Scholarships/Tuition Discounts: $3,000 tuition discount for Registered Health Care Assistants. Some conditions apply.
Course Delivery: Online (instructor-led). Local practicums.
Duration: 47 weeks, including a 7-week practicum
Start: April & August
Wages: Earn between $25.83 – 28.84/hour
Student Diversity:
Stenberg supports diversity in our student population, and we hold one seat per program for a self-identified Indigenous applicant who meets admission requirements. If the seat remains unfilled at 12 weeks prior to the program start, the seat will be released and offered to other qualified applicants.

About the Career

Therapeutic Recreation Assistants (TRAs) help older adults rediscover joy. By using a person-centred approach, TRAs assist each individual in pursuing past recreational and leisure activities while also learning new ones. TRAs enhance older adult’s quality of life while maintaining their independence and wellbeing. This is a career for well-trained, passionate and caring individuals who want to make a difference in older adults’ lives.

Therapeutic Recreation addresses the whole person, focusing on their social, physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual domains. As defined by Iso-Ahola (1980), “therapeutic recreation is purposeful intervention designed to improve the client’s quality of life through recreation and leisure.” The programs and leisure activities that Therapeutic Recreation Assistants design are evidence-based and outcome-focused. Most importantly, they are person-centred.

As a Therapeutic Recreation Assistant, you’ll find opportunities for employment in:

  • Community & Senior Centres
  • Residential Settings (Long-term Care)
  • Assisted Living Housing units
  • Adult Day Centres
  • Rehabilitation Centres

Older adults are the fastest growing age group in Canada, resulting in an urgent and growing need for professionals who can support and promote optimal health for this generation.

More coming soon.

About the Program

This 47-week online diploma program includes a seven-week practicum in your home community. Theory is delivered entirely online, practicums will take place in your home region.

This program is collaborative and engaging. In your virtual classroom, you will make friends, receive support, and collaborate with classmates to learn and grow together.

This program is purposeful. Therapeutic Recreation Assistants support and promote optimal health in older adults through recreation and leisure activities that include arts and crafts, music, gardening, games, social events, outings, entertainment, and exercise. 

This program is rewarding. Taking a person-centred approach, you’ll design and lead programs and activities for older adults that bring joy to their lives, and yet, the joy you receive will be greater than the joy you give.

Admission Requirements

Pre-requisites

  • Grade 12 graduation or mature student status
  • Passing Stenberg College entrance examination for Reading and Spelling or the following in lieu:
    • Evidence of passing any high school Grade 12 level English course or higher
    • IELTS: General or Academic with Overall band score of 6.0 with no component less than 6.0 in Speaking & Listening and 5.5 in Reading & Writing
    • CLBPT: Minimum score of 7 in Speaking & Listening and 6 in Reading & Writing
  • Successful completion of the online Computer Skills Entrance Test (minimum 70%)
  • Completion of Stenberg College entrance informational interview
  • Passing Verbal Test of English if EAL
  • Completion of a Criminal Record Consent Form under the Criminal Record Review Act

*Entrance requirements can be met with evidence of alternate assessments such as Challenge Exams, or acceptable standardized English equivalency tests as per the Stenberg College Language Proficiency chart. Evidence of Post-Secondary studies at an equivalent level where English was the first language is acceptable.

Program Courses

Student Support

  • Academic tutoring
  • Assessment and skill development support
  • Open study skills tutorials
  • Typing practice support
  • One-on-one student support coaching sessions
  • English language learning support
  • Online learning resources
  • Online academic journals and databases
  • Campus life events

Our Faculty

Free Therapeutic Recreation Assistant Guide Book

A Stenberg College Publication

Therapeutic Recreation addresses the whole person, focusing on their social, physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual domains. As defined by Iso-Ahola (1980), “therapeutic recreation is purposeful intervention designed to improve the client’s quality of life through recreation and leisure.” The programs and leisure activities that Therapeutic Recreation Assistants design are evidence-based and outcome-focused. Most importantly, they are person-centred.

Each of the program plans in A Therapeutic Recreation Assistant’s Guide: Program Plans for Older Adults was developed by a Stenberg College student as part of their coursework. They are excellent examples of evidence-based, outcome-focused and person-centred programming. These program plans represent the quality education Stenberg College Therapeutic Recreation Assistant students receive while attending school.

Front Cover of Book - Program Plans for Older Adults

Please click below to download “A Therapeutic Recreation Assistant’s Guide: Program Plans for Older Adults” in your preferred format:

Download the PDF
Download for Apple using the Books app

Accreditation and Recognition

Stenberg College is designated by the BC government’s Ministry of Advanced Education through the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB). This program is approved by PTIB. PTIB is responsible for setting standards of quality and ensuring consumer protection. Stenberg College has also received the BC government’s Education Quality Assurance (EQA) designation, which is BC’s brand or “seal” of quality post-secondary education for public and private institutions.

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