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How to Become a Sex Therapist Online

Dec 02, 2019

If you have a passion for helping others in a mental health setting, you can become a sex therapist using a range of online resources. The criteria and necessary steps in becoming a sex therapist through distance learning is provided here.

Sex Therapist Overview

Sex therapists are licensed counselors and healthcare professionals who help people with various problems relating to sex. Sex therapy sessions typically involve listening to the patient and determining whether the problems stem from either psychological or physical issues. Becoming a sex therapist may be achieved primarily through online methods, with the exception of some on-site clinical hours and sessions. The table listed below provides information on the sex therapist career.

Required Skills Public speaking, compassion, attentiveness, organization
Job Growth* 22% for 2018-2028 (for Marriage and Family Therapists)
Median Salary (2018)* $50,090 per year (for Marriage and Family Therapists)

Source: *U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics

Becoming a Sex Therapist

Becoming a sex therapist will involve both undergraduate and graduate education, as well as clinical experience. Most of these steps may primarily be completed online, with a few in-person requirements. After you have submitted proof of your education and completed hours, you may then qualify for licensure.

Step 1. Complete a Bachelor's Degree

The first step will be obtaining a bachelor's degree in a related field, such as psychology. Many online programs are available that will allow you to complete your degree at your preferred pace. Topics for the coursework may include social psychology, cognitive psychology, and lifespan development.

Step 2. Get a Master's Degree

Upon receiving your undergraduate degree, you will then need to advance your educational career with a clinical master's degree in psychotherapy, psychiatry, counseling, or another related field. Several accredited online programs are available with a variety of specialties to choose from. Coursework may include psychotherapy, abnormal psychology, and counseling theory. Some programs may require additional internships and/or on-site residences.

Step 3. Get Experience and Hours

After completing your master's degree, you will need at least 300 hours of clinical experience in psychosexual disorders prior to obtaining your certification. This can be completed during your graduate education or after. You will need to be a member of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT), which can easily be done online. You will also need to have completed 90 hours of coursework in sexuality education. The program accepts 75 of these hours to be completed online through an accredited university. In addition, you will need 60 hours of training in sex therapy, 30 of which may be completed online. Lastly, you will need at least 10 hours in an in-person group sexuality counseling session and 50 hours of supervised experience with an AASECT Certified Supervisor of Sex Therapy.

Step 4. AASECT Certification

The final step involves submitting an application and getting approval, which will cost $300. In your application, you will need to include all transcripts, proof of membership or licensure in another discipline if applicable, a professional resume, and proof of hours completed. Your supervisor will need to provide a letter of endorsement stating that you have completed the required clinical experiences and counseling sessions. Once the completed application has been received, it will be put under review until notification of approval. You will then be a licensed sex therapist. This certification will need to be renewed every 3 years.

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