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Course Introduction

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Graduates of the Diploma in Occupational Therapy will be competent professional occupational therapists who are able to assess, treat and assist individuals to perform important daily human activities such as self care, work and leisure by using a range of treatment techniques and approaches. Being client-centred, occupational therapists apply their clinical skills and knowledge to enhance the quality of life of clients in all age groups.


Occupational therapists use activities to facilitate human performance and improve health. They can specialize in varied areas such as in the case of children with learning disabilities, occupational therapists employ activities which develop sensory integration, thinking, writing and social skills so that they can function within the school environment. Conversely, to treat injured workers after hand surgery, splinting and hand therapy techniques are used so that workers may return to gainful employment.


The Occupational Therapy course will suit people who:

  • have a strong interest in the health sciences;
  • like the challenge of being facilitators of positive change in people's lives; and
  • command a passion and desire to help those with physical, psychological and emotional problems.


Course Aims

The Diploma in Occupational Therapy aims to develop professionally and socially responsible occupational therapists who are equipped with core knowledge, attitudinal and psycho-motor competencies to provide safe, ethical, holistic, competent and evidence-based care to clients across occupational therapy practice and programme settings. The graduates will be prepared to meet the professional competencies required for occupational therapy registration and practice certificate with Singapore’s Allied Health Profession’s Council. The graduates will also be equipped with 21st century skills that will enable them to be dynamic professionals who can develop themselves and contribute to the occupational therapy profession in Singapore and internationally.


Course Duration

3 academic years on a full-time basis


Course Learning Outcomes

The diploma graduate would be able to

a)  Subscribe to the occupational therapy professional standards and ethics prescribed by the Allied Health Professions Council of Singapore.

b)  Synthesise knowledge in occupational therapy theories and processes, biological, behavioural and social sciences and critical appraisal of research evidence to promote health and well-being and address occupational dysfunction across the life span, care continuum and practice settings as a beginning practitioner.

c)  Assess, analyse and interpret occupational therapy assessments.

d)  Identify occupational therapy problems and client assets to develop client-centred occupational therapy intervention goals,

e)  Critically reflect on occupational therapy theories and best evidence to create individualised and population based occupational therapy intervention programmes,

f)  Develop individualised and population based, occupation centred health and wellness promotion programmes,

g)  Apply instructional design strategies to be an effective educator of clients, their families and the public on self-management of their health conditions,

h)  Perform basic counselling to show empathy and develop optimal therapeutic relationships,

i)  Practice effective interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills to function effectively in inter-disciplinary team-based practice and work environments

j)  Critically appraise research and contributes as a member of a research team

k)  Apply the Conscious Decision Making Framework to resolve ethical tensions and dilemma

l)  Be proactive in identifying gaps in services and clinical/work processes and contribute to creating innovative solutions and programmes

m)  Engage in reflective practice to continually develop personally and professionally

n)  Is prepared to participate in professional and post-graduate education

Course Educational Objectives

The graduates of the Diploma in Occupational Therapy will be Registered Occupational Therapists with the Allied Health Professions Council of Singapore; a competent reflective client centred practitioner committed to ethical conduct, life-long learning and professional development. They will be valued members of the health and social service teams providing occupational therapy services across care and practice environments and contributing meaningfully to their families, communities and the continual development of the profession in Singapore and internationally.




Industrial Attachment


In Nanyang Polytechnic, occupational therapy students have to complete a minimum of 1080 clinical fieldwork education within their 3 year course.  The overall aim of the clinical fieldwork education is to allow the students to apply theoretical knowledge to practice, as well as build skills to be a competent emerging practitioner in the occupational therapy process of assessment, treatment planning and implementation and re-evaluation. There is also emphasis on therapeutic communication and administrative skills.


The clinical fieldwork education begins in first year second semester and spans the duration of the 3 year course with period of attachment ranging from one day clinics in first year to eight weeks in third year.  At the end of the course, students would have completed clinical fieldwork education in acute hospital, community based and mental health settings, treating patients and clients across disability groups and the life span. Some students may have the opportunity to be placed at occupational therapy private practices, non-traditional placement settings or overseas clinical centres.


During clinical fieldwork placements, students are under the supervision of Allied Health Profession Council’s registered occupational therapists, to mentor and guide the students to develop clinical reasoning and practical skills. Students are assessed on professional behaviour; skills in assessment, treatment planning and implementation; therapeutic and professional communication; organisational and administrative skills.


Key Contact for Clinical Fieldwork Education

Ms Sheleen Aw 
Lecturer & Clinical Coordinator/Occupational Therapy 
Tel: 6550 1441


Ms Jessica Tan

Lecturer & Deputy Clinical Coordinator/Occupational Therapy

Tel: 6550 1394







There are various scholarships provided by Ministry of Health, Ministry of Health Holdings, Health Clusters, Community Hospitals and National Council of Social Services for Occupational Therapy. Click  here  to find out more about some of these sponsorships and scholarships.




Career Prospects

NYP’s Diploma in Occupational Therapy course is recognised by Singapore’s Allied Health Professions Council and World Federation of Occupational Therapists. Graduates are eligible to register for practice as occupational therapists in Singapore and worldwide, subject to local regulations.


You will have ample opportunities to work in health,disability, social service, education sectors or private practice. Over time, occupational therapists can choose to specialise in clinical, administrative or academic fields by developing clinical specialty skills in treating physical disabilities, mental health problems, developmental problems or problems associated with the older adult.


You may also occupy management and administrative positions, establish private practice, or work in academia and in research; as there is an emerging demand for occupational therapists in the health promotion and wellness sectors. In addition, Singapore Association of Occupational Therapists, the local professional body, conducts regular special interest group meetings for qualified occupational therapists to network and exchange professional ideas. 


Further Education

You can undertake the Singapore Institute of Technology and Trinity College Dublin (TCD) degree upgrade hosted by NYP. The one-year TCD degree in Occupational Therapy is an honours programme that is tuition grant funded, and includes a six-week overseas attachment in Dublin, Ireland. Click SIT Singapore to find out more.


Other degree, master's and doctoral programmes are also available through overseas universities in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, the US and the UK.


Key Contact

Ms Tan Hwei Lan

Assistant Course Manager, Occupational Therapy

Tel: 65501406

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