8 Free Occupational Therapy CEUs
We all know quality occupational therapy CEUs can come with a hefty price tag. And unfortunately, we sometimes have fork over significant money to keep up with our CEUs for license renewal.
But this doesn’t have to be the case! Thankfully, there are FREE occupational therapy CEUs available that you can use towards your state license and NBCOT renewals.
We’ve rounded up these great options for free occupational therapy CEUs, current as of May 2020. We will update this as needed, so be sure to let us know if you notice any changes when perusing these options.
And as with any continuing education, be sure to check with your individual state’s licensing board to be sure they will accept these credits.
Without further ado, here are 8 totally free OT CEU options for you to check out:
1. The NBCOT Navigator
The NBCOT Navigator is a fantastic option for free quality continuing education. If you’re certified through NBCOT as an OTR or COTA, you have free access to up to 14 units per renewal period, which they call competency assessment units.
The Navigator includes case simulations, management challenges, practice quizzes, evidence-based research, an orthotic builder, an OT knowledge library and a physical agent modalities tool. They are also going to launch an app version this year so you can earn credits easily on your phone.
To learn more about the Navigator and to see if your state also accepts these CAUs for state licensing, be sure to check out their platform here.
2. AOTA’s Free Webinars
AOTA offers free webinars yearly in which you can earn up to 12 continuing education contact hours free, with each webinar equaling one contact hour.
Just a few examples of these interesting webinar topics include:
- Tech Talk: Potential of Everyday Technology for OT
- Health Through Horticulture: Gardening as an OT Intervention
- Identifying and Preventing Burnout in Occupational Therapy Practice
Typically, these CE opportunities are reserved for AOTA members but in 2020, AOTA is also offering a free virtual series for both members and non-members. The free series covers COVID-19 and OT, with topics including:
- What OTs Need to Know About Starting Medicare Home Health Cases
- OT in Hospitals and Inpatient Care: Responding to a Pandemic
- OT and Telehealth
You can find the full list of this free series here.
3. OccupationalTherapy.com’s One Free Course
OccupationalTherapy.com offers one free 1-hour course of your choice for new users. Just enter their code 1FREECOURSE at checkout.
If you enjoy their online platform and want unlimited online courses after that, you can purchase an annual membership for $99. I have not used OccupationalTherapy.com myself but have heard from other OTs that they feel they get a pretty good value for the $99/year price tag.
4. AbleNet University’s Free Courses
AbleNet is an assistive technology company that not only manufactures assistive tech for individuals with disabilities but also provides free live webinars and recorded webinars (available 24/7) through their AbleNet University.
They currently offer over 250 hours of free CE content, with many of the courses taught by OTs. A few course examples include:
- Working with Students Using Switches
- How Do I Develop Readiness for Power Mobility?
- Managing Behavior in a Technology Rich Environment
5. Montana Geriatric Education Center’s Two Free Courses
The Montana Geriatric Education Center (MTGEC) – affiliated with the University of Montana – offers two free 2-hour online courses on cognitive impairment. The courses are created for healthcare professionals.
The two courses are:
- Cognitive Decline and Dementia in Older Adults
- Screening for Cognitive Impairment
Both are offered for free as part of their Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program. If you ever work with older adults, this is a great option that is well worth your time.
To get credit, you’ll just have to register and pass the exam at the end of the courses with a 70% or higher.
Update: As of Feb. 2021, this course is only free to Montana residents, however out-of-state residents can take either course for $25 (which is not bad at all for two-hour courses!)
6. Saebo’s Free Online Continuing Ed Courses
Saebo offers multiple free online evidence-based continuing education courses, which are all approved by AOTA. These are great options if you’re working with neurological populations and/or hand therapy, since Saebo specializes in stroke rehab products related to the upper extremity.
- Saebo Self-Study Certification: Get Certified to Fit the SaeboFlex and SaeboReach (8 CEU hours)
- Introduction to Electrotherapy: Learn the Basics of Electrical Stimulation (1.5 CEU hours)
- SaeboGlove: Grasping Functional Recovery (.5 CEU hours)
- SaeboStretch: A Dynamic Resting Hand Splint for Neurophysiological Changes (.5 CEU hours)
- SaeboFlex and SaeboReach: Improving Upper Extremity Motor Recovery (.5 CEU hours)
- SaeboMAS and SaeboMAS Mini: Unweight Your Arm and Explore Life
- SaeboStim Micro: Boost Hand and Arm Recovery (.5 CEU hours)
- SaeboStim One and SaeboStim Pro: Overcome Weakness and Improve Function (.75 CEU hours)
- Fostering Patient Compliance While at Home (1 CEU hour)
As you can see above, there are many options to choose from which will give you a huge chunk of free hours. The courses are all self-study and can be taken 24 hours a day.
7. OnlineCE.com’s One Free Course
Similar to OT.com above, OnlineCE.com also offers an introductory free 1-hour course of your choice from their collection of OT CEUs. To get the free course, you’ll click the “Try it Free” to register for your free course.
The course can also be done any time of day, and has a vast library of options. Some course topics include driver rehabilitation, pain management in OT, and hand therapy treatment activities.
8. Wild Iris’s Free CEU Option
Wild Iris Medical Education is an online continuing education company known for it’s super low cost CEU options that are approved by AOTA and the NBCOT. Most of their paid courses run between $10 and $65, with many of them in the $20-$30 range.
Along with their super low-cost courses, they’re currently offering a free COVID-19 course titled The Impact of a Pandemic on Mental Health: Providing Mental Health Interventions for Patients and Healthcare Workers, which is definitely worth checking out. The course is 1.5 credits as of May 2020.
BONUS: The Parkinson’s Foundation Free OT Course
While this course may not qualify for your state or national CEUs, it’s a great free course for therapists working with individuals with Parkinson’s disease. A bit about the course:
The Parkinson’s Foundation teamed up with AOTA and occupational therapists who are specialized in Parkinson’s disease to create this free 4-module course that provides evidence-based practice across the continuum of Parkinson’s care to help OT practitioners evaluate and treat individuals with PD in all settings.
- An Overview of Parkinson’s
- The Role of OT in Parkinson’s Care
- Emerging Research, Resources and Beyond
You can access the course 24 hours a day through the above link.
Still Need More CEUs?
If you’re still on the hook for more continuing education hours and don’t want to splurge on a $500 weekend course, I use and highly recommend MedBridge Continuing Education for the highest quality and unlimited online continuing ed courses.
While MedBridge is not free, you can get a year of unlimited CEUs and webinars that count towards live courses for just $200 with our promo code MYOTSPOT (the yearly price is normally $375/year). If you’re still on the fence or want to learn more, be sure to check out my in-depth MedBridge review.
And there you have it! Let us know if you’ve discovered any other great free occupational therapy CEUs. We’d love to add them to this list.