This study used data from self-administered questionnaires to compare technical- and professional-level students from four occupational therapy educational programs in Illinois. Examination of the similarities and differences in biographic characteristics indicate that registered occupational therapy and certified occupational therapy assistant students come from different backgrounds. The reasons why students chose their levels of education, and the amount and character of contact with occupational therapy that they had prior to entering the program provide useful information for counselors, recruiters, and designers of informational materials. The students’ intended roles, desired career goals, and work values furnish suggestions for curriculum developers.

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