University of Southern California
Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy

OTD: Course Sequence*

Students that do not already have a Master of Arts degree in Occupational Therapy from USC attend the two-year OTD program. However, selected courses may be waived if the student has taken comparable courses at another institution. The following is the course of study for the first year of this program. Please note that if, at the time of admission, the student has less than three years of clinical experience as a registered or licensed occupational therapist, he or she may be required to complete at least 8 units of 500-level courses within the Division (please see USC Catalogue for details).


*Courses subject to change.

First Year Course Overview

Read Course Descriptions here.

Fall Semester One

Fall semester generally begins in late August and continues for 16 weeks.

  • OT 515 Neuroscience of Behavior (4 units)
  • OT 525 Qualitative Research for Evidence-Based Practice (4 units)
  • OT 534 Health Promotion and Wellness (2 units)
  • OT 538 Current Issues in Practice: Adulthood and Aging (2 units)
  • OT 581 Quantitative Research for the Practicing Clinician (4 units)

Spring Semester One

Spring semester begins in January and continues for 16 weeks.

  • OT 540 Leadership Capstone (2 units)
  • OT 545 Advanced Seminar in Occupational Science (2 units)
  • Elective Courses (4 units)

Second Year Course Overview

Students with a Master of Arts degree in Occupational Therapy from USC are on the “fast track” to earning their clinical doctorate with just one year of study. The following is the course of study for these “fast track” students, as well as the second year of study for the two-year OTD students.

Fall Semester Two

Fall semester generally begins in late August and continues for 16 weeks.

  • OT 620 Current Issues in Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy (4 units)
  • OT 686 Part-time Residency (6 units)

Spring Semester Two

Spring semester begins in January and continues for 16 weeks.

  • OT 621 Occupational Therapy Leadership: Contemporary Issues (4 units)
  • OT 686 Part-time Residency (6 units)
  • Elective Course (4 units)

Summer Session

Summer session begins in mid-June and continues for nine weeks.

  • OT 686 Full-time Residency (12 units)
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USC Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
1540 Alcazar Street, CHP 133
Los Angeles, CA 90089-9003
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Phone: (323) 442-2850 · Toll free: (866) 385-4250
Fax: (323) 442-1540
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The USC entry-level master's degree program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education® (ACOTE). ACOTE c/o Accreditation Department, American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.®, 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449, (301) 652-6611 x2914, acoteonline.org

Professional program graduates are eligible to apply for certification by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy, Inc.® www.nbcot.org

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