The health-care professions are adapting, changing and evolving through evidence-based practice, research and technological innovations, and policy reform. In recent years, that adaptation has included broadening the clinical scope to include not only a biomedical view of health, but sociocultural, community and population perspectives as well.
There is a significant need locally, nationally and internationally for health-care professionals to be trained to address issues of prevention, participation, everyday functional performance, habilitation and quality of life in persons with chronic disease, disability or sociocultural disadvantage. The Program in Occupational Therapy and the Master of Public Health program at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis have responded to this need and paradigm shift by developing a joint degree program.
The Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (MSOT)/Master of Public Health (MPH) degree will give students a unique combination of skills and knowledge to benefit communities and populations, and will create new pathways of research, practice and health programming. Graduates will be prepared to work in a diverse array of settings including community agencies, government institutions and nonprofit organizations, and assume leadership roles in public policy, urban planning and advocacy.
“Persons trained in public health alone have limited exposure to biomedical knowledge and less focus on performance of daily life tasks. In contrast, practitioners trained solely as occupational therapists often lack sufficient community and population focus to extend their reach beyond acute care and rehabilitation settings,” says Associate Director of Professional Programs Steve Taff, PhD, OTR/L (pictured, right). “We feel that the MSOT/MPH degree offers the training required to equip new practitioners with a paradigm-spanning skill set that is needed in a new health-care landscape.”
“Public health brings a community and population perspective to the study and practice of occupational therapy, as well as a focus on prevention,” adds Associate Dean for Public Health Matthew W. Kreuter, PhD, MPH (pictured, left). “The combination of these two degrees will be a potent mix for health improvement in the 21st century."
Learn more about the joint degree MSOT/MPH program by clicking here.
Ranked as the Number One OT Program in the Nation
We welcome inquiries from prospective students, potential collaborators, community partners, alumni and others who want to connect with us. Please complete the form below to begin the conversation.
Current, future, and accepted applicants are encouraged to visit. We also welcome people who are exploring career options and considering occupational therapy. Dr. Kathy Kniepmann, one of our faculty members, opens our visit sessions with an informal presentation and discussion, followed by a tour that’s led by one of our current occupational therapy students.
Upcoming visit sessions*:
*At least two to three visit sessions are scheduled every month. All times are Central Standard Time (CST). Click here for more info.