9 Accredited OTA to OTR Bridge Programs (No Bachelor’s Needed!)

If you’re an occupational therapy assistant (OTA) thinking about making the transition into becoming an occupational therapist (OTR), you’ll first need to figure out which OTA to OTR bridge program will be the best fit for you.

There’s a lot to consider including (but not limited to) cost, location, program flexibility (for the working COTAs!) and program length.

To help you with this major decision, I wanted to compile an all-in-one list of accredited OTA to OTR bridge programs that don’t require a Bachelor’s degree to help you narrow things down a bit.

Check out the How To Get Into OT School Guide! It’s the most comprehensive resource that covers everything you need to know.

Each bridge program listed will have tuition information, location, program length, NBCOT pass rate (from 2019), and other essential information to help you with your decision.

And as mentioned above, due to many COTAs having their Associate’s without a Bachelor’s, each of these OT graduate programs do not require a Bachelor’s degree as a pre-requisite prior to starting the program.

And if you’re still on the fence about whether you want to make the switch to become an OTR, be sure to also check out our article Should You Transition From COTA to OTR? The Pros and Cons of Making The Leap.

So without further ado, here’s our list of 9 no-Bachelor’s OTA to OTR bridge program options:

1. Belmont University

Location: Nashville, TN

Length of Program: 22 months

Cost: $14,760 per semester (program is 5 semesters) averaging approximately $73,800 not including fees.

Type of Program: Full-time weekend Master’s of Occupational Therapy degree. Meets in-person every third weekend with online courses weekly. Meets year round. Two Level II fieldworks are full-time in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate (from 2019): 97%

Program Website: Belmont School of Occupational Therapy

2. Bay Path University-East Longmeadow

Location: East Longmeadow, MA

Length of Program: There are two tracks to choose from.

  • Track 1: Three years (this option is for COTAs with no Bachelor’s degree).
  • Track 2: Two years (for COTAs already with a Bachelor’s degree). Visit the website below for further details.

Cost: $95,200 for Track 1 and $81,810 for Track 2 not including fees.

Type of Program: Blended online and onsite Master’s of Occupational Therapy bridge program, with in-person coursework every other weekend. Two 12 week Level II fieldworks are full-time in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 89%

Program Website: Bay Path Occupational Therapy Department

3. Concordia University

Location: Mequon, WI

Length of Program: Four years which includes a Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Science followed by Master’s of Occupational Therapy. Three years for COTAs that already hold a Bachelor’s degree.

Cost: $15,237 per semester for Master’s semesters and $10,175 per semester for Bachelor’s semesters. The program is a total of 12 semesters.

Type of Program: Primarily online Master of Occupational Therapy bridge program with one weekend a month on campus. In-person, full-time Level II Fieldworks.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 97%

Program Website: Concordia University OT Department

4. Utica College

Location: Utica, NY

Length of Program: Five semesters

Cost: $77,804 not including fees

Type of Program: Online and in-person hybrid Master’s in Occupational Therapy program with in-person courses held every other weekend. Level II Fieldworks are full-time in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 93%

Program Website: Utica College OT Department

5. Salem State University

Location: Salem, MA

Length of Program: Three years

Cost: $570 per credit hour, including fees. Estimate approximately $90,107 including 120 BS credit hours and 38 MS credit hours. Please contact the program for up-to-date numbers as this is an estimate.

Type of Program: Part-time evening Master’s in Occupational Therapy bridge program with in-person classes two nights per week. Options include a combined BS/MS bridge program for COTAs without a Bachelor’s or entry-level MSOT program for those already with a Bachelor’s degree.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 88%

Program Website: Salem State University’s OT Department

6. Dominican College

Location: Orangeburg, NY

Length of Program: Three years

Cost: $27,650 per year (27 credits per year) not including fees. Estimate approximately $68,000 total as 3rd year is only 15 credits. See program website for further details.

Type of Program: Online and in-person full-time Master’s in Occupational Therapy program meeting every 3rd weekend in person. Level II Fieldwork is in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 92%

Program Website: Dominican College OT Department

7. Cabarrus College of Health Sciences

Location: Concord, NC

Length of Program: Two years for COTAs already with a Bachelor’s and three years for combined BS/MOT track for COTAs without a Bachelor’s.

Cost: $59,678 for the Master’s in OT including fees. This does not include the Bachelor’s degree cost for COTAs who need to obtain this as well.

Type of Program: Full-time online/in-person meeting in person every third weekend. Level II Fieldwork is all in person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 93%

Program Website: Cabarrus OT Department

8. New England Institute of Technology

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Image Source: https://mainstreeteg.org/

Location: East Greenwich, RI

Length of Program: Two and half years

Cost: Estimate $87,575 total based on cost per credit hour (not including fees).

Type of Program: Online/in-person Master of Science in Occupational Therapy. This bridge program is online with in-person classes 5 weekends per 10 week quarter. Two Level II Fieldworks are full-time in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 100%

Program Website: New England Institute of Technology OT Department

9. Keiser University

Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL

Length of Program: Not explicitly stated. The program consists of 24 credits of undergrad core courses and 51 credits of Master’s OT courses. The bridge program includes a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy followed by a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy.

Cost: Unable to locate accurate tuition information on their website (must use their tuition calculator to get an estimate).

Type of Program: Online MSOT bridge program with two weekends in-person every 8 weeks. Level II Fieldworks are in-person.

NBCOT Pass Rate: 78%

Program Website: Keiser University OT Department

A Note About Level II Fieldwork

As you may have noticed, each Master’s or Doctorate Occupational Therapy program requires two 12 week, in-person full-time (40 hours per week) Level II Fieldworks. This is required by AOTA and ACOTE standards in order for the program to be accredited.

Both Level II Fieldworks are usually at the end of the program, but one may also be mid-program depending on the curriculum. I wanted you to be aware of this full-time requirement since I hear from applicants often wanting a fully online option (which doesn’t exist due to the need for that hands-on in-person training).

Because of this, I wanted to make a note that you will need to be prepared for 24 weeks of full-time in-person Level II Fieldworks regardless of the bridge program you choose. Each program website will have a sample curriculum that should indicate when in the program they have their Level II Fieldworks.

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Check out the How To Get Into OT School Guide! It’s the most comprehensive resource that covers everything you need to know.

I hope you found this list of OTA to OTR bridge programs helpful! Be sure to also check out AOTA’s full list of accredited OTA to OTR bridge programs here. This list also includes OTA to OTR bridge programs that do require a Bachelor’s degree beforehand.

And for the most up-to-date tuition and program information on each of these programs, check back at each program’s individual website as well in case any of this data changes after this article is published. 

If I’ve missed any accredited COTA to OT bridge programs that don’t require a Bachelor’s, please let me know in the comments below!

 

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