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Occupational Therapy

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Although the UCAS equal consideration date has now passed, many of our courses are still accepting applications from UK students for 2024 entry through UCAS.

The deadline for international students is 30 June 2024.

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Bachelor of Science

Bachelor of Science (BSc) is a bachelor’s degree awarded for an undergraduate programme in the sciences.

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Course overview

Our Occupational Therapy programme is stimulating and rewarding, delivering a breadth of patient-focused practical experience in a region with a particularly diverse population, providing an invaluable insight into a student's potential future career.


The Occupational Therapy programme at Liverpool will equip you with a range of both academic and practical skills for a rewarding career that enhances the quality of life for a variety of people encountering physical, emotional and social difficulties.

You will be taught by respected academics with a breadth of clinical and research experience and will graduate with up-to-date knowledge. You will learn about the human body and use the impressive Human Anatomy Resource Centre. This knowledge will help you learn about disease and disability and how they impact on the ability to engage in everyday meaningful occupation.

Throughout the three years you will undertake clinical placements. We have extensive connections with a diverse range of clinical specialties in physical and mental health and learning difficulties, for all age groups from young children to the elderly, in our student placements. There are also opportunities for you to study abroad.

More than 1,000 hours of clinical experience, together with the theoretical knowledge gained from the programme, will enable the Liverpool graduate occupational therapist to competently analyse the psychosocial, physical and environmental factors in the lives of the people in their care and devise appropriate interventions to help them.

The programme is approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and is accredited by the Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT). The programme also has approval from the World Federation of Occupational Therapy (WFOT). Recognition of the programme by the RCOT and WFOT are important for graduates seeking international job opportunities.

Programme in detail

During your three years you will engage in modules which are framed within four themes. These themes explore the person, occupation and environment relationship, which is a core underpinning philosophy for the practice of occupational therapy. They are:

  • Core concepts and skills
  • Professional identity
  • Society and well-being
  • Evidence for practice.

As a requirement for qualification you will experience a minimum of 1,000 hours practice placement education. Placements are integrated within each of the three years of the programme and are undertaken in a variety of health and social care settings.

What you'll learn

  • Research gathering techniques
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Communication skills
  • Self-directed learning techniques
  • Patient care

Teaching Excellence Framework 2023

We’re proud to announce we’ve been awarded a Gold rating for educational excellence.

Course content

Discover what you'll learn, what you'll study, and how you'll be taught and assessed.

Year One

The aims of year one are to provide you with the opportunity to:

  • Develop an understanding of the concept of ‘person’ as it relates to health and wellbeing
  • Explore and experiment with the use of occupation as a therapeutic medium
  • Demonstrate basic self-awareness and communication skills
  • Demonstrate an understanding of normal biological and behavioural functioning that contributes to human lifespan
  • Apply systematic problem-solving approaches to rehabilitation
  • Develop critical appraisal skills
  • Develop skills to inform occupational therapy practice and engage with research literature.

Compulsory modules

Mind Body Performance 1 (OCCU170)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

This module is the first of two Year 1 modules that introduce the students to foundational anatomy and physiology knowledge relevant to occupational therapy practice. Students will learn by attending online key-note lectures, participating in online small peer group seminars, videos and through self-directed study. Students will attend online teaching sessions at the Human Anatomy Resource Centre (HARC). Students will develop skills in movement and activity analysis informed by their knowledge of the lived body.

Learning and teaching is delivered by lectures, practical and interactive small group seminars and self directed learning. Students also attend the Human Anatomy Research Centre.

The assessment is an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OPSE).

Mind Body Performance 2 (OCCU171)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This module is the second of two Year 1 modules that introduce the students to foundational anatomy and physiology knowledge relevant to occupational therapy practice. This second module focuses on increasing students’ understanding of neuroanatomy including the relationship between causes of neurological deficits and occupational performance.

Students will learn by attending virtual or on campus key-note lectures, participating in small peer groups seminars, interacting with service users, practical teaching sessions and through self-directed study. Students will attend teaching synchronous teaching sessions online from the Human Anatomy Resource Centre (HARC).sessions at the Human Anatomy Resource Centre (HARC). Students will develop knowledge and some understanding of standardised and non- standardised assessments used to evaluate function in the central and peripheral nervous system.

The assessment is an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).

Occupations throughout the life-course (OCCU172)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

In this module, students will be introduced to fundamental aspects of occupational therapy philosophy and theory. Students will discuss the different occupations that people perform throughout their life-course, the importance of occupational participation on health and well-being and key theories that underpin occupational therapy practice.

This module will be delivered through a combination of online interactive lectures and seminars, workshops and group discussions. On-line learning, including engaging with on-line quiz software and accessing video clips will also be used in this module.

This module will be assessed through a 2500 word essay. Students will be offered a choice of case-studies of people at different stages in their life-course with different occupational performance challenges.

Occupational Therapy Toolkit 1 (OCCU173)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This module enables students to begin to develop their clinical reasoning skills when working with people with a range of medical conditions, pathologies, social and cultural challenges. Drawing on information from first semester modules, this module will enable students to consider an appropriate, theoretically-sound assessment for case-study individuals. The module involves keynote lectures, problem-based learning and workshops where students will develop the required knowledge and skills. This module is assessed with a presentation of the proposed occupational therapy assessment strategy and individualised goals as if to a multi-disciplinary team meeting.

The module involves keynote lectures, problem-based learning and workshops where students will develop the required knowledge and skills, particularly in assessment and goal-setting in occupational therapy.

This module will be assessed through two summative assessment components, each of 50%. Students must achieve an aggregate mark of 40% to pass this module. The assessment includes a presentation of the proposed occupational therapy assessment strategy, individualised goals and the underpinning theory for a case study, chosen from a range provided, as if to a multi-disciplinary team meeting and the submission of the powerpoint presentation with accompanying notes (equivalent of 1,500 words). This will be either on campus or via virtual delivery


Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This module sits within the ‘Evidence for Practice’ theme within the occupational therapy programme. In this first-year module, students will explore how evidence is relevant to occupational therapy practice.  They will also be introduced to the philosophical basis underpinning established research methodologies. They will consider how best to source evidence to inform occupational therapy practice. Connections will be made between contemporary occupational therapy practice, evidence-based practice, audit and research.

Learning will comprise a blend of lectures, group-work, guided on-line learning, on-line quizzes, library supported sessions and independent study. Teaching and learning activities will be delivered in line with a hybrid approach. Throughout the module, examples of authentic occupational therapy practice will be used to enable students to recognise the importance of evidence, identify the types of evidence required to inform practice and to propose, at a basic level, how to collect, review and use evidence to inform practice. Throughout the learning journey, students will be concurrently developing IT skills, skills in referencing sources, become familiar with searching library resources and classifying sources based on their quality.

Summative assessment comprises of online assessments and a written assignment in which students can demonstrate their appreciation of the importance of evidence-informed practice and their ability to undertake a basic search for information in a specific, authentic area of practice.​ 

Person in Context (OCCU176)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

In this first module of the Society and Well-being theme the student will develop knowledge and understanding of psychological and sociological theories and principles which are relevant to the practice of occupational therapy.

The student will learn about principles of human behaviour and society to increase their understanding of health and well-being, illness and disability.

Students will be introduced to accounts of the lived experience of disability which will enhance awareness of psychological and sociological factors impacting on disabled people’s lives. Students will learn how issues of diversity, equality and disability impact on occupational participation and social inclusion and the relevance for occupational therapy.

Students will learn by attending key-note lectures, accessing on-line resources, participating in small peer group learning tutorials and through self-directed study.

The assessment is a 3000 word written assessment.

Professional Practice 1 (OCCU178)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

This is the first module within the Professional Practice theme. Student’s will learn about the history of the Occupational Therapy profession and be introduced to the professional values, behaviours and attitudes required of an occupational therapist. Students will learn about the role of the regulatory and professional bodies, and will be introduced to the code of conduct and professional practice for occupational therapists.

Students will also begin to develop a range of skills required for professional practice, including communication skills and moving and handling. The concept of continuous professional development will be introduced.

Students will engage in a one-week observational placement within an occupational therapy clinical environment.

Learning and teaching will be delivered in a range of formats including large room and small group teaching, and practice and simulated placements.

Students will be assessed in a one hour practical examination assessing a range of professional and communication skills.
This will be delivered either on-campus or via virtual on-line delivery.

Professional Practice 2 (OCCU179)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This is the second module within the Professional Practice theme.
Within this module students will participate in the first assessed practice placement (four weeks, 150 hours) within an occupational therapy clinical environment.

Student’s will be continuing to develop professional behaviours and attitudes required of an occupational therapist. Students will be expected to adhere to the code of conduct and professional practice for occupational therapists.

Students will continue to develop a range of skills required for professional practice, including knowledge of and fitting of standard equipment to facilitate activities of daily living, interpersonal skills and adult and paediatric resuscitation skills.

Students will begin to generate and collate evidence of personal and professional development for inclusion within their personal continual professional development (CPD) portfolio. This will use the guidance provided within the RCOT career development framework (2017b) and the HCPC audit process.

This module will also include a personal development tutorial with the student’s allocated academic advisor.

This module will incorporate a mixed style of learning and teaching strategies including tutor facilitated seminars and opportunities for developing skills through experiential learning prior to and during practice placements. Students will also engage in inter-professional learning within the University environment.

This module is assessed by means of:
An OSPE delivered either on-campus or via virtual on-line delivery and a four week practice placement in an occupational therapy practice environment.

Programme details and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.

Our curriculum

The Liverpool Curriculum framework sets out our distinctive approach to education. Our teaching staff support our students to develop academic knowledge, skills, and understanding alongside our graduate attributes:

  • Digital fluency
  • Confidence
  • Global citizenship

Our curriculum is characterised by the three Liverpool Hallmarks:

  • Research-connected teaching
  • Active learning
  • Authentic assessment

All this is underpinned by our core value of inclusivity and commitment to providing a curriculum that is accessible to all students.

Course options

Studying with us means you can tailor your degree to suit you. Here's what is available on this course.

Global Opportunities

University of Liverpool students can choose from an exciting range of study placements at partner universities worldwide.

What's available on this course?

Year in China

Immerse yourself in Chinese culture on an optional additional year at Xi'an Jiaotong Liverpool University in stunning Suzhou.

  • Learn Chinese
  • Study in a bustling world heritage city
  • Improve employment prospects
  • Study Chinese culture
  • 30 minutes from Shanghai
  • Learn new skills

Read more about Year at XJTLU, China

Language study

Every student at The University of Liverpool can study a language as part of, or alongside their degree. You can choose:

  • A dedicated languages degree
  • A language as a joint or major/ minor degree
  • Language modules (selected degrees)
  • Language classes alongside your studies

Read more about studying a language

Your experience

Occupational Therapy students benefit from the School of Allied Health Professions and Nursing‘s experience in delivering over 100 years of dynamic, research-led teaching. Our student satisfaction rates, which range from 93-100%, are testament to our School being a great place to start to your career.

Virtual tour

Supporting your learning

From arrival to alumni, we’re with you all the way:

What students say...

Occupational Therapy just jumped out at me a couple of years ago. After looking at Liverpool University on their website I saw that they had a Foundation Year, a Year Zero over at Birkenhead. I did my year there and it gave me the foundation and footing to come to study at Liverpool. Since I have started it is amazing how quickly the practicals come into play. We are working with service users already, they come in and they give up their time to come and talk to us. So we really get to put our experiences across, within the first two weeks we were talking with patients.

I am loving the course, I think it is fantastic. We have such a variety of people on the course and the lecturers are great. You are straight out on placement so you see what is really involved; you get to see what you are going into. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done for my life. I know that I am going to get a job at the end of it. It is a way of changing your future, you either want to do it or you don’t. Liverpool University offers a fantastic place to study and a wonderful city to come to.

Careers and employability

Occupational Therapy graduates are eligible to apply for membership of the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), the Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT) and the World Federation of Occupational Therapy (WFOT) to work outside the UK.

Your qualification allows opportunities to build a career in the NHS, Social Services, and independent third-sector employers.
Successful completion of the programme will allow you to work in a range of specialist services with people of all ages to support them to address the psychological, physical, cognitive, social, and environmental challenges that impact their day-to-day functioning.

You can work in a variety of settings including:

  • hospitals
  • schools, higher and further education
  • community centres
  • prisons
  • clients’ homes.

99% of School of Allied Health Professions and Nursing students find their main activity after graduation meaningful.

Graduate Outcomes, 2018-19.

Fees and funding

Your tuition fees, funding your studies, and other costs to consider.

Tuition fees

UK fees (applies to Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland)
Full-time place, per year £9,250
Year in industry fee £1,850
Year abroad fee £1,385
International fees
Full-time place, per year £27,200
Year abroad fee £13,600
Fees are correct for the academic year 2024/25. Please note that the Year Abroad fee also applies to the Year in China.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching and assessment, operating facilities such as libraries, IT equipment, and access to academic and personal support. Learn more about paying for your studies..

Additional costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This includes the cost of stationery and equipment, professional association fees, and travel to placements. Students can choose to undertake a placement overseas that would incur additional costs.

Find out more about the additional study costs that may apply to this course.

Additional study costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This includes the cost of stationery and equipment, professional association fees, and travel to placements. Students can choose to undertake a placement overseas that would incur additional costs.

Students should expect to cover the following costs.

Stationery and equipment

  • In years two and three, students may be required to purchase materials for group work (approximately £25 per year)
  • Students are advised to purchase a USB pen drive to use when carrying out presentations (£10)
  • In year two, students are required to participate in a leisure activity. Students choose their own activity but will need to consider that some activities will involve additional costs, eg gym classes, craft materials, and club fees. However, many students choose to undertake free activities.

Professional association fees

Optional (but strongly recommended) Royal College of Occupational Therapists fee. The cost to join is £60 per year / £5 per month.

Travel to placements

Students will complete 33 weeks of placement experience. Most clinical placements are a daily commute (students are placed within 50 miles of the University). Student concessions are also available from local travel companies.

Additional accommodation costs apply for students wishing to complete a placement in the Isle of Man at the cost of £343 per month (placement lengths vary from 4- 8 weeks)

Elective placements

Elective placement (6 weeks in semester two, year three) is mandatory. The same travel costs will be incurred as those on a clinical placement.

Students can choose to complete placements in the UK or abroad (these are self-funding).

  • Vaccination costs apply if going abroad to certain countries and vary from £10-£50 approx.
  • Visa fees apply in certain countries costs vary
  • To travel abroad student must be a member of professional body approximately cost £12 per month
  • First aid course is required to complete a placement in Australia £30
  • Australian Police checks are required to complete a placement in Australia $46.90
  • Food, travel and accommodation costs up to £3,000 for a six week elective placement in Australia.

*Home students are able to apply for reimbursement of travel/accommodation costs in relation to placement from the NHS Business Services Authority.

Find out more about additional study costs.

Scholarships and bursaries

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to provide tuition fee discounts and help with living expenses while at university.

Check out our Liverpool Bursary, worth up to £2,000 per year for eligible UK students. Or for international students, our Undergraduate Global Advancement Scholarship offers a tuition fee discount of up to £5,000 for eligible international students starting an undergraduate degree from September 2024.

Discover our full range of undergraduate scholarships and bursaries

Entry requirements

The qualifications and exam results you'll need to apply for this course.

NHS Values will be assessed in all areas of an application including UCAS Personal Statement and at interview. For more details, please download our explanation of Value Based Recruitment.

We believe in treating applicants as individuals and we take into account a range of factors, both academic and non‐academic, in assessing applicants’ merit and potential. We consider personal circumstances and backgrounds and may be able make offers that differ from those indicated as ‘typical’ below when taking extenuating circumstances or relevant experience into account.

If you would like us to consider any extenuating circumstances, please provide evidence of these and their impact on your educational achievement from an appropriate individual (school headteacher, medical practitioner, etc).

Please find below indicative offers for the BSc Occupational Therapy programme. If you would like to discuss your qualifications please contact School of Health Science Admissions office on +44 (0)151 794 9490/5712/5901 for further information.

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Your qualification Requirements

About our typical entry requirements

A levels

BBB with at least one Science subject from the following: Biology, Health & Social Care, Psychology, Sociology, Physical Education.

Narrowly missed the entry requirements on results day?

You may automatically qualify for reduced entry requirements through our contextual offers scheme.

If you don't meet the entry requirements, you may be able to complete a foundation year which would allow you to progress to this course.

Available foundation years:

T levels

T levels are not currently accepted.

GCSE 5 GCSEs at grades A*-C or 4-9 including Maths and English Language. Please note English Language must be achieved at a minimum of grade 5. A GCSE Science subject (not applied) must be achieved at grades 4-9 or A*-C if applicants are not offering an A-level Science qualification or level 3 equivalent.
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

BTEC Nationals are considered in addition to 5 GCSEs grades A* – C or level 5, which must include English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject. Science Dual Award is acceptable. Core and Additional Science are also considered. Please note that Applied GCSEs will not be considered.

BTEC National Extended Certificate

We will accept one National Extend Certificate at a minimum of Distinction. This must be accompanied by two A2 subjects at grade B. The A2 subjects must include Biology/Human Biology, Sociology, Psychology, PE or Health & Social Care. In total between the two types of qualification 3 separate subjects must be taken.

BTEC Level 3 National Diploma

We will accept in Health & Social Care at grade DD plus one accompanying A2 level subject at grade B.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

We will accept in Health and Social Care, Sport and Exercise Science or Applied Science at grade DDD.

International Baccalaureate

30 points to include 3 Higher Level subjects at a minimum of Grade 4. Biology must be offered at a minimum of a Grade 4.

European Baccalaureate 74% overall with a minimum mark of 8 in biology and no subject mark below 6.
Irish Leaving Certificate 6 Higher Level subjects including Biology, English and Mathematics. Four subjects graded at H2 or above which should include Biology. The remaining two subjects should be graded at a minimum of H3.
Scottish Higher/Advanced Higher

Advanced Higher Level/Higher Level
A minimum of 5Bs from any combination of Higher levels and advanced Higher levels. Consideration will only be given to advanced highers in different subjects to those of highers. All grades offered must be at least B.

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced WJEC Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate (Level 3) at grade A in addition to two level 3 qualifications as outlined above.
Cambridge Pre-U Diploma Grade M2 accepted in addition to 2 A-levels achieve at BB. At least one subject must be taken from Biology, Health & Social Care, Psychology, Sociology, P.E or Sport Science. Three separate subjects must be taken between the two qualifications.
AQA Baccalaureate Will be considered.
Graduate application

We welcome applications from graduates holding a 2:2 classification, or above. For queries about the suitability of your degree, please contact the Admissions Tutor in the first instance. Experience in health care is also an advantage.

Access The Access to HE Diploma should include 45 credits at Level 3 in a Biological, Psychological, Sociological or Health related subject (all should be new learning, ie. GCSE awards cannot be APL'd against the Diploma). 30 credits passed at distinction and the remaining 15 credits must be passed at merit or higher. The diploma qualification should be supported by a sound academic background. We would usually expect applicants to meet the GCSE requirements listed.
Academic Reference

An academic reference must be included within the UCAS application. If the applicant is a graduate and has been working since graduating (within three years), an employer reference is acceptable.

Profession-specific knowledge and skills required

Candidates must show evidence, in their UCAS Personal Statement, of a good understanding of the scope of Occupational Therapy practice, preferably indicated by observational experience.  It is recommended that applicants have observed Occupational Therapists at work and reflect this in their personal statement. It is preferable to have at least two visits, one being in the field of mental health and one being in the physical field. 

The Personal Statement of the UCAS application form will be screened for evidence of what has been learned from these visits. Health Trust Open Days, careers conventions, information leaflets and websites may also provide useful background information. Experience in a paid or voluntary capacity in a health and well-being environment that demonstrates your caring nature.

Declaration of criminal background

You will understand that as a health sciences student, and when you qualify, you will be asked to treat children and other vulnerable people. We therefore need information about any criminal offences of which you may have been convicted, or with which you have been charged. The information you provide may later be checked with the police.

If selected for interview you will be provided with the appropriate form to complete.

Health screening

The University and the School of Health Sciences has an obligation to undertake health screening on all prospective healthcare students. Any offer of a place to study is conditional on completion of a health questionnaire and a satisfactory assessment of fitness to train from the University’s Occupational Health Service. This will include some obligatory immunisations and blood tests.

Disability information

If you have, or think you have dyslexia or a long term health condition or impairment that may have the potential to impact upon your studies and/or your Fitness to Practice duty, please complete the Disability form‌. We will contact you to discuss your support needs.

International qualifications

The IELTS requirement is an overall score of 7.0 with no component less than 6.5

Please note – whilst we do accept IELTS qualifications, we do not accept IELTS qualifications that have been sat and gained online. We only accept qualifications that have been sat and gained in person.

English language requirements

You'll need to demonstrate competence in the use of English language, unless you’re from a majority English speaking country.

We accept a variety of international language tests and country-specific qualifications.

International applicants who do not meet the minimum required standard of English language can complete one of our Pre-Sessional English courses to achieve the required level.

English language qualification Requirements
IELTS 7.0 overall, with no component below 6.5
International Baccalaureate Standard Level grade 5 or Higher Level grade 4 in English B, English Language and Literature, or English Language

Contextual offers: reduced grade requirements

Based on your personal circumstances, you may automatically qualify for up to a two-grade reduction in the entry requirements needed for this course. When you apply, we consider a range of factors – such as where you live – to assess if you’re eligible for a grade reduction. You don’t have to make an application for a grade reduction – we’ll do all the work.

Find out more about how we make reduced grade offers.

Preferred subjects

From three A2 levels with at least one Science subject from the following: Biology, Health & Social Care, Psychology, Sociology, Physical Education.

General studies is not acceptable.

About our entry requirements

Our entry requirements may change from time to time both according to national application trends and the availability of places at Liverpool for particular courses. We review our requirements before the start of the new UCAS cycle each year and publish any changes on our website so that applicants are aware of our typical entry requirements before they submit their application.

Recent changes to government policy which determine the number of students individual institutions may admit under the student number control also have a bearing on our entry requirements and acceptance levels, as this policy may result in us having fewer places than in previous years.

We believe in treating applicants as individuals, and in making offers that are appropriate to their personal circumstances and background. For this reason, we consider a range of factors in addition to predicted grades, widening participation factors amongst other evidence provided. Therefore the offer any individual applicant receives may differ slightly from the typical offer quoted in the prospectus and on the website.

Alternative entry requirements

Changes to Occupational Therapy BSc (Hons)

See what updates we've made to this course since it was published. We document changes to information such as course content, entry requirements and how you'll be taught.

7 June 2022: New course pages

New course pages launched.

18 April 2023: International qualifications update

English language requirements have been updated – IELTS.