The Equivalency Paths are designed for applicants who have accomplished extensive
work in RT in combination with designated coursework to meet the NCTRC Certification Standards.
Equivalency Path (Effective July 1, 2019)
- 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
- A minimum of 18 semester or 24 quarter hours of recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) and general recreation content coursework with no less than a minimum of 15 semester or 20 quarter hours in recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) content.
- A minimum of five (5) courses in recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) is required and each course must be a minimum of three (3) credit hours. Two (2) of the required recreational therapy (therapeutic recreation) courses may be taught by the applicant as a full-time educator.
Supportive courses to include a total of 18 semester hours or 24 quarter hours of support coursework
- 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, if receiving supervision from 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.