Occupational Therapy (pre-registration)

Key Information


2 years

Typical Offer

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Brayford Pool

Academic Year

Course Overview

MSc Occupational Therapy (pre-registration) is a science-based programme designed to prepare graduates for work in a variety of settings, including health organisations, social care services, housing, education, voluntary organisations, or as independent practitioners.

This programme is suited to those who want to fulfil, or work towards fulfilling their potential as an occupational therapist, to promote function, quality of life, and the realisation of potential in people who are experiencing occupational deprivation, imbalance, or alienation. They believe that activity can be an effective medium for remediating dysfunction, facilitating adaptation, and recreating identity.

Occupational therapists work with adults and children of all ages with a wide range of conditions; most commonly those who have difficulties due to a mental health illness, or physical or learning disabilities. The course seeks to develop the skills, knowledge, and confidence needed to work in a range of complex and dynamic health and social care environments.

Students on this course are encouraged to appreciate and understand current occupational therapy practice, while being critical in their approach to developing new, innovative, and evidence-based interventions. There are interprofessional components of the course which are designed to develop practitioners who are professional, compassionate, safe, reflective, and autonomous. Working with peers from other professions including physiotherapy, nursing, midwifery, and social work helps promote team work, collaboration, and an application of research skills in the transformation of health and social care services.

Why Choose Lincoln

Opportunities for interprofessional working

Practice based learning

Opportunities for placements

Opportunities to engage with research centres

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How You Study

The foundation of this course is the inter-professional learning approach to develop and promote a culture of wellness in health and social care. Students on this pre-registration MSc Occupational Therapy course can experience collaborative approaches to learning and teaching that will challenge traditional perceptions of healthcare provision.

A variety of learning and teaching strategies will be used to cater for the individual needs of students on the programme. These strategies may include lectures, seminars, workshops, small group activity, self-assessment, case studies, library based resources, clinical skills sessions, virtual learning, simulation, and practice-based learning.

To find out more about occupational therapy, please visit the Royal College of Occupational Therapy website at: and

Contact Hours and Independent Study

Contact hours may vary for each year of your course. Students will be engaged in a two-year full-time course and so, at the very least, should expect to undertake a minimum of 37 hours of study each week during term-time. There may also be assignments set outside of term time. The composition and delivery of the course varies for each module. Each year of the course runs from January to January.

Master's level study involves a significant proportion of independent study, exploring the material covered in lectures, seminars and practice-based learning. As a general guide, for every hour spent in class, students are expected to spend two to three hours in independent study.


This course is accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT). Successful completion of this programme will provide graduates with the eligibility to apply to the HCPC Register as an occupational therapist and membership of the Royal College of Occupational Therapists.

Health and Care Professionals Council logo


† Some courses may offer optional modules. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by staff availability.

Applied Sciences in Occupational Therapy 2024-25OCU9008Level 72024-25The Applied Sciences module develops and applies the biological, physical, psychological, and sociological sciences in the occupational therapy context of health and social care. Learning through a series of core lectures, learners will then use seminar-based enquiry-based learning (EBL) activities to align the sciences with occupational therapy specific practice. The module will promote the development of a knowledge base of core health and social science clinically relevant to the breadth of occupational therapy practice. The acquisition of knowledge will be challenged through critical analysis and contextual application to develop a firm foundation for the practice of evidence-based occupational therapy in promoting wellness and addressing illness.CoreAssessment and Professional Reasoning in Occupational Therapy 2024-25OCU9003MLevel 72024-25This module will explore a range of health conditions and their impact on occupational performance. It will build on the learners theoretical knowledge of occupational therapy, introduce different methods of assessment and explore the interpersonal skills required to build meaningful relationships in order to deliver collaborative and person centred care in the context of the individual’s life. The learner will explore how to interpret information gathered from a variety of sources, how it contributes to the formulation of diagnosis within the Multi-Disciplinary Team and subsequently to a treatment plan, taking into account the personal preferences, personal and social circumstances of the individual. . Learners will explore this in the context of people at various stages of their lifespan, with a variety of needs and a range of different environmental settings. This module will focus on a range of holistic person centred approaches to assessment which will develop the learner’s skills in clinical reasoning and case formulation that will be applied in practice. Learners will consider their assessment strategies within the boundaries of their professional code of conduct.CoreEssential Interprofessional Practice 2024-25HEA9432MLevel 72024-25This module has been designed to provide students with the opportunity to develop essential knowledge and understanding about the structure and function of health and social care in the UK. The module will support students in making the transition to Master's level study and assist them in the development of key skills such as critical evaluation, reflection, and using evidence to underpin practice.CoreEssential Occupational Therapy Practice 2024-25OCU9007Level 72024-25This module will explore the history of occupation in relation to the fundamental concepts of occupational science and occupational therapy, and the dynamic relationship between engagement in occupation, health and well-being. Learners will be introduced to the theoretical knowledge and skills that underpin occupational therapy practice and links will be made between the impact of occupation, the person and their life context on occupational engagement. Core skills for the professional practice that promotes occupational engagement over the lifespan will be analysed and will form the foundation for the development and application of occupational therapy practice. Learners will develop their critical evaluation skills by exploring the evidence underpinning specific occupational therapy interventions, whilst starting to develop clinical reasoning and decision-making skills in the selection of therapeutic techniques. Interventions to promote wellness, lifestyle change and self-management will be embedded in this module. Learners will consider their role as an Occupational Therapist within the requirements of their professional code of conduct. During this module learners will commence a CPD portfolio which they will use to connect their module learning and placement experiences and reflections. This will be used throughout the programme and will prepare learners with the necessary skills to demonstrate their ongoing professional development as a graduate OT. This module must be commenced prior to undertaking Practice Placements 1 and 2 which must be completed to achieve learning outcomes 5 and 6 of this module.CoreEvaluating the evidence base and quality improvement for professional practice 2025-26HEA9469Level 72025-26CoreImproving Population Health and Wellbeing 2024-25HEA9470Level 72024-25Population health and a population health approach aims to improve the health and wellbeing of a population, this could be at a local, regional or national level. It is about improving both mental and physical health outcomes, wellbeing and reducing health inequalities. It includes action to reduce ill health, ensure appropriate health and care services are provided and the wider determinants of health. It requires working with communities and partner agencies (Holmes, 2022). Lifestyle choices are increasing the risk of preventable diseases and affecting individual's wellbeing. People are living longer with more multiple long-term conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and asthma and the health inequality gap in increasing. Population health is one of the core strategic aims of integrated care systems (ICSs); to improve physical and mental health outcomes, promote wellbeing and reduce health inequalities across an entire population, focusing on the wider determinants of health (NHS England, 2023).CoreLeading Innovation for Contemporary Occupational Therapy Practice 2025-26OCU9006Level 72025-26CoreManaging Complexities in Occupational Therapy Practice 2025-26OCU9001MLevel 72025-26This module aims to build on the learners’ core knowledge and skills in occupational therapy and prepare the learner for the daily challenges encountered by a qualified occupational therapist. Learners will be applying previous knowledge and skills to the assessment and interventions with service users who have more complex needs and multi morbidities, within increasingly complex and dynamic health and social care environments. The teaching for this module will include practical workshops where learners will work on simulated and real life case scenarios to consolidate the philosophical and theoretical concepts that underpin occupational therapy in order to develop their professional identity, promote occupational engagement and be able to justify their practice. This will include consideration of the individual’s s’ unique personal circumstances and the needs of care givers and others in the context of their social situation. Learners will be applying previous knowledge and skills in evidence based practice, assessment and clinical reasoning to demonstrate the links between the theory of occupational therapy and real life practice including exploration of complex legal and ethical considerations in the practice of occupational therapy. Critical reflection and evaluation of the outcomes of interventions will be emphasised and form the basis of ongoing decision making. At the end of this module, learners should be prepared with the knowledge and skills to be an autonomous practitioner and practice within their professional code of conduct. This module must be commenced prior to undertaking Practice Placement 5 which must be completed in order to achieve Learning Outcome 6 of this module.CoreOccupational Therapy Placement 1 2024-25OCU1001Level 42024-25CoreOccupational Therapy Placement 2 2024-25OCU2001Level 52024-25CoreOccupational Therapy Placement 3 2025-26OCU2002Level 52025-26CoreOccupational Therapy Placement 4 2025-26OCU3001Level 62025-26Core

What You Need to Know

We want you to have all the information you need to make an informed decision on where and what you want to study. In addition to the information provided on this course page, our What You Need to Know page offers explanations on key topics including programme validation/revalidation, additional costs, contact hours, and our return to face-to-face teaching.


In addition to academic-based learning in a modern university setting students will be required to complete over 1,000 hours of practice-based learning over four placements in a variety of clinical settings. 

In the second year, students have the opportunity to develop a ‘role emerging placement’ to explore an area where occupational therapists haven’t traditionally worked before, subject to achieving the minimum requirements for supported practice learning. This is an excellent opportunity to contextualise your learning, and further understand the role of an occupation therapist in a real-world setting.

You are responsible for your own travel, accommodation, and general living costs relating to placements, but some NHS funding may be available.

How you are assessed

Students will be assessed both formally and informally throughout the course to develop their learning and autonomy. The assessments will take place both within the University and practice placement environments. Practice-based learning will be pass/fail, while the Level 7 academic work will contribute towards a student's final grade.

Some of the assessment will be led by tutors but students are also encouraged to engage in peer and self-assessment to help develop the skills of reflection and evaluation which are essential for lifelong learning and continued professional development following registration as an Occupational Therapist.

Some of the assessments will focus on theoretical knowledge and application of theory, and others on the practical performance of technical skills and patient management. Detailed guidance of what is expected, and the assessment criteria, will be provided for each module.

Assessment Feedback

The University of Lincoln's policy on assessment feedback aims to ensure that academics will return in-course assessments to students promptly - usually within 15 working days of the submission date (unless stated differently above).

Methods of Assessment

Assessment methods on this course will vary for each module. It could include coursework, such as a service transformation project, written and practical exams, and demonstrations, group work or presentations. You will also be assessed in clinical practice on your four placement blocks.


The University of Lincoln is home to the Community and Health Research Unit (CaHRU), which is the research centre for the School of Health and Social Care. CaHRU conducts world-leading interdisciplinary research with service users, health service professionals, and organisations to increase health and wellbeing across the health, social, and third sector care services. CaHRU is allied with the Lincoln Institute for Health.

Explore Research
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Career Development

Many registered Occupational Therapists work within the NHS or in social care settings and are recruited and employed by individual organisations. This forward-looking programme appreciates that many occupational therapists and new graduates may also work in non-traditional OT roles, or for private and third sector organisations.

New, varied, and innovative job opportunities are increasingly available to qualified Occupational Therapists, and this programme aims to prepare its graduates accordingly. Non-clinical careers also exist in teaching, research, management and administration, health and safety, and training and development. The experienced teaching team can help students explore and develop their individual career aspirations.

Why Postgraduate Study?

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Meet the Master's

You can find out more about this course from our online Meet the Masters session on Friday 26 April 2024, 1pm-2pm. Our knowledgeable academics will be on hand to answer your questions and discuss degree structure, content, delivery, and assessments.

How to Apply

Postgraduate Application Support

Applying for a postgraduate programme at Lincoln is easy. Find out more about the application process and what you'll need to complete on our How to Apply page. Here, you'll also be able to find out more about the entry requirements we accept and how to contact us for dedicated support during the process.

How to Apply
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Entry Requirements 2024-25

Entry Requirements

- Applicants should hold an honours degree in a relevant discipline at 2:2 classification or above. If you are unsure whether your first degree is relevant we welcome you to send us your degree transcript so that our Admissions Tutor can advise you further.
- Entry on to the course is subject to meeting the requirements of a profession specific occupational health screening.

Certificates and degree transcripts of all previous qualifications will need to be provided before any offers are confirmed.

International Applicants

We welcome international applications although our places are very limited.

All international applicants require IELTS 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each element for students whose first language is not English. Applicants must provide a valid IELTS certificate at the point of application.

Students who have completed a UK degree within 5 years of their proposed enrolment at the University will not be required to provide IELTS.

For information regarding other English language qualifications we accept, please visit the English Requirements page:

International applicants need to obtain a recent criminal record certificate from their home country and ensure this is still valid by the date of enrolment in addition to the DBS requirements detailed below. A list of admissible certificates can be found on the UK Government website; please see:

Other requirements include:
- Evidence of recent academic learning
- Successful performance at an interview
- Knowledge of contemporary health and social care issues, and the role of the occupational therapist in providing health and social care interventions
- Understanding of written material and can communicate clearly and accurately in written and spoken English.
- All students will be required to sign the subject-specific Fitness to Practice Code of Conduct on entry, details of which will be forwarded with an offer letter
- Satisfactory completion of an Enhanced Disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), including a check of all cautions and warnings as well as convictions before their place on the course is confirmed. Note that the University will pay the costs of this check directly on your behalf.

Applicants with disabilities:

We take seriously our obligation to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that all students with disabilities can successfully complete their studies. All applicants will be assessed based on the criteria outlined here regardless of any disability. If you declare a disability we will invite you to work with us to explore how best we can support your studies.

Other information:

You must declare all spent and unspent criminal convictions including (but not limited to) cautions, reprimands, final warnings, bind over orders or similar and details of any minor offences, fixed penalty notices, penalty notices for disorder, ASBOs or VOOs.
Further information can be found at

If you would like further information about entry requirements or would like to discuss whether the qualifications you are currently studying are acceptable, please contact the admissions team on 01522 886097, or email

Course Fees

You will need to have funding in place for your studies before you arrive at the University. Our fees vary depending on the course, mode of study, and whether you are a UK or international student. You can view the breakdown of fees for this programme below.

Course Fees

The University offers a range of merit-based, subject-specific, and country-focused scholarships for UK and international students. To help support students from outside of the UK, we offer a number of international scholarships which range from £1,000 up to the value of 50 per cent of tuition fees. For full details and information about eligibility, visit our scholarships and bursaries pages.

Course -Specific Funding and Bursaries

From September 2023, pre-registration undergraduate and postgraduate healthcare students can apply for the NHS Learning Support Fund (LSF).

If eligible, you will receive:
- A training grant of £5,000 GBP per academic year.
- Increased parental support of £2,000 GBP, if you have at least one dependent child under 15 years, or under 17 years if registered with special educational needs.
- Increased money back for excess travel and temporary accommodation costs (Travel and Dual Accommodation Expenses) while you're on your practice placement.
- Students experiencing financial hardship (Exceptional Support Fund).

For more information and to see your eligibility, visit:

Please note, this government bursary is available to Home students only. Details on scholarships and bursaries available to Overseas and EU students can be found online:

Please note that International students will not be eligible for support for travel and accommodation.

Course -Specific Additional Costs

Students are responsible for their own travel, accommodation, and general living costs relating to placements.

Placement expenses for travel, and accommodation may be reimbursed by NHS Bursaries where, for example, the requirement exceeds that of attending university; requires transport out of normal operating hours; or requires additional accommodation to that of the usual term time location. These expenses may need to be covered initially by the student before any applicable reimbursement is received.

The current rates for reimbursement can be found here:

You may find that there are additional costs. These may be with regard to the specific clothing, materials or equipment required, depending on your course.

With regards to text books, the University provides students who enrol with a comprehensive reading list and you will find that our extensive library holds either material or virtual versions of the core texts that you are required to read. However, you may prefer to purchase some of these for yourself and you will be responsible for this cost.

Funding Your Study

Postgraduate Funding Options

Find out more about the optional available to support your postgraduate study, from Master's Loans to scholarship opportunities. You can also find out more about how to pay your fees and access support from our helpful advisors.

Explore Funding Options
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Academic Contact

For more information about this course, please contact the Programme Leader.

Carol Duff

Postgraduate Events

To get a real feel for what it is like to study at the University of Lincoln, we hold a number of dedicated postgraduate events and activities throughout the year for you to take part in.

Upcoming Postgraduate Events
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The University intends to provide its courses as outlined in these pages, although the University may make changes in accordance with the Student Admissions Terms and Conditions.