Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy


The Department of Occupational Therapy supports the mission of UTPA by preparing graduate level professionals capable of meeting the challenges of health care and community environments, and the unique needs of growing international and multi-cultural populations of the south Texas region.

contact information
Dr. Shirley Wells
Program Director
Phone: (956) 665-2474
Department of Occupational Therapy
Social Work Occupational Therapy Building (SWOT) 1.300
Phone: (956) 665-2475
Fax: (956) 665-2476

Message from the Chair

Dr. Shirley A. WellsOur Master of Science in Occupational Therapy provides an opportunity to acquire entry level knowledge and professional skills, to build critical thinking skills, and to develop clinical research skills in a health profession based on occupational performance. The academic curriculum has been designed to exposure students to the influence and impact of occupation, culture, systems, and disabilities on the provision of occupational therapy. As a graduate of the program, you will be able to guide individuals in understanding how their ability to perform daily activities affects their ability to take part in home, school, work, and community life. Guided by the values and ethics of the profession you will be able to effectively evaluate and provide intervention for clients’ occupational needs, problems and concerns. You will be a part of a community where faculty and students engage in and promote scholarly inquiry and service in support of the health and wellness of the Rio Grande Valley. Come join us!

Dr. Shirley Wells

Time to Degree: Typically 2 years and a half: Fall, Spring, and both Summer I and Summer II of the first year; Fall, Spring, and Summer of the second year; and Fall of the third year. The maximal length of time to complete the MS in Occupational Therapy program is 5 years.

Total Credit Hours: 71 credit hours, including 2 years of academic coursework and 6 months of fieldwork. 

    Graduation      Year   Student Entering/Graduating  Graduation Rate
2012 26/28 93%
2013 23/24 96%
2014 19/22 86%
Total 68/74 92%

UTPA’s National Board for Certification Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) Examination Pass


The program’s passing percent data is calculated on the number of New Graduates who passed the NBCOT exam regardless of the number of attempts during the testing year to meet ACOTE’s reporting standard. For questions about the reporting standard, please contact ACOTE

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Office of Graduate Studies



The UTPA Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by The Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education


c/o Accreditation Department

American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)The Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education
4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200

Bethesda, MD 20814-3449

Tel.: (301) 652-2682 (AOTA)
Fax: (301) 652-7711
(TDD): (800) 377-8555
Web site: