Learn to use recreation as a way to restore and renew people with a wide range of disabilities.


Calvin's therapeutic recreation program, one of only two such programs offered by Christian colleges in the world, offers cutting-edge knowledge in recreational therapy and health care. The 37-hour program gives you the knowledge and practical skills you need to work in a variety of settings. The program will prepare you for the national certification exam in therapeutic recreation.

Additionally, this program allows students to specialize in child life. 

Careers in Therapeutic Recreation

  • Acute care hospitals
  • Mental health agencies
  • Physical rehabilitation hospitals
  • Substance recovery programs
  • Long-term care facilities
  • At-risk youth services
  • Schools

Careers in Child Life

  • Pediatric hospitals
  • Emergency departments
  • Surgical and intensive care units
  • Outpatient units
  • Hospice care
  • Outpatient healthcare facilities
  • Doctor's offices

Course Requirements 2013-14

Therapeutic Recreation major

(37 semester hours)

  • KIN-201 Introduction to Kinessiology
  • RECR-203 Leadership in Recreation Programs
  • RECR-205 Therapeutic Recreation with Special Populations
  • RECR-310 Theory and Philosophy of Leisure
  • RECR-314 Principles of Therapeutic Recreation
  • RECR-324 Therapeutic Recreation Practice
  • RECR-326 Intervention Techniques in Therapeutic Recreation
  • RECR-345 Field Seminar in Therapeutic Recreation
  • RECR-346 Field Internship In Recreation
  • RECR-380 Individual Competencies

Cognates (16 semester hours)

  • One course from:

    • MATH-143 Introduction to Probability and Statistics
    • PSYC-255 Statistics and Research Design
    • SOC-255 Social Science Statistics

  • PSYC-201 Development Psychology: Lifespan
  • PSYC-212 Psychopathology
  • PSYC-310 Social Psychology
  • SOWK-370 The Helping Interview
  • HE 115 Essentials of Anatomy and Physiology (cross-listed as BIOL 115 Human Biology)

Additional psychology minor option

Because five psychology courses are embedded in the therapeutic recreation curriculum, taking one more psychology course will result in a psychology minor. 

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Calvin College Course CatalogCurrent students please download your course catalog for complete degree requirements.


New students are automatically considered for general academic scholarships ranging from $1,000-15,000 based on a careful review of their application materials.

For a complete listing of departmental scholarships available to first-year students, use the Scholarship Search ».


Donald De Graaf

Donald De Graaf
Director of off-campus programs
Professor of Kinesiology
Department of Kinesiology
HH 319A
(616) 526-6225

Youngkhill Lee

Youngkhill Lee
Department of Kinesiology
SFC 243
(616) 526-6030

James Timmer

James Timmer
Professor, Men's Athletic Director
Department of Kinesiology
SFC 217
(616) 526-6037

Talk to us

Brian Bolt Brian Bolt
Department Chair
department chair
Department of Kinesiology
SFC 220
(616) 526-7526


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