UPDATED OCT. 15, 2021
The question, “Are OTA classes hard?” may have already popped to mind if you’re considering a career as an occupational therapy assistant (OTA). While it’s a broad question with an answer that depends on the person who’s asking it, finding the answer that’s right for you will help you make an informed decision about your career choices.
The first thing to know is that academia is different for everybody and the same can be said for Occupational Therapy Assistant programs. Some people are stronger in math and science, whereas others may be more proficient in social sciences like economics or sociology. Your areas of strength may translate well for the OTA degree program, or you may have to study more frequently and for longer periods than your classmates.
Are OTA classes hard? Maybe. Getting through the program is less about how hard it is and more about how much work you’re willing to put into the program. As you search for the answers, here are some suggestions and considerations.
During your pursuit of the OTA degree, you will experience some coursework delivered in a traditional college lecture format, similar to the prerequisite (required) courses that are necessary to begin your degree program.
Since OTA is a hands-on career, you will also engage in hands-on learning that will provide the training you’ll use for the rest of your career. For those who learn best in that type of environment and want to help people live independently, an Occupational Therapy Assistant program is often a good career match.
OTA classes are easier when you:
- Read the materials provided
- Use proven study- and test-taking skills
- Use recommended resources
- Participate in group learning opportunities.
OTA class sizes are generally small. This means that you will likely have a favorable teacher-student ratio. The translation? You will enjoy greater access to your instructors because they will have fewer students who need their assistance. When you do need help or have a question, you’ll be able to get the guidance you want.
Also, small class sizes with hands-on study techniques will allow you to become familiar with your classmates. Since you will be sharing the same profession, it’s good to start building a network in your field.
OTA classes are easier when you:
- Get to know your classmates
- Practice and be willing to learn from mistakes
- Ask questions.
Later in the program, you will have the opportunity to do fieldwork for 4-5 months, which will allow you to use what you’ve learned and get feedback from trained evaluators. From your lecture notes to the hands-on classroom training, it will all be on display when you are put in real-world situations that require your skills.
The time doing fieldwork will be the culmination of your study and will put you on the road to your degree and certification as an OTA. While fieldwork isn’t a class, it’s still an educational part of your program.
OTA fieldwork is easier when you:
- Listen to the feedback you receive
- Take and refer to your notes
- Keep a journal of your experience
Still wondering, “Are OTA classes hard?” Well, consider this. The classes might be hard, but it could be worth the effort to earn your college degree and begin a rewarding healthcare career in as little as 2 years as an Occupational Therapy Assistant.
OTA jobs are considered one of the best healthcare support jobs in the nation and have a national median wage of more than $57,000 annually.
Cleveland University-Kansas City (CUKC) is a healthcare-focused, private, non-profit university with small classes that prepare students for national certification and professional job opportunities.
CUKC links the teaching and learning process used by occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants to ensure a quality educational experience. The full-time, on-campus Occupational Therapy Assistant degree program at CUKC delivers 8-week courses that are intentionally sequenced to allow students to build upon the knowledge and skills gained in each course, so challenging concepts are easier to grasp.
For more information about the OTA degree program at CUKC, contact the Office of Admissions today so you can get our free eBook: Your Complete Guide to an Occupational Therapy Assistant Career.