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GVSU Recreational Therapy class.

Recreational Therapy, B.S.

Recreational therapy (RECTX) is the specialized application of recreation and experiential activities or interventions that help maintain or improve the health status, functional capacities, and ultimately the quality of life for persons with disabilities. Secondary admission.

Visit the program website for more information.

This program requires a secondary admission process.

Program Overview

Grand Valley State University's RECTX major is a four-year academic curriculum plus one semester of internship leading to a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree. This is a cohort program where students receive individualized attention, hands-on practice, and over 1000 hours of clinical experience prior to graduation. Students need to be able to use clinical reasoning skills to solve problems, formulate concepts, make judgments, analyze behaviors and tasks, and determine appropriate interventions.

RECTX is a secondary admission program. Visit for application information.

Why Study Recreational Therapy at Grand Valley?

  • Nationally recognized curriculum with diverse opportunities for employment after graduation.
  • Located in the state-of-the-art Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall with a one-of-a-kind recreational therapy classroom/lab space including adventure therapy course and adaptive sports court(s), in close proximity to five hospitals, and many research, clinical, and treatment facilities.
  • Graduates entering a satisfying helping profession that assists people with disabilities to be more independent and achieve a higher quality of life, changing lives through transformative and innovative application of recreation and leisure.
  • The program meets the standards of the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification.
  • The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Programs ( under the recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation of Recreational Therapy Education.

Career Insights

This tool shows an overview of potential career opportunities for this major. Actual salaries, employment opportunities, and job titles may change over time.

Location & Format

All undergraduate students begin their academic career on the Allendale Campus. Students in this major continue their upper division studies on the GVSU Health Campus, near the Grand Rapids Medical Mile.

  • Face To Face


Students study a variety of topics that include:

  • Foundations of recreational therapy
  • Human anatomy and physiology
  • Interventions in recreational therapy
  • Leisure, health and wellness

Combined Degree Programs

Many GVSU undergraduate programs can be combined with an existing master’s degree program to save on tuition and get you into the workforce sooner. On average, you can save $8,500 by pursuing a combined degree and take up to four fewer courses than if earning the degrees separately.

Talk with an advisor about how you can build your combined degree from existing programs to further personalize your education and create your own niche area of expertise.

Admission Requirements

Students spend two years completing the general education and prerequisite courses. After admission to the secondary competitive program, students complete two years of full-time professional coursework. Application deadline for secondary admission is February 15; applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis until all seats are filled. For more information on the program and to apply now, click here

College of Health Professions
School of Interdisciplinary Health
Recreational Therapy

500 Lafayette Ave. NE, Suite 106
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 331-5600

Admissions and Recruitment Office


"With my degree, I feel empowered to pursue my passions and excel as a professional... I was provided with extensive hands-on experiences and mentorship from faculty and professionals, enabling me to graduate with a network of connections, a clear direction for my professional path, and a renewed sense of energy to make a meaningful impact."