University of Alberta's occupational therapy program receives accreditation for the next seven years

The MSc Occupational Therapy program is the first program with a satellite campus be officially accredited

Caleng Chang - 17 March 2016

(Edmonton) The Masters of Occupational Therapy (MSc OT) professional program at the University of Alberta's Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine has received official accreditation for the next seven years or until November 2022, making it the first program in Canada with a satellite campus (Calgary) to receive accreditation by the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT).

Lili Liu, chair, Department of Occupational Therapy, thanks the faculty and staff for their hard work over the past year in preparation for the on-site accreditation in November 2015.

"A special thank you to Susan Mulholland for leading the self-study report which each faculty member took oversight of portions, to Shaniff Esmail for overseeing much of the process, and to everyone, including our Calgary satellite campus, for ensuring a successful accreditation!"

In addition to the campus in Edmonton, the U of A occupational therapy program is also offered in Calgary via real-time, high-definition video conferencing technology and traditional face-to-face lectures and labs. Located in the heart of downtown Calgary, the satellite campus currently has 49 students in first and second year of the MSc OT program.

"I'm proud to be part of an inclusive university that recognizes the need to diversify and make readily available learning opportunities for students across Western Canada," says Cassandra Greenhough, second-year MSc OT student at the Calgary satellite campus. "The introduction of a satellite campus allows prospective students choice in location and format that meets their required and preferred educational needs."

Academic accreditation gives confidence to professionals, students and health service decision-makers that the educational programs meet the highest standards and quality determined by experts in the field. The quality assurance process is granted by the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT) Academic Credentialing Council.

The accreditation allows instructors of the MSc OT program to receive support in advancing the present education and clinical practice of occupational therapy for current and future students.

"I love the passion and commitment demonstrated not only by my colleagues, but by the students we get the pleasure to teach and learn with. It motivates me to teach and conduct research from a place of passion as well," says Shanon Phelan, assistant professor in occupational therapy.

Students in the MSc OT program show high regard and appreciation for the work their instructors do to ensure an innovative and dynamic learning environment.

"Our instructors are very knowledgeable, approachable and love what they do. They instill the passion that they have for their profession in each of us as students," says Jasmine Maser, second-year MSc OT student in Calgary.

For more information on the occupational therapy program, visit