Occupational Therapy (OT) addresses how we decide, navigate, manage, and sustain the daily occurrences in life. Those occurrences can be brushing your teeth, drinking a cup of coffee, driving to work, baking chocolate chip cookies, reading a book, riding the bus, meandering around a museum, or holding hands with a loved one. When a person encounters barriers in participating in those daily occurrences, an occupational therapist examines the why, when, where, what, with whom, and how a person occupies time, space, and activities to engage a meaningful life. At GW OT, you will learn how to remove the barriers to independence and empower people and communities to live productive and meaningful lives.
Applying for Admission
Applicants to the Entry-Level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (eOTD) program must complete the following two applications. Applications open in July.
- 1. OTCAS (Occupational Therapy Central Application Service)
OTCAS is the standard online application system. You must create your OTCAS application first, in order to enter your unique OTCAS ID number into the GW Supplemental Application.
Application Fee: OTCAS will charge a fee based on the number of programs applicants apply to through OTCAS.
- 2. GW Supplemental Application
You can begin this application before you have submitted your OTCAS application
Application Fee: The GW Supplemental Application charges a non-refundable application fee of $60 for programs on the Main Campus. The fee is waived only for the following applicants:
- GW alumni holding a GW degree or graduate certificate
- Current GW degree or graduate certificate candidates
- Graduates of Minority Serving Institutions (MSI)
- Current McNair Program Scholars
- A completed Certification of McNair Program Participation and Application Fee Waiver form must be submitted with your application
- U.S. active duty military personnel and veterans
- Applicants granted a OTCAS fee waiver
Strong applicants will demonstrate the following:
- Commitment to service and social change
- Respect for science and logical reasoning
- Ability to adapt, collaborate, and think creatively
Fall 2023 - March 1, 2023 (Rolling Admission)
- Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis until all seats have been filled.
- Admission notifications will begin in December and continue until the class is fully seated.
- International Applicants: The eOTD program is in the process of becoming eligible to issue visa support documents but are unable to do so at this time.
- Due to new U.S. federal government regulations, all international applicants should apply at least six months in advance of the application deadline. Additionally, all international applicants must review the information regarding Visa Requests and Financial Certification.
- Completion of a bachelor’s degree
The program invites applications from candidates who have, or will have received by the time of enrollment, an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university. Official transcripts must demonstrate completion of an undergraduate degree prior to matriculation into the program. GW OT welcomes all bachelor degree majors. We welcome the diversity of backgrounds, experiences, and voices as long as you have prerequisite coursework in progress and completed prior to matriculating in the fall.
- Prerequisite Coursework
The following courses must be academic, college-level course work completed at a regionally accredited institution with a grade of B- or higher. AP credits are accepted.
Your overall cumulative GPA must be a 3.0 or higher.
Applications exceeding 3 prerequisite courses outstanding will not be reviewed. Applicants with 3, or less, outstanding prerequisite courses that are in progress may be conditionally admitted. For applicants that are conditionally admitted, a transcript must be submit showing all prerequisite courses by August 1. If the transcript is not received by August 1, the applicant's acceptance will be withdrawn.
Human Anatomy with Lab – 3 credits lecture, 1 credit lab
Physiology – 3 credits
Two semesters of a combined Anatomy & Physiology course in lieu of individual Anatomy and Physiology courses is acceptable.
- Examples of course titles: Human Anatomy with a lab; Anatomy & Physiology I & II with an anatomy lab; Human Structures and Functions I & II with an anatomy lab.
Psychology - 3 credits
- Introduction to Psychology (3 credits)
AP credits are accepted for Introduction to Psychology
- Examples of course titles: Introduction to Psychology; General Psychology; Psychology 101 Psychology major in lieu of Introduction to Psychology is accepted
- Non-Psychology majors cannot use an upper level psychology course in lieu of Introduction to Psychology requirement
Psychopathology – 3 credits
- Psychology and non-psychology majors must have a specific psychopathology course
- Examples of course titles: Psychopathology; Abnormal Psychology
Lifespan Human Development – 3 credits
- One course across the lifespan or two courses across different life phases is acceptable. Human development courses are often taken within psychology or education courses.
- Examples of course titles: Developmental Psychology; Development across the Lifespan; OR two courses with titles such as: Child Psychology, Adolescent Psychology; Adult Development & Aging; Gerontology (if using two courses, prefer one course in child/youth development and one course in adulthood/aging development)
Sociology or Cultural Anthropology – 3 credits
- Sociology or Anthropology major in lieu of Intro to Sociology or Cultural Anthropology is acceptable
- Examples of course titles: Introduction to Sociology; Sociology 101; Social Theories; Social Problems; Society & Culture; Cultural Anthropology; Ethnic Studies; Gender Studies; Family Studies; Aging in Society
Statistics – 3 credits
- Statistics, Biostatistics, or Basic Research Methodology course may satisfy this requirement
- Examples of course titles: Introduction to Statistics; Introduction to Biostatistics; Applied Biostatistics; Introduction to Research; Basic Research Methods; Research Methods; Applied Research
Recommended (Not Required):
- Public Health. Examples of course titles: Introduction to Public Health; Public Health 101
- Physics. Examples of course titles: Introduction to Physics; Physics I and II
- Admissions Essay
In addition to your OTCAS essay, please address the GW program short essay questions (within the OTCAS online application).
The admissions essay includes the following two questions:
- In an essay of 250 to 500 words, How does the mission of the GW OT program resonate with you? Share an example from your life experiences.
- In an essay of no more than 500 words, include anything that you would like us to know that was NOT covered elsewhere in your application.
- Letters of Recommendation
You are required to submit at least three (3) letters of recommendation through OTCAS. Please do not submit additional recommendations directly to GW.
Recommendations from family members and friends are not acceptable
- Official Transcripts
Please submit an official transcript from every college and university you attended, whether or not a degree was earned, directly to OTCAS. No transcripts are submitted to GW at the time of application.
All non-U.S. transcripts (including those in English) must be evaluated by World Education Services and submitted directly to OTCAS.
- International Applicants: English Language Test
Applicants who are not U.S. citizens are required to submit official test scores for either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Pearsons Test of English (PTE) Academic, or the academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS). International applicants are required to complete the question under the OTCAS online application directly related to the English Language Test.
International students must provide official scores from one of the following English language proficiency tests, meeting the stated minimum:
Academic IELTS (an overall band score of 7.0, with no individual band score below 6.0) TOEFL (600 on the paper-based test or 100 on the internet-based test) PET Academic (68)
TOEFL code: 5246
International applicants who meet the following conditions may be considered for admission without submitting TOEFL, PTE or IELTS or scores:
- They are a citizen of countries where English is the official language (as identified by GW ISO list of Exempt countries) OR
- They hold at least a bachelor degree from a country where English is the official language as well as language of instruction OR
- They hold at least a bachelor degree from an institution accredited by a U.S. regional accrediting agency
- Observation Hours (Optional)
It is recommended, but not required, that applicants have approximately 40 hours observing two different occupational therapy settings to experience the scope, breadth, and depth of occupational therapy practice.
Applicants interested in transfer of credit from other institutions must be an admitted student to the program. The transfer applicant must provide evidence that they are in good academic standing and demonstrates an appropriate level of professional comportment. The OT program reserves the right to limit any transfer or advanced placement of credit to the basic sciences courses.
Transfer students must formally petition the OT Program Director to transfer credit into the GW eOTD program. Only courses instructed with comparable content and rigor in which the student has earned a “B-” grade or better will be approved for transfer credit. If you have any questions regarding transfer or advanced placement credit, please contact us at GWOTD@gwu.edu.
Students admitted to the eOTD program must:
- Acknowledge reading the program's Technical Standards
- Acknowledge reading the Health Sciences' Background and Drug Screen Policies
- Acknowledge reading the program's pre-fieldwork requirements
- Submit the following documents at matriculation:
- Completion of an annual health assessment and medical/physical examination
- Immunization records including PPD, Sars-CoV-2 (COVID-19), annual flu vaccination, MMR, varicella, hepatitis B, meningitis, Tdap
- Criminal background check and drug screen test
- Current health insurance