Disclaimer: If there are references to products or services, I certify that I either personally use them or stand by them. If you’re interested in using one, click the link so I’ll make a little money and you can tell your friends you helped keep the lights on over here.

Grades Do Not Define You

Sarah Putt, MA, OTR/L

Wanna know a secret?

Our grades in occupational therapy school do not define who we are.

Yes, you need them to pass the program and yes you want to do well of course.

But here’s the secret… once you become a practitioner, grades don’t matter any more.

I was having a conversation with a student the other day and they were worried because they had just received a low grade on a test. And they were worried that this low test score might indicate that occupational therapy isn’t the right path for them.

And it got me thinking that too often students get wrapped in getting the highest scores and become completely deflated when they receive a lower score than they would have liked.

I mean, I remember when I was in school and one of my classmates freaked out because she received an A- and it was the lowest grade she had received… EVER. And mind you I believe I got a B- or even a C on the same test and was happy to have passed.

I’ve even had multiple students ask me if I have ever been requested to provide grades to a potential employer And the answer is no. I have never been asked to provide them or even asked what my grades were in school.

All a hiring manager wants to know is did you pass. Did you pass all your coursework? Did you pass fieldwork? And did you pass the board exam?

The rest is just numbers.

Now, I’m not saying that grades aren’t important. Because they are. You need good grades to pass your coursework and complete the program.

But what I am saying is that they do not define who you are. And one (or a few) lower grades do not necessarily mean that occupational therapy isn’t the right future for you.

While I was in school, I had some classes that I did well in, felt like I understood the material really well, and got good grades. But there were also classes that I didn’t do as well in, didn’t feel like I understood the material very well, and didn’t get high grades in.

And you know what, that’s perfectly fine.

So the next time you feel down on yourself about a low grade, remember this: Grades do not define who we are.

Students- are you worried about how your grades will reflect your competency once you become a practitioner? Practitioners- Have you ever been asked what your grades were by an employer? I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments or shoot me a DM if you prefer.

Share this post:

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on reddit
Share on email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get resources and inspiration directly to your inbox