Academic Path

Academic Path

The Academic Path to Certification is designed for the traditional academic graduate.

Academic Path Overview

  1. Completion of Bachelor degree or higher with concentration in recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) in addition to specific support coursework
  2. Completion of a minimum 14 week / 560 hour internship supervised by a CTRS
  3. Pass the NCTRC Certification Exam

Requirements

1. Enrollment in a baccalaureate degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university with a major in (a) therapeutic recreation (recreation therapy); (b) recreation or leisure with an option in therapeutic recreation; (c) therapeutic recreation, recreation, or leisure in combination with other fields of study (e.g., Therapeutic Recreation and Health Studies; Recreation and Sport Management; Leisure and Tourism); and (d) a major in another field of study with a concentration/emphasis/sub-plan/option/minor/certificate in recreation therapy/therapeutic recreation.

2. Completion of a minimum of 90 credit hours toward degree attainment.

3. Therapeutic Recreation Content Courses: A minimum of 18 semester or 24 quarter credit hours of Recreation Therapy/Therapeutic Recreation (RT/TR) content coursework. A minimum of six (6) courses in RT/TR is required. Two (2) of the required RT/TR courses may be taught by the applicant as an educator in a college/university/academic program. Educators may not enroll in their own courses to meet certification requirements.

4. Supportive Courses: A total of 18 semester hours or 24 quarter hours of support coursework with a minimum of: (i) three (3) semester hours or four (4) quarter hours coursework in the content area of anatomy and physiology; (ii) three (3) semester hours or four (4) quarter hours coursework in the content area of abnormal psychology; and (iii) three (3) semester hours or four (4) quarter hours coursework in the content area of human growth and development across the lifespan. The remaining semester hours or quarter hours of coursework must be fulfilled in the content areas of social sciences and humanities.

5. Submission of an official academic transcript denoting the completion of the above requirements.

Applicants will be awarded the CTRS credential upon demonstration of the following:
1. Receive a passing score on the NCTRC exam.

2. Completion of an internship experience in accordance with NCTRC Standards:
• A minimum 560-hour, 14-week internship experience that uses the therapeutic recreation process as defined by the current NCTRC Job Analysis Study.
• Supervision by an agency internship supervisor who must be an active CTRS on the first day of the applicant’s internship and have been certified for at least one year prior to supervising interns. Any change in certification status of the supervisor during the internship shall not affect the certification eligibility of an applicant.
• Supervision by an academic internship supervisor who must be an active CTRS on the first day of the applicant’s internship and must be employed at the college/university.
• The CTRS cannot serve in the capacity of both the academic supervisor and agency supervisor during a given internship experience. Only the agency supervisor can earn continuing education credit for supervising the intern.
• An acceptable internship must be completed after the majority of required therapeutic recreation coursework is completed. Verification of the completed internship must appear on the official academic transcript. The majority of therapeutic recreation content coursework is defined as no less than 12 semester or 16 quarter hours of therapeutic recreation content coursework. This requirement applies to coursework completed at the degree earning institution and does not apply to coursework completed after the academic degree is conferred.
• The applicant must receive academic credit and an evaluative grade for the internship experience as verified by official transcript. The internship experience must be completed over the same dates as the semester or quarter in which the student receives academic credit for the experience.

3. Academic degree attainment as documented by an official academic transcript.

Professional Eligibility Application

Online Submission