Our Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) program is a three-year, clinical program for students seeking entry-level professional education.

Students applying to the program must obtain a bachelor's or master's/graduate degree prior to entrance into the D.P.T. program, though they may apply during their senior year of undergraduate study. For more information on applying as a sophomore or junior undergraduate student, refer to the Occupational Therapy Scholar program.

In addition to the degree, you must complete certain prerequisite coursework prior to beginning the program. All coursework must be completed and a bachelor's degree obtained by June 1 prior to beginning the OTD program.

Selection Criteria

Enrollment is limited to 32 students selected through a competitive application process based on evaluation of the following:

  • Academic preparation and Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores
  • Personal statement
  • Work or volunteer experience in occupational therapy or related area (recommended minimum of 30 hours in at least three different areas of practice)
  • Community involvement, leadership, and diverse cultural experiences
  • Recommendation letters (minimum of 3 letters)
  • One letter must be from a healthcare provider, preferably an occupational therapist
  • One letter must be from an instructor/advisor
  • Personal interview

Important Information for Fall 2020 Program Entrance

Criteria Early Admission General Admission
Application material must be submitted to the Occupational Therapy Centralized Application Service (OTCAS) & USD by: Oct. 1, 2019 Dec. 2, 2019
*GRE Test recommended to be taken by: July 31, 2019 Nov. 1, 2019
**USD must receive Academic Updates from OTCAS by: Not applicable Jan. 2, 2020
Scheduled Interview Dates (by invitation only): Nov. 8, 2019 Feb. 13 and 14, 2020
Minimum requirements for Interview Selection:

The following criteria must be met:

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.5 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • Prerequisite GPA of 3.5 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • Science Prerequisite GPA of 3.2 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • No grade below "B-" in prerequisite courses
  • 6 of 9 prerequisites completed
  • 2 of 3 science prerequisites completed

2 of the following 3 criteria must also be met:

  • 40th percentile rank for verbal GRE score
  • 45th percentile rank for quantitative GRE score
  • GRE analytical writing score of 4.0

The following criteria must be met***:

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • Prerequisite GPA of 3.0 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • Science Prerequisite GPA of 3.0 (as calculated by OTCAS) based on a 4.0 scale
  • No grade below "C" in prerequisite courses
  • 7 of 9 prerequisites completed
  • 2 of 3 science prerequisites completed

The following criteria are recommended but not required:

  • 40th percentile rank for verbal GRE score
  • 45th percentile rank for quantitative GRE score
  • GRE analytical writing score of 4.0

*The oldest GRE scores considered will be Nov. 1, 2014. Please keep in mind that it can take up to eight weeks for GRE score reports to arrive at OTCAS following your test date.
**Updates received after this date will not be considered on applications.
***Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 may submit their application for review. Applicants are encouraged to provide rationale in their application as to why they feel their GPA is not indicative of their academic capabilities. Merit of the application will be determined by reviewing grades for the most recent 64 semester hours, which must meet the 3.0 GPA requirement. In the event the cumulative or science prerequisite GPA is below 3.0, the committee may review applications as long as the GPA falls between 2.85-3.0 and all other application requirements are satisfied.  


Applications received after Dec. 2, 2019 will not be accepted.