Play Therapy Research and Training

The University of Arkansas Office of Play Therapy Research and Training was designated a nationally approved center by the Association for Play Therapy on March 6, 2015.

The office offers graduate level coursework to students enrolled in the Counselor Education and Supervision Program, enabling them to become registered play therapists. Students have the opportunity to learn in a state-of-the-art playroom as well as have opportunities to conduct research in the field of play therapy.

As a designated provider for the Association for Play Therapy, the U of A office also provided workshops throughout the year for students and mental health professionals seeking certification as a registered play therapist or a registered play therapist supervisor. Professional play therapists with expertise in the field conduct the training.

Kristi Perryman is an associate professor of counselor education director of the U of A Office of Play Therapy Research and Training. She has over 15 years of experience in the field of play therapy as a professional school counselor and licensed professional counselor. Her experience includes working as a special education teacher, elementary counselor, middle school counselor, as well as a private practice practitioner and counselor educator. She also has published in School Based Play Therapy and The Handbook of Play Therapy, as well as the International Journal of Play Therapy and conducts training on play therapy, sandtray therapy, expressive arts therapy and supervision.

The University of Arkansas Office of Play Therapy Research and Training offers the 150 continuing education units (CEUs) needed to become a registered play therapist each year:

  • Annual Summer Conference: 12 hours (2 day workshop offered each summer)
  • Introduction to Play Therapy: 67.5 hours (5 week course offered each summer)
  • Counseling Children and Adolescents Through Play: 67.5 (16 week course offered each spring)

Additional workshops are offered throughout the year in which the additional 3 hours may be obtained.

Partnerships and Mission

The University of Arkansas Counseling Office of Play Therapy Research and Training is committed to conducting research that has a positive impact on the children, families and mental health professionals in our state and beyond. We also strive to continue to contribute to the evidence base for play therapy by partnering with local schools and mental health agencies.


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