St. Ambrose University, Loras expand OTD degree


For The Catholic Messenger

DUBUQUE, Iowa — Loras College in Dubuque and St. Ambrose University (SAU) in Davenport have expanded their partnership to allow an early admission pathway for students in SAU’s accredited doctor of occupational therapy program (OTD).

The agreement offers the opportunity for Loras students to earn a bachelor’s degree and an OTD degree in six years, one year less than typical, through a 3+3 dual degree program. Eligible students would begin studies at St. Ambrose or Loras for their first three years of undergraduate coursework. If accepted in SAU’s OTD program, Loras students would begin the program in their fourth year. They would earn their bachelor’s degree from Loras at the end of the fourth year before completing the final two years of the OTD program. Pending approvals, students would complete on-campus courses at either St. Ambrose University or Loras College as early as August 2024. A 4+3 option is available for students who prefer the traditional timeline for earning both degrees.

High school students accepted at Loras College and first-year Loras students who plan to pursue a doctoral degree in OT will receive automatic, conditional admission if they meet and continue to maintain the requirements listed on St. Ambrose’s OTD website. It is the same pathway available to SAU students. Interested high school students must complete the automatic, conditional admission request form by March 1 of their senior year in high school. First-year Loras students interested in receiving automatic, conditional admission must complete their form by June 1 following their first year.


Current Loras College juniors, seniors or graduate students or Loras alumni may also apply for an early admission decision to the OTD program through the Occupational Therapist Centralized Application Service (OTCAS). 

To learn more about St. Ambrose University, visit To learn more about Loras College, visit

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