Recreation Therapy (Accelerated) - 353

Ontario College Diploma
One and a half years
At the core, Recreation Therapists use leisure as a tool to help people of all ability levels make the most of their lives – physically, mentally, emotionally and socially.

What is Recreation Therapy? 

  • Recreation Therapy is person-centred: Our approach is about the individual, their needs and their passions, find out what lights their fire, and help them attain it.
  • Recreation Therapy breaks barriers: It’s about inclusion and empowering individuals to live their fullest life despite any limitations.
  • Recreation Therapy is evidence-based: Leisure is always purposeful and rooted in research, which matches specific interventions to specific client groups. 
  • It is a healthcare field that enriches lives. Recreation Therapists work in a variety of clinical & community settings and work with people across the lifespan. (Adapted from 

Program Highlights

  • At Mohawk, we are committed to providing the best experiential learning through the integration of theory and practice. Our commitment to experiential learning is supported by faculty who understand its value.
  • Students gain 480 hours of practical experience in the field through multiple practicum experiences with over 400 agencies in our database. 
  • Compressed schedule allows for students to balance work and school with enhanced flexibility 
  • We offer two unique outdoor RT course experiences (overnight at camp) which has been shown to engage students, increase sense of belonging among peers and faculty, and contribute towards student success. Students say it is one of the most memorable parts of the program!
  • We offer over 6 certifications and workshop trainings to set students apart on their job applications. Classroom learning is enhanced with our own experiential learning lab as well as the use of a Multisensory environment lab space.
  • Mohawk College’s Therapeutic Recreation curriculum has been successfully reviewed and determined to be in alignment with the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO), and Essential Competency Framework (ECF).  As a result, graduates of this program (283, 353) are eligible to apply for the Registration designation with the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) upon graduation. 
  • As a student in the program, you will receive a student membership with Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO)

Interested in our 2 year program of study?

Check out our Recreation Therapy 283 Program


What you’ll learn

  • Theoretical foundation and practical skills to plan, implement and evaluate leisure services for individuals at all stages in life who experience barriers to healthy leisure.
  • Recognize leisure, recreation and play as integral components of quality of life.
  • Assess needs and passions of an individual to provide person centred care.
  • Focus on inclusion and empowering to help people live their fullest life despite any limitations.
  • How to give back as much power and choice as possible back to the participant.
  • Provide services to individuals who have physical, mental, emotional or social limitations that impact their ability to engage in leisure experiences.

Follow us on Instagram @mohawkrecreationtherapy to check out highlights of our program! 


Program Length

16 months of study – accelerated and consecutive semesters, compressed schedule for enhanced flexibility 

View the Exceptions Calendar for start dates and semester break information.


We're here to help

We’re here for you to support applications and admissions by providing online and virtual service.


Applied and have questions?
The admissions team is available to help, you can contact them via Admissions or by phone at 1-844-767-6871.


Haven’t applied and need help?
Contact us or phone 905-575-2460.

Take a virtual campus tour

Explore Mohawk College from the comfort of home! Our virtual campus tours provide a guided visit of our buildings, labs, services, classrooms and athletic and recreation centre.


Start your virtual tour​!

Program delivery

Learn about program delivery terms.


Please note: in-person, virtual, and hybrid classes vary according to the program and some programs may be in-person only. Refer to the Program Overview for more information.



Domestic and International student admission requirements

  • OSSD or equivalent (Mohawk Academic Upgrading, GED) including:
    • Grade 12 English, C or U or equivalent (70% guideline)
  • Mohawk College will consider advanced standing and credit for prior learning with related experience on an individual basis
  • Volunteer experience in Recreation Therapy recommended
  • Attendance at program orientation is strongly recommended
  • Applicants should note that some employment opportunities require that certain physical standards must be met as a condition of employment

Language Requirements for Applicants with English as a Second Language

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English.

Options are available for mature applicants.

Tuition and Fees

2023 - 2024 Domestic Tuition and Fees

DescriptionSemester 1Semester 2

Compulsory Ancillary Fees

Co-op FeesN/AN/A

Compulsory Program Fees

Domestic Tuition$1,354.04$1,354.04
Total Domestic Charges Per Semester$2,734.39$1,959.16
Total 1st Year Fees$4,693.55

Above fees based on full-time September program start date. Contact Student Services to confirm fees for other start dates or semesters.

2023 - 2024 International Tuition and Fees

DescriptionSemester 1Semester 2

Total Tuition & Ancillary Fees

Co-op FeesN/AN/A

Program Compulsory Fees

International Tax Recovery$375.00$375.00
Total International Charges Per Semester$9,169.07$8,730.00
Total 1st Year Fees$17,899.07

If you pay by wire transfer, please note your bank might charge you a fee to transfer money. Make sure your transfer includes the Mohawk payment and the wire transfer fee. This applies to each wire transfer payment you make.

Additional Information

Financial Assistance

When it comes to paying for your education, investing in your future can be more affordable than you think. A Mohawk education is one of the most cost-effective means of acquiring the skills and knowledge you need to have a prosperous and rewarding career. 

As you start on your chosen career path, it's important to have a realistic set of expectations regarding the expenses associated with attending college. In addition to your tuition fees, you will also need to budget for books, supplies, housing, and other related living expenses. You may be able to supplement your income and savings with scholarships, bursaries, or loans. It pays to do some research into what types of financial assistance you may qualify for.

Available Financial Assistance Resources:

Apply for Awards:

By submitting a Scholarships and Bursaries Application every semester, students have access to over $3 million in Mohawk College scholarships, bursaries and Ministry-partnered funding to help meet their financial needs.

Financial Literacy and Money Coaching:

Whether saving for school, sticking to a budget, or planning for a major purchase, financial literacy affects us all. That's why Mo' Money is committed to helping our students improve their money skills and become more confident with their money.

Course Overview & Descriptions

Click on the course title for a course description.

Experiential Learning

How you'll gain skills

  • Complete 2 practicum experiences guided by Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) standards of practice.
  • Earn industry specific certifications and trainings such as GPA training, Multisensory Environment training, Dementiability Certification, Urban pole certification, SAFEtalk training, Music Care training, Mental Health first aid certification, etc. 
  • Participation in in-house community day program simulation and develop practical communication competencies through performance-based simulations.
  • Learn outdoor facilitation techniques by participating in an outdoor camp experience field trip.
  • Use sensory equipment in Mohawk’s on-site Multi-Sensory Lab.
  • Apply cumulative program knowledge through a capstone project.
  • Develop solutions or strategies for local organizations within a classroom setting.

To learn more, please visit the Centre for Experiential Learning.   

Recreation Therapy Practicum

The Recreation Therapy Practicum program offers two distinct practicum experiences over 16 months of study. Each student will graduate with 480 hours of practical experience in the recreation therapy field. The Recreation Therapy practicum program offers the highest number of practical hours compared to all other College recreation therapy programs in Ontario. 

PracticumSemesterDays a WeekHours per WeekHours
1 and 2Spring (May to August)Fridays
Wednesday, Thursday, Fridays

8 hours x 7 weeks

24 hours x 6 weeks

3Fall (January to April)Thursdays and Fridays16 hours x 10 weeks
Fulltime x 3 weeks


Community Partners

The Recreation Therapy program has partnerships with over 400 community agencies, locally, throughout Ontario, and across Canada. 

Recreation Therapy is practiced in diverse settings, including Hospitals, Long Term Care, Retirement, Day Programs (Seniors and Persons with Disabilities), Children’s Health Centres, and Residential and Community Programs.

Students will participate in an Agency Selection process to select their top three choices for placement. Students will complete an agency interview which determines the successful candidate. All students must complete the preplacement immunization and coursework listed below under practicum requirements.

Practicum Requirements

Vulnerable Sector Check (VSC)
Students must complete a vulnerable sector police clearance check to meet agency screening guidelines. Students must complete the VSC for each new agency experience through the 2-year program.

Immunization Requirements
Students must submit documentation of MMR, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Varicella (Chicken Pox), Hepatitis B, and Tuberculin Skin Tests before participating in the first practicum experience. We encourage students to begin this process early (upon the student’s acceptance of the recreation therapy program). The field placement specialist, Naritta Divjak, will email all new students with directions on how to find the immunization forms. It is best to have the immunizations complete before starting the program. For more information or questions on this process, please email naritta.divjak [at] (naritta[dot]divjak[at]mohawkcollege[dot]ca)

Pre-placement Course Work
All placement students must complete pre-placement courses, including Fire, WHIMIS, AODA, Workplace Harassment and Workplace Violence, and Worker Health and Safety.

Covid-19 Vaccine
Healthcare and community agencies require complete Covid-19 vaccination. Please note all recreation therapy placements are in healthcare and community settings. 


  • Placements may occur at locations that are not accessible by public transit. As such, students shall be expected to either have access to a car or the ability to supply their own transportation when attending placement activity. Mohawk shall not be responsible for providing students with transportation to placements within or outside the Hamilton region
  • Registered students who have been convicted of an offence for which they have not been pardoned may be denied the opportunity to enter or continue in a placement while in the program
  • Students are required to complete various Immunizations and Disease Screening protocols required by some field placement agencies

Become an Agency Partner

If you would like to become an Agency that takes students on placement from Mohawk College's Health Studies programs, please email the naritta.divjak [at] (Field Placement Specialist).

To learn more, please visit the Centre for Experiential Learning. 

Contact Us

If you have any questions at all, feel free to contact us.

Tracy Hopkins
Practicum Co-ordinator
905 575-1212 ext. 3518
tracy.hopkins [at] (tracy[dot]hopkins[at]mohawkcollege[dot]ca)

Naritta Divjak
Field Placement Specialist
905-575-1212 ext. 4240
naritta.divjak [at] (naritta[dot]divjak[at]mohawkcollege[dot]ca)

Learning Outcomes

Program Learning Outcomes, often referred to as ‘Program Standards', set out the essential learning that a student must achieve before being deemed ready to graduate.

In many cases these program learning outcomes were developed by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU) in consultation with employers and educators who are experts in the program field. To ensure the outcomes remain current and in line with industry needs, we invite our employers, graduates working in the field and current students to re-examine and update them during regular, ongoing program review focus groups.

Career Opportunities

Your future career options

  • Recreation Therapist

Where you could work includes:

  • Long-Term Care Facilities and Hospitals
  • Acute or Chronic Care Hospitals
  • Inpatient/Outpatient Rehabilitation Programs
  • Mental Health Settings
  • Municipal Recreation Departments
  • Day Programs/Day Hospitals
  • Addiction Treatment Centres
  • Community-Based Agencies serving people with disabilities
  • Private Practice
  • Limited opportunities to work with children

Opportunities for grads

  • Graduates are eligible to become a registered member of Therapeutic recreation of Ontario (TRO).
  • Students receive a number of industry-specific certifications.

Educational Pathways


Pathways to Mohawk 

If you've successfully taken a course at another post-secondary institution, you may be able to earn course exemptions toward your credential here at Mohawk.

Pathways within Mohawk

If you have successfully completed one of the following programs at Mohawk, you may be eligible to receive transfer credit in this program. *

We offer a diverse range of programs to further your studies within Mohawk following completion of this program. * 

This Pathways map shows how the identified program can lead to future program choices within Mohawk.

Pathways beyond Mohawk

Earn a degree:

 See for additional opportunities at other colleges or universities in Ontario.

Search the Mohawk Transfer Database for opportunities outside of Ontario.

Program Coordinator


Contact us

Domestic Canadian Students

Contact Student Recruitment
Haven’t applied yet and have questions?
Contact our Student Recruitment team for information on programs, how to apply, and more.

Contact Admissions
Contact our Admissions advisors for help with your application.
Contact Admissions
Phone: 1-844-767-6871

International Students

Contact International Student Recruitment
Contact our International Student Recruitment team for information on programs, how to apply, and student life.
Contact International
Phone: 1-905-575-2254
Toll free phone numbers:
For general questions: 1-888-Mohawk9 (1-888-664-2959)
North China: 10-800-714-2521
South China: 10-800-140-2541
Brazil: 0800-022-7408
Philippines: 180011102544

Contact International Admissions
Contact our Admissions advisors for help with your application.
Contact International Admissions
Phone: 1-905-575-2254

*Not all programs are international eligible. Please see our programs available for international students.

Accessible Learning Services

Are you a student with a confirmed or suspected disability? Visit our Accessible Learning Services website to discover how we can help you.

Interested in seeing what students are learning in our program?

Check out our Instagram and follow us @mohawkrecreationtherapy

Program Coordinator

Canadian Domestic Students

Mohawk College Custom Viewbook on app: Cxplore. Select. Create

Create your personalized viewbook

Build (and share) your online Mohawk College experience.

Get started!

Stay Connected!

Join our email list to receive college and program updates, upcoming events and stories about our students!

Sign up!