Occupational Therapy Assistant | MCC

Occupational Therapy Assistant


Occupational Therapy Assistant

Promote health and healing. In this program, you’ll assist occupational therapists, who help people recovering from illness get back to the everyday tasks of work and life.

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What is Occupational Therapy Assistant?

The Occupational Therapy Assistant Program is designed to provide a quality educational experience that will train prospective professionals in the art and science of promoting and maintaining the holistic health and wellness of people, organizations, and populations through engagement in occupation. Graduates will be able to perform/engage as entry-level professionals under the supervision of an Occupational Therapist (OT). Graduates will develop skills necessary for employment as Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants, thereby meeting the student's individual needs and the expressed healthcare needs of the local and extended communities served by the Colleges. The program strives to fill a growing need for professionals able to contribute to all facets of occupational therapy, from community-based programs to client-centered intervention. The program promotes the value and professional importance of life-long learning.

A basic background in natural sciences, mathematics, communication, and behavioral sciences undergirds the specialized coursework. Specialized coursework prepares students for the certification examination they will take to become Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants (COTA). Employment may be in hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, nursing homes, clinics, and other healthcare facilities, as well as within pediatric, community, or educational settings.


What are my career choices?

Employment is available in rehabilitation units, schools outpatient clinics, long-term care facilities, home health agencies, and a variety of community-based programs. Entry-level wages in Kentucky are $32,000 to $40,000.

What are my degree, diploma, or certificate options?

Occupational Therapy Assistant is a selective admission. In addition to MCC's general admission requirements, OTA program candidates must complete the Selection Process requirements listed below.

  1. Official transcript of all postsecondary education, if courses were not taken in the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS).
  2. Documentation of completion of all prerequisite courses, including OTA 101, with a “C” or better before beginning program coursework.

Students seeking admission into the Occupational Therapy Assistant program are required to complete the OTA Application form and mandatory writing assignment

To see the full OTA pre-admission conference presentation, please click here.

  1. The selection process is complete the week after spring grades are posted by the OTA Admission Committee.
  2. Applicants are notified via KCTCS email. 

OTA 101 Introduction to Occupational Therapy. OTA 101 requires successful completion of ENG 101. OTA 101 is offered only online in the fall and spring semesters.

The OTA Application will automatically submit your application. The mandatory writing assignment must be printed and mailed to:

Dr. Kim Qualls  
Madisonville Community College
750 N. Laffoon Street
Madisonville, KY 42431

The OTA program is only offered as a full-time program. Student can complete the program in 18 months. Courses are offered during three 16-week semesters (August-December and January-May).

Progression in the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program is contingent upon the achievement of a minimum grade of a “C” or higher in each OTA course and prerequisite courses.

Portions of the OTA Program may be online/hybrid. Access to internet is required. Technology requirements are listed on the OTA Webpage for each program. 

MCC uses Blackboard, a web-based learning management system (LMS). Students and faculty use it to access and manage online courses and to communicate about course content, assignments, exams, and more. To deliver online courses and to enhance on-ground and hybrid classes. 

Blackboard:  If you have problems with Blackboard, please contact the GO KCTCS Student Service Centertoll-free at 1-855-554-6622 or online here: GO KCTCS Student Service Center.

Just log in to https://MyPath.kctcs.edu and click the Blackboard icon on the Welcome page. That’s how easy it is to take MCC OTA online hybrid courses. 

Students will take courses both online and on campus to complete OTA degree requirements

Hybrid Definition

Classes combine classroom and online coursework and typically meet only once weekly online.

Technical Requirements

If you’re planning to enroll in MCC’s OTA program, you’ll need regular access to a computer with internet access. The following suggested and required computer standards can help you avoid some common technical problems.

  • Internet Access
    • DSL, cable, or higher bandwidth is required
      If you have dial-up (56K or less for bandwidth), you may need to use the computers at a local library or MCC OTA Program home campus computer labs to download large documents required by some OTA courses.
  • Hardware
    • Windows or Mac-based computer (Chromebooks are not recommended)
      • 8GB or higher RAM
      • 256GB or higher Solid State Hard Drive (SSD)
      • Speakers, Microphone, and Webcam
    • iOS or Android tablets can be used but are not recommended for coursework.
    • Software
      • Windows 10/11 or Macintosh OS
      • Browser and plugin support
        • Chrome, Firefox, or Edge Recommended
      • Microsoft Word/Office is suggested for most courses and required for others; review each course syllabus for specific course requirements
        • Adobe Acrobat Reader
      • Security software – Keep all your definitions for both spyware and virus software update

The Occupational Therapy Assistant, under the supervision of a licensed occupational therapist, works to promote and maintain the holistic health of individuals in the community. The program strives to fill a growing need for professionals able to contribute to all facets of occupational therapy, from assessment to treatment termination. Therefore, in order to work successfully with clients, all applicants should possess sufficient performance skills in the areas of:

  • sensory functions including visual acuity, such as observation skills necessary for administering client care and reading equipment gauges and settings used in treatments;
    sensory functions including auditory perception to receive verbal communication and to execute client care through the use of monitoring devices;
  • strength and gross and fine motor coordination and motor praxis skills to respond promptly and to implement client care skills, such as the manipulation of equipment, and positioning and lifting clients;
  • communication and social skills (speech, reading, writing) to interact with the individuals and to communicate their needs promptly and effectively, as may be necessary in the client’s interest, and
  • Intellectual, cognitive, and emotional function to implement the plan of care.

OTA Projected Program Cost

Item Cost

  • Tuition (3+ semesters at current in-state tuition rates) - $7,626
  • In-State Students - $186/Credit hour
  • Non-resident students - $250/Credit hour
  • Mandatory Fee - $8/Credit hour
  • Distance Learner Fee - $20/Credit hour
  • Textbooks/Supplies - $2,000.00

Liability insurance, background check, drug screening - $125.00

Program shirt - $50.00

Hepatitis vaccine - $100.00

AOTA and KOTA dues - $95.00

NBCOT certification fees - $625.00

Cap, gown, and diploma cover for graduation - $100.00

Miscellaneous Items (transfer belt, goniometer, craft materials etc.) - $150.00

Total instate estimate $10,846

This is an estimated cost. Actual costs could be higher or lower than this total depending on the cost of books and materials and changes in tuition and fees charged by the college.

The total number of graduates for the Madisonville Community College Occupational Therapy Associates Program during the 3-year period 2020-2023 was 33/40, with an overall graduation rate of 82%.

The 3-year new graduate (NG) pass rate on the National Board for Certification of Occupational Therapy exam (NBCOT) for 2020-2023 is 87%.

Year Results
2021 71% - 11/14
2022 91% - 10/11
2023 73% - 11/14
Year Results
2021 91%
2022 70%
2023 100%

OTA Program national statistics reported by NBCOT

License and Accreditation

The OTA Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE), a division of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), which can be contacted by postal mail at:

c/o Accreditation Department 
American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200,
North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929 
Phone number: (301) 652-(AOTA) 

Madisonville Community College’s associate-degree-level occupational therapy assistant program is accredited 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 www.acoteonline.org. Graduates of the program will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, all states require licensure to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.

“Students must complete 16 weeks of Level II fieldwork within 18 months following the completion of the didactic portion of the program.”

This information should not be considered a substitute for the KCTCS Catalog. You should always choose classes in cooperation with your faculty advisor to ensure that you meet all degree requirements.

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Program Contact

Kim Qualls, OTD, MS OTR/L

Program Coordinator Associate Professor



Misty Burton, MA, OTR/L

Fieldwork Coordinator
Associate Professor



Tina Seibert

Administrative Assistant