Freshmen Admission Entry Option

Our accelerated pathways to the MSOT and OTD degrees provide you with a BS in Health Sciences after 4 years of full-time study. 

If you chose the MSOT pathway, you will receive your MS degree after an additional 9 months of full-time, post-baccalaureate study.

If you chose the OTD pathway, you will receive your OTD after an additional 19 months of full-time, post-baccalaureate study. Students who pursue the OTD program do not earn a Master's Degree.

All freshmen admitted to Duquesne University's Occupational Therapy program enter the Master's of Occupational Therapy degree tract.  In the Fall of the 4th year, students are given the option to declare their intent to earn an Occupational Therapy Doctorate.  No additional application to enter the professional phase for either degree is required for students who have declared occupational therapy as their major. Students in the accelerated programs who achieve a a ‘C' or better in all courses and a 3.0 cumulative GPA in the math and science courses by the end of the pre-professional phase are guaranteed a place in the professional phase of the occupational therapy curriculum beginning in January of the third year of study.

This graphic reflects the progression through our program for a freshman.

Freshmen Application Process

We are excited that you are interested in attending Duquesne University!  To apply as a freshman, please visit the Admissions web site. Admission into the Occupational Therapy program at the freshman level is highly-competitive and will require a minimum Q.P.A. of at least a 3.0, a composite math and verbal SAT score of at least 1,170; or a composite ACT score of at least 24 (admitted freshman usually have test scores higher than the minimum), a minimum of seven units of math and science, evidence of extracurricular activity during high school, and knowledge of the profession. Please be advised that we are test-optional for the current application cycle (students who will start in fall 2022).

Technical Standards/Performance Indicators

  • To assure the health and safety of the Occupational therapy students and patients with whom they work, all applicants and students (freshman, transfer, and graduate) are required to meet the RSHS Technical Standards/Performance Indicators to ensure that they have sufficient abilities to meet the rigorous work expectations of a student studying Occupational Therapy.
  • To further protect the health and well-being, all students are required to have a complete physical exam and demonstrate appropriate immunizations before transition into the Professional Phase of the Program.
  • The requirements for this physical exam and other health / security requirements are also explained during the pre-professional student body meetings and are available to students in the RSHS Academic Student Handbook, which all students receive.


Duquesne University's OT programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). ACOTE accredited our programs for the maximum initial accreditation periods on August 5, 2016.

Information regarding the accreditation of this program can be obtained through the American Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE), 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929, Phone: (301) 652-AOTA.

Graduates of our program are eligible to sit for the national certification examination for occupational therapists administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be an Occupational Therapist, Registered (OTR). In addition, most states require licensure in order 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.

The NBCOT Board of Directors has approved the implementation of background checks as part of the exam process. This enhancement offers the unique opportunity to apply a national standard to all entry-level practitioners in support of NBCOT's mission of public protection.

Background checks will be completed as part of the exam application process for all first-time applicants beginning January 1, 2018. Students and prospective students are advised that a felony conviction may affect one's ability to sit for the certification examination or attain state licensure.