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Occupational Therapist, Departments of Mental Health and Developmental Services (8204)

Occupational Therapist, Departments of Mental Health and Developmental Services

California State Personnel Board Specification

  • Schematic Code: TQ12
  • Class Code: 8204
  • Established: 03/07/1995
  • Revised: --
  • Title Changed: --


Under direction, to assist with the occupational therapy program of a State developmental center or hospital; and to do other related work.

Typical Tasks

With cerebral palsied children: teaches self-care activities, with particular emphasis on the requirements of neuromuscular reeducation; adapts activities as therapeutic exercises; makes hand splints; cooperates with the teaching and other technical staff in teaching special activities and assists in coordinating the total therapy and educational program; assists in instructing parents in the use of suitable activities and adapted equipment for the continuation of the treatments at home.


With mentally or physically ill and handicapped: promotes acceptable social behavior in patients through the media of industrial arts and handicrafts such as ceramics, metal work, weaving, and painting; teaches self-care activities designed to promote improved mental and physical health; assists in planning and supervising the social, recreational, and work activities of patients.


With the therapeutic team, plans treatment goals to maintain or improve motivation, work approach, physical or emotional condition; utilizes recognized therapeutic techniques in working toward these goals with groups or individuals; assists in educating other personnel and volunteers to understand and cooperate in the physical and psychological objectives of the occupational therapy treatments; instructs them in carrying out assigned phases of the program; attends medical and administrative conferences; observes patients' reactions and progress and keeps clinical notes and records to be included in case histories and prepares reports; orders necessary equipment and supplies; cares for equipment and facilities.

Minimum Qualifications

Registration with the National Registry of the American Occupational Therapy Association or eligibility for such registration. (Applicants who have completed the academic training required for registration will be admitted to the civil service examination, but they must also have completed the required clinical training before they will be considered eligible for appointment.)

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: Theory and practice of mental and physical rehabilitation of mentally and physically handicapped persons; therapeutic techniques including arts and crafts, prevocational exploration and self-care activities commonly used in occupational therapy work, and skill in their application; basic pathology involved in diseases and injuries resulting in physical and mental handicaps and physical and psychological problems of the handicapped person; child growth and development; construction and use of special equipment.


Ability to: Interpret occupational therapy treatments to staff, relatives, patients, and others; teach others; prepare reports and keep records to be included in case histories; analyze situations accurately and take effective action.

Special Personal Characteristics

Ability to establish and maintain cooperative interrelationships with individuals and groups; a sympathetic and objective understanding of the problems of mentally and physically handicapped persons; tact; patience; emotional stability; pleasing personality and neat personal appearance.

Drug Testing Requirement

Applicants for positions in this class are required to pass a drug screening test. Testing of current employees who are applicants in an examination or who are transferring is permitted only if the person does not have a current appointment to a class for which drug testing is a requirement.

  Updated: 6/3/2012
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