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The 2019 Therapeutic Recreation Education Survey: A 50-Year Comparison

Cari E. Autry, Stephen C. Anderson, Sydney L. Sklar


Fifty years ago, Stein (1970) conducted a therapeutic recreation (TR) education survey. Ten years later, Anderson and Stewart (1980) conducted a follow-up study that began the longitudinal studies in therapeutic recreation/ recreational therapy (TR/RT) education in the U.S. and Canada for the next four decades, and the results of each survey were published in the Therapeutic Recreation Journal (Anderson et al., 2000; Autry et al., 2010; Stewart & Anderson, 1990). The decennial TR/RT education surveys have included the same items and used the same core instrument since its first implementation in 1969 (Stein, 1970). Although survey content has expanded to include additional questions, this consistency of content was designed to allow the researchers to compare results across each decade and to identify and discuss trends and issues in TR/RT education. The overall findings and discussion were divided among TR/RT curricula, faculty and students and were compared to these same categories over the past 50 years.

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Higher education; longitudinal; recreational therapy; therapeutic recreation; trends

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