If you are in this profession as a therapist or educator and are considering adding a credits program to your resume please note that being an American Association of Sexuality Educators member is not necessary in order to teach or counsel sex. There are several other credentials that will get you in the door. Please note that becoming a member of the AASE does not guarantee that one has all the skills, experience and abilities necessary to facilitate a positive sexual education or guide someone through the process of exploring their sexual identity and/or sexuality.
Becoming an AASE member is the first step in obtaining training as either a sex therapist or counselor or a psychologist specializing in sexual counseling and psychology. One must also complete a formal education or certification in psychology, education, development, human sexuality or biology. There are many programs available at most community colleges, vocational schools, universities and online universities. Please check with your state licensing board to find out what educational requirements are in your area. In addition to completing the required courses and hours, there are several other factors that must be considered for acceptance into the American Association of Sexuality Educators and Treaters.
For those considering becoming a sex therapist, the requirement to complete a minimum of sixty hours of approved sex therapy training is the first requirement to fulfill. Once you have completed this requirement, you will need to take a licensing exam, typically held by the American Board of Sex Therapists (ABST). After you have successfully completed the required coursework, please note that you must pass the certification exam. Please note that sex therapy is not licensed or certified by the ABST.
For those interested in becoming psychologists or counselors, you will also need to complete a minimum of sixty hours of approved CE. You can find approved CE credits on the Internet. Most programs offer an online program where you can log on at any time to access CE course work and then complete them at your own pace. The majority of programs offer core knowledge areas that will help you prepare for the licensing exam.
Once you have completed the required courses and passed the certification exam, you will be required to take a supervised internship. This is typically held at a local sex therapist’s office for a couple of hours a week, up to one hundred hours in total. Your supervisor will assign you to either perform group supervision, or one individual supervision per week. Typically, those working in a clinical setting will complete group supervision hours as a part of their weekly workload.
Most therapists who specialize in sex therapy choose a specific type of clinic or practice. Some specialize in couples therapy, while others work with clients who have children. Still others may only practice within a certain geographical area. If you feel you would be better suited to work in a more traditional clinical setting, you can generally obtain a position in a nearby clinic. However, if you are seeking work outside of your home region, your best bet is to look for clinics or practices that accept your specialized field of practice.
Many psychiatrists choose to work in private practices. Some opt to open their own consulting firm, while others work as private, independent therapists in private practice. Regardless of how you choose to work, your work will generally require some supervision, or the services of a psychologist or counselor. Typically, a psychiatrist will not perform group practice unless he or she has been trained to do so. If you decide to work as an independent therapist, you will still require the services of a psychologist or other qualified counselor in order to provide ongoing counseling.