Prerequisite Coursework

Completion of specified prerequisite courses with an earned grade of C or better for each course. (All prerequisites are at least 3 credits each.)

  • Conditional acceptance may be given for qualified students with outstanding prerequisites. Regardless of graduation date, conditionally accepted applicants must complete all prerequisite courses with a C or better prior to start date. It is the student's responsibility to provide official documentation of satisfactory course completion prior to start date. Students who have not completed all requirements or have not submitted documentation by the deadline must reapply for the next cohort to be considered for admission the following year.
  • Prerequisite coursework must be completed within seven years prior to the application to the program. The only potential exceptions are for those who work in fields focused on a specific area and who have taken the coursework in the past. For example, mental health professionals may not have to retake abnormal psychology.
  • During the Rolling Admissions Cycle, only applicants with 0-1 prerequisite courses remaining will be considered the year before desired start date — early admission. Applicants with up to three outstanding prerequisites will be considered starting in February prior to desired start date. Applicants are only considered eligible for consideration if grade-point averages for their prerequisites and last 60 cumulative credit-hours are 3.0 or higher.

Prerequisite Courses

Most students have found at least one of these choices on their campus or in their community. The minimum acceptable grade is C and the minimum credit-hours for each class is 3.

  1. Title: Abnormal Psychology
    Note: No substitutions for this course.
  2. Human Anatomy with Lab
    Notes: If anatomy and physiology are offered together as one course, then two semesters must be taken (example: Anatomy and Physiology I & II). There must be a lab component reflected.
  3. Human Physiology with Lab
    Notes: If anatomy and physiology are offered together as one course, then two semesters must be taken (example: Anatomy and Physiology I &II). There must be a lab component reflected.
  4. Neuroscience of Behavior
    Notes: Also accepted: Brain and Behavior, Behavioral/Cognitive Neuroscience or Neurophysiology or Neuropsychology or Neurobiology, Physiological Psychology. Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Social Psychology do not meet this requirement.
  5. Statistics
    Note: Any undergraduate statistics course (examples: psychological statistics, educational statistics, statistics in nursing, statistics in healthcare, business statistics, scientific statistics, etc. are accepted.)
  6. Technical or Research Writing
    Notes: Graduate level writing skills — 3000 level or above, may include graduate-level courses — are expected throughout the program starting in the first semester. Composition I and II do not meet this requirement.
  7. Terminology for Health Professions
    Notes: Please note that this course must be 3 credits to meet the prerequisite requirement. If you completed a medical terminology course with fewer credit hours, you will need to repeat the course at the three credit level.

Frequently Asked Questions about Prerequisites

Neuroscience Prerequisite

I have taken (insert course title). Does it satisfy the neuroscience prerequisite?

Courses that satisfy the neuroscience prerequisite requirement must emphasize the structures and functions of the brain/nervous system as they relate to motor planning, sensory processing, executive functioning, (i.e. behavior) etc. and cover impacts on the entire body. Here are two examples of accepted courses.

  • PSYC4183 — Behavioral Neuroscience — Examination of the biological basis of behavior. Surveys the anatomy, physiology and pharmacology of the mammalian brain and examines brain mechanisms underlying a wide range of behaviors and cognitive processes. Prerequisite: Six hours of psychology, not including PSYC 2013. [Group B course]
  • BIOL 4793 — Introduction to Neurobiology — 3 Hours — Exploration of the neurological underpinnings of perception, action and experience, including how sense receptors convert information in the world into electricity, how information flows through the nervous systems, how neural wiring makes vision possible, how the nervous system changes with experience, and how the system develops. Prerequisite: BIOL 2533.

Technical Writing Pre-requisite

I took Writing/Composition I and II for my undergraduate program. Does it count toward the Technical Writing requirement?

No. Courses that count toward this requirement must include advanced research writing that includes use of a style guide (preferably APA). Students are expected to utilize APA in every writing assignment in the OTD program.

Example of a preferred course:

"ENGL 3053 guides students to hone writing skills by focusing on writing conventions in career-focused fields. The course focuses on the concepts and strategies of writing in a particular field, including analysis of audience and purpose for different types of writing projects, and teaches the fundamentals of research in that field, including proper citation. The types of writing assigned include descriptions, memos, letters, proposals and reports. Rhetorical analysis includes organization, style and design."

Other Prerequisites

Will you accept my (insert exact name of prerequisite course) if I completed it at XYZ community college / university?

As long as you completed the course at a regionally accredited college or university and it fits the credit requirements, we will accept the prerequisite.

Will you review the syllabus for (insert exact name of prerequisite course) to make sure it will be accepted?

We do not review syllabi or course descriptions from approved course titles, including the approved substitutions for the neuroscience course that are listed on the OTD website. If you are asking for an exception or substitution, we are happy to review course descriptions to assist you in finding a good fit.

If I take a course or a number of courses at different schools from where I will graduate, will that lessen my chances of getting into your program?

No. Many factors are considered during the application review and selection process.

I took a medical terminology course that was not 3 credits. Will you accept it?

No. You will need to repeat that course with a 3-credit medical terminology course to satisfy the program prerequisite requirement.

Will you accept a Straighterline Medical Terminology course?

Yes. As long as it is 3 credits.

My school does not offer XYZ prerequisite. Do I still have to take it?

Yes. Online options from other universities that meet the requirements of the prerequisite are generally accepted. Remember that anatomy and physiology courses must have lab components. You may also take courses at other universities, as you are able to arrange them.

Will my prerequisite transfer?

Transfer credits do not apply to this program. If accepted, students are required to take all courses in the curriculum as scheduled.


If you have additional questions, contact us at OTD@uark.edu for the fastest response.