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Registration and deadlines for the BSc in Occupational Therapy

Please find detailed administrative information on the Bachelor’s programme in Occupational Therapy below.

Entry requirements

Prospective students are admitted to the programme if they meet the entry requirements of Swiss federal and cantonal law.

In addition to a Baccalaureate or Federal Vocational Baccalaureate, candidates must provide evidence of at least one year of professional experience in a field that is related to the discipline. A clinical placement of up to 12 months (additional module A or A1) is also required before the beginning of the programme.

Completed vocational training

Evidence of professional experience, additional modules A/A1

Federal Specialised Baccalaureate (FSB) in Health Care
FSB in Health and Natural Sciences

Additional modules – must be completed

Other FSB

Additional module A – must be completed

Federal Vocational Baccalaureate (FVB) +
Federal VET Diploma in Health Care

Additional module A1 – to the overview(PDF 93,3 KB)

other Federal VET Diploma

Additional module A – must be completed

Swiss Red Cross diploma / degree from a College
of Higher Education and Training (CHET) in Health Professions

Additional module A1 – to the overview(PDF 93,3 KB)

Diploma from a CHET (or another tertiary B diploma) in another professional areas according to

Additional module A – must be completed


Additional module A – must be completed

Candidates with a vocational diploma but no Baccalaureate do not meet the school's formal entry requirements. They will first have to complete a Baccalaureate or an FVB. (For more information, please contact the vocational college in your area or a careers advisory service.)

Please notice in this context that the professional experience of which you are providing proof must have been no more than five years ago from the start of your course of study. Otherwise, it is considered to have expired - the head of the study program decides on exceptional cases. Federal Certificates of Proficiency do not expire.

«What I particularly liked about the degree programme in Occupational Therapy was that I was able put implement my own project.»

Nadine Janaïna Schulz, BSc alumna in Occupational Therapy

Knowledge of English and German

Freshers need to have good knowledge of English and German: Their proficiency of English needs to be at level B2-C1 according to the European Framework of Reference (CEFR), which corresponds to a very good Cambridge First Certificate in English (grade A) or a good Certificate in Advanced English (grade C). In addition, candidates need to be either native speakers of German or have German language skills at level C1 according to the CEFR.

Students are expected to read English and German academic texts (abstracts, reports, and case studies) and be able to follow classes in English and German.

Students who fail to meet the basic language requirements listed above are strongly recommended to attend a language course prior to the beginning of the program (German) or after they have started it (English).

Admission procedures

There is limited admission to the Bachelor’s degree programme in Occupational Therapy with its 90 study places annually. All prospective students have to undergo a fee-based aptitude test that is used in the final admission decision-making process.

Aptitude test and interview

The formal evaluation of the admission requirements by the Programme Secretariat is followed by a fee-based, two-tiered aptitude test (assessment):

  • a written cognitive test in the first part.
  • the evaluation of a film sequence to test creative problem solving ability followed by several Multiple Mini Interviews (MMI) in the second part.  For organisational purposes, this second part will take place on a Saturday.

The outcome of the cognitive test in the first part determines the participation in the second part of the aptitude test.

The Academic Office decides on the final approval of candidates based on the results obtained in the aptitude test.

If you fail to achieve the minimum score in the aptitude test, you get one more chance to try again.

Course fees / Expenses / Compensation

Description Frequency Cost
Registration fee for admission process [1] once CHF 100.–
Enrolment fee for Bachelor's and Master's programmes [2] once CHF 100.–
Tuition fees for Bachelor's and Master's programmes [3] per semester CHF 720.–
Fixed charge for students on leave of absence [4] per semester CHF 300.–
Additional tuition fees for students who are not Swiss residents [5] per semester CHF 500.–
Membership of the Academic Sports Association Zurich (ASVZ) per semester CHF 35.–
Membership of the ZHAW Students Association (Alias) per semester CHF 20.–
Fees for guest auditors (depending on the number of courses attended) per semester CHF 100.– to 600.–

[1] Fee according to § 2 ordinance on tuition fees 
[2] Applicants are exempt from paying the registration fee for the admissions process if they pass the admissions assessment/test and enrol for the next available programme start date.
[3] According to §4 of the regulations on tuition fees
[4] According to § 25, paragraph 5 of the general examination regulations for Bachelor's and Master's programmes at the ZHAW, students on leave of absence are exempt from paying tuition fees. According to the regulations on fees and contributions (in German), they pay a fixed charge per semester of CHF 300.– to cover their e-mail account, campus card, use of the University Library and general administration costs. This fixed charge also applies to students on the Bachelor’s programmes at the School of Health Sciences who attend the additional module C and to students who do delay the completion of their programme (e.g. by postponing submission of their thesis).
[5] Under Swiss law, non-Swiss nationals who come to Switzerland to study are not considered residents of Switzerland (Art. 23 Swiss Civil Code). In addition to the regular tuition fee, they pay an additional tuition fee of CHF 500.– during the entire duration of their studies (even if they move their official place of residence to Switzerland after commencing their studies). Official residency under civil law is not possible if the residence permit was issued for study/educational purposes.

Additional costs


Recurrence Fees

Aptitude test (Part 1 CHF 300, Part 2 CHF 300)

one-time charge CHF 600

Flat rate for lecture notes

each semester CHF 35

Registration of documents with the Swiss Red Cross

one-time charge CHF 130

Salary for clinical placements

Over the period of three years: around CHF 4,000 to CHF 6,000

How to enrol

After passing the aptitude test, successful candidates will receive the documents for enrolment at the ZHAW from the Programme Secretariat by post.

Additional costs

In addition to the semester fees, course-specific costs are incurred (for books, school supplies, field trips, etc.).

Notebook computer

All students are required to purchase a notebook computer at their own expense.


To enrol in the Bachelor’s degree programme in Occupational Therapy, you need to send the completed registration form (available online as of mid-September) together with all mandatory attachments to the Programme Secretariat of the Occupational Therapy programme. Receipt of registration will be confirmed in writing.

An invitation to the first part of the aptitude test will be sent out to all candidates after the registration deadline. Candidates who have passed the first part of the aptitude test will be invited in writing to the second part.

All mandatory registration documents must be submitted to the Programme Secretariat by the end of July. Exception is made only for employer's references from practical work experience (additional module A/A1). They must be submitted to the Programme Secretariat by the end of August before they can start the programme.