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Entry Requirements

MOT program admission requirements are listed below. General admissions requirements may be obtained from the Graduate School. Some of these requirements for admission into the MOT program are higher than the general requirements for admission into the ISU Graduate School.

Applicants are selected on a competitive basis. Applicants should be aware that meeting minimum entry-level requirements does not guarantee acceptance into the program.

The Master of Occupational Therapy Program is pleased to announce updated admissions requirements.

These requirements will take effect for the OTCAS admissions cycle that opens in July 2024 for students applying to start the program in August 2025.

Masters of OT Admissions Requirements

Bachelors Degree Requirements

Applicants must complete a baccalaureate degree or higher from a college or university regionally accredited in the United States or its equivalent from a school in another country. If admitted, applicants will be required to submit official transcripts before attending/registering for classes.

GPA Requirements

Applicants must have an overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher (out of a 4.0 scale) OR a GAP of 3.0 as calculated using the grades from the most recent 60 credits of accredited college coursework.

General Provisions

  • Applicants must complete specific prerequisite courses with a GPA of 3.0 in each of the specified categories.
  • Prerequisite coursework in anatomy and physiology must be completed within the last five (5) years.
  • An applicant with more than four (4) prerequisite courses in progress or planned for the spring/summer semesters may not be considered for admission (the program may not consider applications when there are more than 4 prerequisites planned/in progress).
  • Courses graded on a pass-fail basis are acceptable for meeting minimum criteria in fulfilling prerequisite requirements; however, such grades may be evaluated less favorably by the admissions committee in ranking applicants. Thus, the use of such courses as prerequisites is discouraged. 

Prerequisite Coursework

  • Anatomy and Physiology (2 courses)
    • 1 course in Human Anatomy and 1 course in Human Physiology with labs. (Two courses in combined Anatomy and Physiology with labs are also acceptable.) Must have been taken within 5 years of application date. Courses must be listed
      in the Biology, Zoology, Anatomy, or Physiology categories.
  • Statistics (1 course)
    • This requirement is not fulfilled by a course in research methods, marketing statistics, or tests and measures.
  • Human Development (1 course)
    • Lifespan Development preferred
  • Abnormal Psychology (1 course)
    • A course in Psychopathology would also fulfill this requirement
  • Sociology OR Cultural Anthropology
    • Sociology course must be offered by sociology department
    • Cultural anthropology course must be offered by anthropology department and the focus of the course must be cultural
  • Medical Terminology
    • Online certification courses accepted. Certificate must be included with application.


Occupations are the heart of occupational therapy. Occupations are the everyday activities people want, need, and are expected to do.  Occupational therapists believe that by engaging in occupations, people are improving and/or maintaining their health, well-being, and quality of life. 


Applicants must demonstrate knowledge and exposure to the occupational therapy profession. They are required to complete one of the following three options:

  • A minimum of 10 hours of observation experience
    • Hours must be completed directly with an occupational therapist or occupational therapy assistant. Work hours are permitted, provided the work is completed directly with an occupational therapy practitioner.
    • Observation hours cannot include therapy administered to the applicant or the applicant's relatives
    • All required hours must be completed prior to application to the ISU MOT program
  • Completion of an Introduction to OT course offered by a college or university (e.g. OT 2209 at ISU)
  • Interview an occupational therapist

Letters of Reference

Each applicant is required to submit two letters of reference to complete the application. Applicants often submit letters from occupational therapy practitioners who supervised their volunteer experiences, professors or academic advisors who are familiar with their academic performance, or employers or coaches with knowledge of personal characteristics or attributes that would enhance your ability to be an occupational therapist.

We will not accept letters of reference from relatives of the applicant.

Letters of reference must be submitted according to OTCAS requirements: 

Personal Statement/Essay

Each applicant must submit a personal statement/essay via the OTCAS system.  This statement may include any additional information that an applicant wishes to provide the admissions committee. 

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