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2021-2022 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog

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Bachelor of Science in Recreational Therapy

Degree Requirements

The curriculum for the bachelor's degree in recreational therapy is designed to provide the essential competencies and skills related to professional practice in therapeutic settings. Students desiring a major in recreational therapy must complete the following:

University Degree Requirement

As identified in the General Academic Policies section of the Grand Valley State University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog.

Core Courses

Elective Courses

Choose two courses from the following:

Cognate Courses

Academic Standards

To embark on the fieldwork and internship placements, students must show academic competence. The criterion for competence is 80 percent (B-) in each RTX designated course. Additionally, students should be aware that prior to the beginning of the fieldwork and internship placements, they must complete comprehensive health compliance obligations including but not limited to a criminal background check, fingerprinting, and drug screening. It is the responsibility of the student to comply. If there is illegal activity in the background check/fingerprinting, or if there is evidence of one or more prohibited substance in the drug test, the clinical sites have the right to refuse a student's placement, which may negatively impact a student's ability to progress in the recreational therapy program. In addition, individuals who have been charged with, or convicted of a crime, may not be eligible for national certification by the National Council on Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC). Students to whom this may apply are strongly advised to work with NCTRC for preapplication review of eligibility for certification. Contact information for NCTRC:; email: [email protected]; telephone: (845) 639-1439; fax: (845) 639-1471.


  • First aid/CPR certification and other health compliance certifications must be current before registering for RTX 390 - Fieldwork OR RTX 490 - Internship.
  • Water safety instructor (W.S.I.) certification is often an internship requirement in a clinical rehabilitation setting. Students interested in physical rehabilitation or aquatics should consider pursuing this certification.


National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) Credential: It is the students' responsibility to be sure that they comply with NCTRC standards during their course of study. The certification process can only be pursued by the graduate. Universities and colleges are not permitted to enter into this process. Grand Valley's recreational therapy faculty can only advise the student on which courses to take to meet the qualifications required to sit for the credentialing exam. Upon application, the NCTRC board has the sole responsibility of reviewing the academic program and ascertaining whether a graduate is permitted to sit for the National Certification Examination. All decisions regarding certification are determined by the NCTRC Board.

Suggested Order of Coursework

Year One

Fall Semester (14 credits):

Winter Semester (14 credits):

Year Two

Fall Semester (16 credits):

Winter Semester (16 credits):

Year Three

Fall Semester (16 credits):

Winter Semester (12 to 15 credits):

Summer Semester (3 credits):

Year Four

Fall Semester (12 to 15 credits):

Winter Semester (12 to 15 credits):

Summer Semester:

*Must complete a minimum of two elective courses to fulfill program requirements.

If you are in need of assistance please submit any questions or comments.