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Master of Occupational Therapy (MOccTher)

This four-year integrated undergraduate master’s course will give you the expertise, people skills and conceptual understanding that you will need to work as an occupational therapist. Students commence the course with a view to graduating with a master’s degree in four years.

This course is responsive to the demands of the health and social care sector and there are practice-based learning opportunities across the course to integrate theory, knowledge and practice.


Why QMU?

  • Our graduates are recognised by employers as being independent learners who can address problems creatively.
  • You will be taught by highly experienced lecturers who are well respected in their fields. They engage in innovative research, contribute to knowledge development and translation and have strong personal links with practice settings.
  • We have small class sizes, therefore our staff will really get to know you. We genuinely care about your journey and will recognise your strengths and where you most need support.

About the course

Living, not existing, that is a primary objective for the profession. As an occupational therapist, you will work with individuals, groups and communities to foster participation in the aspects of life that people need, want and have to do. This course is your first step towards a rewarding and diverse healthcare career with excellent employment prospects.

On this course you will explore how to provide practical support to empower people, facilitate health and wellbeing, and help identify and respond to barriers that prevent people from doing what really matters to them. You will learn a wide range of transferable personal and professional skills, understanding why and how people engage in occupations and what might disrupt patterns of occupation; critically engaging with knowledge and evidence that informs the profession; and collaborating with services to address needs of their communities. You will develop an appreciation of how individual’s lives can be shaped by society including environments, history, or systems and how these factors can impact health. You will learn through a variety of approaches, and practical placements are a key element of the course, giving you the opportunity to translate your learning into practice and to work with a wide range of services and populations. A practice placement is offered in each of the four years, and in total you will complete 31 weeks of full-time practice-based education.

In Year One you will study a range of modules that provide you with the knowledge and concepts that are foundational to occupational therapy practice. You will be introduced to different perspectives on occupation and its centrality in everyday life, as well as its relationship with health and wellbeing. You will develop skills in communication, information technology and academic study skills.

In Year Two you will focus on occupational therapy processes (assessment, goal setting, intervention, evaluation) with individuals and communities. You will explore disruption and deprivation of occupation (personal and contextual factors), across the life span. Aspects of public health and health promotion will be introduced and revisited in the later years.

During Year Three you will critically explore issues related to practice, theories and systems. You will study the social construction and complexity of knowledge and practice. You will develop further understanding of leadership, practice development and innovation in thinking and action.

Year Four consolidates your master’s-level learning opportunities and builds upon your previous knowledge and practice experiences in diverse and changing contexts. This year will include community partnership working, project development, leading to the completion of a dissertation, and deepening leadership skills.
Interprofessional learning and working is an integral part of professional practice and will be incorporated throughout the course.


This is a four year, full-time integrated undergraduate master’s course. You will complete a range of modules each year, and a final project in Year Four. Students on this course will complete 600 Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) credits across the four years, with sufficient credits in the final year to enable graduation with a Master of Occupational Therapy (MOccTh). There is an option for students to choose a BSc (Hons) route at the end of Year Two and they will still be eligible to apply for registration with the HCPC as an occupational therapist.

Teaching, learning and assessment

Our course is designed to allow you to get to know your peers and our staff, and build positive academic and professional relationships. Teaching and learning methods include interactive lectures, seminars, practical workshops, group work and self-directed learning. Outside timetabled sessions, you will be expected to continue learning through independent study. For assessment, we focus less on written examinations and more on demonstrations of knowledge and understanding: reports, essays, presentations, oral and practical examinations, and creative assessments.


Year One

  • Foundations of Occupational Therapy Practice
  • Personal Academic and Professional Development
  • Preparation for Practice-Based Learning
  • Practice-based Learning 1
  • Health Wellbeing and Participation in Occupation
  • Finding, Evaluating and Consuming Knowledge

Year Two

  • Assessing, Analysing and Evaluating Occupational Needs, Performance and Participation
  • Developing Goals to Meet Occupational Needs
  • Facilitating Learning within Occupational Therapy
  • Developing, Delivering and Evaluating Occupation-Focused Interventions
  • Practice-based Learning 2

A learner who achieves 60% average in SCQF level 8 modules can proceed on MOccTher route. They may choose to remain on the BSc (Hons) route.

Year Three

BSc (Hons) route:

  • Elective Module Occupational Therapy: Contexts, Collaborations and Communities
  • Practice-based Learning 3
  • Evaluating Occupational Therapy Practice

MOccTh route:

  • Elective Module
  • Occupational Therapy: Contexts, Collaborations and Communities
  • Practice-based Learning 3
  • Evaluating Occupational Therapy Practice
  • Research Methods

Year Four

BSc (Hons) route:

  • Health Society and Occupation
  • Practice-based Learning 4
  • Dissertation Project

MOccTh route:

  • Health Society and Occupation
  • Practice-based Learning 4
  • Transforming Occupational Therapy Practice
  • Dissertation Project

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (April 2021) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2022. Please check back here for any updates.



Placements provide the opportunity to integrate practice with theory. You will work with individuals, groups and communities in a variety of settings across Scotland. QMU manages the sourcing and allocation of full-time placements for each student. In Years One and Two, you will complete a six-week placement; in Year Three, nine weeks and in Year Four, ten weeks.

Exchange opportunities

In Years Three or Four you have the opportunity (subject to availability) to undertake practice-based learning at an overseas university with which we have partnership agreements. For more information, see www.qmu.ac.uk/study-here/international-students/exchanges-and-study-abroad/

Please note that exchange opportunities are subject to availability. In addition, please note that where exchange opportunities are arranged in the EU, Erasmus+ funding is available subject to the UK remaining in the Erasmus+ scheme.


The degree opens doors to a rewarding and stimulating career in NHS trusts, local authority social care departments, voluntary organisations, private practice, industry, and your skills will support entrepreneurial initiatives. Your work as an occupational therapist may not necessarily be in a medical setting, hospital or clinic. Many of our graduates pursue the exciting diversity of employment opportunities in the community, including within the voluntary sector or primary care. The course will enable you to work as part of a health and social care team. You will develop leadership and partnership working skills and you may wish to engage with further professional development or higher level academic learning opportunities.

Entry requirements

Scottish Higher: Standard - BBBB, Minimum -BBCC

A Level: BCC

Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H3 H3

International Baccalaureate: 28 points

International: IELTS score of 6.0 with no element below 6.0

Required subjects: English is preferred, or a discursive subject such as History or Sociology at Higher, A Level or equivalent. English and Maths at Nat 5/GCSE.

Mature/Access: Related Access course or HNC may be considered for Year One, see: www.qmu.ac.uk/college-qualifications

We welcome applications from mature students with other relevant qualifications and experience.

Direct Entry:

Year Two

  • HNC Occupational Therapy Support with B in the graded unit, plus successful fieldwork placement, when places are available. Other relevant qualifications may be considered for entry to Year One.

Other requirements: A satisfactory criminal records check is required. You will be required to attend an interview as part of the application screening process. Some experience working or volunteering with different groups of people is required (ie older or younger people with different health or life situations).

Professional registration/accreditation

This course is approved by the HCPC and the Royal College of Occupational Therapists. It is recognised by the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT). Graduates are eligible to apply for registration with the HCPC.

Teaching staff, class sizes and timetables

Our course is small by design, allowing you to get to know your peers and our staff, and build positive academic and professional relationships. 

For more information, please see ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’.

Awarding body

QMU. For more information, please see the the 'External review' section on our ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’ page.

More information

For more information on this course please email:MOccTher@qmu.ac.uk 

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Please note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2022/23 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate).

Teaching staff may be subject to change.

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Course Overview

On campus
4 years full-time
Start Date
September 2022
Study Abroad
School of Health Sciences
Fees & Funding

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