Occupational Therapy In Missouri: Schools, Certification Procedure, and Salary

Missouri is located in the Midwestern United States and is not only the 21st most extensive but also the 18th most populous state out of the 50 states of the country. Due to high population, this state offers immense job opportunities and a bright career to the occupational therapy aides, assistants, and therapists. According to the BLS, the average annual and hourly income of occupational therapy professionals, in Missouri was $74,710 and $35.92 (in May 2015), respectively. The Missouri Board of Occupational Therapy issues the licenses to all occupational therapy professionals in this state. License approval and issuance may take several weeks.

Occupational therapy schools in Missouri encompass the different levels of courses for occupational therapy including bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate’s, associates’ and dual degree programs. Some schools offer courses for all the job titles while a few of them provide degrees only for specific jobs. Candidates who are already working as professional occupational therapists and are a graduate in the same field can complete the master’s program in 1 or 2 years but, if you are a graduate in some other stream, you will be able to gain the same degree in 2 or 3 years. Those who want to do both, graduation as well as post graduation altogether in just 5 years can go for the dual degree course. In order to get the licensure in any state, it is a must for you to have your degree in occupational therapy from an Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) or American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) approved school, college or university.

To know more about the accredited schools, procedure to become an OT, and the salary figures in different cities of the state of Missouri, proceed further:

Approved Occupational Therapy Schools in Missouri

  • East Central College
    Address – 1964 Prairie Dell Road, Union, MO 63084
    Contact No. – 636-584-6500
    Official Websitehttp://www.eastcentral.edu/
  • Ozarks Techincal Community College
    Address – 1001 East Chestnut Expressway, Springfield, Missouri 65802
    Contact No. – 417-447-7500
    Official Websitehttp://www.otc.edu/
  • A T Still University- Missouri Campus
    Address – 800 West Jefferson Street, Kirksville, MO 63501
    Contact No. – 660-626-2121
    Official Websitehttps://www.atsu.edu/
  • Maryville University
    Address – 650 Maryville University Drive, St. Louis, MO 63141
    Contact No. – 314-529-9300
    Official Websitehttps://www.maryville.edu/
  • Mizzou- University of Missouri
    Address – Columbia, MO 65211
    Contact No. – 573-882-2121
    Official Websitehttp://missouri.edu/
  • Metropolitan Community College
    Address – 3200 Broadway, Kansas City, MO 64111
    Contact No. – 816-604-1000
    Official Websitehttp://www.mcckc.edu/
  • Rockhurst University
    Address – 1100 Rockhurst Road, Kansas City, MO 64110
    Contact No. – 816-501-4000
    Official Websitehttp://ww2.rockhurst.edu/
  • Saint Louis Community College
    Address – 11333 Big Bend Road, St. Louis, MO 63122-5720
    Contact No. – 314-984-7500
    Official Websitehttp://www.stlcc.edu/MC/
  • Saint Louis University
    Address – One North Grand, St. Louis, MO 63103
    Contact No. – 800-758-3678
    Official Websitehttp://www.slu.edu/
  • Brown Mackie College, Saint Louis
    Address – 2 Soccer Park Road, Fenton, MO 63026
    Contact No. – 636-651-3290
    Official Websitehttps://www.brownmackie.edu
  • Washington University in Saint Louis
    Address – One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130
    Contact No. – 314-362-5000
    Official Websitehttps://wustl.edu/
  • State Fair Community College
    Address – 3201 West 16th Street Sedalia, Missouri 65301-2199
    Contact No. – 877-311-7322
    Official Websitehttp://www.sfccmo.edu/
  • St. Charles Community College
    Address – 4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive, Cottleville, MO 63376
    Contact No. – 636-922-8000
    Official Websitehttps://www.stchas.edu/

Stepwise Procedure To Become An Occupational Therapist In Missouri

There are enormous vacancies for occupational therapists in the state of Missouri. As per the data of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 2,750 employed and licensed occupational therapists in Missouri (in May 2015). With every state, the procedure to get a license of occupational therapy professional differs. Thus, the licensing body in this state too offers somewhat a distinctive process to issue the licensure to the applicants. The Missouri Board of Occupational Therapy regulates the issuance of licensure in the state. The license is available at two levels, one for occupational therapist and other for occupational therapy assistants. Before sitting for the permanent licensure exam, you can apply for a temporary license for any of the two levels. Anyone, who wants to practice as an occupational therapist in Missouri has to go step by step with the following procedure.

Step 1 – Graduation from an ACOTE Certified School In Occupational Therapy

To gain license as a registered occupational therapist in Missouri, candidates need to have a bachelor’s, master’s or dual degree from an ACOTE or AOTA accredited school, university or college. It is one of the first and foremost requirement to become licensed in a state. There are 5 approved schools in Missouri where the courses that are essential to become an occupational therapist are available. For some basic information about the colleges, you can refer to the list included in the article.

Step 2 – Complete the Internship Or Practicum

Practical knowledge related to the course of occupational therapy is quite an important thing because during fieldwork you learn many things that guide you to serve the patients with any physical, emotional or mental disorder. Internship or practicum plays a vital role in occupational therapy. All those who want to practice as a licensed occupational therapist in Missouri, have to complete a 6 months internship or practicum, under the supervision of a registered occupational therapist in a clinical setting.

Step 3 – Clear The National Certification Exam

Those who are seeking a license in Missouri must clear the national certification exam. After clearing this exam, named as Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR), you can work as a registered occupational therapist all over the United States of America. This exam is offered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Only the students who pass this exam with at least 70th percentile can get the license from the board.

Step 4 – Take the Exam and Apply For The State License In Missouri

After passing the national certification exam, every individual has to apply for the licensure from the state licensing board. For this, first of all you have to submit a completely filled and properly signed application form to the board with a money order or check of $55 for the license fee. Along with this, you need to submit some essential documents to the board like official transcripts from all the schools and colleges you have attended so far, verification of certification from NBCOT and verification of licensure from all the jurisdictions where you have worked till date. Board may take some weeks to issue the license, after completely reviewing all the documents.

Step 5 – Maintain The Professional Licensure

License renewal is equally important as to gain it from the board. To maintain the license in Missouri, individuals have to complete 24 continuing education contact hours during every two-year licensure period.

Salary of Occupational Therapists in Missouri

As per indeed.com, the salary of an occupational therapist in Missouri was 85,000 as of May 19, 2016.

Average Salary of Professionals with Similar Job Titles

Occupational Therapist Skilled $85,000
Occupational Therapist Occupational Therapy $85,000
Occupational Therapist Rotation $50,000
Occupational Therapist Hand $91,000
Outpatient Occupational Therapist $94,000
Occupational Therapist Rehab $85,000
Occupational Therapist Pediatric Outpatient $85,000
Occupational Therapist Pediatric $85,000
OT Occupational Therapy $101,000
Occupational Therapist Psych $85,000
Occupational Therapist Outpatient $85,000
Occupational Therapist Acute $85,000
Occupational Therapist School $85,000
OT Occupational Therapist Therapy $100,000
Occupational Therapist Home Health $93,000

Information Source: indeed.com

On the analysis of the table above, we can find out that the wage of OT Occupational Therapy is highest among all the related jobs titles of occupational therapy in Missouri at $101,000, while lowest is of Occupational Therapy Rotation at $50,000.

Annual Median Salaries of OTs in Different Cities of Missouri

Name of the City Annual Median Salary
Blue Springs $79,634
Chesterfield $79,327
Columbia $79,327
Florissant $79,327
Independence $79,634
Jefferson City $79,327
Joplin $73,161
Kansas City $79,634
Lees Summit $79,634
O Fallon $79,327
Saint Charles $79,327
Saint Joseph $79,634
Saint Louis $79,327
Saint Peters $79,327
Springfield $73,161

Information Source: salary.com

From the table above, we can conclude that the wage of an occupational therapist, among the different cities of Missouri is highest in Blue Springs, Kansas City, Lees Summit, Independence and Saint Joseph at $79,634 and lowest is in Springfield and Joplin at $73,161 (as on April 26, 2016).