Occupational Therapy Technician

Work with Occupational Therapists to help patients learn basic life skills.
picture of Occupational Therapy Technician

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$17,000 – $53,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Occupational Therapy Technicians do?

When an injury or illness strikes, a patient’s life can completely change: Getting dressed is difficult when only one arm is working, and answering the phone is a challenge when you can no longer speak clearly. An Occupational Therapist puts together plans to help the patient improve, but the patient must practice and put those plans to work.

That’s where you — the Occupational Therapy Technician — come in. An Occupational Therapy Technician helps the patient master the exercises and perform them properly.

At the beginning of each session, you study the Occupational Therapist’s plans and determine what exercises you’ll perform that day. As an Occupational Therapy Technician, you don’t devise plans of your own. Your job, instead, is to describe each exercise to the patient, and demonstrate how it should be done. Then, you watch as the patient performs it.

In some exercises, you replicate the patient’s office and show them how to type, file, or perform work in a new way. In others, you ask patients to remember cards that you show them. In still others, you teach them to enunciate and speak without slurring.

At the end of each session, you write notes for the patient’s Doctor describing how the patient is progressing. Sometimes, you measure the patient’s strength, flexibility, or mental capacity, and you record the results of those tests as well. Patients can become irritable and angry during your sessions, and you do your best to remind them of their major goals. Returning to work may not be a thrill, but leaving pain behind may certainly be worthwhile.

Should I be an Occupational Therapy Technician?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.

  • Also known as: OT Tech

    How to Become an
    Occupational Therapy Technician

    Most Occupational Therapy Technicians have a Certificate or higher. Chart?chd=s:98ooaa&chl=no+college+%2831%25%29|certificate+%2830%25%29|associate%27s+%2820%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2820%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,31,31
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