Occupational therapy is a rewarding profession that makes an impact and change in the lives of people. It is a dynamic profession that balances both the arts and sciences when it comes to creating meaning in people’s lives. As one of the recognized allied health professionals under the Allied Health Professional Council (AHPC), occupational therapists in Singapore are highly regarded and in demand. This blog post will provide a comprehensive guide on how to become an occupational therapist in Singapore, discussing the necessary training, education, and qualifications.
Step 1: Choose the Right Educational Path
In order to become a fully registered occupational therapist in Singapore, one needs to have undergone training and education through a university recognized by the AHPC. Currently, the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) is the only local university offering a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. This program is recognized by the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT).
Alternatively, aspiring occupational therapists can opt to pursue their education overseas. Many reputable universities worldwide offer programs in occupational therapy. However, it is crucial to ensure that the program is accredited by the WFOT and recognized by the AHPC in Singapore.
Step 2: Complete a Supervised Practicum
Following the completion of your degree, you will need to secure a position with an employer who is recognized by AHPC to provide supervision to occupational therapists who are fresh graduates or are new to Singapore. Your workplace will then apply on your behalf for a Conditional Registration and the registration process involves submitting your educational transcripts, practicum records, and other relevant documents to the council for evaluation. You will then undergo a period of supervision under the AHPC. This typically lasts for one to two years and serves as a valuable opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the field. During this period, you will be working under the guidance of an experienced and fully registered occupational therapist, who will help you develop your skills and knowledge in a practical setting.
Dynamics Therapy Group has a fantastic team of Occupational Therapists who continuously provide supervision for Occupational Therapists who are new to the profession. Our founder, Yael Sasson has vast experience and unique clinical insights and she enjoys mentoring young therapists helping them achieve professional growth.
Step 3: Apply for Full Registration with AHPC
Once you have successfully completed your degree and supervised practicum, you can apply for full registration as an occupational therapist with the AHPC. The registration process involves submitting supporting documents related to the supervision process for the council for evaluation.
Step 4: Continuing Professional Development
Occupational therapy is an ever-evolving field, and it is essential for practitioners to stay updated with the latest trends and research. The AHPC recommends that registered occupational therapists participate in ongoing professional development to maintain their registration. This can be achieved by attending conferences, workshops, and courses relevant to the field.
At Dynamics we believe in ongoing clinical and professional education, and we provide a generous professional development annual budget to our therapists to continue their growth.
Becoming an occupational therapist in Singapore is a fulfilling career path that offers the opportunity to make a positive impact on the lives of others. By pursuing a recognized educational program, completing a supervised practicum, and obtaining full registration with the AHPC, you will be well on your way to joining the ranks of these skilled professionals. Remember to stay committed to lifelong learning and professional development to ensure that you continue to provide the best possible care to your clients.