BSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy

Work towards a rewarding career in occupational therapy and make a positive impact on the quality of life for individuals - helping patients recover, improve, and maintain their health and wellbeing to support their everyday routines at home or work.

Occupational Therapy is a long-established profession practised across a range of health and social care settings. Occupational Therapists work to learn and understand people and their occupations, helping them improve their physical and social health and wellbeing.

This part-time Occupational Therapy course is designed to help students develop the skills and knowledge required to practice as an Occupational Therapist across a range of practice environments. It involves a range of placements across health and social care and provides a gateway to a flourishing profession with a wide range of employment opportunities.

Graduates will be eligible to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and membership of the Royal College of Occupational Therapists.

This course is due to commence September 2022 subject to approval by Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and accreditation by Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT).

This course is subject to validation.

2021/22 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N/A Part-time 4.5 Years September Glyntaff A

Modules studied help develop a core underpinning knowledge of the medical sciences, involve interprofessional learning and working to enable the highest quality integrated practice, and deliver the fundamental skills required by the Occupational Therapist.

Modules focusing on basic and medical sciences, cover the foundations of assessment, diagnosis and management and are developed throughout all levels of the programme to underpin the management of increasingly complex situations.

Your studies will include the opportunity for interprofessional learning in theory, simulation scenarios and during practice learning experiences. This includes three IPE modules focussing on developing your confidence and decision making in practice and progression to being a proficient occupational therapist.

You will also have shared learning where core themes are considered and then applied to each unique professional group, these modules include the modules focussing on promoting health and preventing ill-health, professional, legal and ethical issues in health care practice and leading and managing quality care across settings.


The course is delivered part time, with each ‘level’ – one full-time year – taking 18 months. You will undertake timetabled University and placement activities over 2-3 days per week depending on the year of study, and will be expected to devote an additional 12.5 hours of individual study per week. There is an extensive placement programme across the NHS, social care and additional care delivery locations.

University activities will include lectures, workshops and seminars. Practical sessions will take place in our simulation and practical teaching areas which are extensively equipped to replicate the facilities and situations encountered in a range of real-world practice locations. You will also regularly work on core techniques in groups, developing confidence to underpin placement practice.


USW helps every kind of student excel by creating a social and supportive environment for studying and living. There is close support from the academics and practitioners you meet on campus and on placement.

What kind of student does this course suit?

Occupational Therapy is a science-based, applied health discipline that supports the participation of people from all backgrounds and abilities in the occupations that help define them and their quality of life.

Practically-oriented students who are patient, understanding, and curious about using a variety of approaches to help improve quality of life, are ideally suited to this course that will lead to a rewarding career.


Occupational Therapy is an applied discipline and will use practical examinations undertaken in both University and within practice placements, with up to 80% coursework. These assessments methods will be used alongside a range of traditional assessment techniques including essays, presentations, and written exams. You will also have the opportunity to work on a project to improve or enhance an aspect of service delivery.


The course is working towards accreditation by the Health and Care Professions Council and Royal College of Occupational Therapists (subject to approval).


The course benefits from extensive clinical simulation facilities and a community flat simulation area in which a range of practical skills are taught, practised and examined. The University has an extensive range of partner organisations, including and extending beyond health and social care partners, to deliver a high quality placement programme. For some elements of your course, you will be taught interprofessionally alongside Physiotherapists, Nurses, Midwives, Operating Department Practitioners and will benefit from the holistic understanding this brings.

We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

Entry criteria below detail typical offers. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable.

Additional requirements include:

Two satisfactory references (one to be added to your application, and a second written reference to be printed out and brought to the interview).

An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on the Child & Adult Workforce and Child and Adult Barring Lists and subscription to the DBS Update Service (no offences are considered spent).

Applicants are required to attend an interview. You will be required to demonstrate a real insight to, and enthusiasm for, the discipline. You should learn as much as you can about the profession, including where practitioners practice, and their role in modern healthcare. You must also demonstrate insight to your organisational skills and ability to effectively manage your studies.

Unfortunately as this course is funded by the NHS and students have to have placements in the local NHS Health Board we are unable to accept applications from overseas (Non EU) students.

Entry criteria below detail typical offers. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable.


Typical A-Level Offer

BBB to exclude General Studies

Typical Welsh BACC Offer

Grade B and BB at A Level to exclude General Studies

Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction, Distinction, Merit

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum score of 32 include 17 at Higher Level to include 5 or above in Maths and English at standard level.

Typical Access to HE Offer

Science/Mathematics/Health Care/Nursing Diploma. Must complete 60 credits overall with at least 45 at level 3 and 15 at Level 2. Of the 45 credits at level 3, you will need a minimum of 24 Distinctions, 18 Merits and 3 passes.

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances.

Equivalent qualifications considered are Essential Skills Level Two in Communication and Application of Number, or Functional Skills Level Two in English and Maths. (Must be achieved within the last 3 years).

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees

  • Part-time UK: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.


The course is commissioned by the Welsh Government, which provides access to a tuition fee bursary and support grant, as well as placement expenses.

To receive NHS funding, students will have to commit to working in Wales for two years after completing their degree. Any applicant wishing to self-fund should refer to the fees outlined below. We recommend you read the bursary information on the NHS website.

Applicants are welcome to self-fund and should refer to the fees outlined above and may be eligible for Student Finance Wales funding.

Securing a place on the Occupational Therapy course will require you to demonstrate real insight into, and enthusiasm for, the discipline. You should learn as much as you can about the profession, including where Occupational Therapists practice, and their developing role in modern healthcare. Try to convey an understanding of the philosophical basis of Occupational Therapy practice. You must also demonstrate insight to your organisational skills and abilities to manage part-time study.

Offer of a place on this course is subject to an interview that is designed to establish candidates’:

  • Values
  • Undestanding and insight to the discipline
  • Motivations
  • Abilities

Interviews are conducted by academic and NHS practitioners.

Occupational Therapists are found whereever people are found facing challenges to their ability to function and do the things that they need to do, and to enjoy. This includes the NHS, social care and education settings, and new roles are continually emerging.

There are many career opportunities associated with the various sectors in which Occupational Therapists are found. In the NHS this involves opportunities to develop as an advanced practitioner delivering specialists services, with similar opportunities available in other settings.

How does the course prepare me for employment?

This course prepares graduates to work as an Occupational Therapist in a range of healthcare settings within the NHS, in private healthcare, and in private practice. Graduates will be eligible for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and  membership of the College of Occupataional Therapy (subject to HCPC and relevant College approval).

Graduates will possess a range of transferable skills that will range from the ability to communicate via various means with patients and colleagues, an understanding of health promotion, quality improvement, team working, interprofessional and multi-disciplinary practice and ethics, which are all eminently transferable.