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Occupational Therapy Assistant

Available at the Grand Island Campus
  • Occupational therapy assistants help address the quality of life of people who are unable to fully participate in meaningful tasks and activities of daily life because of physical, psychological or social conditions or environmental or attitudinal barriers.

    The Grand Island Campus offers Nebraska’s only two-year occupational therapy assistant (OTA) program. Graduates receive an associate of applied science degree and are eligible to take the licensing exam required to become a certified occupational therapy assistant (COTA).

    People with a strong interest in health and wellness, psychology, sociology, and behavioral studies are encouraged to apply to the program.

    Occupational therapy assistants:

    • Work with people of all ages and ability levels — from serving on early intervention teams to implementing aging-in-place programs for community elders.
    • Assist occupational therapists in assessing individual and community occupation-related needs. Help develop therapeutic intervention plans.
    • Use purposeful activities, creative arts, environmental modification, adaptive equipment and technology and the therapeutic use of self to facilitate engagement in meaningful activity.
    • Assist with planning and implementing treatment activities.
    • Communicate with individuals, families and health care providers.
    • Document progress toward the achievement of individual and community identified and centered goals.

    Working Conditions

    Occupational therapy assistants work in a variety of settings including:

    • Skilled nursing facilities.
    • Schools
    • Rehabilitation hospitals
    • Day treatment centers
    • Out-patient and community-based clinics
    • Acute care hospitals
    • Home health

    Job Outlook

    This field is ranked as the 8th fasted growing occupations, with employment expected to increase by 43 percent during the decade ending in 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.


    The occupational therapy assistant program has been granted accreditation through 2026 by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Ln Ste 200 Bethesda, MD 20814-3449.  Additional information regarding occupational therapy accreditation may be obtained from the ACOTE Accreditation section of the AOTA  Web Page (, or by phone 800 -729 - 2682. Graduates of the program are eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Most states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Exam and on the demonstration of continuing education and competency.

    NBCOT Program Data Results

    For detailed information, see the Occupational Therapy Assistant Handbook.

    Admissions Documents

    OTA Admissions Packet     OTA Student Handbook

    • At 2017-18 tuition and fee rates, completing the 71 credits required for the Occupational Therapy Assistant degree costs:

      Nebraska residents - $7,100
      Non-residents - $10,224

      Cost for books, a laptop and other expenses total about $3,900. Students may have additional expenses for room and board while completing fieldwork, immunizations, and CPR training. (See OTA Admissions Packet for details.)

      OTA Admissions Packet

      These costs are for tuition and fees only for the program of study as listed in the CCC online catalog. It does not include the cost of foundations courses, retaking courses or taking courses in addition to those required for the degree. It does not include the cost of books, supplies, tools, computers or other items that may be required.

      View College Costs

    • Finish in 2 years by completing 4 semesters + 1 summer session

      See the  OTA Student Handbook for details. 

      OTA Student Handbook

      The length of time to complete a program is based on a student taking only the courses required for the program as listed in our online catalog. It does not include the cost of foundations courses that may be required based on COMPASS, ASSET or ACT scores, retaking courses or taking courses that are not required by your program of study.

      Your adviser will develop a plan of study to meet your personal needs.

    • Career Coach(2)Check out Career Coachto learn about job openings, pay and careers for graduates of the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program.