Academic Update

Q: What is Academic Update?

A: Academic Update is a window of time in which OTCAS can update your GPA with any Fall 2016 coursework that may not have been originally submitted with your application. While the Academic Update window is open, you can only enter grades for courses taken during the summer and fall 2016 terms.  You can also add any new planned or in-progress coursework for the winter, spring and summer 2017 terms.

Q: Who can take advantage of Academic Update?

A: You can begin the Academic Update only after OTCAS has verified your application and a GPA has been calculated. The following steps must be completed before you can begin the Academic Update:

  • The OTCAS fees paid in full
  • OTCAS has verified your initial application

Once your application is verified, OTCAS will notify you by email.

Q: Am I required to enter my updated courses during the Academic Update?

A: If you originally e-submit your OTCAS application in summer or fall 2016, you are strongly encouraged to enter your updated summer and fall 2016 grades and planned/in-progress courses for 2017 during the Academic Update. Please enter your updated courses during the Academic Update as soon you are notified, even if you have already received an offer of admission to one or more OT programs. If you fail to enter your updated courses, your designated OT programs may not consider your application or may revoke a previous offer of admission. (OTCAS does not require applicants to complete the Academic Update).

Q: How do I use Academic Update?

A: If you are eligible for Academic Update, navigate to the “Transcript Entry” section. Change any Planned/In Progress terms that now have grades to a Completed Session by editing the term, and unchecking the Planned/In Progress button. Then enter the grade and credits for each course. At this time, you may also enter any new planned or in-progress courses for the winter, spring, or summer 2017 terms. Once you are finished adding all of your new courses, you MUST go back to the main application dashboard and click on “Update my Application.” If you do not do this,  OTCAS may be unable to process your changes and your programs will NOT receive your updated coursework and grades!

Once your application is updated and your fall transcripts are received during the AU window, OTCAS will verify and send your revised course history and GPA’s to your designated OT programs. Your updated GPA’s will be available under the “Status” menu option of your OTCAS application.


Q: Can I use Academic Update more than once?

A: No. You can only submit your Academic Update coursework once. Make sure you have the complete results for your fall classes and carefully review the form before clicking on the “E-Submit Academic Update” button. If you do not click the “E-Submit Academic Update” button, your coursework and GPA will not be updated.

Q: What do I do if my fall grades are already entered as complete?

A: This means that your fall transcript arrived at OTCAS before your application was mailed and the OTCAS staff has already entered the data for you. There is no need for you to enter the grades again or send another transcript.

Q: Can I update courses that were already reported as completed?

A: No, courses that were originally reported as completed cannot be modified.

Q: When does the Academic Update window open?

A: Academic Update is open from December 14, 2016 through February 15, 2017 for editing of coursework. You are strongly encouraged to have your updated transcript into OTCAS by the priority deadline of February 1, 2016.

Q: Can I send my updated transcript to OTCAS after the February 1, 2017 priority deadline?

A: Yes. While OTCAS strongly encourages you to have your updated transcripts in to OTCAS as early as possible, we will accept updated transcripts until February 15, 2017. Please note, your designated occupational therapist programs may not consider your application if the Academic Update is not completed by the February 15 deadline.

Q: What do I do if some fall grades have been entered, but not all of them?

A: In this case, OTCAS received a partial transcript and entered all the grades that were present. You will need to contact OTCAS, (617) 612–2860 or, to arrange for OTCAS to enter the remaining coursework for you.  DO NOT add the coursework into an incorrect or duplicate term.

Q: After I enter in my Academic Update, when can my designated OT programs see my updated GPA’s and coursework?

A: As soon as you click ” Update my Application” for your Academic Update, OTCAS gives your designated OT programs real-time and secure access to your entire application on-line, including the UNVERIFIED courses you entered during the Academic Update. Once OTCAS receives your updated official transcripts during the AU window, OTCAS will verify your fall courses and recalculate your OTCAS GPA. Your entire application file, including your newly VERIFIED courses and revised GPA, are available to your designated OT programs online immediately.

Q: Can I add coursework from prior year’s semesters & AP information during the academic update?

A: No, you cannot add any prior year’s semesters or AP information during Academic Update. The Academic Update is only intended for your newly completed summer or fall 2016 coursework and planned and in progress coursework for winter, spring or summer 2017.

Q: I plan to Submit my application in January. Should I enter my fall grades when I first Submit my application or wait until the Academic Update?

A: Most colleges and universities post fall term grades from late-December through mid-January. If you know your fall term grades when you are ready to e-submit; enter the fall courses in the Completed Coursework section. Arrange for your official transcripts to be sent as soon as your registrar confirms that the fall term grades are posted on them. Do not wait for the Academic Update.