Steps to a Career as an Occupational Therapist in Australia.

Students want to know the salary of occupational therapists in Australia and how much they earn after five years.

Are you looking for a rewarding career in healthcare that doesn't involve much stress and gives you a high level of job satisfaction? If you answered yes, an occupation as an occupational therapist might be the right fit for you. Those individuals who are interested in working directly with patients to make their lives easier and more manageable should strongly consider pursuing a career in occupational therapy.  

Because of the nature of our work in the healthcare industry, we are in a unique position to affect people's lives while also developing meaningful relationships with them. The most important job in the healthcare sector in Australia is that of an occupational therapist (OT).

The article that follows will educate you on everything you need to know in order to pursue a career as an occupational therapist in Australia.

1. Who Is an Occupational Therapist and What Do They Do?

People can become more productive and independent with the help of occupational therapists, who also assist them in overcoming obstacles that arise in their day-to-day activities. They provide patients who have been injured, sickened, or disabled with assistance in the process of learning, recovering, and improving skills necessary for daily living and employment.  

Those who want to aid others in leading lives that are purposeful and productive will find that becoming an occupational therapist, despite the fact that doing so requires a significant investment of time and energy, is an endeavor that is well worth undertaking.

2. The Obligations of Occupational Therapists in Australia and Their Scope of Practice

Occupational therapists, more commonly referred to as OTs, work with clients of all ages to assist them in overcoming the effects of diseases or physical impairments. They assist individuals in participating in the day-to-day activities of life by performing in-home assessments, assisting individuals with daily responsibilities such as cooking, moving, dressing, driving, and a great deal more, and much more.

In most cases, an occupational therapist in Australia will be responsible for the tasks listed below:

  • Conduct a thorough examination of the patient, taking into account their symptoms, treatment options, and medical history.

  • Develop a treatment plan for the patients, including an outline of the activities and specific targets.

  • Conducting evaluations of formerly employed individuals with disabilities in order to identify the most effective methods for assisting them in reentering the workforce

  • Visiting workplaces to gain a better understanding of the challenges that an injured worker may face when attempting to get back to work

  • Investigate dangerous manual labor positions in the workplace.

  • Offering medical perspectives and justifications through in-depth report writing

  • Putting on workshops on various topics that are related to people's health and well-being

  • Discussions with insurance companies, medical professionals, and business owners

  • Carry out Pre-Employment Evaluations to ensure that personnel are both mentally and physically capable of performing the duties of the position.

Providing personal care to patients is a significant part of the occupational therapist's job in Australia. This includes assisting patients with activities like cooking, bathing, and getting dressed.

3. Competencies Necessary to Obtain a Position as an Occupational Therapist in Australia

Hard skills are essential for successful occupational therapists, as they allow for the best possible outcomes for their patients. They are able to develop relationships with customers and strengthen their social ties thanks to the soft skills they possess. Occupational therapists are in high demand by health care providers because they need to possess a variety of skills, including:

In order to pursue a career as an occupational therapist in Australia, one must possess the following skills:

Competence in both Oral and Written Communication

Occupational therapists in Australia are required to have excellent communication skills and the ability to actively listen in order to comprehend their clients' limitations, challenges, and desired outcomes.  

If they need more information to get a complete picture of their client's health, then they have to know which questions to ask to get that information. Communication skills are frequently utilized by occupational therapists in the process of instructing clients and interacting with the clients' support network. Through the utilization of their abilities in written communication, they are able to produce reports that are informative.


Occupational therapists are expected to have the ability to solve problems in order to assist their patients in overcoming challenges. They should be able to identify the limitations faced by their customers and design appropriate solutions to assist those customers in achieving their goals.  

The most successful occupational therapists create individualized treatment plans for each client because every individual has their own particular set of constraints and objectives.

Interpersonal Abilities

Occupational therapists can build strong relationships with their clients and other members of their support network, including other health professionals, with the help of their interpersonal skills. Occupational therapists who have developed a strong rapport with their patients are typically better able to motivate their patients to put in more effort and accomplish more.

Counseling as well as Psychological Study

Occupational therapists who are knowledgeable in the fields of psychology and counseling can conduct accurate evaluations of their patients and determine the most effective ways to help them. They are aware of the personalities of their customers and know how to interact with them in order to acquire new skills and maintain their motivation.  

A significant number of occupational therapists work with patients who suffer from psychological issues, which necessitates vigilant management and sensitivity. Occupational therapists can more effectively develop appropriate treatment approaches if they have a solid understanding of these problems.


Strong self-management skills are essential for occupational therapists to have in order to provide effective assistance to their patients. Clients have the potential to become frustrated when they are experiencing discomfort or when they are making slower progress than they would like. Occupational therapists are trained to maintain composure and patience while encouraging their clients in their endeavors.

4. The Procedures to Follow in Order to Obtain a Position as an Occupational Therapist in Australia

In Australia, one can become an occupational therapist through one of two different routes, both of which require the completion of professional qualifications.

  • First, earn a bachelor's degree in occupational therapy. Step 2: Get licensed. In Australia, occupational therapy undergraduate degree programs typically last for a total of four years.
  • Step 2: If you already have a bachelor's degree in any field, you can continue your education by getting a master's degree in occupational therapy. The typical time commitment for this class is five to five 5 years to finish (three years for the undergraduate degree, and two years for the master's degree) The master's degree program lasts for a total of 5 years. It is possible that before you can enroll in a master's program to become an occupational therapist, you will need to finish certain prerequisite classes that you took while earning your bachelor's degree.
  • Step 3: Accumulate some professional experience. For instance, you could work as a nanny for a child who has special needs, or you could volunteer at a summer camp for people who have disabilities.

5. What Kind of Certification Is Necessary to Work as an Occupational Therapist in Australia?

In Australia, in order to work as an Occupational Therapist, you need to have either a Bachelor's or Master's degree in the field of occupational therapy.

Begin Your Career

After completing the requirements for a Certificate IV level qualification, you will be able to find employment as an occupational assistant, which is an excellent stepping stone toward a career in occupational therapy.

Improve Your Skills

To start working as an occupational therapist, the first thing you need is a degree from an accredited college or university, either in the undergraduate or graduate level. Then you need to work on improving your skills such as your interpersonal skills, communication skills, motivating skills, listening skills, and other skills.

Create Your Resume

Consider earning a graduate certificate in Policy and Applied Social Research if either conducting research or working in policy is something you're interested in doing. Think about going into a field that is connected to business if you plan on working in private practice or as a consultant.

Prerequisites for the Industry

In order to practice occupational therapy in Australia, you are required to become registered with the Occupational Therapy Board of Australia.

Obtaining a Position of Employment

Utilize your training to its full potential and get a head start on your professional life in the medical field. You should highlight your skills and accomplishments in your resume, and you should also tailor your cover letter to the job description.

Employment Opportunities

In the coming years, there will be an increase in the demand for occupational therapy. The pay is generally above average, despite the fact that many of these positions are only part-time.

6. The Variable Roles That Can Be Played Within Occupational Therapy in Australia

Occupational therapists have the ability to specialize in a wide range of areas. It's possible that they specialize in a certain field, such as working with patients recovering from physical injuries, mental health issues, or something else entirely.  

Others may find employment in corporate settings, where they develop and carry out programs to reduce the risk of injury. They also have opportunities to find work in areas such as research and policy development.

Occupational Therapists Who Are Dedicated to Their Work

Occupational therapists who specialize in nothing but their chosen field are referred to as dedicated. They are highly knowledgeable in the specific field of occupational therapy in which they specialize. They gain a deeper comprehension of the challenges that are unique to their respective fields of expertise, which enables them to provide more all-encompassing solutions to the problems that their customers face.

Occupational Therapists Working in Businesses

It is common practice for companies to employ occupational therapists to work with their employees in the workplace in order to reduce the likelihood of employees suffering injuries on the job.  

They educate workers on occupational health and safety issues such as adequate workspace setup and other challenges specific to the workplace and industry. They also have the potential to facilitate the return to work of injured workers.

The Formulation of Policies and Research

Jobs in research or policy could benefit greatly from the expertise of occupational therapists. Due to the fact that they are fully aware of the difficulties associated with matters such as health, employment, education for those with special needs, and social interactions In most cases, they are employed by scholarly organizations or governmental organizations.

7. In which areas of Australia can occupational therapists be found working?

Occupational Therapists are required in a variety of settings across Australia. The following are the most common departments in which an OT can easily find open positions:

  • Hospitals both in the public and private sectors

  • Health Centers Serving the Community

  • Private Clinics

  • Facilities for the Elderly

  • Facilities Dedicated to Education

  • Institutions for Criminal Justice

  • Buildings dedicated to research

  • Universities

  • Government departments

  • Employment Assistance Programs

  • Settings including industry and corporations

  • Organizations that are independent of governments

  • Residence of the people

  • Places of mental health care

8. How much money can one expect to make working as an occupational therapist in Australia?

The compensation or salary that an Occasional Therapist receives in Australia can vary depending on their position and level of experience. Following is a list of the estimated salaries that are associated with the various OT positions in Australia, as provided by

  • An entry-level Registered Occupational Therapist with less than one year of experience can earn an average total remuneration (tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of AU,940. This figure takes into account the Occupational Therapist's base salary as well as any bonuses and overtime pay.

  • A Registered Occupational Therapist who is just starting out in their career and has between one and four years of experience makes an average salary of AU,256.

  • A Registered Occupational Therapist who is in the middle of their career and has 5-9 years of experience makes an average salary of AU,083 per year.

  • A Registered Occupational Therapist with 10 to 19 years of experience earns an annual salary of AU,065 on average, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

  • Late-career workers, defined as those with 20 years of experience or more, take home an average of AU,000.

9. Instructions on How to Get a Job as an Assistant Occupational Therapist in Australia

In Australia, a professional who assists occupational therapists in assisting patients with daily activities that the patients may be having difficulty with is known as an occupational therapy assistant. Online travel agencies (OTAs) provide customers with assistance in reestablishing connections with their vocations by utilizing an all-encompassing strategy that takes into consideration all of the customer's requirements.

The primary difference between an occupational therapist and an occupational therapy assistant is that the former is qualified to make diagnoses and recommend therapies, while the latter is not. On the other hand, the latter can only provide assistance to the patient in a direct manner under the supervision of the therapist.

It is possible to find employment as an occupational therapy assistant in a variety of settings, such as schools, hospitals specializing in mental health care, and private practice offices.

10. Careers Available for Occupational Therapist Assistants in Australia and How to Become One

An occupational therapy assistant, in contrast to an occupational therapist, does not require a master's degree in order to work in the field.  

Nevertheless, you are required to finish high school as well as tertiary courses through TAFE. You are not required to have a background in biology, psychology, general physiology, or anatomy; however, having such knowledge will assist you in better understanding the role of the job.

In order to work as an Occupational Therapist Assistant in Australia, you need to fulfill a number of requirements, including the following:

  • You must be at least 18 years old to enter this website.

  • You must be in your senior year of high school or an equivalent educational level.

  • Have a Certificate II or higher certification, in addition to a minimum of two years of experience in a field that is vocationally related.

11. Courses That Must Be Completed in Order to Work as an Assistant to an Occasional Therapist

After you have satisfied the requirements presented earlier, you should think about enrolling in a Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance program. You will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to provide occupational therapy programs to a variety of clients as a result of this. In addition to that, having a Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance might be useful.

Certificate of Competency in Allied Health Assistance Level IV

The entirety of the Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance curriculum can be completed online. However, you are required to complete a minimum of 120 hours of training specific to the industry. In addition to this, you need to have experience working with at least three different clients in occupational therapy programs.

This certification offers a digital clinic that allows candidates to investigate and become familiar with their future workplace.

A Third-Level Certificate in Allied Health Assistance

Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance is yet another qualification that can help you get started working as an Occupational Therapist assistant in Australia.

It will assist you in gaining a fundamental understanding of medical terminology as well as the regulations governing infection prevention and control. Additionally, it enables you to improve your communication skills, which is essential for an assistant, both with patients and with the other employees. You are required to complete eighty hours of job training in addition to your online education.  

The following factors will be considered in their assessment of you:

  • Tests and reports based on observations

  • Short-answer questions, and more

Within a year, you are required to finish the requirements for this certificate.

12. In Australia, how much money can one expect to make working as an assistant to an occupational therapist?

Before deductions for social security and Medicare, the average wage for an Occupational Therapy Assistant working full-time in Australia is $1,050 per week (or $54,600 annually). It is merely a reference point and represents the value that is typical for full-time workers. As your level of expertise increases, you can anticipate receiving a higher income than those who are new to the industry.

In Australia, becoming an occupational therapy assistant is a surefire way to have a successful and fulfilling career. If you're ready for a job that will push you to your limits, reward you for your efforts, and give you the opportunity to assist a wide variety of people, take the first steps toward that goal today.

13. Concluding Remarks Regarding This Post

There are likely to be a lot of positive aspects associated with working in occupational therapy in Australia, but the job can also be challenging. The duties and responsibilities of occupational therapy are, for many therapists, both satisfying and complex all at the same time.

Because of the client-centered nature of this profession, you will have the opportunity to provide care and assistance to patients, which can be intrinsically rewarding. Nevertheless, it can also be a contributor to both mental and physical stress. Therefore, give it a shot if you think you can handle everything that comes with the job.

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