Occupational therapists help people overcome difficulties caused by physical or mental illness, disability, accidents or ageing.
To become an occupational therapist you will need GCSE grades 9-4 (A*-C), particularly in English, maths and science. There are several routes once you have achieved this: you could become an occupational therapy support worker, then go onto a degree; you could also complete a degree apprenticeship. If you have a degree in science, health or psychology you could complete a conversion degree in occupational therapy or you could complete a Bsc in Occupational Therapy 3 year course.
Career progression – You may want to get involved with education, research or become a senior clinician.
Occupational Therapist goals:
- admission avoidance
- speedy discharge from hospital
- enabling the person to remain in their chosen home environment
Skills you need:
- knowledge of psychology
- counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
- sensitivity and understanding
- to be flexible and open to change
- knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to use your initiative
- to be able to use a computer