OTD Admission

Apply for undergraduate admission and Pre-Occupational Therapy here.

(Program with Candidacy Status) The entry-level occupational therapy doctoral degree program has applied for accreditation and has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its Web address is The program must have a preaccreditation review, complete an on-site evaluation, and be granted 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). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, most states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

Admission to the Drake University OTD program is based on academic and personal qualifications that are necessary for successful, competent practice as an occupational therapist. Candidates are evaluated on the basis of the fit between their personal goals and the mission and goals of the OTD program.  Prior education, work experience, honors, awards, service to others and leadership activities are also considered in the admission process. Prior shadowing in an OT environment is helpful, but not required.

Students can apply to our OTD program by meeting the following requirements.  Please note that these are the requirements applicants must meet in order for their applications to be considered complete.  Meeting these requirements does not guarantee admission to the OTD program.  

  • Submit an application through the Centralized Application Service for Occupational Therapy (OTCAS)
  • Submit a Drake University Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) Supplemental Application and $70 application fee (Applications for the Summer 2017 term are now closed.  Applications for the Summer 2018 term will open in July 2017.)
  • Take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and have scores submitted directly to Drake University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences OTCAS (institution code 1892); no minimum score is required to be considered for admission to the OTD program
  • Earn a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university by the end of the spring semester prior to entering the OTD program
  • Earn a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher (as calculated in OTCAS)
  • Complete (or be in the process of completing) the prerequisite coursework outlined in the table below; all required courses must be completed by the end of the spring semester prior to entering the OTD program
SubjectCredit HoursDrake Courses

Anatomy and Physiology

A complete year course sequence in anatomy (one semester) and physiology (one semester) is required.  Students may take a combined anatomy/physiology sequence, but they must take both semesters in order to fulfill the requirement.  Labs are required.

8 credit hours (including labs) HSCI 125/L and 141 (PHAR 125 may replace HSCI 125); or BIO 018/L and 129

General Psychology

A one-semester introductory course in psychology is required.  This course must fulfill the prerequisite to allow students to take courses in developmental and abnormal psychology.  A lab is not required.

3 credit hours PSY 001 (4 credit hours)

Developmental Psychology

Students may take a one-semester course in child and adolecent development, adult development and aging, or lifespan development.  A lab is not required.

3 credit hours PSY 042 or 044

Abnormal Psychology

A one-semester course in abnormal psychology is required.  A lab is not required.

3 credit hours PSY 076


A one-semester course in general physics is required.  This may be a course designed for physics, life science or health science majors.  A lab is not required.

3 credit hours PHY 011 or 132


A one-semester course in general statistics is required.  Business, psychology or biological science statistics courses are accepted.

3 credit hours STAT 060 or 071

Medical Terminology

A one-semester course in medical terminology is required.

1 credit hour HSCI 095

English Composition

A complete year course sequence in college-level English writing or composition is required.  The sequence can be made up of a one-semester college-level composition course and a one-semester intensive writing course.

6 credit hours FYS and Written Communication AOI

Public Speaking

A one-semester course focused on public speaking is required.  Common course titles include Fundamentals of Speaking or Public Speaking.  Interpersonal speaking and communciation courses will NOT be accepted.

3 credit hours SCSR 073

Students must earn a grade of C or higher in order to receive transfer credit and fulfill prerequisite courses.  Please see Drake University's Transfer Credit Information page or contact the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at (515) 271-3018 for more information.  Students who wish to fulfill prerequisites using Advanced Placement (AP) scores must earn a 4 or higher on the AP exam.  Please see Drake University's AP, IB and CLEP Credit policy or contact the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences for more information. 

Application materials for the Summer 2017 term are now available.  Drake University's Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) program operates on a rolling admission process.  We recommend submitting application materials early in order to ensure your application is processed and considered in a timely manner.  Students with strong applications and academic credentials will be invited to complete the second phase of the admission process, which includes a scored on-campus interview and a scored writing assessment.

Tuition and Fees

Official tuition and fees are set on an annual basis by the Drake University Office of Business and Finance, approved by the Board of Trustees and administered through the Office of Student Accounts.

Recommended tuition and fees for the 2016/2017 year-round Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) program:*

  • Summer 2016: $8,969
  • Fall 2016: $17,938
  • Spring 2017: $17,938
  • Technology fee: $250 per year
  • Activity fee: $73 per year

*Subject to approval by the Drake University Board of Trustees in January 2016


Interested in financial assistance?  Visit our Office of Student Financial Planning website