In Alabama, the Federal Law provides many legal protections for the employees, thus it is one of the favorite places of those who wish to become an occupational therapist, aide or assistant. Occupational therapy schools in Alabama offer different courses for almost every job title of occupational therapy which include bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate’s, associate’s, and dual degree. Those who want to get both graduation and post graduation in lesser time can opt for dual degree as it completes in just 5 years. In order to prepare the students as perfectionist occupational therapists, practical knowledge of the profession is equally important as the theoretical coursework. It should be done under the supervision of an expert and registered occupational therapist so that the aspirants can provide best healthcare to the patients who are undergoing some mental, physical or emotional incompetency.

Students need to pursue their degree from an Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (AOTE), American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) or National Board of Certification for Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) approved school. Make sure that the school in which you are enrolling for the occupational therapy course must have a good past reputation and the number of students enrolled in it. It is a must in order to get the licensure, Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy (ASBOT) takes the responsibility to provide license to the professionals in Alabama. According to the BLS, the average annual and hourly income of occupational therapy professionals was $79,660 and $38.30, respectively in May 2015. To know more about the schools, procedure to become a registered OT, and the salary of the profession in the state of Alabama, read below:

Accredited Occupational Therapy Schools In Alabama

  • University Of Alabama in Birmingham
    Address – 1720 2nd Avenue South, Birmingham, Alabama 35294
    Contact No. – 205-934-4011
    Official Websitehttp://www.uab.edu
  • Alabama State University
    Address – 915 South Jackson Street, Montgomery, AL 36104
    Contact No. – 334-229-4100
    Official Website – http://www.alasu.edu
  • Wallace State Community College
    Address – 801 Main Street North West, P.O. Box 2000, Hanceville, AL 35077-2000
    Contact No. – 256-352-8000
    Official Websitehttp://www.wallacestate.edu
  • Oakwood University
    Address – 7000 Adventist Boulevard North West, Huntsville, AL 35896
    Contact No. – 256-726-7000
    Official Website – http://www.oakwood.edu
  • University of South Alabama
    Address – Mobile, Alabama 36688
    Contact No. – 251-460-6101
    Official Website – http://www.southalabama.edu
  • Tuskegee University
    Address – 1200 West Montgomery Road, Tuskegee Inst, Alabama, 36088
    Contact No. – 334-727-8011
    Official Websitehttp://www.tuskegee.edu

Stepwise Procedure To Become An Occupational Therapist In Alabama

Rich history and huge demand of occupational therapists, aides, and assistants in Alabama makes it an attractive destination for the students who want a successful career in this profession. According to the statistics of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were about 1,170 employed and licensed occupational therapists in Alabama in May 2015. With this, salary of these professionals in this state was also high. As we know, procedure to get licensure to practice is almost the same in all the states of America, but there are a few prerequisites that may vary per state. The Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy issues the license to the eligible candidates in Alabama to practice OT in the state. Licensure is available for both occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants. Those who want to be a registered occupational therapist in this state need to follow the procedure given below:

Step 1 – Become Graduate In Occupational Therapy

The first step towards your plan to become a registered occupational therapist in Alabama is to become a graduate in any of the courses of occupational therapy, provided by the accredited schools of the state, including bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate’s, associates’ or dual degree. This article contains a list of the approved colleges in Alabama to choose from.

Step 2 – Complete The Internship

Internship, practicum or any kind of practical experience in this stream is essential in order to acquire the licensure. Occupational therapy schools in Alabama offer this program during the period of the coursework and thus prepare the students to perform the best as an occupational therapist. This internship needs to be done under the guidance of a registered and expert occupational therapist for at least 24 weeks in a clinical setting.

Step 3 – Gain The National Certification

Third step that the applicants for licensure of occupational therapist need to follow is to gain the national certification by passing a test named as Occupational Therapy Registered exam. It is offered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Candidates can give this exam either online or in the paper form. For online exam, they need to pay $500 and for the paper one, the fee is $540. Along with this, every individual has to pay $40 each for the score reports and $45 each for the conformation of exam registration notices. NBCOT allows the candidates to take the OTR exam as many times till he/she succeeds, but they need to wait for 45 days to retake the exam.

Step 4 – Take The Alabama Licensing Exam And Submit A Licensing Application

The Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy (ASBOT) offers an exam twice a year for both occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants to show the abilities that are essential to serve best in this profession. After taking the exam, candidates need to submit a completely filled and properly signed document. With this, the verification of licensure of the states where you have practiced as an occupational therapist before, letter of verification from NBCOT, names of licensed occupational therapist supervisors for COTA’s and a check or money order for $115 for OTR licenses or $95 for COTA licenses, need to be submitted to the state board.

Step 5 – Maintenance Of The Licensure

License renewal is as important as to gain it. To maintain the licensure as a registered occupational therapist in Alabama, professional need to complete 1.5 continuing education units every year or 3.0 continuing education units every two years.

Salary Of Occupational Therapists In Alabama

As per indeed.com, the average salary of an occupational therapist in Alabama was $88,000 per annum (as of Apr 14, 2016).

Average Salary Of Professionals With Similar Job Titles

Occupational Therapist Rotation$52,000
Occupational Therapist Occupational Therapy$88,000
Outpatient Occupational Therapist$97,000
Occupational Therapist Paediatric Outpatient$88,000
Occupational Therapist Hand$94,000
Occupational Therapist Psych$88,000
OT Occupational Therapist Therapy$103,000
Occupational Therapist Paediatric$88,000
Occupational Therapist Skilled$88,000
Occupational Therapist Home Health$96,000
Occupational Therapist School$87,000
Occupational Therapist Rehab$88,000
OT Occupational Therapy$104,000
Occupational Therapist Acute$88,000
Occupational Therapist Outpatient$88,000

Information Source: indeed.com

Analysis of the table given above shows that highest salary among the job professionals of occupational therapy was of OT Occupational Therapy i.e. $104,000 and lowest was of Occupational Therapist Rotation i.e. $52,000.

Annual Median Salaries Of Occupational Therapists In Different Cities Of Alabama

Name of the CityAnnual Median Salary
Auburn$76,088
Birmingham$75,313
Decatur$78,447
Dothan$66,753
Florence$67,205
Gadsden$75,313
Georgiana$73,197
Huntsville$78,447
Madison$78,447
Mobile$73,827
Montgomery$73,197
Prattville$73,197
Tanner$78,447
Tuscaloosa$67,577

Information Source: salary.com

From the table above we find that the cities where wage for occupational therapists is highest are Decatur, Huntsville, Madison and Tanner i.e. $78,447 and lowest is in Dothan i.e. $66,753.