Bachelor of Occupational Therapy

Course information for - 2023 entry

Offered at 3 locations


4 years full-time or 8 years part-time

QTAC code
94.00 for Brisbane
Fees (first year)*

$9151 CSP

Start dates
Semester 1 intake: Beginning February 2024
Applications open August 2023
Midyear (Semester 2) intake: Not available


Occupational therapists play an important role in the lives of individuals and communities enabling participation in occupations of self-care, productivity and leisure. To do this, occupational therapists need to know how humans function, and need the skills to practice competently and safely. You will learn how to analyse and assess occupational performance; apply and evaluate interventions to enable occupational performance; and collaborate and communicate effectively with clients and their families and colleagues.

High achieving Bachelor of Occupational Therapy students can undertake honours in the third and fourth years, provided they meet admission requirements.

Professional experience

You will undertake 1,000 hours of professional practice education as part of your degree. Each semester, starting in Semester 1 of your first year, you will undertake industry placements. These supervised placements are designed to help you apply and contextualise theoretical knowledge gained in your course work, into professional practice.

Work placement

Fieldwork and clinical placements are undertaken throughout the course, working with people across the life-span to help them overcome physical, cognitive or societal barriers to participation.

ACU has strong industry ties with a range of health and community services for placements and significant stakeholder engagement with many health partners. We endeavour to place students in a variety of different locations to give students experience in various settings. Students should expect to benefit by a rural/remote placement during their course. Locations and settings of placements include:

• a range of private hospitals

• community health

• private sector and private practices

• non-government and charitable organisations

• aged care sector

• disability sector

Your placements start in first year:

• Year 1: Semester 1: ½ day placement;

• Year 1: Semester 2: 2-week full-time block (80 hours)

• Year 2: Semester 2: 40 hours simulated placement (one week).

• Year 3: 2 x 5-week blocks. These are scheduled after the end of traditional semesters in the inter-semester break,  so you’ll need to check placement dates before making other commitments.

• Year 4: Semester 1: a 9-week block;

Year 4: Semester 2: 2 weeks (1 day per week for 10 weeks).

As part of your course, you will be placed in a range of organisations to integrate the theory you learn with practical workplace experiences (placements). As part of your enrolment, you must complete the Faculty of Health Sciences pre-placement requirements. To ensure you meet these requirements you need to start as soon as possible. Visit ACU’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL) website to view your Pre-Placement Requirements checklist.

Community engagement

Year 2: Semester 1: 25 hours

Year 2: Semester 2 – 25 hours

Year 4: Semester 2: 30 hours

Professional recognition

The ACU Bachelor of Occupational Therapy has been developed to ensure new graduates will meet the competency standards of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) and Occupational Therapy Council (OTC). ACU is adhering to accreditation requirements of WFOT and OTC in the implementation of the program. Full accreditation has been granted in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. Graduates will be eligible for registration as practicing Occupational Therapists with the Allied Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and for membership of Occupational Therapy Australia (OTA). Please refer to the Registration Standards for Occupational Therapy on the AHPRA website.


Course details

Course structure

To complete the Bachelor of Occupational Therapy, a student must complete 320 credit points (cp).

View course rules

Sample program map

Year - Study periodUnit 1Unit 2Unit 3Unit 4Unit 5
Year 1 - Semester 1

ALHT106 Psychology for Allied Health

BIOL121 Human Biological Science 1

OTHY100 Foundations of Occupational Therapy (Professional practice)

OTHY101 Health and Occupation

Year 1 - Semester 2

OTHY102 Musculoskeletal Structure and Function for Occupational Therapy

UNCC100 Self and Community: Exploring the Anatomy of Modern Society


PHCC102 Being Human


PHCC104 Ethics and the Good Life

OTHY107 Infants and Children data-versionlabel=2 >

OTHY108 Evidence-Based Practice and Health Conditions data-versionlabel=2 >

Year 2 - Semester 1

ALHT210 Neuroscience for Allied Health data-versionlabel=2 >

OTHY211 Social Determinants of First Peoples Health and Wellbeing data-versionlabel=2 >

OTHY210 Physical Rehabilitation 1

OTHY205 Mental Health Recovery in Occupational Therapy 1

Year 2 - Semester 2

OTHY204 Occupational Participation and Disability

OTHY208 Clinical Counselling and Group Work

ALHT211 Research and Evidence - Informed Practice in Allied Health data-versionlabel=2 >

OTHY207 Vocational Preparation and Rehabilitation

Year 3 - Semester 1

OTHY300 Neurological Rehabilitation 1

UNCC300 Justice and Change in a Global World


PHCC320 The Just Society

OTHY302 Children Youth and Families

OTHY303 Professional Practice Education 1

Year 3 - Semester 2

OTHY304 Neurological Rehabilitation 2

OTHY301 Mental Health Recovery in Occupational Therapy 2

OTHY310 Physical Rehabilitation 2

OTHY307 Professional Practice Education 2

Year 4 - Semester 1

OTHY400 Occupational Therapy: Ageing, Participation and Health

OTHY415 Assistive Technology data-versionlabel=2 >

OTHY416 Professional Practice Education 3 data-versionlabel=2 >

Year 4 - Semester 2

OTHY402 Allied Health Management and Leadership

OTHY403 Occupational Therapy and Community Centred Practice


ALHT420 Global Perspectives of Community-Centred Practice

OTHY404 Advanced Occupational Therapy Practice

OTHY405 Professional Practice Education 4

This is a sample program only and units will vary depending on your campus and mode of study. Please refer to the handbook for the prerequisite units and the current listing.

AQF framework

Bachelor - AQF Level 7

Exit Points

A student who has successfully completed 230 cp from units, and 10 cp from Core Curriculum units may exit from the course with following qualification:

  • Bachelor of Allied Health

Additional course information


Class sizes

In 2021 we welcomed 89 new students to our Brisbane campus, 106 to our Melbourne campus, and 112 to our North Sydney campus. You can expect tutorial class sizes of approximately 25 – 30 students.

Contact hours

You can expect to have about 16–20 hours of face-to-face contact each week for 12 weeks of the semester in first, second, third and fourth years (on a full-time load). In addition, you will be required to attend professional practice placements full-time, for example, 40 hours a week for two weeks in first year and two x 5-week placements in third year. See more details under placement.

We understand the need for flexibility when it comes to your studies. For many of our undergraduate programs, lectures and tutorials are delivered face to face. Lectures provide an opportunity to engage with the lecturer and the occasional guest lecturers will provide specialist insights into the course content. Tutorials are where critical exploration of key concepts and development of attributes takes place. This is achieved through activities including group work, debate and role play.

Lectures are recorded and are made available online for students who cannot attend in person. Most tutorials and practical classes are held on campus.

Sample Assessments

Occupational Therapy sample assessment examples: online quiz, written reflective journal, oral presentation, poster, written examination, written assignment.

Sample unit assessment criteria:

OTHY204 Occupational Participation and Disability

• Assessment 1 (20%)

Case-based group presentation: students will, in groups of three, deliver a 15 minute oral presentation to demonstrate skills in gathering and presenting material related to evaluating the impact of the physical, social and technological environment on occupational participation and communication for a client with a disability.

• Assessment 2 (50%): written assignment (2,000 word essay)

Students will write on the National Disability Insurance Scheme to develop skills to synthesise and analyse societal, political, environmental and other factors impacting the community participation and inclusion of individuals with disabilities.

• Assessment 3 (30%): post community engagement critical reflection

Students will write a 1,500 word reflection on their preparation for community engagement and the community engagement experience.

Meritorious students may apply to undertake Honours in the third and fourth years of the course, subject to meeting the admission requirements and achieving a grade point average of 5.5 on the ACU seven point scale.

Determination of students who meet the requirements to enrol in the honours program, and will be offered a place, will be the responsibility of the undergraduate course coordinator in collaboration with the Head of School.

Overseas study available

Each year ACU’s Faculty of Health Sciences offers a number of destinations where students can undertake a community engagement unit or professional practice placement abroad as part of their studies. These include in Vietnam, Vanuatu and Timor Leste. These activities are facilitated through our ACU overseas partners. Most of these experiences are offered to students enrolled in their third or final year of study at ACU.

You might also choose to study an Occupational Therapy unit at ACU’s Rome Campus over the June - July or December - January breaks.

To find out more, visit:    

Please note: overseas travel opportunities are subject to public health restrictions in place at the planned time of travel.

Entry requirements

An applicant must also comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

To be eligible for admission to the Bachelor of Occupational Therapy, an applicant must have completed the following prerequisites at year 12 level, or equivalent:


New South Wales

English (Advanced) or English (Standard) (Band 4) or English as an Additional Language (Band 4); plus at least one of biology, chemistry, physics, or personal development, health and physical education (PDHPE) (Band 2 for all).


English (Units 3 & 4, C) and one of biology, chemistry or physics (Units 3 & 4, C).


Units 3 and 4 – a study score of at least 30 in English (EAL) or 25 in any other English and a study score of at least 25 in one of biology, chemistry or physics.

An applicant must comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy .

 International applicants need to meet the English Language Proficiency requirements as defined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy .

Disclaimer: The course entry requirements above are for 2023 Admission. Refer to your relevant Tertiary Admission Centre website for future years' entry requirements.

View transparency admission information

Applicants with recent secondary education

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course.

If your school result was affected by circumstances outside of your control, such as financial hardship, illness, disability or a challenging home environment, you may qualify for an access scheme. You can apply through your TAC as part of your application process.

Learn more about access schemes

Applicants with vocational education and training (VET) study

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course.

For current year 12 students

If you’re a current Year 12 applicant you can be given a selection rank separate from, and in addition to, your ATAR if you’ve completed a competency-based and graded AQF Certificate III or above.

For non-school leavers

If you’ve completed, or are completing a competency-based AQF Certificate IV or AQF diploma you will be assigned a selection rank by your local Tertiary Admission Centre (TAC). This is an entry score based on your individual qualifications and achievements.

ACU has partnerships with ACU College, TAFE, and many private education providers. If you have completed a qualification with one of these partners, you may be eligible for guaranteed entry and/or credit into a related ACU degree. Please apply through your local TAC and then submit a credit application for your previous study.

Applicants with work and life experience

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course.

If you have no formal education qualifications you may be eligible for a selection rank based on your work, life or service experience.

  • If you’ve been in paid employment, relevant to the course you’re applying for, for a minimum of six months full-time (or equivalent), this work may be assessed for your selection rank.
  • If you’re 21 years or older you can sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) through your local TAC.
  • You can apply for an ACU bridging course. Our bridging courses allow you to transition back into studying and can give you a head start on the relevant undergraduate degree.
  • If you have served in the defence force, your rank and time in service may contribute to your selection rank.

Find your path into study

English language requirements

Applicants require an academic IELTS minimum overall score of 7.0 (with a minimum score of 7.0 in all bands), or an equivalent acceptable test score as outlined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy (Schedule 3).

Adjustment factors

If you’re currently completing Year 12 you may be eligible for adjustment factors that can boost your rank and help you get into your desired course.

Adjustment factors may be applied to your TAC application if you study particular subjects, attend schools geographically close to our campuses or in certain regional areas, apply as an elite athlete or performer or meet certain other criteria.

Learn more about adjustment factors

Inherent requirement

There are essential components of a course or unit that demonstrate the capabilities, knowledge and skills to achieve the core learning outcomes of that course or unit. You will need to be able to meet these inherent requirements to complete your course.

Learn more about inherent requirements for your course and how they affect you


Pathways into course for current or recent Year 12 students

Pathways into the Course for current or recent year 12 students

Students need to have completed a Year 12 science subject to be eligible to apply for entry into the B. Occupational Therapy. Some Australian preparatory and bridging studies would satisfy this requirement including:

Satisfactory completion of Biology, Chemistry or Physics in the Certificate IV of Adult Tertiary Preparation;

UNILEARN – Pass in Biology, Chemistry of Physics;

TAFE Tertiary Preparation Certificates

ACU (Health Sciences) programs that have a science unit – most commonly Biology but a few have Chemistry. Students would then apply to transfer course the following year (on the basis of their GPA which is converted to an ATAR). Entry is competitive and is not guaranteed.

Further study

Honours graduates may be eligible to undertake a Master of Philosophy or Doctor of Philosophy.

ACU offers a number of postgraduate courses suitable for Bachelor of Occupational Therapy graduates including:

Postgraduate programs in Rehabilitation

Postgraduate programs in Mental Health

You can find out more on postgraduate programs in Health Sciences here –


Course costs

Average first year fee*

$9151 CSP

All costs are calculated using current rates  and are based on a full-time study load of 40 credit points (normally 4 units) per semester.

A student’s annual fee may vary in accordance with:

  • the number of units studied per semester;
  • the choice of major or specialisation; and
  • elective units.

The University reviews fees annually.

Payment options

You should be able to concentrate on getting good marks instead of worrying about how you’ll pay your fees. We have a number of options that can help you ease the financial burden, including government assistance, scholarships and income support.

Explore your options


You could be eligible for one of the hundreds of scholarships we award each year to help students from across the university with the cost of studying, accommodation or overseas study opportunities. Some of our scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit, but these aren’t just for the academically gifted; ACU also recognises excellence in community engagement and leadership. We also offer a range of scholarships for those who may be struggling financially or who have faced other barriers to accessing education.

Search our scholarships

How to apply

Additional application information

This is a four year course with an embedded honours program.


Deferment is available for one year. Find out more about deferment: Deferment Information.


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