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Registration for the Winter 2020 semester begins soon.  Watch your email for more details.
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Valuing Diversity: Therapeutic Recreation and Physical and Developmental Disabling Conditions

Course Code: THRT 2407
Faculty: Child, Family & Community Studies
Credits: 3.0
Semester: Flexible Delivery ranging over 1 to 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Tutorial
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

The purpose of this course is to give the student an appreciation of the changes, diversity and needs of people with different abilities and cultural experiences. Therapeutic Recreation implementation strategies and techniques will be used to study age, disability and disease related changes and diversities, focusing on people living with a variety of physical and developmental disabling conditions. This understanding of diversity will enable the design and development of leisure experiences to meet a variety of client needs.

Course Content

The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:

Disabling Conditions:

  • Changes and its impact on the child, adolescent, and adult
  • Adjustment to disability theory
  • Stress and its management
  • Developmental disabilities: autism, mental retardation, fetal alcohol syndrome, cerebral palsy, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities
  • Respiratory disorders: asthma, cystic fibrosis
  • Physical impairments: obesity, eating disorders
  • Neurological impairments: acquired brain injury, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury,
  • Life altering and threatening illnesses: cancer, chronic pain
  • Ethnicity, gender, cultural and socioeconomic influences

Social Implications of Illness

  • Issues with respect to sudden illness
  • Issues with respect to social attitudes that equate slimness with beauty
  • Adjustment to disability – perceived and actual losses
  • Cultural implications of disability and illness


  • The health benefits and the value of leisure
  • The role of leisure in the health of people
    • Overcoming losses
    • Physical, social and emotional health
    • Social support networks

Therapeutic Recreation Frameworks and Interventions to Solve Problems

  • Therapeutic touch
  • Environmental/therapeutic milieu
  • Non verbal (augmentative) communication
  • Behaviour management practices, including behaviour modification
  • Physical recreation activities as a therapeutic intervention
  • Sensory stimulation
  • Leisure activities and experiences
    • Physical, social, cognitive, emotional and spiritual activities
  • Activity adaptation
  • Emergent situational needs
  • Activity adaptation
  • Activity analysis

Methods of Instruction

  • Lecture
  • Group work
  • Student/media presentations
  • Community experiences
  • Skill development

Means of Assessment

This course will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations

An evaluation schedule is presented at the beginning of the course. Typical means of evaluation will include a combination of written assignments, presentations and testing.

This is a graded course

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. describe a variety of physical, neurological, and developmental disabling conditions
  2. describe a variety of life altering illnesses and conditions
  3. discuss the social implications of illness including cultural differences
  4. discuss the role and benefits of leisure and recreation experiences
  5. use therapeutic recreation frameworks and interventions to solve problems relating to diversity in abilities, disabilities and culture
  6. design therapeutic recreation programs
  7. discuss recreation program adaptations needed during leadership of recreation experiences

course prerequisites

BIOL 1205

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.