Accreditation & Outcomes


The Doctor of  Occupational Therapy program at the University of South Dakota is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). ACOTE is recognized as the accrediting agency for occupational therapy education by both the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Students must graduate from an ACOTE-accredited program and successfully pass the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy exam in order to apply for state licensure and to practice as an occupational therapist.

For more information, visit the AOTA website or contact:

6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200
North Bethesda, MD, 20852-4929
Phone: (301) 652-AOTA (2682)

Certification & Credentialing

Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Examination for the Occupational Therapist administered by the NBCOT. After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a registered occupational therapist. Most states require licensure to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT certification examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

Occupational Therapy Outcomes

The USD OT Program was one of the first 12 programs in the nation to offer the Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.). Our graduates have a 100% pass rate on the NBCOT Exam as outlined in the table below and on the NBCOT web page.

Year Number of program graduates who took the exam Number of program graduates who passed the exam Percentage of program graduates who passed the exam
2019 27 27 100%
2020 29 29 100%
 2021  30 30 100%
Total  86 86 100%

Retention and Progression

Graduation Year Students Entering*/Graduating Graduation Rate
2019 28/26 92.9%
2020 31/29 93.5%
 2021 32/30 93.8% 
Total 3-Year 91/85 93.4%

*May include students who entered under different admission cycles.