General Information

The Master of Science in Occupational Therapy is the first and the only entry-level professional program in Occupational Therapy in Puerto Rico that prepares occupational therapist at the master level. Graduates with baccalaureate degrees in disciplines other than Occupational Therapy can become occupational therapists through this program. This program is offered in Spanish.

Occupational Therapy is a profession whose focus is on enabling a person or a group of persons to access and participate in activities that are meaningful, purposeful, and relevant to their lives, roles, and sense of well-being. It helps people to be productive and to have satisfying lives. Occupational therapists consider occupation to be everything people do to occupy themselves, including taking care and supporting themselves and others, work, education, play, enjoying life (leisure) and social participation with family, friends, colleagues and in the community in general. Occupational Therapy focus on improving performance, preventing illness and disability, and promoting adaptation to life changes. Occupational therapists assess, utilize, and adapt everyday activities to improve function, enhance performance, promote health, prevent illness, and increase independence in those persons to whom they provide services. Occupational therapists examine not only the physical effects of an injury or disease, but also address the psycho-social, community and environmental factors that influence function.

Occupational therapists work in a range of settings including: hospitals, rehabilitation centers, outpatient centers, mental health centers, schools, pediatric clinics, community centers, workplaces, skilled nursing facilities, nursing homes, home health and in private practice. They provide services in all areas of occupation in which people engage in their everyday activities.

The academic program is offered in Spanish. It is a full-time, two years and a half in length (27 contact months). Two years are required to complete the didactic courses and six months to complete clinical fieldwork, 24 weeks of fieldwork, three 8-week full-time periods, are required for certification to practice. The fieldwork must be completed within 24 months following completion of the didactic portion of the program. Upon completion of all graduation requirements, the student receives a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy.

The entry-level occupational therapy master’s degree program is currently accredited for ten years (2012-2022) by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its Web address is https://acoteonline.org/.

Licensure is required to practice in Puerto Rico and in most states. If you have a felony or misdemeanor conviction eligibility for certification and licensure can be affected. It is your responsibility to contact the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy and/or the PR Examination Board, Department of Health to determine eligibility.

Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for occupational therapy administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Satisfactory completion of both the academic program and 24 weeks of Level II fieldwork are required to be eligible to take the licensure test offered by the Puerto Rico Occupational Therapy Board of Examiners and to take the Certification Examination of the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Successful completion of the licensure test or the NBCOT certification test allows graduates to practice the profession in Puerto Rico and USA states.

Admission Requirements

Candidates for admission for the entry-level master’s degree in occupational therapy must:

  • Possess a baccalaureate degree in a discipline other than Occupational Therapy from a regionally accredited institution, recognized by USDE.
  • Have a minimum overall/general Grade Point Average of 2.8
  • Have a Specific Grade Point Average of 3.00 in the following pre-requisite courses:

 

Courses Credits
Second Year English (Literature or reading comprehension content) 6 credits
Sociology or Anthropology 3 credits
Human Growth and Development (across the life span) 3 credits
Human Anatomy and Physiology (300 or 3000 Level or higher) Laboratory experiences are highly recommended 6 credits
Basic Statistics 3 credits
Total 21 credits

 

  • Applicants should have at least 12 credits of the pre-requisite courses approved, including 3 credits in Human Anatomy and Physiology by the application submission deadline January 31 of each year.
  • All pre-requisite courses shall be completed by the month of May of the year of application/admission to the program.
  • Take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing), within five years of admission date. There is no required minimum GRE score. Test report must be available before application submission deadline January 31. The EXADEP (Examen de Admisión a Estudios de Pos Grado) with a score of 500 or above can be accepted for academic years starting on august, 2021 and august, 2022 if it was taken within three (3) calendar years of the admission date. (The EXADEP test will only be accepted for academic years 2021 and 2022 due to its discontinuation, on year 2020)
  • After an initial evaluation of the admission criteria with all applicants, the program’s Admissions Committee will determine which candidates will be invited to write an essay as a final part of the evaluation process.
  • Submit a written essay of an assigned topic on a specific day selected by the Admission Committee.
  • A laptop computer or equivalent portable device and internet access are required.
  • Have oral and written knowledge and fluency in English and Spanish.

Courses Validation Table

These validation tables contain most of the courses accepted for our program.  For the courses that do not show up on this table, please send an email to reclutamiento-terapiaocupacionaleps.rcm@upr.edu with a scanned copy of your university transcript and the course syllabus for a course evaluation.

Weight of Admission Requirements

General Grade Point Average (GPA): 30%
Specific Grade Point Average (Grade Point Average in Pre-requisite Courses): 30%
Admission Test (EXADEP or GRE): 30%
Written Essay: 10%
Deadline to submit application: January 31.

Online application submission: https://sistemas.rcm.upr.edu/admisiones

Transfer Credit Policy

Students who have approved course credits from an entry-level Occupational Therapy program can make a written request for evaluation of possible credit transfer. For specific transfer credit eligibility criteria and procedures see Policy.

Click here to see Transfer Credit Policy 2021-2022 (English Translation)

Click here to see Transfer Credit Policy 2021-2022 (Spanish)

Cost of Attendance, Tuition & Fees

The following table shows the estimate of total cost of attendance, tuition costs and fees for the 2021-2022 academic year. Health insurance may vary on an annual basis according to negotiation with the insurances companies and type of coverage. Students from the United States who are not Puerto Rico residents pay the local cost. Nonresident students who are foreign citizens pay the local cost as graduate students. All amounts and fees are subject to change.

Graduation Requirements

In order to graduate, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Complete all the requirements of the didactic (68 credits) and the fieldwork component (16 credits) of the curriculum with a minimum GPA of 2.8, within a maximum period of 5 years after registration as first year OT student.
  • Demonstrate professional behaviors considered acceptable by faculty and fieldwork supervisors and in accordance with regulations of the Medical Sciences Campus and the Occupational Therapy Program.

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy Professional Courses – Total semester Credit-hours 84

 

Course Descriptions

Informative Sheet

Graduation Rates

Graduation Year (admission cohort year) Graduates in minimum  time/Admitted Minimum time Graduation Rate Graduates within maximum time/Admitted Overall Graduation rate for cohort
2018 (2015) (16/16) (100%) 16/16 100%
*2019 (2016) 10/16 63% 12/16 75%
2020 (2017) 15/16 94% 15/16 94%
2021 (2018) 13/16 81% In progress In progress
Total for last three years 38/48 79% 43/48 89%

*Note: Hurricane Maria Year

National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy

For the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy Test Pass Rate Results, please click in this link to see the passing rate of the University of Puerto Rico: https://secure.nbcot.org/data/schoolstats.aspx.

Puerto Rico Licensure Exam Pass Rate Results for the Last Five Years

The total number of graduates from the University of Puerto Rico Master of Science of Occupational Therapy Program during the last 5-year period of 2016 to 2020 that passed Puerto Rico Licensure Exam was 16 with an overall passing rate of 61%.

2019**105120%

 

 

*Due to the impact of Hurricane Maria, the Puerto Rico Licensure Exam scheduled for November 2017 was cancelled by Puerto Rico Office of Regulation and Certification of Health Professionals. Therefore, none of the 2017 graduates were able to take it. 2017 graduates took the test on May 23- 25, 2018 & Nov 2018 and the results were received from the Puerto Rico Occupational Therapy Examination Board on February 5, 2018 and on September 2019.
** 2019 Puerto Rico Licensure exam results have been received on November 9, 2020.

Telephones

Director
787-758-2525 ext. 4210

Mrs. Francisca Morales
Secretary
787-758-2525 ext. 4200, 4203
Fax – 787-282-8174
For additional Program information:  reclutamiento-terapiaocupacionaleps.rcm@upr.edu

Professional Links

American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
https://www.aota.org/

Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE)
https://acoteonline.org

World Federation of Occupational Therapists
https://www.wfot.org

Canadian Association of Occupational Therapist
http://www.caot.ca/

Colegio de Profesionales de Terapia Ocupacional
http://www.cptopr.org/