Walsh University is committed to fostering an institutional climate in which qualified students with disabilities have full access to the academic environment. The Office of Accessibility Services (OAS) allows students the opportunity for full participation in the Walsh Experience by providing reasonable, appropriate accommodations, as directed by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008.

In accord with these federal regulations, listed below are the student occupational therapist's physical and mental requirements, along with descriptions to assist each candidate to evaluate his/her prospects for academic and fieldwork success. When a student's ability to perform is compromised, the student must demonstrate alternative means and/or abilities to perform the described requirement. Each student must read each requirement carefully. Once admitted into the program, the student will sign a form indicating that s/he has read and understood these requirements. If a student is not sure of the ability to meet these requirements due to disability-related reasons or a temporary medical issue, or know of anything that currently or in the future might affect the ability to fulfill these requirements, please contact Meredith Soduk, Director of Academic Support Services at msoduk@walsh.edu or (330)490-7529 to discuss individual situations.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities

Walsh University is committed to fostering an institutional climate in which qualified students with disabilities have full access to the academic environment. It is our practice to create an inclusive and accessible learning environment consistent with federal law.

If you feel that you may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability or temporary medical condition, please contact Meredith Soduk, the Director of Academic Support Services, at 330-490-7529 or msoduk@walsh.edu. Accessibility Services will confidentially discuss your needs, review your documentation, and determine your eligibility for reasonable accommodations. Please know that it is the student’s responsibility to request and coordinate accommodations. Although students may contact Accessibility Services at any point throughout the semester, it is ideal for a student’s accommodations to be arranged and communicated as early as possible because accommodations are not retroactive.

Students must maintain current eligibility for accommodations in accordance with Academic Support Services. A student will be ineligible to receive accommodations without providing documentation on his/her disability and consenting to the limited sharing of information.

NOTE: Requesting accommodations to meet the below listed physical and mental requirements does not affect the student’s status in the program.

In addition to the Physical and Mental Requirements listed below, it is expected that the student occupational therapist adhere to the Occupational Therapy Code of Ethics (2015) (American

Occupational Therapy Association, 2015) and the Walsh University OT Professional Behavior policies.

Skills Associated Requirements
  • Provide OT services to clients with various diagnoses including clients who may be terminally ill, have transmittable diseases, psychiatric disorders, and developmental disorders
  • Respond and perform professionally to required duties, roles, and responsibilities in environments that involve exposure to the smells, sights and sounds within healthcare facilities (e.g., surgery, infection control), and in situations requiring contact with bodily fluids (e.g. blood, urine, feces)
  • Interact with people displaying a variety of adverse behaviors (e.g., cursing, yelling, sexual innuendos) without being judgmental or prejudiced
  • Cope with stress and maintain composure under pressure and time constraints
  • Recognize and react appropriately to emergency situations
  • Adapt to changing environments and display flexibility when faced with the uncertainties inherent in the clinical setting
  • Interact with people of diverse cultures, age groups, and socioeconomic groups without bias (e.g. severely injured; limited by cognitive, emotional and functional deficits)
Physical Mobility
  • Participate in all laboratory and fieldwork experiences in the OT program requiring standing, sitting, lifting, reaching, bending, stretching or other postures that provide support/assistance for recipients of services
  • Move freely and quickly in open and confined spaces such as laboratories, patient rooms, and elevators.
  • Transfer, lift, move, and position patients/clients
  • Transport clients in wheelchairs and/or stretchers
  • Demonstrate ability to grasp and manipulate tools (e.g. goniometers, dynamometers)
Critical Thinking
  • Demonstrate self-directed learning including assessment of needs and identification of assistance required
  • Access information from paper and electronic sources to accurately perform job functions and duties
  • Utilize creativity to provide evidence-based evaluation and interventions to clients
  • Utilize technology for course work and client-centered evaluation and interventions
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and reasoning skills necessary to assess clients’ occupational performance including adaptations based on best practices
  • Utilize time-management skills to multi-task and fulfill clinical and course requirements
  • Apply sound judgment to all clinical situations both in the classroom and on fieldwork
  • Identify and follow safety precautions with potentially hazardous chemicals or biohazard waste
  • Possess sufficient visual ability to observe and assess recipients of services including accurate interpretation of nonverbal behaviors
  • Possess sufficient hearing ability to monitor and assess needs of recipients of services and ensure safety
  • Possess the ability to perceive a client or caregiver’s physical/emotional status through touch and movement
Interpersonal Communication
  • Communicate effectively in English both verbally and in writing using proficient grammar and vocabulary
  • Demonstrate active listening skills and therapeutic use of self in all interactions
  • Communicate sensitive content professionally to service recipients, family members, and colleagues including those of varied cultural and social backgrounds, adhering to principles of confidentiality as appropriate
  • Demonstrate ability to work cooperatively with others
  • Demonstrate appropriate behaviors and skills in classroom and fieldwork interactions with faculty, other students, fieldwork coordinator, fieldwork supervisors, and professional colleagues
  • Demonstrate ability to give and receive constructive feedback and adjust or modify responses according to feedback received

Note: Specific fieldwork sites may have additional and unique requirements beyond those listed above. Accommodations given during fieldwork rotations are determined by the fieldwork site and it is the responsibility of the student to request such accommodations. However, fieldwork sites are not required by law to provide accommodations for students. Please keep in mind that qualifying for a disability-related fieldwork accommodation does not guarantee you the fieldwork assignment of your choice. An assignment that meets your accommodation needs may not be available. If that is the case, you may decide to forgo the approved fieldwork accommodation or you may wait until an assignment that meets your accommodation needs comes available (which could delay graduation).

Adapted from the Essential Functions documents from the following: Xavier University, The Ohio State University, Seton Hall University, Cleveland State University.

American Occupational Therapy Association. (2014). Guidelines for supervision, roles, and responsibilities during the delivery of occupational therapy services. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 68(Suppl. 3), S16-S22.
American Occupational Therapy Association. (2015). Occupational therapy code of ethics (2015).
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 69(Suppl. 3), S17-S26.
American Occupational Therapy Association. (2015). Standards of practice for occupational therapy.
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 69(Suppl. 3), 6913410057p1-6913410057p6.