• OT student with client
  • Students and client
  • OT student with client
  • Students and client
  • OT student with client

The Department of Occupational Therapy was the first non-teacher education program at Western Michigan University and is consistently ranked among the top 50 such programs in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. Currently, we are the top ranked program in the state of Michigan.

As part of the College of Health and Human Services, the Department of Occupational Therapy is an inclusive community of learners that embraces, respects and advocates for human diversity. The college has a sustained commitment to eliminating disparities in health care and other human services by using dynamic methods to infuse this perspective into curricula, clinical practice and research.

Accreditation information

logoThe occupational therapy program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814-3449. ACOTE’s telephone number is (301) 652-AOTA.

Click to review NBCOT certification exam results of WMU OT grads.

Click for more accreditation information.

WMU OT Graduation Rates 2015-17

Total number
of graduates
2018 96 89 92.7%
2017 96 94 97.9%
2016 96 96 100%
2015 96 96 100%

News and announcements

Learn about I-PEER

IPEER logoThe Interprofessional Peer Education and Evidence for Recovery program provides enhanced interdisciplinary education for social workers, occupational therapists and peer specialists in evidence-based practices in behavioral health. Learn about this innovative workforce development project from WMU's Department of Occupational Therapy and School of Social Work.

Student Empowerment Using a Collaborative Model in Level II Fieldwork Education
Click here to read an article interpreting the benefits of a collaborative model, and what the literature reports as potential challenges and solutions. By Holly Grieves, OTD, OTRL.

Creating a functional therapy space with giant blocksLEGO house
Occupational therapy students and faculty worked with staff at the Unified Clinics to create a unique new space in the Occupational Therapy Clinic to be used for working with children who have sensory disorders. The space was constructed with large, plastic, interlocking bricks.

retirement communityWMU students moved to retirement home as part of intergenerational study
For more than a year, three OT grad students have lived in a communal setting off campus, similar to a residence hall with common areas and a dining center. But, in this case, the students are sharing their meals, time and personal lives with neighbors who are in their 80s and 90s

stduentsOT grad students attend summer institute for future scientists
Elsie Bush and Colette Chapp, two students from WMU's occupational therapy graduate program, will attend the third annual Summer Institute of Future Scientists in Occupational Therapy in June. The one-day program matches future student scientists with doctoral and post-doctorate mentors.

Book cover, second editionWMU OT faculty, alumni revise essential OT text
Developmental and Functional Hand Grasps is a popular text for occupational therapists and OT students, published in 2002 by Sandra Edwards, WMU OT professor emerita, along with WMU OT alumni, Donna Gallen and Jenna McCoy-Powlen. Dr. Michelle Suarez joined the authors in working on the book's second edition, which is set for a March release.

adorable childWMU grad programs ranked among nation's best by U.S. News
The latest annual U.S. News & World Report ranking of the top graduate programs in the nation shows Western Michigan University with eight programs ranked among the top 100 in their disciplines, four in the top 50 and two programs assessed as the best of their kind in Michigan. 
In the latest round of rankings released March 14, WMU's occupational therapy program at No. 32 nationally, making it the state's highest ranking program in that discipline.