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What is the procedure for setting up an occupational therapy education programme and obtaining curriculum approval?

Refer to the following documents:

  • ‘Advice for the Establishment of a New Programme for the Education of Occupational Therapists (2004)’ in the Resource Centre > Education and Resource section.
  • 'Curriculum Approval Process', available in the Resource Centre > Education and Research section.
  • WFOT ‘Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists 2016’ available at the Online Store.

Where can I find more information about the location of OT courses and types of qualifications conferred?

A complete list of occupational therapy education programmes (for entry-level only into the occupational therapy profession) that meet the WFOT Minimum Standards can be found in Educational Programmes. Only the qualification that meets the WFOT minimum standards are listed - other degrees are not listed.

Please contact the national association of the country in which you wish to study or the universities that you may wish to attend, for further information.


I am trying to source information about standards of practice and guidelines for treatment as part of my research project? Can you help?

The WFOT Position Statements inform practice, research, and other issues. These are available in the Resource Centre > Position Statements section.

In the Links section you will find a number of sites that may be of assistance to you.

Online discussions, including research and practice, are available via the WFOT Occupational Therapy International Online Network (OTION).

Can you tell me how occupational therapy practice differs in each country ?

The delegate, the national association or the education programme(s) in the country (countries) that you wish to know about can assist you. Their contact details can be found in the Country Profile and Educational Programme sections.

I would like to know about Practice Placements in another country.

Find your country of interest in 'Country Profile'. Here you will find the contact details for the National OT Association and they may be able to assist you with your elective practice placement.

From the perspective of the WFOT, we recommend that you work through the resources of the WFOT member country national association. It is important that they know what students are entering the country as most students need some type of support as they may not be not fluent in local languages and dialects or familiar with customs. Some countries require students to practice under the supervision of qualified therapists.

It is helpful to have a personal social network in the country of interest, but you still need to work within local professional standards. Making contact with the National OT Association also serves as a professional courtesy. The Association may also assist with necessary practical arrangements as well as by providing valuable information.

Personal safety is another matter in any country.

Do your homework, find where you want to go, be knowledgeable about the country. Narrow it down with some research about the country and what is going on (refer to WHO country reports). There are often non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that you can work with. Check policies on insurance, criminal records declaration / police check, travel advisories, conflict areas and repatriation coverage. Be aware of supervision requirements in the country of interest.

The WFOT resource ‘Working as an Occupational Therapist in Another Country revised 2015’ may provide relevant information, and is available in the Resource Centre > General section.

Online discussions, including working and studying in another country, are available via the WFOT Occupational Therapy International Online Network(OTION).

Does WFOT provide international recognition of post graduate/qualifying courses in occupational therapy?

The WFOT can only approve those educational programmes that meet the WFOT "Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists".

The programmes can be at a diploma, baccalaureate degree or Master's level that fundamentally educate a person to become an Occupational Therapist. Other Master's courses are the responsibility of the educational institution, and/or the professional organisation, and the WFOT has no mechanism or standards to evaluate the programs or approve them nor determine international portability.

Please note that the WFOT does not accredit courses, the WFOT approves courses.
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