Development of Learning Outcomes for Therapeutic Recreation Education Accreditation


  • Lynn S. Anderson


Accreditation, learning outcomes, standards, Council on Accreditation, COAPRT, therapeutic recreation, recreational therapy


This article describes the development of the Guidelines for Learning Outcomes for Therapeutic Recreation Education (Anderson et al., 2012). The Guidelines provide guidance for therapeutic recreation programs pursuing accreditation with Council on Accreditation for Parks, Recreation, Tourism, and Related Professions (COAPRT) using the 2013 Accreditation Standards, based on best practices in higher education accreditation. A task force of diverse educators and practitioners, using a rigorous content analysis of documents vetted by the therapeutic recreation profession, developed the learning outcomes to align with new 2013 COAPRT standards. The learning outcomes focus on foundations, the therapeutic recreation process, therapeutic recreation administration, and the internship. Suggestions for evidence of learning outcome attainment are provided, as well as the system for evaluation used by accreditation visitors. The Guidelines, when used as a part of COAPRT accreditation, provide a means for therapeutic recreation curricula to assure quality, achieve consistency in learning outcomes meaningful to the profession, and allow for flexibility in curriculum design.



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