Application Process for the Doctor of Occupational Therapy Program

Applying to Rockhurst University’s Occupational Therapy program is done through OTCAS – the Occupational Therapist Centralized Application Service. Know that if you have questions or need assistance throughout this process, we’re here to help.


Step 1: Complete Your Application
Create an OTCAS account and complete your application. Cycles open July 16, 2020 for the programs beginning the following academic year. Applicants who meet the September 15, 2020 soft deadline will be considered for an interview on November 21, 2020. Final deadline for application is January 2, 2020. Enrollment is limited and early application is strongly encouraged. Meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.

RU bachelor's and pre-admission students are also required to apply through OTCAS. The Graduate Admissions Office no longer accepts paper applications.

For assistance using OTCAS, contact 617-612-2860 or

Important dates:

  • OTCAS 2019-2020 application cycle opens in July 16, 2020.
  • Rockhurst pre-admission students deadline September 1, 2020.
  • OTCAS application deadline September 15, 2020 (soft deadline).
  • OT interview day November 21, 2020.
  • OTCAS academic update opens December 10, 2020 (applicants enter updated grades from summer and/or fall semesters 2020).
  • OTCAS application close date January 2, 2021. 
  • OTCAS academic update closes February 15, 2021.


Step 2: Submit Required Materials to OTCAS
Students submit all required materials directly to OTCAS and must follow guidelines found on the OTCAS web site. Your application is not complete until the following materials are submitted directly to OTCAS:

  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended. These must be sent to OTCAS Verification Department, P.O. Box 9120, Watertown, MA 02471.
  • Summary of your observation hours, extracurricular activities, honors and awards.
  • Three letters of recommendation. These can be sent electronically or mailed. OTCAS only accepts paper recommendations when they are accompanied by a completed Paper Reference Form – an evaluation grid available for download when you login to your OTCAS account – and it must be sent to the same address above.
  • A personal essay - The essay should be no more than 1,000 words and addresses how the applicant's life experiences informed his or hers decision to pursue occupational therapy while also demonstrating knowledge of the profession. The essay should also demonstrate knowledge of Rockhurst University's Jesuit Core Values and how they can often inform the profession of occupational therapy. This is separate from the personal statement required by OTCAS.
  • TOEFL scores of at least 80 on the internet-based text (only needed for international students whose first language is not English).


Step 3: You’re Accepted, Now What?
Once you accept an offer of admission to our OT program, you will receive a New Student Information packet with details on preparing for Rockhurst University and the Occupational Therapy program, including the date for orientation. All new OT students are required to attend orientation.

If you have questions about the application process, please contact the graduate admissions coordinator at 816.501.4059 or by email. To book a meeting with a graduate admissions coordinator, click Book Appointment.