Occupational Therapy Schools in Denver, CO with Degree Overviews

The Denver area has two schools within 65 miles of downtown that offer occupational therapy programs. Learn about the degree programs, admission info, and program requirements for these schools to make an informed education decision.

Denver-Area Schools for Occupational Therapy

Few schools in the Denver area offer occupational therapy (OT) programs. This article profiles two schools and the programs they offer. One of these institutions is about 20 minutes from downtown Denver and trains graduates for a career as an occupational therapy assistant (OTA), while the other is about 70 minutes away, but offers preparation to become a licensed occupational therapist.

This information on the schools and programs is followed with a table that showcases statistics about each school, such as enrollment, tuition, the percentage of students who graduate on time and the acceptance rate. At the end of the article is the name of one other Colorado school that offers occupational therapy training.

  • About 62 miles from Denver, Colorado State University in Fort Collins offers two types of master's degree programs and one doctor of philosophy (Ph.D) program in occupational therapy.
  • Pima Medical Institute, about 12 miles from the city center, offers an associate's degree program in occupational science.

Comparison of Schools

This table displays information about the schools that can be useful to individuals who are deciding where to enroll.

Colorado State University Pima Medical Institute - Denver
School Type* 4-year; public 2-year; private for-profit
Total Program Enrollment 50 (2018 entering class)** 49 (2016-2017 graduating class)***
Campus Setting* Midsize city Large suburb
Program Tuition (2017-2018) $12,035 in-state, $26,430 out-of-state graduate* $35,416***
Acceptance Rate (2018) 50/625 applicants** N/A - Open admissions*
Passing Rate for National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) exam (2016-2017) 100%** 97%***
Graduation Rate (2017) 93%** 88%***

Source: *NCES College Navigator, **Colorado State University, ***Pima Medical Institute

Colorado State University

Colorado State University's Department of Occupational Therapy houses several research and resource centers particular to the field. While the post-professional master's degree program is designed for those who hold a bachelor's degree in occupational therapy, the Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) and Master of Science (MS) in Occupational Therapy programs are for students without an OT degree. Colorado State University also offers a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in Occupational and Rehabilitation Sciences (ORS).

Master of Occupational Therapy or Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Students entering study in occupational therapy at the master's degree level at Colorado State begin in the MOT program. The initial semester provides information about the MOT and MS programs, along with the distinctions between them - namely, that the MOT program has a stronger focus on professional practice, while the MS program is more research-oriented and includes the development of a thesis. Both programs follow the same curriculum and include identical fieldwork requirements. Those in the MOT program will undergo more elective courses, while MS students will enroll in credits devoted to thesis research and writing. Required courses in the curriculum cover such subjects as rehabilitation science, old age occupational performance, and program development.

Doctor of Philosophy in Occupational and Rehabilitation Sciences

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in Occupational Rehabilitation Sciences (ORS) program at Colorado State prepares graduate level students for careers in research and higher education. Career opportunities may also exist in industry and government fields. The program requires 72-credit hours of coursework in occupational and rehabilitation science, research and academic teaching preparation. The coursework also requires students to complete a dissertation for completion of the degree.

Pima Medical Institute - Denver

Pima Medical Institute (PMI) is a for-profit institution with several campuses around the country. The OTA associate degree program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE).

Associate of Occupational Science

The occupational therapy assistant program at PMI in Denver requires courses in such areas as statistics, documentation, and health communications. In addition, the curriculum includes study of field-related topics including medical terminology, psychology, kinesiology, and physiology, among others. Students undertake three fieldwork practicums during the duration of the program.

Other School Options

Pueblo Community College, located about 102 miles from downtown Denver, is a 2-year, public school that also offers an OTA associate degree program.


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