ATRA awards Professional Membership to applicants that have a degree concentration in Therapeutic Recreation. The degree program must meet specified coursework and practicum criteria. Graduates of these academic programs are prepared to enter practice as a Recreation Therapist.
FAQs: Grandfathering Education & Experience
1. An applicant with a diploma in Recreation Therapy (graduation prior to 2021), with applicable clinical experience has applied for a job as a Recreation Therapist in my facility. Shall I employ this person? Can I call them a Recreation Therapist?
As the Recreation Therapy profession matures the qualifications of requiring a specific degree to enter practice came into effect in April 2021. Prior to April 2021, ATRA recognized the academic qualifications and experience of Therapeutic Recreation diploma graduates within our professional membership category. If your applicant has a TR Diploma, is a professional member in good standing of ATRA and has clinical experience and characteristics you are seeking you may have found your best employee.
2. The Recreation Therapist employed in my agency does not have a degree or diploma that corresponds with 2021 requirements; but is currently a professional member of ATRA. Will they be able to retain their professional membership?
ATRA has implemented a Grandfather Clause to protect current members rights to maintain professional membership. Your employee is able to retain their right to professional membership providing the following conditions are met:
- Renewal of annual membership and payment of fees
- Participation in ATRA’s Continuing Competence Program
3. The Recreation Therapist employed in my agency has let their ATRA Professional Membership lapse. Will ATRA allow my employee to renew their membership?
Member participation in ATRA’s Continuing Competence Program is the key element in membership renewal. To ensure Albertans receive safe competent therapeutic recreation intervention, a Recreation Therapist that has let their membership lapsed longer than the three-year period prior is required to apply as a new member. ATRA’s Membership Review Committee will implement a Bridging Process to membership considering the applicant’s combination of education and experience.
4. The Recreation Therapist employed in my agency has never been a member of ATRA. Does my employee need to be a member of ATRA?
Make current and ongoing professional membership a condition of employment. Direct your employee to follow the instructions in Pathway 4. Return to Practice Track
Membership with ATRA assures Albertans, your agency, clients and families, that your recreation therapist has met entry to practice requirements, follows a code of ethics, standards of practice and is committed to maintaining competent evidence based practice through completion of a Continuing Competence Program.