Our Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation and Recreational Therapy prepares students for a career of helping others get better and stay healthy by engaging in the activities they love to do. The program is designed for students who are eager to pursue a career in recreational therapy (RT), or for students who plan to pursue graduate education in allied health care programs such as Physical Therapy (PT), Occupational Therapy (OT), Audiology and Speech Language Pathology (SLP), Nursing, Rehabilitation Counseling, Athletic Training (AT), Art Therapy, Music Therapy or Child Life.
The BS program prepares students to become competent entry-level rehabilitation professionals and recreational therapists in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills) and affective (behavior) domains.
A student may take the Rehabilitation Track or the Recreational Therapy Track. To decide which track best meets your education and career goals, you can review the RRT Degree Decision Tree or the screen reader-friendly RRT Degree Decision Tree.
Both tracks are also offered in an online format. Contact Tonia Porter for more information.
If you entered the program before Fall 2021, view our older Recreational Therapy tracks under the BS in Recreation and Sport Management.
The Rehabilitation Track prepares students for entry-level health care positions within a health care or human services setting. The courses in the rehabilitation track emphasize the broad spectrum of health care through treatment, education and therapeutic services – all of which are instrumental to improving and maintaining physical, cognitive, emotional and social functioning, preventing secondary health conditions, and enhancing overall quality of life. Students in the rehabilitation track will meet the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) academic requirements for the Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) credential via the equivalency path, which requires 1,500 hours of paid post-graduation work experience using the RT process under the supervision of a CTRS.
The Rehabilitation Track is suitable for students interested in graduate programs in other allied healthcare professions, as this track provides 30 credits of electives that can be used for prerequisite courses for graduate programs.
Students who choose the rehabilitation track to pursue other allied healthcare professions have good prospective employment, as the labor and employment market for health and rehabilitation fields is very strong. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, health care occupations are projected to add more jobs than any of the other occupational groups, with 14% projected growth from 2018 to 2028.
The Recreational Therapy Track prepares students to be eligible for certification as a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) via NCTRC’s academic path, to work as a recreational therapist right after graduation. Recreational Therapy jobs are growing due to the prevalence of disability in our society. According to the CDC, 1 in 4 adults in the United States have some type of disability. The curriculum in the recreational therapy track emphasizes the role of recreational therapy in the health care team through treatment, education, and recreation and leisure-based interventions – all of which are instrumental to improving and maintaining physical, cognitive, emotional and social functioning, preventing secondary health conditions, and enhancing quality of life.
Recreational Therapy is a fast-growing profession. According to the U.S Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment of recreational therapists is projected to grow 7 percent from 2018 to 2028, faster than average for all occupations. The increase in the number of aging adults is generating recreational therapy jobs nationwide, and especially in Florida, the state with the highest percentage of persons ages 65 and over.
College to Career
- Rehabilitation Therapy: Rehabilitation settings, long-term care agencies, disability services, social assistance, and human service settings. This degree track is appropriate for students who want to pursue graduate degrees in allied health professions such as Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Athletic Training, Rehabilitation Counseling, Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, Art Therapy, Music Therapy, and Child Life Specialist.
- Recreational Therapy: Physical medicine and rehabilitation agencies, schools, behavioral/mental health facilities, military services organizations, community-based and disability organizations, assisted living facilities, adapted sports programs, parks and recreation departments, government, and home health care.