USC Chan Sensory Integration Continuing Education (CE) Certificate Program
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why should you take your sensory integration coursework at USC Chan?
Sensory integration was originated by USC Faculty Emeritus A. Jean Ayres PhD, OTR, who was both an occupational therapist and an educational psychologist. Dr. Ayres developed a theoretical framework, a set of standardized tests and a clinical approach for the identification and remediation of sensory integration problems in children. Her publications on sensory integration span a 30-year period from the 1960s through the 1980s and include psychometric studies as well as clinical trials and single case series. The USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy has a rich history of advanced training in sensory integration, starting with the initial hands-on course, OT 610, originally taught by Dr. Ayres through the University of Southern California beginning in 1977. Through continued development and refinement of the content and materials over the past 45 years, the Chan Division remains committed to upholding the legacy of Dr. Ayres’ work in the science and clinical application of sensory integration, and felt that this commitment was best served by offering a continuing education program on sensory integration in both the United States and internationally. Read more about how USC Chan continues to contribute to the theory and practice of sensory integration.
2. How does the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate compare to other courses offered in sensory integration around the world?
The USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program has been developed by a team of highly-vetted experts in sensory integration. The material presented in this program builds on the rich history of sensory integration originated by A. Jean Ayres PhD, OTR, and is enhanced by up-to-date research findings and evolving clinical methods. The USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program is supported by one of the most prestigious occupational therapy programs in the world, which is itself housed in one of the top globally connected R1-research universities. Participants can be assured that the information they are learning is not only grounded on the original work of Dr. Ayres but based on current science and applicable in today’s clinical practices.
3. Is USC an AOTA-Approved Provider for continuing education?
Yes, the USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy is an AOTA-Approved Provider for Continuing Education. In addition, USC Chan’s entry-level academic program is ACOTE-accredited and WFOT-approved and the institution is WASC-accredited. There are no accrediting bodies for continuing education courses.
4. Who is eligible to complete the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program?
The USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program was designed by occupational therapists with occupational therapists as the primary target audience. Occupational therapists who have graduated from an occupational therapy program that is recognized/approved by a government agency in the country of education are eligible for the full course series and certificate. OT students may take all the courses, but will not receive the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate until they have graduated.
5. Are certified occupational therapy assistants (COTAs) eligible to complete the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program?
COTAs are not eligible to complete the full program, however, they are welcome to participate in some of the courses that are most relevant to their practice. All COTAs are eligible to participate in CE Course 1 — Theoretical Foundations of Sensory Integration. COTAs interested in taking CE Course 3 — Sensory Integration Treatment may do so under the supervision of a qualified occupational therapist. A qualified occupational therapist is one who has either completed or is currently enrolled in CE Course 3.
6. Are physical therapists and speech therapists eligible to complete the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program?
Yes, physical therapists and speech therapists who have graduated from a physical therapy or speech therapy program that is recognized/approved by a government agency in the country of education are eligible for the full course series and certificate. Because the courses are designed with occupational therapists in mind, OTs are given priority in course registration, and a limited number of physical and speech therapists may be admitted.
7. In what format will the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate courses be offered?
The USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate courses are online, offering two full sessions of the course series each year, with CE Course 1 beginning in January and June. All courses must be taken in sequential order, beginning with CE Course 1. The online courses are completed over a 4-week period in an asynchronous format.
8. Are the courses offered in other languages?
We offer all courses online in English and CE Course 1 in both English and Spanish. Courses in Spanish are taught by native Spanish speakers. Our international hosts often provide translators for other languages.
9. Do I need to take the courses in order?
All courses must be taken in sequential order, beginning with CE Course 1.
10. What assessment tools are covered in USC’s SI Certificate Program?
CE Course 2 covers sensory integration and sensory processing evaluation, including using standardized assessments. It does not go into details regarding the mechanics of specific assessments, but rather facilitates an understanding of how therapists can use a variety of assessments available to help them evaluate the client’s sensory challenges. Our SI faculty keep up to date with the available pediatric tests that provide information about sensory processing and its impact on performance and participation.
11. Do you offer training in sensory assessments for adolescents and adults?
At this point, we do not cover assessments for adolescents or adults, although some of the assessments we describe can be used with young adolescents.
12. How much does the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program cost?
The cost for the complete USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program in the US or online is $3,300. See below for individual course cost breakdowns. AOTA members receive a 10% discount.
Course 1: $990 USD
Course 2: $660 USD
Course 3: $660 USD
Course 4 Special Topics: $990 USD
Fees for course completion at international locations vary based on the individual location. Registration fees for these courses are set by the individual international course hosts based on their venue, administrative costs, and the local economy.
13. How often will the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate courses be offered?
The USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate courses will be offered on a regular basis, with the goal to provide clinicians the ability to complete the entire CE certificate program within 12 months.
14. What are the qualifications of the instructors who teach the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate courses?
The instructors for the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program are renowned occupational therapy experts in sensory integration research, education and practice who hold a doctoral degree. The primary instructors for this program are USC faculty.
15. Will USC keep a database of therapists who have completed the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program?
Yes, upon completion of the entire USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate program, participants can choose to make their professional contact information available to families and referring sources via an online database.
16. If I have previously completed the USC/WPS Comprehensive Program in Sensory Integration, can I obtain the USC Sensory Integration CE Certificate at a discounted rate?