EKU Online: Doctorate in Occupational Therapy

Are you an occupational therapist with a master’s degree looking to advance your existing career? Achieve your goals on your terms by earning a doctorate in occupational therapy online from Eastern Kentucky University.

Named one of the top occupational therapy programs in the nation, EKU offers a Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) program that is a post-professional program designed for students who are occupational therapists with a master's degree in occupational therapy or another field.  The mission of this advanced, post-professional online degree program is to create occupation-based practitioners who will be ethical leaders of change in occupational therapy services for diverse populations.

As an EKU student, you will learn from committed faculty with diverse specialties, academic expertise and professional experience.  Focus areas include:

  • Advanced Occupation-Based Practice
  • Diversity and Health Disparity
  • Policy and Change
  • Applied Research and Ethics
  • Evidence-Based Practice
  • Educational Practice

The program can be completed part-time in just over two years, and may be tailored to your specific interests.

In states that have identified practicum experience a physical presence trigger, a student MAY not be able to have that experience in their state of residence. Please enquire about your state at the time of inquiry. 

This path is for those who have a master’s degree in OT or a bachelor’s degree in OT with a master’s degree in any field. See the admissions requirements for more information.


Total Program Requirements: 40 hours

Click here to view sample course schedules.

Download a PDF of the OTD Brochure

OTS 853 Leadership and Change in OT

(3 hours) Focus on the development and application of leadership skills, including transformational and transactional leadership. Students will demonstrate development of their own leadership skills through a major project.

OTS 882 Advanced Occupational Science

(3 hours) Exploration of occupational science as a disciplinary knowledge base, current research on occupation-based practice, and methods of developing occupation-based practice. Emphasis on change, clinical leadership, and research.

OTS 886 Culture and Diversity in OT

(3 hours)Importance of culture and diversity in the understanding of health disparities in health care policy and OT practice. Global and national policy and program models for inclusion of culture, diversity and disability are highlighted.

OTS 901 OTD Leadership Seminar I

(3 hours) Foundational work for development of OTD capstone and Applied Leadership Experience. Conceptualize identity as a leader for change. Develop methods to assess population needs to improve occupation-based programming.

OTS 902 OTD Leadership Seminar II

(3 hours) Explore options for professional development and leadership experiences. Assess population needs to support occupation-based programming.

OTS 903 OTD Leadership Seminar III

(3 hours)Design capstone project based on needs assessment, literature synthesis, and professional goals to serve as a change agent for occupation-based programming. Capstone emphases are ethical leadership within change and OBP for diverse populations.

OTS 904 OTD Leadership Seminar IV

(3 hours) Implement capstone project. Evaluate capstone project outcomes to assess change in occupation-based programming.

OTS 905 OTD Applied Leadership Experience

(6 hours) Custom-designed practicums for capstone, field-based experiences in the Clinical Doctorate in Occupational Therapy. Course emphases are on ethical leadership within change and excellence in occupation-based services for diverse populations.

OTS 906 Capstone

(1 hour) Integration and application of program outcomes through the capstone project and portfolio. Students present final capstone project.

OTS 910 Policy Analysis for OT

(3 hours) Influence of social and healthcare policy on the profession of occupational therapy. Health disparities, disability studies and advocacy need in emerging practice.

OTS 911 Applied Research in OT

(3 hours) Students will apply research methods, synthesize paradigms, designs, methods, and ethical issues related to research, and discuss funding options. The role of research as an agent of change in practice will be emphasized.

OTS 912 Evidence-Based Practice for OT

(3 hours) Evaluate and perform critical research appraisals to justify intervention decisions. Content focuses on: clinical reasoning, outcomes measurement, finding evidence, changes in practice, ethics, communicating decisions.

OTS 913 Educational Practices for OT

(3 hours) Fundamental principles of designing and implementing educational programs across the lifespan. Educational strategies and learning theories will be analyzed and applied to clinical, community, and didactic settings and populations.