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Serving the public interest by advancing client care and professional practice through evidence-based certification standards and the validation of knowledge essential for effective practice in occupational therapy.


Certified occupational therapy professionals providing effective evidence-based services across all areas of practice worldwide.

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Contact Us

The National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy, Inc. (NBCOT®)

12 South Summit Avenue
Suite 100
Gaithersburg, MD 20877
(301) 990-7979

Email NBCOT at

Business Hours
Monday-Thursday: 9 am – 5 pm, Lunch: 12 pm – 12:45 pm

Friday: 9 am – 4 pm, Lunch: 12 pm – 1 pm


OTR® & COTA® Credential Verification

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OTED® Application

NBCOT requires the Occupational Therapist Eligibility Determination (OTED®) as a method of determining if an applicant's completed education is comparable to current U.S. entry-level educational requirements. The OTED process allows applicants without a U.S.-accredited entry-level master's degree in occupational therapy to submit their OT education for an exam eligibility review. The criteria for submitting an OTED application requires an occupational therapist to complete a master's-level degree in OT and necessary fieldwork requirements.

Applicants are required to complete the application, provide documentation demonstrating compliance with all eligibility criteria, and pay the application fee of $700 (USD).

Once the applicant has completed and been approved through the OTED process, they are eligible to apply for the NBCOT Certification Examination for OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST REGISTERED OTR®.

Please Note: Graduates of U.S.-accredited entry-level master’s programs are eligible to take the NBCOT Certification Examination for OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST REGISTERED OTR® under the category of ‘U.S. graduate.’ These applicants are not required to submit an OTED application for exam eligibility.

Studying Abroad

Students from the United States who are considering studying abroad OR have already completed their entry-level master's degree in occupational therapy from outside the U.S. and are thinking about applying through the OTED® process must keep in mind the following:

  • Graduating with an occupational therapy degree from a government-authorized educational program does not guarantee OTED approval to apply for the OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST REGISTERED OTR® examination.
  • Even if an OT meets the eligibility requirements to participate and be reviewed through the OTED process, completion of the review may or may not result in an OTED approval to apply for the OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST REGISTERED OTR® examination. However, recommendations are provided throughout the OTED process to help the OT meet educational standards that were not found to be met after initial review.
  • Each OTED applicant must fulfill ALL eligibility standards. 

Inquiries related to the OTED process should be directed to