Academics / Departments

Department of Occupational Therapy

Department Chair:

Wendy J. Coster, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA617-353-2729

How does a child’s physical environment encourage or discourage active play? How can older adults modify their daily routines as their vision declines? How does obesity affect a person’s ability to adapt to obstacles in the environment? The Boston University Department of Occupational Therapy explores questions like these, focusing on biological and psychological processes that influence people’s daily activities. And with a focus on evidence-based, client-centered professional education, you’ll be involved in leadership, scholarship, and cutting-edge research that are shaping the profession.

U.S. News & World Report ranks BU Sargent College MSOT #2 in the nation!

We’re proud that Boston University ranks among the world’s most esteemed educators of the next generation of leaders in occupational therapy. In fact, U.S. News & World Report’s latest graduate school rankings named Boston University’s OT program #2 out of 156 accredited programs in the United States. Here are a few reasons why.

Our renowned faculty

You’ll learn from and work closely with faculty who are remarkable in every sense. They’re interdisciplinary and internationally known. They write textbooks, conduct research, present findings at global conferences, serve on committees and task forces, and generally lead the profession. Some examples:

  • Dr. Wendy Coster, our department chair, is recognized worldwide for groundbreaking work, and she recently received the profession’s highest academic honor from the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA).
  • Dr. Ellen Cohn is a former coeditor of the textbook used by 97% of all OT programs.
  • Dr. Karen Jacobs is a past president of AOTA.

Our faculty members love sharing their experience, knowledge, perspective, and projects with students. So you’ll find them accessible, supportive, and passionate about teaching.  Please visit the Boston University OT Faculty webpage to view all our faculty and their expertise/interests.

The benefits of Boston

Location really matters in a research-driven health field. Since BU is a major research university in a vibrant urban center and medical hub, BU Sargent College offers an unusually rich diversity of clinical placement sites and research activity. For you, that means a wider range of experience. Every semester, new fieldwork placements will broaden your exposure across the spectrum of client populations and OT practice. You’ll have more opportunities for placements in areas that interest you, too. And, while receiving an evidence-based, client-centered professional education, you can be involved in the scholarship and cutting-edge research that are shaping the profession.

A complete range of programs

We offer undergraduate, graduate professional, and graduate research programs in OT. We also have distance education programs online for practicing professionals and an interdisciplinary doctoral program in rehabilitation sciences.

Take a closer look

We invite you to learn more about this rare environment for leadership, learning, launching a new career, or growing in an established one. Choose any occupational therapy degree program here for more information.