State of Maryland


- Hourly / - BiWeekly /
- Monthly / $26,929.00-$41,786.00 Yearly






An Activity Therapy Associate I is the entry level of activity therapy support work assisting in the implementation of the prescribed activity therapy programs and patient/client assessments for mentally ill, aged or physically ill or physically disabled patients or developmentally disabled clients who are residents of State treatment facilities or community based programs. Employees in this classification do not supervise, but may provide advice and guidance to direct care staff, students and volunteers.

Employees in this classification receive close supervision from a Therapeutic Recreator or other healthcare professional. Employees may be assigned to day, evening or rotating shifts to include holidays and weekends, overtime and on-call duty. Employees are required to observe infection control precautions in order to prevent contamination and the spread of disease. Employees may be required to restrain patients/clients displaying violent or aggressive behavior. The work may require lifting and positioning of non-ambulatory patients/clients and lifting of wheelchairs and other heavy equipment. The work may require long periods of standing, walking, bending, and reaching.

Positions in this classification are evaluated using the classification job evaluation methodology. The use of this method involves comparing the assigned duties and responsibilities of a position to the job criteria found in the Nature of Work and Examples of Work sections of the class specification.

The Activity Therapy Associate I, Activity Therapy Associate II and Activity Therapy Associate III are differentiated on the basis of degree of supervisory control exercised by the supervisor over these employees. The Activity Therapy Associate I learns to perform duties under close supervision.  The Activity Therapy Associate II performs duties under close supervision at times and under general supervision at other times depending on the complexity of the specific duty being performed.  The Activity Therapy Associate III performs the full range of duties and responsibilities under general supervision.


Learns to conduct therapeutic activities in art, music, dance, crafts, games, aerobics, gymnastics, swimming, therapeutic recreation or social events for patients/ clients as directed by the Therapeutic Recreator or other healthcare professional;

Learns to plan and organize approved therapeutic activities by assigning patients/clients to specific activity groups and planning auxiliary structured activities;

Learns to prepare for group activity sessions by setting up equipment and material, informing staff of the day’s agenda and escorting patients to program areas;

Learns to observe patients’/clients’ participation during individual and group activities and document progress in behavioral terms;

Learns to assist in patient/client assessments by reporting progress of patient, effectiveness of the treatment and participating in patient/client planning conferences as a member of a treatment team;

Learns to prepare attendance rosters, periodic reports documenting types of activities, number of participants, and problems and progress reports documenting treatment and therapeutic activities of individual patients/clients;

Learns techniques to motivate the patient/client to participate in activity therapy sessions;

Learns to maintain equipment, work area and adequate supplies needed for operation of the activity therapy programs;

Attends in-service training programs in order to maintain a continual awareness of current activity therapy principles and practices and the needs of the mentally ill and developmentally disabled population;

May provide advice and guidance to direct care staff, volunteers and students;

Performs other related duties.


Ability to learn group dynamics and current activity therapy principles and techniques;

Ability to learn the symptoms of common physical illnesses, mental illnesses, or developmental disability disorders;

Ability to learn the use and care of basic activity therapy materials and equipment;

Ability to learn and apply activity therapy techniques;

Ability to learn to exercise good judgment in patient/client treatment;

Ability to learn to observe patient/client behaviors, communicate in behavioral terms, organize work and manage time;

Ability to learn to assist in the preparation of structured activities and assessment reports;

Ability to learn to assist in assessing levels of patient/client behavior, aptitude and performance;

Ability to learn techniques to motivate patients/clients to participate in therapeutic activities;

Ability to learn procedures and safeguards in lifting and positioning patients and clients;

Ability to learn and carry out emergency and routine safety procedures for the protection of patients, clients, staff and the public;

Ability to establish and maintain working relationships with volunteers, students, employees, supervisors, patients and clients;

Ability to communicate effectively with volunteers, students, employees, supervisors, patients, clients and the general public.


Education: Completion of 60 credit hours from an accredited college or university with at least 15 credit hours in health services, human services, education or the behavioral sciences.

Experience: None.


1. Applicants may substitute two years of experience assisting in the implementation of prescribed activity therapy programs under the supervision of a healthcare professional to include assisting in patient/client assessments for mentally ill, aged, physically ill or physically disabled patients or developmentally disabled clients for the required education.

2.  Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a non-commissioned officer in Therapy       classifications or Therapy specialty codes in the Therapeutic Recreation field of work on a year-for-year basis for the required education. 


1. Employees in this classification may be assigned duties which require the operation of an automobile. Employees assigned such duties will be required to possess a motor vehicle operator’s license valid in the State of Maryland.

2. Employees in some positions in this classification may be required to operate vehicles which require a Class “C” motor vehicle operator’s license valid in the State of Maryland.

3. Employees in this classification may be required to successfully complete and maintain current certification of cardio-pulmonary resuscitation training.

4. Employees in this classification at facilities with a swimming pool may be required to obtain Red Cross instruction and certification in Life Saving and Water Safety prior to appointment.


Employees in this classification are subject to call-in and, therefore, will be required to provide the facility with a telephone number where they can be reached.


Class specifications are broad descriptions covering groups of positions used by various State departments and agencies. Position descriptions maintained by the using department or agency specifically address the essential job functions of each position.

This is a Skilled Service classification in the State Personnel Management System.  All positions in this classification are Skilled Service positions.  Some positions in Skilled Service classifications may be designated Special Appointment in accordance with the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 6-405, Annotated Code of Maryland.  

This classification is assigned to Bargaining Unit D, Health and Human Service Nonprofessionals classes.  As provided by the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 3-102, special appointment, temporary, contractual, supervisory, managerial and confidential employees are excluded from collective bargaining.  Additionally, certain executive branch agencies are exempt from collective bargaining and all positions in those agencies are excluded from collective bargaining.

Employees in this classification are eligible to receive overtime compensation. An employee who works more than the normal workweek is entitled to be compensated for that overtime, as provided by the State Personnel and Pensions    Article, Section 8-305.    

This classification is one level in a Non-Competitive Promotion (NCP) series.  NCP promotions are promotions by which employees may advance in grade and class level from trainee to full performance level in a classification series.  In order to be non-competitively promoted to the next level in a NCP series, an employee must: 1) perform the main purpose of the class, as defined by the  Nature of Work section of the class specification; 2) receive the type of supervision defined in the class specification and 3) meet the minimum qualifications of the classification.

Date Revised

December 1, 2017

Approved By

Director, Division of Classification and Salary

CLASS: 004200; EST: ; REV: 12/1/2017;

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