Baylor University and Evidence in Motion Will Launch Two New Programs in Occupational Therapy

July 9, 2018

Contact: Corey Johnson, Robbins College of Arts and Human Sciences, 254-710-4975 and April Briggs, EIM, 512-850-0261

WACO, Texas (July 9, 2018) — Baylor University’s Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences is launching two new programs — a Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) degree program that will begin in August 2018 and an entry-level degree program scheduled to start in January 2021.

The programs are aimed at providing an innovative, career-focused education to develop skilled, empathetic health care providers in a field in which doctorate programs are struggling to keep pace with demand. Job growth in occupational therapy is projected to expand by 25 percent over the next 10 years, adding more than 31,000 positions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“The profession of occupational therapy is shifting from the master’s degree to an entry level doctoral degree as a means to keep up with the demands for contemporary knowledge in an increasingly complex and specialized health care environment,” said Rodney Bowden, Ph.D., dean of the Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences.

Baylor will partner with Evidence in Motion, a provider of post-professional educational programs in the physical therapy industry.

To keep up with demand in the occupational therapy field, new graduates soon will enter the profession exclusively with a doctoral degree, according to the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education. The shift to a doctoral level as an entry-level requirement will take place July 1, 2027. The change also is expected to create an incentive among existing occupational therapists to update their knowledge and skill set to a larger scope of practice.

“The Baylor Post-Professional OTD program is ideally suited to meet that demand,” Bowden said.

Program Director Marian Gillard, Ph.D., said that one of the unique benefits of this program is that it is fully online.

“Students will be able to continue working full time and have the flexibility to fit education into their already busy lives,” she said. “We think the flexibility of this program is one of its most attractive features.”

The program will assist existing occupational therapists in maintaining the most contemporary practice standards consistent with a doctoral level profession, Gillard said.

The new program is part of Baylor’s strategic plan, Pro Futuris, which calls for greater emphasis on health-related professional programs. It will prepare students for continued professional development in an area of clinical specialization, including teaching in an academic setting.

The program is open to therapists with a master’s degree in occupational therapy or a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy with a master’s degree in a related field. It integrates active learning into an online environment, with the core curriculum designed to bridge the gap between master’s and doctoral level training and allow students to choose elective content that matches their professional and clinical goals. The curriculum consists of 30 total credits that can be completed in 12 to 36 months. To learn more, visit or email OTD Admissions.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.


The Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences at Baylor University was established in 2014, a result of identified priorities for strengthening the health sciences through Baylor’s strategic vision, Pro Futuris, which serves as a compass for the University’s future. The anchor academic units that form the new College – Communication Sciences and Disorders, Family and Consumer Sciences and Health, Human Performance and Recreation – share a common purpose: improving health and the quality of life. The College is working to create curricula that promote a team-based approach to patient care and establish interdisciplinary research collaborations to advance solutions for improving the quality of life for individuals, families, and communities.