Occupational Therapy

Awarded Academic Degree – Bachelor of Medicine
Duration of Studies: 4 years (8 terms)
The aim of the Bachelor program is to equip students with the knowledge corresponding to international standards and necessary skills in occupational therapy.

Graduate’s skills and competencies:

•    Explaining theoretical concepts underpinning occupational therapy, specifically the occupational nature of human beings and their occupational performance;
•    Explaining the relation between occupational performance, health and wellbeing;  
•    Applying relevant knowledge from biological, medical, human, psychological, social, technological, and occupational sciences together with theories of occupation and participation;
•    Analyzing the complexities of applying theories and research evidence related to occupation in the context of a changing society;   
•    Engaging in rational and reasoned debate in relation to occupational therapy;


Occupational Therapy Process and Professional Reasoning  

•    Working in partnership with individuals and groups, using occupation in prevention, rehabilitation, and treatment in order to promote participation, health and well-being;
•    Selecting, modifying and applying appropriate theories, models of practice and methods to meet the occupational and health needs of individuals/populations;
•    Using professional and ethical reasoning effectively throughout the occupational therapy process;
•    Utilizing the therapeutic potential of occupation through the use of activity and occupational analysis and synthesis;
•    Adapting and applying the occupational therapy process in close collaboration with individuals/ populations;
•    Working to facilitate accessible and adaptable environments and to promote occupational justice;
•    Collaborating with communities to promote and develop the health and well-being of their members through their participation in occupation;
•    Actively seeking, critically evaluating and applying a range of information and evidence to ensure that occupational therapy practice is up-to-date and relevant to the client;
•    Critically appraising occupational therapy practice to ensure that the focus is on occupation and occupational performance;

Professional Relationships and Partnerships
•    Working according to the principles of client-centered practice;
•    Building a therapeutic relationship/partnership as the foundation of the occupational therapy process;
•    Establishing and maintaining collaborative partnerships, consulting and advising with clients, caregivers, multi-disciplinary team members and other stakeholders on enabling occupation and participation in a wide range of contexts;
•    Collaborating with clients to advocate for the right to have their occupational needs met;
•    Appreciating and respecting diversity, individual differences, cultural beliefs, customs and their influence on occupation and participation;

Professional Autonomy and Accountability     

•    Preparing, maintaining and reviewing documentation of the occupational therapy process;
•    Complying with local/regional/national/European policies and procedures, professional standards and employers regulations;
•    Demonstrating continuing lifelong learning to enhance occupational therapy;
•    Practicing in an ethical manner, respecting clients and taking account of professional codes of conduct for occupational therapists;
•    Demonstrating confidence in self-management, self-awareness and knowledge of own limitations as an occupational therapist;

Research and Development in Occupational Therapy/Science
•    Identifying the need for research on issues related to occupation, occupational therapy and/or occupational science and formulate relevant research questions;
•    Searching independently, critically examining and synthesizing scientific literature and other information relevant to occupational therapy;
•    Understanding, selecting and defending designs and methods appropriate to research in occupation and occupational therapy, considering ethical aspects;
•    Interpreting, analyzing, synthesizing and criticizing research findings relevant to occupational therapy;
•    Developing new knowledge of occupation and occupational therapy practice, particularly in relation to local and/ or emerging health and social challenges;
•    Disseminating research findings to relevant stakeholders.

Management and Promotion of Occupational Therapy

•    Determining and prioritizing occupational therapy services;
•    Understanding and applying principles of management to occupational therapy services, including cost-effectiveness, administration of resources and equipment, and establishing occupational therapy protocols;
•    Engaging in a continuous process of evaluation and improvement of the quality of occupational therapy services, involving clients where appropriate and communicating the results to relevant stakeholders;
•    Taking a pro-active role in the development, improvement and promotion of occupational therapy;
•    Considering developments and influence policies in health and social care, society and legislation at international, national and local levels that affect occupational therapy services.

Fields of Employment

The field where an occupational therapist has to work is established in line with the requirements of that institution or employer, where she/he works. Occupational therapist may deal with:
•    Supporting prematurely born children (in developing), i.e. early intervention;
•    Improving learning environment for the pre-school and schoolchildren with physical or mental disabilities and challenging behavior;
•    Assisting the patients who have suffered a stroke and have low vision and dementia in adapting to home conditions;
•    Planning, designing the equipment (devices, special furniture, other auxiliary equipment) necessary for the patients in post traumatic state and instructing the patients in the use of this equipment;
•    Undertaking research on the effectiveness of occupational activities

The diversity of assisting services and broad possibilities of changes ensure a wide range of employment opportunities. Occupational therapists can work at schools, rehabilitation and mental health centers, nursing homes, medical clinics and agencies providing home health care services.