Occupational Therapist Assistant - Level 2

Occupational therapy

The main job of occupational therapy assistants is to assist their patients in developing, improving and recovering the necessary skills needed by the patients for various daily activities. You work alongside an occupational therapist, assisting people in the community to live happy and fulfilling lives.

Skills and knowledge

To become an Occupational Therapy Assistant you will need:

  • the ability to motivate people
  • tolerance and acceptance of different lifestyles
  • willingness to work with people from different backgrounds
  • ability to address groups and work with them
  • flexibility and adaptability
  • willingness and ability to travel
  • the ability to work alone or as part of a team
  • to be self-disciplined
  • the ability to handle challenging patient behaviours
  • patience
  • excellent communication skills
  • customer care skills
  • personal organisation skills


Although no formal qualifications are required, basic GCSEs (or the equivalent) are usually a good idea to demonstrate literacy and numeracy. Administrative computer skills are also very desirable, so consider taking an IT qualification.

Routes into this job

You could do a college course, which may help you when looking for work.

Courses include:
- level 2 Diploma In Preparing for Further Study in Health, Social Care and Social Work
- level 2 Diploma in Health and Social Care
- level 3 National Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care
- T Level in Health

Most health and social care courses include work placements which is a good way to get experience.


2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

Consider a relevant healthcare support worker apprenticeship that could lead you into this type of role.


2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

You could apply for a job as an occupational therapy assistant/support worker directly.


A levels (or the equivalent) are less important than basic administrative IT skills, a driving licence and good communication abilities.

Career progression

Career progression The next step up from an occupational therapy assistant is to study to become an occupational therapist.

Senior Healthcare support worker - Level 3

Senior support workers will use more advanced skills under the supervision of registered staff and may also work alone, with access to a registered member of staff on site or via the telephone. Responsibilities include the direct delivery of clinical, technical, or scientific activities following training. They may demonstrate own duties to other support workers, students, or less experienced staff. They will also carry out administration tasks related to patient care and the wider service. At this stage, senior support workers will contribute to service improvement and be able to make fact-based judgements.

Assistant Practitioner - Level 5

Assistant practitioners work at a level above that of healthcare support workers and have more in-depth education and understanding about factors that influence health and ill-health, for example anatomy and physiology. Support workers at this level will possess enhanced skills in their area of work, which may be a specialist clinical area. They will provide routine and non-routine care and support, including to service users with more complex needs and making assessment of progress. They can demonstrate own activities to new or less experienced employees and provide training to others.

Occupational Therapist BSc - Level 6

As an occupational therapist, you’ll help people who have difficulties carrying out day-to-day activities because of a disability, illness, trauma, ageing, and a range of long-term conditions.

Enhanced Clinical Practitioner - Level 6

This occupation is found in the health and care sector. Enhanced Clinical Practitioners are qualified health and social care professionals who are working at an enhanced level of practice with specific knowledge and skills in a field of expertise. They manage a discrete aspect of a patient’s care within their current level of practice, which will be particular to a specific context, be it a client group, a skill set or an organisational context. This is in contrast to Advanced Clinical Practitioners who have developed their knowledge and skills to an advanced level of practice and would manage the whole episode of a patient’s clinical care, from the time they first present, through to the end of the episode.

Advanced Clinical Practitioner - Level 7

An Advanced Clinical Practitioner in Occupational Therapy works at an advanced level across all four pillars of advanced practice at master’s level. Advanced Clinical Practitioners are experienced clinicians who demonstrate expertise in their scope of practice. Advanced Clinical Practitioners manage defined episodes of clinical care independently, from beginning to end, providing care and treatment from the time an individual first presents through to the end of the episode, which may include admission, referral or discharge or care at home. They carry out their full range of duties in relation to individuals’ physical and mental healthcare and in acute, primary, urgent and emergency settings (including hospitals, general practice, individuals’ homes, schools and prisons, and in the public, independent, private and charity sectors). They combine expert clinical skills with research, education and clinical leadership within their scope of practice. Advanced Clinical Practitioners work innovatively on a one to one basis with individuals as well as part of a wider team. They work as part of the wider health and social care team and across traditional professional boundaries in health and social care.