You’ve decided you enjoy working with persons with disabilities either through direct care or administrative service. Not quite sure which is the best career path? The Bachelor of Science in Occupational Science and Technology (OST) allows you the chance to pursue a variety of career options. A flexible educational path, combined with a blend of elective courses, and you’ll be prepared to work in different health and human service settings.

You will also be particularly well prepared for further graduate study in Occupational Therapy and other disability related disciplines. Students in the OST Program with the designated pre-occupational therapy designation may apply to the UWM Masters in Occupational Therapy Program through the Early Admission Program. This is an advantage over students applying through the regular Occupational Therapy Comprehensive Application System (OTCAS). 

Become part of a large interdisciplinary department with a strong focus on interprofessional education, research excellence and technology, especially around assistive and therapeutic technologies. The OST undergraduate degree program is housed in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences and Technology within the College of Health Professions and Sciences. Students in the OST Program may study in specialty areas in assistive technology, engineering, human factors, injury and performance, occupational therapy and therapeutic recreation. Learn from faculty who are among the strongest in the nation in terms of their leadership, professional credentials and research productivity.

For additional information, please contact Patricia Thomas, MPA, CTRS, OST Program Director or visit the OST Undergraduate Program website.


Foundation 35
Program Core30
Free Electives and GER 34-41
Total Credits120-127

Degree Requirements

The undergraduate degree in occupational science and technology offers a flexible path that allows students to pursue a variety of career options in different settings. The combination of foundation, core, track electives and free electives allows students to create an individualized program based on their interests and career objectives. The first few semesters are focused on building a foundation of knowledge. In the final semesters of the OST degree program, students focus primarily on the track and free electives courses. Students are automatically admitted to the major after completion of 57 credits. Within those 57 credits students must have a B- or better in: BIO SCI 202 or BIO SCI 203, OCCTHPY 151, OCCTHPY 201, PSYCH 101, and THERREC 202.

At the time of admission to the major, students must declare at least one track to complete as part of their program of study. Selection of a minor or certificate is encouraged to meet the program free elective requirements. To remain in the program, students must maintain a 2.75 cumulative GPA. The faculty and staff in the OST Program want the students to succeed. Students falling below the required 2.75 cumulative GPA are strongly encouraged to meet with the Program's Academic Advisor to develop an action plan for success. Ongoing communication with the Academic Advisor and Program Director are encouraged and a key to success in the program. 

Students must achieve the following to complete an undergraduate degree in occupational science and technology:

  • Satisfactory completion of 120 credits with a cumulative 2.75 GPA or better in all credits earned at UWM. Because a master’s degree is required for professional practice in many health-related fields, such as occupational therapy, it is recommended that students maintain a GPA greater than 3.0 to be competitive with other Graduate School applicants;
  • Satisfactory completion of the University General Education Requirements; and
  • Completion of the last 30 credits in residence at UWM.

Students are encouraged to meet with the Program's Academic Advisor at least once per semester throughout your undergraduate career to ensure that all requirements are being met.

Course of Study

The program is divided into foundation, core, track and free elective courses. The undergraduate program requires 120 credits for graduation. All students admitted to the program must satisfy University-Wide General Education Requirements (GER), (except second-degree candidates who are exempt). English and mathematics competency requirements must also be met.

With 120 credits required to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Occupational Science and Technology, students need to take responsibility to complete all foundation and core courses, GER requirements, at least one program track, and sufficient free elective credits. A number of GER courses are part of the degree requirements. Recommended free electives and certificate/minor programs are listed to assist the student in creating an individualized area of study.

Requirements are subject to change as of the publication date of the catalog. Please check with the Office of Student Affairs for the most current information.

University General Education Requirements
Competency Requirements
Oral and Written Communication (OWC) Part A & B
Quantitative Literacy (QL) Part A & B
Foreign Language
Distribution Requirements
Natural Sciences
Social Sciences
Cultural Diversity
BIO SCI 202Anatomy and Physiology I4
BIO SCI 203Anatomy and Physiology II (GER NS)4
COMMUN 103Public Speaking3
Select one of the following:3
Business Writing (OWC-B)
Health Science Writing (OWCB)
Writing for Professional Development in Health Administration (OWCB)
HCA 203Human Life Cycle (GER SS)3
KIN 270Statistics in the Health Professions: Theory and Practice (QL-B)3
CHS 100New Student Seminar in Health Professions1
OCCTHPY 151Foundations of Scientific Inquiry for Occupational Science and Technology3
General Physics I (Non-Calculus Treatment)
and General Physics Laboratory I (Non-Calculus Treatment) (GER NS)
PSYCH 101Introduction to Psychology (GER SS)3
PSYCH 412Abnormal Psychology3
Program Core
OCCTHPY 201Introduction to Occupational Science and Technology3
OCCTHPY 220Gizmos and Gadgets: Introduction to Assistive Technology3
THERREC 202Disability: Society and the Person3
OCCTHPY 245Client Diversity in Health Sciences: An Interdisciplinary Perspective (GER CD and SS)3
or THERREC 245 Client Diversity in Health Sciences: An Interdisciplinary Perspective
OCCTHPY 260Enhancing Health Through Activity, Occupation and Technology I3
OCCTHPY 320Introduction to Ergonomics for Healthcare Professionals3
OCCTHPY 340Evidenced for Practice I: Applications of Biostatistics3
OCCTHPY 341Evidence for Practice II: Appraising Evidence3
OCCTHPY 401Overview of Medical Conditions3
OCCTHPY 530Contemporary Issues and Professional Preparation in OST3
Select at least one track21
Free Electives and GER
Select 34-41 credits (minimum of 9 cr at 400 level or higher). See below.34-41
Total Credits120-127


Disability and Occupation

This track is predominantly aimed towards students that are interested in health and human service professions such as Occupational Therapists and others. Student are encouraged to also add the Pre-Occupational Therapy designation to their program if following this track. The Program's Academic Advisor may assist with adding the designation.

THERREC 202Disability: Society and the Person (GER SS)3
OCCTHPY 250Concepts of Time and Occupation3
THERREC 303Inclusive and Disability Programs in the Community3
OCCTHPY 315Group Process in Rehabilitation3
OCCTHPY 401Overview of Medical Conditions3
OCCTHPY 505Work and Disability3
or OCCTHPY 420 Principles of Human Factors and Usability
OCCTHPY 625Design and Disability3
Total Credits21
Applications of Assistive Technology

This track is aimed towards students who are interested in applying technology and/or designing environments and products that enhance the capabilities of persons living with and without a disability. This may include Occupational Therapy or other rehabilitation professions. Students are encouraged to also add the Pre-Occupational Therapy designation to their program if interested in pursuing Occupational Therapy. The Program's Academic Advisor may assist with adding the designation. 

OCCTHPY 220Gizmos and Gadgets: Introduction to Assistive Technology3
OCCTHPY 250Concepts of Time and Occupation3
OCCTHPY 420Principles of Human Factors and Usability3
OCCTHPY 521Essentials of Assistive and Rehabilitation Technology3
OCCTHPY 593Introduction to Biomedical and Rehabilitation Instrumentation (U/G)3
OCCTHPY 595Vision I: Introduction to Low Vision & Visual Impairment3
OCCTHPY 625Design and Disability (U/G)3
Total Credits21
Therapeutic Recreation

This track is aimed toward students who are interested in the area of Therapeutic Recreation (also called Recreation Therapy). Students may pursue employment as a Life Enrichment Coordinator/Director, Activity Therapist or Program Leader/Director in the areas of adapted sports or community recreation for individuals with disabilities. Recreational Therapist as a profession may be pursued with additional requirements.

THERREC 103Life Balance: An Understanding of Leisure3
THERREC 203Therapeutic Recreation Process3
THERREC 300Therapeutic Recreation Assessment and Documentation3
THERREC 308Therapeutic Recreation in Physical Rehabilitation and Behavioral Health3
THERREC 309Therapeutic Recreation in Pediatrics and Gerontology3
THERREC 310Facilitation Techniques in Therapeutic Recreation3
THERREC 400Issues and Trends in Therapeutic Recreation (TR)3
Total Credits21
Human Factors, Injury and Performance

This track is targeted toward students interested in helping individuals (with and without disabilities) achieve peak occupational health and performance through the interaction of human factors and human function. This track is aimed at students who seek an entrepreneurial component to their educational learning experience, and provides a strong foundation for graduate study in rehabilitation professions. Students are encouraged to also add the Pre-Occupational Therapy or other pre-professional designation to their program if interested in pursuing graduate rehabilitation studies. The Program's Academic Advisor may assist with adding such designations.

OCCTHPY 250Concepts of Time and Occupation3
OCCTHPY 320Introduction to Ergonomics for Healthcare Professionals3
Select one of the following:3
Introduction to Nutrition
Introduction to Nutrition for the Health Professions
Health Aspects of Exercise and Nutrition
Health Aspects of Exercise and Nutrition
KIN 350Psychological Aspects of Sport and Exercise3
OCCTHPY 420Principles of Human Factors and Usability3
OCCTHPY 522Health, Performance, & Injury Monitoring in Organizations3
OCCTHPY 592Innovative Solutions in Human Factors and Performance3
Total Credits21

Recommended Minors/Certificates

(not inclusive)

College of Health Professions and Sciences

Certificate in the Study of Complementary & Integrative Health Approaches
Minor in Health Care Administration

Zilber College of Public Health 

Minor in Kinesiology
Minor in Nutritional Sciences

College of Letters and Science

Certificate in Childhood and Adolescence Studies
Certificate in Global Health
Certificate in Spanish for Health Professionals
Minor in Anthropology
Minor in Communication
Minor in Psychology
Minor in Sociology

Lubar College of Business

Minor in Business

School of Education

Autism Spectrum Disorders
Community Engagement

Honors in the Major

Honors in the major are granted to students who earn a GPA of 3.500 or above on a minimum of 30 completed credits at UWM.

College of Health Professions and Sciences Dean's Honor List

GPA of 3.500 or above, earned on a full-time student's GPA on 12 or more graded credits in a given semester.

Honors College Degree and Honors College Degree with Distinction

Granted to graduating seniors who complete Honors College requirements, as listed in the Honors College section of this site.

Commencement Honors

Students with a cumulative GPA of 3.500 or above, based on a minimum of 40 graded UWM credits earned prior to the final semester, will receive all-university commencement honors and be awarded the traditional gold cord at the December or May Honors Convocation. Please note that for honors calculation, the GPA is not rounded and is truncated at the third decimal (e.g., 3.499).

Final Honors

Earned on a minimum of 60 graded UWM credits: Cum Laude - 3.500 or above; Magna Cum Laude - 3.650 or above; Summa Cum Laude - 3.800 or above.