FAQs

  • What was the final admission GPA in the last 2 years?

    The minimum admission GPA for both 2016 and 2017 was 3.6. The final admission GPA each year varies depending on the number of applications we receive and the quality of the applicant pool, but seems to be increasing slightly each year. Applicants should only apply if they present a GPA of at least 3.3 (78%; B+) in their last 2 years of study. Also note that meeting the admission GPA in a particular year does not guarantee admission - all aspects of the application are reviewed to ensure a proper fit with the program and the OT profession.

  • Are there any prerequisites?

    Yes, you need to complete the following prerequisite courses:

    • Statistics (3 credits/one term) General introductory course covering basic statistical concepts.
    • Human Anatomy (min. 3 credits/one term) General introductory course covering basic human anatomy.
  • I am not sure that a particular course is a match for your statistics and/or anatomy prerequisite. How can I find out?

    Send an email with the course name/number, outline/syllabus and name of university/college to mscot@ualberta.ca

    Note: Course outlines/syllabus must be submitted, calendar descriptions of courses are not accepted.

  • How long is the program?

    The program is approximately 26 months long and involves approximately 30 courses and 28 weeks of clinical placement. Academic and clinical courses are held throughout the calendar year.

  • How is my GPA calculated?

    We determine your GPA using your most recent 60 credits (20 courses). If we need to go back more than 2 years in your program to get 20 courses, we will go back a term (semester) and use the GPA of that term. Courses taken in Spring/Summer terms, exchange programs and graduate programs are counted in the GPA.

    Activity courses in phys. ed, studio/performance courses in fine arts, practicum courses, pass/fail courses and seminar/research/thesis courses are not included in the calculation of the admission GPA. Repeated courses of previously passed or failed courses are not included in the calculation.

  • How many students are accepted each year?

    Admission is limited to 120 students annually. 15 of those spaces are reserved for Saskatchewan residents. 20 of those spaces are at our Calgary satellite program.

  • How many applications are submitted each year?

    We receive close to 650 applications each year.

  • If I fulfill the minimum requirements and GPA cutoff, what are my chances of admission?

    Fulfilling the minimum criteria and GPA cut off only guarantees consideration for admission. All applicants meeting the application requirements are ranked based upon GPA, a history of academic success and strong supporting documents. Successful applicants tend to significantly exceed the admission criteria both quantitatively and qualitatively. Applicants should only apply if they present a GPA of at least 3.4.

  • Is any work experience required?

    No work or volunteer experience is required, though it may strengthen your application.

  • When is the application form deadline?

    The application deadline is January 31st of the admission year. The application database closes automatically after this date and no applications are allowed to be submitted.

  • What documents are required by the January 31st deadline?

    Supporting documents must be uploaded to the online application by January 31st. No hard copies of documents are accepted.

  • Is there an application fee, and if so, how do I pay it?

    Yes, there is a nonrefundable application fee of $100. You must pay it by credit card just prior to the final submission of your online application form.

    The department does not have access to a application or any supporting documents until the applicant has paid the $100 fee and submitted their application. Once a application is paid for and submitted applicants have until the January 31st deadline to upload all supporting documents.

  • What if my first language is not English?

    Applicants with degrees/qualifications in a language other than English may need to demonstrate English Language Proficiency through one of the following exam scores:

    • TOEFL: minimum score of 600 (paper-based) or a total score of 100 with a score of at least 25 on each of the individual skill areas (internet-based)
    • MELAB: minimum score of 85
    • IELTS (Academic): minimum overall band score of 6.5, with at least 5 on each band
    • CAEL: overall minimum score of 60, with at least 60 on each subtest
    • PTE (Academic): overall minimum score of 59
  • Do international (visa) students pay more tuition fees?

    A differential fee of 100% of all instructional fees is assessed to students who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

  • When should I apply?

    If you are finished your post-secondary education, please apply as soon as possible (after Nov. 1) and send in all of your documentation as soon as possible (after Nov. 1). That way we can process your application quickly and provide you with a possible early admission decision (late March) if you are VERY competitive.

    If you are still taking courses during the application year (2016-17), please apply and send in your documents any time after Nov. 1, but wait to send in your transcripts until AFTER all grades are reported for first term (fall term).

  • Are there any restrictions on applicants from other provinces?

    There are no limits placed on applications from other provinces. All applicants from across Canada and other countries are reviewed together and will compete for the 120 spaces. However, 15 of those spaces are reserved for residents of Saskatchewan.

  • What are the tuition fees?

    Tuition fees are found in the OT Student Handbook.

  • Why is the admission GPA weighed so heavily in the admission review?

    Our program is academically challenging and very intensive and we want to ensure success in our program. Work experience, letters of reference, etc. are certainly reviewed to ensure an applicant's proper fit with the program, but a strong history of academic success is very important.

  • I applied but my GPA was not competitive. What should I do?

    Unsuccessful applicants may re-apply in subsequent years once they have completed more coursework. Any courses taken after a degree has been granted must be 200-level (second year) or higher in order to be counted in the GPA. Graduate course work may also be used. Courses taken through Athabasca University must transfer to the University of Alberta as a 200-level course or higher in order to be used in the admission GPA after a degree has been completed. Please use the Alberta Transfer Guide for assistance.

    Unsuccessful applicants may also want to consider registering in an after-degree program or another course-based Master's program. That way, if unsuccessful in gaining admission in subsequent years, the applicant will be on their way to obtaining another credential rather than simply a random collection of coursework.

  • Does my professional/personal referee need to complete the reference form?

    Yes. Although the form is geared towards an academic reference, please ask the referee to complete the form as completely as possible. Any additional information or comments can be included in a free form letter that the referee may attach to the form. Any referee, professional, personal or academic can attach a letter to their form if they wish.

  • The OT program is considered a Professional Program. What does that mean?

    The program is an intensive, graduate level program requiring independent thinking and initiative. Although it is a course-based program, occasionally some learning opportunities and course-related content are offered outside of the traditional classroom setting. Students are expected to be available and attend all portions of the program which can include seminars or lectures by guest speakers, site visits, etc. even during evenings and weekends. Applicants, particularly those with families or part-time jobs should keep this in mind when considering the program.

  • Where do I find a reference form?

    A department specific reference form will be automatically sent to your referee once their email address in entered in your online application form. Referees will not receive the automated email with the reference form until the applicant has paid for and submitted the application.

    Applicants must check their online application frequently to ensure their referee has uploaded their form by January 31st. Applications missing reference forms will not be considered for admission.

  • I applied with what I thought was a competitive application, but was refused...

    With over 650 applicants and only 120 available seats, admission into our program is very competitive.   We receive several hundred very competitive applications each year and it is unfortunate that we have to ultimately refuse so many of them.

    Due to the volume of applications and the comprehensive, academically challenging nature of the OT program, all applicants meeting the application requirements are first ranked based upon the admission GPA.  We then review the entire application and select applicants who present a history of academic success and strong supporting documents.

    However, while an applicant may demonstrate a competitive GPA, meeting the admission GPA in a particular year does NOT guarantee admission.  All aspects of the application are reviewed to ensure a proper fit with the program and the OT profession.

    Successful applicants present applications with extremely strong supporting documents that demonstrate a thorough working knowledge of the profession and a compelling desire to be an Occupational Therapist based on their personal, academic and/or professional backgrounds.  This should be most clearly defined in the Letter of Intent and supported by reference letters.

    Due to the very competitive nature of admission it is strongly recommended that serious applicants apply to more than one OT school in Canada.

  • Are interviews part of the admission process?

    The Occupational Therapy program does not conduct applicant interviews.

  • What transcripts are acceptable and how do I upload them?

    Applicants are required to upload one transcript (front and back page) from each university, college, technical school, etc. ever attended or are currently attending. You need to request an official transcript from all universities/colleges ever attended in any capacity and either have the transcript sent to you for you by mail, or request the university to provide you with a PDF. Applicants may open official mailed transcripts from their University and scan them into a PDF.
    Applicants will then upload this document to their application. All transcripts must be uploaded into a application by the January 31st deadline.

    Guide for acceptable transcripts

  • When I start an application it says I have 21 days to complete, what does this mean?

    From the time an applicant starts an online application they have 21 days to enter all required information, pay the $100 application fee and submit. If the applicant does not meet this deadline their application will be deleted and they will have to start again.

    Supporting documents DO NOT need to be uploaded to the application before the 21 days limit. Applicants have until the January 31 st deadline to upload all supporting documents. This includes. The Curriculum vitae/Resume, Letter of Intent, Transcripts, Department Checklist, and Reference letters.

    For details about supporting documents refer to the Application Document Requirements.

    It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all supporting documents (including reference letters) are uploaded to the online application by the January 31 st deadline.  Applications missing any documents will not be considered for admission.

  • Where can I find more information about the CASPer testing application requirement?
    More information about CASPer testing, including testing dates, can be found on their website.