How do I become a certified sex therapist?

Sex Therapist FAQ


What do I have to do to be a sex therapist?

Your journey to becoming a sex therapist begins with a master’s degree in a counseling-related field, an internship, and then a license as a Mental Health Counselor, Marriage and Family Therapist, Professional Counselor, or Clinical Social Worker. Psychologists may also become sex therapists.
The next step is to take the additional training in human sexuality and sex therapy education offered by a reputable institution, such as the Sex Therapy Training Institute. You will also need hours of case consultation/supervision to assure that you are competent to treat sex therapy cases.

What is a sex therapist?

A sex therapist is a psychotherapist or psychologist who has taken the additional training in human sexuality and sex therapy education offered by a reputable institution, such as the Sex Therapy Training Institute. The education and the hours of case consultation/supervision assure clients that the sex therapist is competent to treat sexual dysfunctions and disorders such as erectile difficulties, inability to orgasm, or desire differences. They may also specialize with LGBTQI issues, gender transition, sexual abuse, kink/polyamory, childhood concerns, senior sexual challenges, and sex offending.

How much money does a sex therapist make?

Therapy fees vary widely depending on location and experience. Sex therapists may charge one and a half to twice what their fees would be without that title.

What does a sex therapist do?

Sex therapy is a broad umbrella covering such issues as couples with sexual problems, sex and porn addiction, kink/BDSM exploration, sexual trauma, and so much more. Anything that involves sexual behavior and attitudes that cause distress falls under sex therapy.

Can I be a sex therapist if I’m not a therapist?

No, but if you are an educator, nurse, coach, or licensed or certified in another discipline, you may become certified as a clinical sexologist or sexology educator.

What is a Board Certified Sex Therapist?

Many professions have licensing or certification boards, made up of experts in that field. Their purpose is to assure that professionals meet established criteria for excellence in their field. The Therapist Certification Association is one board that certifies Sex Therapists, Sexology Educators, Clinical Sexologists, and other fields that fall under the category of sexology. These include Sex Offender Therapists, Kink Conscious Therapists, and Addiction Therapists.

What are the requirements to get a PhD in sexology/sex therapy?

Prospective students will have earned a Master’s Degree in a healthcare-related field, such as mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, clinical social work, psychology, nursing, medicine, coaching, education, and more. Students do not need a license, only a Master’s Degree.

Why should I get a PhD in sexology/sex therapy?

A PhD is the highest degree attainable in a profession. It is a source of pride for the person who earns it and it tells the world that this person is not only an expert in the field, but also has contributed something original to the field. In the field of sexology, the title “Doctor” also conveys a sense of trust and gravitas to prospective clients, academia, and the forensic arena.

Do I need a license to take the doctoral program?

No, you do not need a license. It is important, however, to be aware of what you can and can’t do with this degree. This is not a licensable degree, so you will need a psychotherapy license to practice therapy. If you are an educator or coach, you need credentials in those areas to then work as a sexology educator or sex coach. This degree is meant to be adjunctive to your profession.

What can I do with a PhD in sexology?

The majority of our graduates are therapists, so their degree allows them to specialize in the field of sex therapy and use the title “Dr.”
Others are authors, forensic experts, program administrators, or educators and the PhD provides recognition and advancement in their fields.

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