The Equivalency Path is designed for applicants who have accomplished extensive
work in RT in combination with designated coursework to meet the NCTRC Certification Standards.
- Completion of Bachelor degree or higher
- Completion of specific coursework in recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) and related areas
- Paid work experience that uses the therapeutic recreation process
- Successful completion of the NCTRC Certification Exam
The eligibility requirements to take the CTRS examination are a baccalaureate degree or higher from an
accredited college or university verified by an official transcript and include the following:
Professional Content Coursework
- 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 and each course must be a minimum of three (3) credit hours. 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.
- 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.
Experience in RT Practice
- A minimum of 5000 hours of paid work experience that uses the TR process, or
- A minimum of 1500 hours of paid work experience that uses the TR process under the supervision of a CTRS for at least 1 hour for every 10 hours worked each week. While onsite or direct supervision is strongly encouraged, NCTRC recognizes there may be applicants who are unable to receive onsite supervision with a CTRS. With current technology, there may be alternative effective models of supervision.