Occupational Therapy

Janet L. Poole, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, Director
Health Sciences Center
School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics
Occupational Therapy Graduate Program
Health Sciences and Services Building, Suite 140
MSC09 5240
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131-5641
(505) 272-1753, FAX (505) 272-3583

Terry K. Crowe, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, University of Washington
Diane Parham, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, University of California, Los Angeles
Janet L. Poole, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, University of Pittsburgh

Assistant Professors
Joanna Cosbey, Ph.D., OTR/L, University of Utah
Carla Wilhite, O.T.D., OTR/L, Creighton University

Brandi L. Jones, O.T.D., MOT, OTR/L, Chatham University
Heidi Sanders, M.A., OTR/L, University of New Mexico
Patricia Siegel, O.T.D., OTR/L, CHT, Texas Women's University

Mary Thelander-Hill, M.O.T., University of New Mexico

Professor Emeritus
Patricia Burtner, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, University of Oregon

Associate Professor Emeritus
Betsy VanLeit, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, University of New Mexico


Occupational Therapy is a profession that therapeutically uses meaningful activities to improve health and well-being, enhance development, and prevent disabilities. An occupational therapist is involved in helping people learn or relearn the skills necessary to carry out the daily occupations of self-care, work/productivity and play/leisure that they need or want to do. Occupational therapists work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, public and private schools, community programs, mental health facilities, private practice, and home health agencies. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages who have physical disabilities, emotional or behavioral problems, developmental delays or other disabilities. They also work to facilitate the health and well-being of people with and without disabilities.

The primary mission of The University of New Mexico’s Occupational Therapy Graduate Program is to improve the health and well-being of individuals and communities through participation in meaningful occupations. To do this, we prepare competent, ethical, culturally sensitive, and compassionate occupational therapists to serve communities in New Mexico and beyond; foster the pursuit of scholarly inquiry and dissemination by both students and faculty; transform occupational therapy practice through leadership and service to community and profession; and create partnerships to address the occupational challenges of diverse populations.

Graduates are prepared to think critically and creatively in a variety of practice settings, to adapt to changing societal and individual needs, and to assume responsibility for their own professional growth. The graduate program (entry level professional Master of Occupational Therapy) consists of 21 months of professional academic preparation plus six months (2 semesters) of full-time fieldwork in the community. Upon successful completion of all requirements, the student is awarded a Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) degree and is eligible to take the National Certification Examination for Registration as an Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR) administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). In addition, most states, including New Mexico, require licensure in order to practice. State licenses usually are based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure. The overall NBCOT pass rate for UNM students since the first graduating class is over 99%.


The Occupational Therapy Graduate Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). ACOTE is located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814. AOTA’s phone number is (301) 652-6611. ACOTE accreditation is recognized by the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT).


OCTH 514L. Introduction to Occupation and Health. (3)

OCTH 522L. Neuroanatomy. (3)

OCTH 524L. Kinesiology of Occupation. (3)

OCTH 534. Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice. (4)

OCTH 538. Interdisciplinary Leadership in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities-Didactic. (3)

OCTH 544L. Occupation Across the Lifespan. (5)

OCTH 554L. Relationship Centered Care. (2)

OCTH 564L. Applied Occupations: Orthopedic Practice. (6)

OCTH 594. Graduate Seminar. (1-3 to a maximum of 10 Δ)

OCTH 604L. Applied Occupations: Neurological Practice. (5)

OCTH 614L. Applied Occupations: Psychosocial Practice. (5)

OCTH 624L. Advocacy, Communication and Leadership. (3)

OCTH 634L. Neuroscience of Occupation. (2)

OCTH 650. Special Topics in Occupational Therapy. (2-6, to a maximum of 6 Δ)

OCTH 654. Organization and Administration. (2)

OCTH 664L. Applied Occupations: Pediatric Practice. (6)

OCTH 674L. Community Health. (4)

OCTH 675. Fieldwork II. (1-12 to a maximum of 24 Δ)

OCTH 690. Independent Study. (1-4, no limit Δ)


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Office of the Registrar

MSC11 6325
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131

Phone: (505) 277-8900
Fax: (505) 277-6809