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Play Therapy Credentials
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Program Overview

First established and offered in 1992, the Association for Play Therapy (APT) offers three credentials by which licensed mental health professionals, school counselors and school psychologists may demonstrate their play therapy knowledge and experience to the general public, parents, and other mental health professionals. 

  • Registered Play TherapistTM (RPT)
  • Registered Play Therapist-SupervisorTM (RPT-S)
  • School Based-Registered Play TherapistTM (SB-RPT)

Registrants are required to annually renew their credential and submit required play therapy continuing education every three years. Please visit the Credential Renewal section of our website for more information.

Effective January 1, 2020, individuals interested in applying for the Registered Play TherapistTM (RPT) credential must meet the criteria as listed in the Credentialing Standards document (formerly known as the RPT & RPT-S Guide). The revisions to the credentialing requirements signals APT's continued commitment to the field of play therapy and the standards by which the RPT/S credentials are earned. To learn more about the revisions and clarifications to the credentialing requirements, please click here or read the Special Section of the March and June 2019 issues of the Play TherapyTM Magazine. For questions concerning the Credentialing Program, contact APT 559-298-3400.

Yasmin Holt, Coordinator, Credentialing Services, yholt@a4pt.org
Michelle Horwege,
Coordinator, Credentialing Services, mhorwege@a4pt.org
Claudia Vega, PhD,
Clinical Coordinator, cvega@a4pt.org

 

Registered Play TherapistTM 

Applications are welcome upon the completion and documentation of all credentialing requirements as outlined in the Credentialing Standards. Applications will not be accepted prior to January 1, 2020.  Early submissions will be returned to sender.

Registered Play Therapist-SupervisorTM

Applicants must first hold and maintain the Registered Play TherapistTM credential in good standing for a minimum of three (3) years prior to applying for the Registered Play Therapist-SupervisorTM.

School Based-Registered Play TherapistTM

School Based-Registered Play TherapistsTM (SB-RPT) are school counselors or school psychologists who hold a license from their state's department of education, and who have satisfied the criteria described in the SB-RPT Guide.


Notifications

Changes to the Supervised Play Therapy Experience & Supervision Credentialing Requirement

Effective January 1, 2020, hours earned toward the supervised play therapy experience and supervision requirements for the RPT and RPT-S applications must be under the supervision of an RPT-S only.  Any supervised play therapy experience and supervision hours accrued prior to January 1, 2020 will be accepted provided they fall under the current guidelines.  Please refer to the Credentialing Standards for further instruction.  If you were conferred the RPT or RPT-S credential prior to January 1, 2020, this change will NOT affect you.  APT dedicated a special section of its magazine to the 2020 changes and it can be viewed here.

Changes to the Definition of Contact & Non-Contact Hours for Continuing Education

Effective January 1, 2020, contact hours are defined as "in-person" instruction only.  Live webinars, recorded webinars, book studies, etc. are defined as non-contact hours and are limited to 50 hours towards the APT credentialing application.  APT dedicated a special section of its magazine to the 2020 changes and it can be viewed here.

Credentialing Changes for Canadian Registrants

This notification addresses recent changes that have occurred with Canadian RPT and RPT-S registrants.  The changes affect a small number of our Canadian registrants. Since APT has no way of knowing if its vast number of members, registrants, Approved Providers, and Approved Centers are affiliated in some way with Canadian supervisees, training attendees, and/or fellow Canadian play therapists interested in the RPT/S credentials, this notice has been made available to all on our website.

RPT and RPT-S Acronym Conflict

In some states the acronym RPT is protected by Physical Therapists, and therefore restricts the public display of such.  To see if your state is included, please review this list.

Changes to RPT-S Renewal:  Supervisor Training Hours

In October 2015, the APT Registration & CE committee revisited the RPT-S renewal standards for supervisor training and agreed that the increase from two to six (6) hours that was effective April 1, 2014 was excessive.  Therefore, we have amended this criterion to three (3) hours of supervisor training in each three year CE cycle. If you were approved BEFORE 1/1/2014 – you will complete three (3) hours of supervisor training in your next 36 month CE cycle and thereafter. If you were approved AFTER 12/31/2013 – you will complete six (6) hours of supervisor training in the first and second CE cycles over the next six years.  Then complete three (3) hours of supervisor training each 36-month CE cycle thereafter.  

 

Disclaimer: The Association for Play Therapy (APT) confers the designation of Registered Play TherapistTM (RPT) and Registered Play Therapist SupervisorTM (RPT-S) to individuals who have provided APT with documentation that they have a) a mental health graduate or higher degree; b) been licensed by the applicable state licensing or certification authority; c) completed a minimum number of hours of general clinical experience and supervision; d) completed a minimum number of hours of play therapy training and supervision; and e) completed the requisite continuing education hours. The designation as a RPT or RPT-S does not certify, imply, or affirm the knowledge or competency of such individual but only confirms that the education and training requirements identified herein have been satisfied.

The Association for Play Therapy (APT) confers the designation of School Based-Registered Play TherapistTM (SB-RPT) to individuals who have provided APT with documentation that they have a) a mental health graduate or higher degree; b) been licensed or certified as a school counselor or school psychologist by the applicable state licensing or certification authority; c) completed a minimum number of hours of general clinical experience and supervision; d) completed a minimum number of hours of play therapy training and supervision; and e) completed the requisite continuing education hours. The designation as a SB-RPT does not certify, imply, or affirm the knowledge or competency of such individual but only confirms that the education and training requirements identified herein have been satisfied.