Professional Background Checks Policy

Professional Background Checks

Incoming students of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program must acknowledge the mandatory federal and civilian background checks that are administered with acceptance into the program. Following notification of acceptance, but prior to the end of the first semester, students must submit documentation of these background checks. This process must be repeated during the second year for Ohio licensure. Results of the federal and civilian background checks may limit access to clinical facilities at anytime during the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program and result in the inability of the student to meet program requirements. If a student is unable to meet the requirements, they cannot graduate from the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at Kent State University.

A felony conviction may affect a student’s ability to sit for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certification examination. A student who is considering entering or has entered the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program may have his or her background reviewed prior to actually applying for the exam requesting an early determination review. In this early determination process, NBCOT may give early or prior approval to take the exam as long as the reviewed information is not found to be a violation of any of the principles of the NBCOT Code of Conduct.

NBCOT considers the following behaviors a direct violation of the Code of Conduct:

  1. An individual is convicted of a crime where the circumstances substantially indicate an inability to engage in the practice of occupational therapy or relate to the practice of occupational therapy.
  2. An individual is engaged in behaviors that would cause them to be a threat or potential threat to the health, well being, or safety of recipients of occupational therapy or that adversely impact the delivery of occupational therapy services. Behaviors include but are not limited to physical violence (murder, robbery, or rape) or other behaviors such as those associated with chemical dependency.
  3. An individual who is engage in conduct with clients, students or colleagues which violates appropriate professional boundaries and that does or may result in harm to the above. Behaviors include sexual exploitation or misconduct, inappropriate physical contact, financial exploitation, intrusion in personal affairs of clients, student or colleagues, and inappropriate self-disclosure.

A felony conviction may also affect a student’s ability to obtain licensure in the state of Ohio. Applicants applying for licensure who have been convicted of a felony must provide the Board with a signed statement describing the details of the event(s) that led to the felony conviction of the following court records:

  1. Indictment
  2. Plea entry
  3. Disposition
  4. Sentencing entry
  5. Terms of parole or probation
  6. Parole or probation release/discharge

Failure to provide these documents will result in a delay in the processing of the application. The Occupational Therapy Section cannot make a determination on a potential for licensure. Determinations may only be rendered after the Section receives and reviews a completed application for licensure.

All question and concerns regarding the requirements of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program should be directed to Program Director.

Reviewed: 06/18/2021
Revised: 02/01/2022