We are enabling excellence in occupational therapy and promoting its global growth and development by ensuring the quality of education programmes around the world. We are engaging occupational therapists in broad and deep discovery of their profession.
The WFOT Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists
WFOT sets the standard for occupational therapy education internationally through the Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists.
The Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists provide an international benchmark ensuring the quality of education programmes globally, while reflecting the dynamic qualities of occupational therapy education.
The WFOT Approval Process for Occupational therapy Entry-Level Education Programmes
Entry-level occupational therapy education programmes can be reviewed for WFOT approval. WFOT approval requires an education programme to submit its curriculum and other documents, which are then reviewed by an international review team to determine compliance with the WFOT Minimum Standards of Education for Occupational Therapists.
The focus of the WFOT approval process is on the education programme’s capability to produce occupational therapists who are equipped to meet the occupational needs of individuals, groups, communities and populations at the local, national and international levels. The programme’s curriculum (its content and sequence) must demonstrate that it is occupation-based, responds to local needs and is informed by international perspectives in occupational therapy.
This is a desktop review and does not require in-person site visits. Feedback is given if the programme does not meet the WFOT Minimum Standards. When the curriculum does meet the WFOT Minimum Standards, the programme is considered “WFOT Approved” and is added to the WFOT List of Approved Programmes on the WFOT website.
WFOT approved programmes are reviewed at regular intervals (every 5 years for programmes with duration of 3.5 years or less and every 7 years for programmes with duration of 4 years of more) to ensure that they continue to adhere with the Standards.
WFOT does not offer accreditation. When compared with the WFOT approval process, accreditation usually involves a much more rigorous review, involving site visits and detailed reports. In many countries/territories there is a local accreditation programme with requirements which exceed the approval process; the review of the WFOT Minimum Standards is consequently subsumed in the accreditation process.
WFOT Approved Education Programme Status
The WFOT Approved Education Programme status provides assurance that the programme adheres to the WFOT Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists.
In many countries, territories and jurisdictions, graduation from a WFOT approved programme is an entry-to-practice requirement for occupational therapists. Most employers and education institutions (e.g. universities) give preference, if not exclusive privilege, to graduates of WFOT approved programmes for acceptance into employment or postgraduate education. Therefore, WFOT approval of an education programme serves to facilitate international mobility of students and graduates, which cannot be overemphasized.
If you are a member of faculty of an entry-level occupational therapy programme and interested in a review of your programme for WFOT approval, please visit this page for more information.
If you are in the process of developing an occupational therapy entry-level programme, or considering such an option, please visit this page for more information.
The list of WFOT Approved Education Programmes
WFOT maintains a list of education programmes worldwide (both current and discontinued) that have attained WFOT Approved status.
Ongoing Functions and Projects
The WFOT Education Programme undertakes a range of ongoing functions and projects:
- Maintain updated list of WFOT Approved education programmes
- Review submitted curricula for approval and re-approval
- Review and approve approval/re-approval processes of Member Organisations
- Respond to education enquiries from students, faculty, employers, regulatory bodies
- Oversee education programmes re-approval reporting and compliance
- Develop, review and update education-related WFOT policies and documents
- Support the development of entry-level education programmes through liaison and connections
- Development of strategies for the transition of diploma level programmes to bachelor's level
- Minimum Standards for the Education of Occupational Therapists Review plan
- Global survey on the emergence of online occupational therapy programmes