- September 01, 2021
Tuition & Fees
International: CAD $4,791
Recreation therapy aides support the efforts of recreation therapists in enhancing the quality of life for clients. You will work to improve the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of clients in a variety of settings including hospitals and assisted living homes, by implementing activities such as sports, dance, board games, music, or crafts.
This certificate is designed for those with work experience or education in health or human services looking to boost their employment opportunities.
This five-month full-time program begins every Fall term. You will complete four months of study which includes both online components and on-campus workshops held twice per month (Note for Fall 2020: due to COVID-19, the workshops will be held online). In January, you will complete four weeks of practicum (approximately 37.5 hours per week). Practicum shifts may include days, evenings, nights, and/or weekends.
You may be required to travel to various locations in order to complete your practicum placement. Every effort is made to accommodate learners in practicum placements within the time frame of the program. In rare instances, there may be a delay in program completion until a practicum placement can be arranged.
Tuition and financial aid
Refer to the Program Tuition Fee Chart for an estimate of the cost of completing a Bow Valley College career program. When creating a budget, consider the costs of tuition, student fees, textbooks, learning materials, and police information check fees. Attend a Financial Aid Information Session for advice on financing a Bow Valley College education.
- Credit in either English 10-1 or 10-2 or equivalent
- Successful completion of the General Educational Development (GED) test with a standard score of 450 in Language Arts: Reading and Writing
- Satisfactory results on the Bow Valley College Admissions Test
- Previous education and/or work experience in health or human services or successful completion of HMSV9102 Personal Support Skills for Caregivers
English language proficiency requirements
- See English Language Proficiency Requirements for details
- A current Police Information Check(PIC) must be submitted prior to practicum placements. The existence of a criminal record may postpone or prevent clinical, practicum, or field work placements and, subsequently, successful completion of the program.
- Immunization requirements must be met prior to participating in practicum placements. Details will be provided at the start of the program. Up-to-date immunizations are valid for the duration of the program.
- Basic Life Support CPR (FACP9101) is recommended and often required by employers
Curriculum subject to change.
Learners explore principles of interpersonal relationships and communication, considering the importance of self-awareness including such values as empathy, respect, genuineness, and humility therein. Learners practice verbal, nonverbal, emotional, conversational, and technology-mediated messaging necessary for effective communication in personal and professional contexts. Through this exploration and this practice, learners improve their ability to communicate assertively and respectfully with others in various contexts, taking care to understand the social and cultural contexts that affect communication, including the impacts of colonization on Indigenous groups in Canada in relation to interpersonal relationships and communication.
This introductory course focuses on the roles and responsibilities of the recreation therapy aide (RTA) within the recreation therapy environment. Learners consider the key dimensions of recreation therapy: cognitive, physical, psychosocial, spiritual, and emotional components that support the different modalities of therapy. In addition, learners examine how assisting with medication administration, treatment plans, and documentation fit into the scope of practice of the RTA during therapeutic recreation service delivery.
Learners examine the stages of human development, and the area of developmental disabilities to identify how recreation can play a part in the different stages of development. This course also introduces learners to common diseases and conditions. They explore recreation modalities that can therapeutically influence progressive conditions and enhance wellbeing in all dimensions of recreation therapy.
The central focus of this course is recreation therapy programming and the role of the recreation therapy aide (RTA) in the application of the program to meet client needs. Learners study the importance of person-centered care and the associated concepts. They collaborate with recreation therapists to develop programs incorporating the differences in assessment, treatment plans, implementation and evaluations. They explore ways to adapt programs to effectively meet or exceed targeted goals as they collaborate with the health care team. Learners address possible barriers and safety concerns before, during, and after the implementation stage of their program.
Prerequisites: COMM1101, RTAD1106 and RTAD1107
Required CoursesPracticum Course
Practice and demonstrate skills within a hands-on setting. For four weeks, a workplace preceptor supervises and guides the learner in the application of skills and knowledge.
The Recreation Therapy Aide Certificate program is designed for those with work experience or education in health or human services looking to expand their skill sets into the area of recreation therapy.
Courses are delivered in a blended delivery model that includes online learning, on-campus workshops (evenings and weekends), and a practicum.
The four full-time theory courses are offered every September to December. Each course is approximately four weeks, and they run one after the other. Related workshops are held approximately three times every month - generally, they are scheduled on Tuesday evenings, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., and occasional Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The final practicum is held every January for four weeks and requires a full-time commitment as learners will spend 150 hours at a placement site.
Program length is a total of twenty weeks. This certificate program includes four months of full-time online learning and workshops followed by four weeks of full-time practicum (five months in total).
Yes. Bow Valley College is the only school in Alberta to offer this certificate. There is also a two-year diploma available from the University of Lethbridge. Most employers are looking for recreation therapy aides with a certificate.