or doctorate degree is going to earn more per hour than an occupational therapy assistant with an associate’s degree. Licensed nurses and with less than a 2 year degree are still called nurses, as well as RNs with AS degrees whereas Certified Nursing Assistants have less education than COTAs or PTAs. If you had it to do over again, would you do things differently? Then came the day when PPS was passed and became law. Between longer life spans, an increase in chronic illness, and the wave of aging baby boomers, there is an ever-growing need for skilled Physical Therapists. St. Catherine University’s online OTA program could have you graduating with an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in just 16 months. If you are not OK with this, you can opt-out if you wish. For example, you might coordinate care with a physical therapist or physical therapy assistant, speech pathologist, registered nurse, or doctor, just to name a few. Positives. But remember, every coin has two sides. Of course, we all most likely started working in occupational therapy to help others. Pros and Cons of Each Profession. Pros and Cons. Article by St. Kate's (St. Catherine University) Career Exploration Career Education Early Education Interactive Infographic Occupational Therapy Assistant Music Therapy Horse Therapy Hand Therapy Physical Therapist With St. Catherine University’s Online OTA program, you can study to become an OTA without needing to relocate, so long as you are willing to travel to one of our learning sites in California, Texas or Virginia. Let’s be honest … every job has its upsides and its downsides. A quick search of OTA jobs reveals a wide variety of full-time and part-time opportunities. Apr 11, 2019. As an OTA, you will make a difference in people’s lives every single day — helping them to live better, maintain or regain independence, learn new skills, improve mobility, and adapt to or overcome disabilities, among other things. While the American Occupational Therapy Association is a great resource, your admissions advisor can also help you. Just looking at that, it may seem like working as an OTR is the best choice for making money. Still, the majority of the responsibility of handling this will fall to the supervising occupational therapist. If you do not live near one of our learning sites in California, Texas or Virginia, you’ll need to travel to the once-monthly skills labs and Level I Fieldwork. Founded in 1917, the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) represents the professional interests and concerns of more than 213,000 occupational therapists, assistants, and students nationwide. An occupational therapist can become a director of rehab or program manager, and honestly make some of the best DORs. So while OTAs are not in charge, they aren’t just order-takers, either. As we previously discussed, the demand for occupational therapy services has never been greater, yet because occupational therapy is not as well-known as, say, nursing or physical therapy, a lot of people don’t pursue it as a career choice. What other pros and cons would you add? This will help you decide if it’s the right career move for you. When it comes to creating effective treatment plans, COTAs are just as capable in implementing beneficial treatments. May, in accordance with State laws, assist in development of treatment plans, carry out routine functions, direct activity programs, and document the progress of treatments. The work can also get hectic at times as you also take the role of caretakers for the special individuals during your therapy session. I believe pursuing a career as a physical therapy assistant is a very smart decision. In many settings, the OT and COTA will have to work closely as a team. Contractor (Independent Contractor) Be sure to do some solid research beforehand on your city’s job market if you plan on staying there after you graduate. This means that a COTA will have to yield to the OT’s final decision making when it comes to treatment plans, discharge processes, and evaluation outcomes. Nov 11, 2016 - Considering becoming an OTA? If you are considering becoming an occupational therapist, it can be helpful to know the pros and cons of the industry and field. Whether near or far, our Online OTA program is for you. As we can clearly see, an occupational therapy assistant is an important part of the rehab team. They may rely on physical therapist assistants, or PT assistants, to help with such tasks as observing patients, demonstrating assistive devices and recording progress. You might not want to take a home health therapy job for this and other reasons. These cookies do not store any personal information. Certified occupational therapy assistants (COTAs) help patients recover, improve and develop skills that are crucial to working and living. In all these instances, it’s important to remember why you got into this field in the first place: to make a difference. As you consider a career as a physical therapist, occupational therapist, or SLP, you want to think about the advantages and disadvantages. Before making a decision about your future, you need to be sure a career is right for you, and that means looking at both and deciding what matters most to you. What OT topics are you most interested in? The nature of an OTA’s job requires that they teach the skills of daily living. Ability to be supportive to patients and set up a great working environment for them on the road to become healthy. OTRs earn about $41/hr across the country according to BLS data for 2018 median income. Initially, it might look like an OT is better prepared to handle direct patient treatment than a COTA. When this is done properly, it can make for an effective and productive therapy environment and an enjoyable workplace. Are you a practicing certified occupational therapy assistant? Like most jobs, there are advantages, but also some disadvantages, to working as a PT assistant. You’ve seen how much good can truly be accomplished through the occupational therapy process. In fact, most places they work are unique, too. As an OTA, you’ll work closely with not only occupational therapists, allowing you to continue learning after you graduate, but you’ll also get to see other medical practitioners at work. The future is bright for anyone considering becoming an OTA. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. 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