Honours Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHSc) and Master of Health Sciences (MHSc), Occupational Therapy

Keep in mind:

  • The Bachelor's and Master's dual degree programs in Health Sciences have been designed for bilingual students.
  • Admission to a dual FAST-track degree program does not guarantee entry into the master's program. An 85% average must be maintained during the first three years. A language test and the CASPer test must also be completed during the third year. Capacity is limited and some applicants who meet all the requirements may not be accepted. 
  • The first three years of the program are a condensed version of the bachelor's degree. No master's courses will be given during this period. For more details on the courses, please refer to the course sequence. 
  • Dual FAST-track degree programs include a practical component to apply the professional program. Programs are not offered in CO-OP format. 

The Honours Bachelor of Health Sciences program is defined by its integrative approach for studying health. Students are provided with a foundational biosciences core, research analytical skills training in a range of quantitative and qualitative methodologies within a broader interdisciplinary context of the social and environmental determinants of health. This unique academic approach allows students to discover innovative ways to examine, measure and unravel complex health problems at all life stages, in Canada and around the world. 

Future health professionals will be challenged to understand biological, environmental and social factors, both in isolation and as interactive health determinants. The curriculum contains a research methodologies core to provide students with applied, quantitative and qualitative transferrable skills for post-graduate training or employment. Three thematic programming options enable students to focus their academic trajectory in Integrative Health Biosciences, Technologies and Innovation in Healthcare or Population and Public Health, gaining theoretical and applied knowledge and skills in these domains. This program also includes select opportunities to conduct a research thesis project and participate in interdisciplinary health sciences fieldwork. 

Graduates will be well-prepared to undertake health-related MSc programs or pursue careers in public or private health agencies, non-governmental health organizations or in community health programs. Students are provided with the necessary foundation for further studies in medicine, rehabilitation studies, dentistry or pharmacy. Our interdisciplinary focus enhances the quality and maturity of future clinicians and health professionals. 

The mission of the Master of Health Science in Occupational Therapy program at the University of Ottawa, which is offered in French, is to train competent health care professionals able to respond to the needs of the francophone population in Ontario and, more generally, to the needs of francophone communities in the bilingual and multilingual Canadian context. 

Occupational therapy is both an art and a science whose aim is to prevent handicap situations, re- establish or promote occupation (everyday activities that people do), health, and well-being of individuals. Occupational therapists work in collaboration with individuals or groups of individuals to prevent or address occupational performance difficulties. Occupational performance difficulties may arise from a health condition, developmental issue, environmental obstacle or a consequence of aging. Difficulties may occur in areas of self-care, productivity, or leisure. Occupational therapists enable their clients to reconstruct their life and develop a renewed sense of self-identity and independence. 

The occupational therapy program follows the standards developed by the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT). This allows students develop the skills and competencies needed to practice their profession upon graduation. In addition to the coursework, students complete 1,000 placement hours as required by CAOT. These mandatory placements can take place in Ottawa-area hospitals, schools, community organizations, the interprofessional university clinic and rehabilitation centres or at locations outside the National Capital Region. 

Students complete this limited-enrollment program over six consecutive terms, i.e., two years of full-time study (including placements). However, students with an undergraduate degree in occupational therapy at the time of admission can follow the accelerated program, which leads to a master’s degree after one year (three terms). Students complete practical and theoretical courses, placements and on-site observation placements. Teaching activities are grouped under the following six themes: 

  • Theme 1: Occupational participation: interaction between the person, their occupations and their environment;  

  • Theme 2: Fundamental principles for the practice as an occupational therapist (being a professional); 

  • Theme 3: Knowledge of health conditions and interventions - occupational therapists and the team;  

  • Theme 4: Occupational therapy practice: assessment and intervention approaches to promote occupational participation;  

  • Theme 5: Critical evaluation of knowledge;  

  • Theme 6: Knowledge integration. 

More information on the program requirements

Course sequences (available in French)

students in a lab

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