Play therapy courses come to the North


Play therapy courses at CDU will address growing demands for qualified professionals

Play therapy courses at CDU will address growing demands for qualified professionals

The first play therapy courses in Northern Australia will address growing demands for qualified professionals in the region.

Charles Darwin University will become the second university in the country to offer qualifications in Play Therapy, including masters, graduate diploma and graduate certificate courses for eligible applicants.

Play Therapy associate lecturer Josephine Downs said the community’s interest in play therapy had grown over the past eight years as awareness about the profession and its benefits increased.

“We try very hard to meet the demand that is growing in the Northern Territory,” Ms Downs said.

“The courses on offer in 2016 will aim to cater to these community demands and help build a robust workforce.”

Ms Downs is currently the only registered play therapy supervisor in the NT but said Darwin could become a hub for international play therapy training with the creation of the courses.

“Play therapy is the least intrusive form of counselling for children,” she said.

“When you see a child who is happy, achieving and making friends and their parents are beaming with joy, it is the most rewarding part of the job.”

Ms Downs said it was important for play therapists to have relevant qualifications as the profession required complex skills in interpreting a child’s method of play as a form of communication.

She said therapists confronted a range of issues experienced by children, from the loss of a pet to bullying, parental separation and child abuse. 

Joining Ms Downs in the delivery of the new course will be course coordinator Carmen Naivalu and registered play therapist and fellow associate lecturer Joanne Wicks.

Course applicants are required to hold a bachelor degree or equivalent in the field of education, teaching, medicine, nursing, allied health, child care or social work. To apply, contact CDU on 08 8946 6666 or visit:

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