Top 5 Universities for Occupational Therapy in Australia

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Best Universities for Occupational Therapy in Australia

Australia is the place which has attracted international students over several years and its world-class universities with rankings at par with those best in the world and has been the melting point for decades for many aspiring international students across the globe.

Occupational Therapy specifically is a popular course and its repute is steadily on the rise. Australia as a country is a strong believer in inclusion of those who are differently abled and want to merge them socially and physically with the rest of the society. There are abundant career opportunities among those who pursue this field of applied science and there is constant guidance from our team of professional agents who overlook the relevance and application of this course and the job prospects thereafter.

The healthcare and social assistance sector is projected to grow by 301,000 (or 15.8%) by 2026. This growth will create many new opportunities for those with a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy. Occupational therapists help people identify and overcome barriers to participating in activities that are important to them. A top university in Australia can provide you with the education you need to pursue a career in this growing field and make a difference in people's lives. A degree in Occupational Therapy will prepare you to develop tailored, evidence-based intervention plans for individuals whose health and well-being are impacted by factors such as injury, illness, disability, or environmental barriers. You will have the opportunity to learn from experienced faculty members who are leaders in their field of research and have a wealth of knowledge in various areas of Occupational Therapy. The course layout will provide you with the chance to learn from experts and colleagues from other disciplines so that you can become an active member of an interdisciplinary team. To become an occupational therapist, students must complete a minimum of 1,000 hours of clinical fieldwork/practice education. This hands-on experience is arranged by the university and allows students to apply theory in a real-world setting. The majority of institutions require students to complete placements in regional, rural, and distant settings, in addition to new and developing practice settings. This allows students to gain the breadth and depth of experience necessary for success in this career.

Occupational Therapy Degree: Course Structure

There are different types of occupational therapy programs, but most include around 30 core credit points and 2 optional units. These credit points must be earned within 3 years to earn a Bachelor's degree in Occupational Therapy. However, some students may choose to pursue an Honors degree, which takes an additional year to complete.

The typical course structure for a Bachelor's in Occupational Therapy usually consists of the following subjects:

Year I

Population Health and Society

Human Anatomy and Physiology 1

Introduction to Occupational Therapy

Professional Competencies in Health

People, Environment and Occupations

Human Anatomy and Physiology

Communication in Health

Evidence in Health

Year 2

Occupational Therapy Practice 1

Culture, Diversity and Health

Pathophysiology 1

Research Methods in Health

Occupational Therapy Practice 2


Psychology and Health

Functional Anatomy

Year 3

Occupation and Neurology

Occupation and Mental Health

Occupational Therapy Practice 3

Child and Adolescent Occupations

Occupation and the Environment

Occupation and Ageing

Occupational Justice

Evidence in Professional Reasoning

Year 4

Occupational Therapy Project

Occupational Therapy Specialties

Ergonomics and Work Occupations

Occupational Therapy Degree in Australia and What can you do after it?

Occupational therapy is a growing field that is receiving increasing appreciation from all health sciences. This growth is expected to become exponential in coming years, leading to increased demand for experienced occupational therapists in diverse areas such as:

  • acute, psychiatric, or rehabilitation hospitals
  • community health organisations
  • government departments or agencies
  • mental health services
  • private practices
  • rehabilitation services
  • primary and secondary schools
  • universities and research institutes
  • workplace wellbeing, occupational health and safety, and rehabilitation services.

List of Top 5 Universities in Australia for Occupational Therapy:

Upon completing an accredited occupational therapy program, students must register with the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) to practice. Registration is required to ensure that all practitioners meet the standards set by the WFOT.

Many colleges offer an honours programme. This programme gives students some basic research skills that will help them pursue higher education, like a postgraduate Master's or Ph.D. Those with an existing entry-level degree in occupational therapy are eligible for post-graduate degrees. The Occupational Therapy course at graduate and postgraduate levels is offered by different universities across Australia.

Occupational Therapy degree from the University of La Trobe

This is one of the best schools in Occupational Therapy and it tops the subject ranking as well as meets all course satisfaction criteria including the indicative graduate salary. It is situated in the fifth best student city, Melbourne (based on QS World University Rankings) and the world’s most friendly and liveable city (based on Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Liveability Index). It boasts of a vibrant campus with ample opportunities for international students across the world. As occupational therapists, there are innumerable career outcomes. Graduates in this discipline work in public and private sector domains in areas such as mental health, rehabilitation centres, community health centres, forensic psychiatric centres to name a few.

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Occupational Therapy degree from the University of Sydney

At present, the University of Sydney is ranked 4th in the world and 1st in Australia, for graduate employability (based on QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2018).  Located in Sydney as the name itself suggests, this university is consistently placed among the top 50 universities in the world (based on QS World University Rankings 2019). Occupational therapy comes under the faculty of health sciences and is ranked number two in this discipline (based on QS subject rankings 2018). Occupational therapists practice with individuals or groups of all ages and in various kinds of settings like hospitals, community centres. Their work also includes areas like early intervention centres, educational institutions and other similar industries

Occupational Therapy degree from Australian Catholic University (ACU)

With campuses across three locations in Australia- Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, ACU is ranked in the top 5% of universities worldwide and is in the top 10 for its quality of teaching in the country (Times Higher Education 2017). It is one of the top three institutions in Australia. It helps international students gain internships and employment as a part of their curriculum. As a part of their career outcome graduates work in nursing homes, hospitals, aged care facilities, local councils, government sectors and so on.

Occupational Therapy degree from Curtin University

It is the largest university in Western Australia and has a sizeable population of international students enrolling each year. Located in Perth, Curtin university holds a strong international repute and is ranked in the top one percent of universities in the world (Academic Ranking of World Universities 2018). It stands for its highest paid graduates in the entire region. Specifically for this course, students gain work experience through interning with industries and work on real-life projects during the tenure of their degree program. Career outcomes are innumerable. There are a series of settings across the health, disability and community well being sectors that need their kind of professional help

Occupational Therapy degree from James Cook University (JCU)

JCU is the second oldest university in Queensland and has its campus in Cairns, in the North Eastern region of Australia. It has been awarded a 5-star rating in the graduate job success domain by the ‘Good Universities Guide’ for the past seven years. Graduates in occupational therapy are equipped for rewarding careers throughout Australia in numerous fields like Independent living centres, Vocational rehabilitation settings, schools and educational settings, Public and private hospitals, aged care facilities etc.

Frequently Asked Questions About PR in Australia

How to become an occupational therapist in Australia?

A career in occupational therapy can be very rewarding. To pursue a full-time career in OT in Australia, you must have a Bachelor's degree in Occupational Therapy from an accredited institution. Additionally, you need to ensure that you are registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).


AECC leads the way in partnering with the best universities in Australia. They collaborate with the top-notch universities in the region. All the aforementioned universities are represented by us. For more ask for a free consultation today and speak with our friendly consultants about your education, career and PR pathways.
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