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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.

Visit the program website for more information.

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. 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. Application information is available at

Why Study Recreational Therapy at Grand Valley?

  • The program meets the standards of the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (N.C.T.R.C.).
  • Nationally recognized curriculum with a small, welcoming program.
  • Diverse opportunities for employment after graduation.
  • Service learning is integrated throughout the curriculum.
  • Graduates are prepared to meet consumer health needs in a dynamic and culturally diverse world by completing a comprehensive curriculum that offers theoretical knowledge as well as practical experience and application.
  • 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 (CARTE).

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

Career Options

Recreational therapy is a diverse field that offers graduates varied career opportunities. RECTX specialists work in hospitals, acute and subacute care settings, nursing homes, older adult programs, centers for physical medicine and rehabilitation, psychiatric institutions, substance abuse centers, correctional facilities, juvenile services, public parks and recreation departments, volunteer agencies, after-care centers, and sheltered workshops.

Combined Degree Programs

This undergraduate degree can be combined with a master's degree to save you time and money, and get you into the workforce sooner. On average, students save $8,500 in our combined degree programs and take up to four fewer classes than if earning the degrees separately.

You can even build your own combined degree from programs in different disciplines to further personalize your education and meet specific career goals.

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 Department of Diagnostic and Treatment Sciences Recreational Therapy
500 Lafayette Ave. NE, Suite 106
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 331-5600

Admissions Office


“Through the quality education and amazing support I've received from the professors in the RECTX program, I have grown not only professionally but personally as well. I have learned so much about the field and feel confident in the knowledge I’ve acquired.”