Stevens, Brooke - Sexuality Educator

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[edit] Job Title (Brooke Stevens)

Sexuality Educator (Or Sexual Health Educator)

[edit] General Overview

Sexuality educators may work in a variety of educational settings. This may involve working with elementary and high school students, parents, the elderly, college students, religious groups, and many more. This variance in potential teaching settings requires sexuality educators to be able to adapt to different scenarios and audiences. The primary goals for sexuality educators are to create and implement sexual education programs in a variety of settings. This involves sharing non-judgmental information regarding topics related to sexuality that is both age and culturally appropriate to the audience.

[edit] Job Duties and Responsibilities

First, a career in sexual health education involves researching and creating lesson plans that are appropriate for the context in which the lesson will be provided; this involves being age, situationally and culturally appropriate. In addition to creating lesson plans, sex educators often must perform presentations for classes, groups, colleges and more. This involves presenting content related to topics such as safe sex, sexual health, healthy and unhealthy relationship, sexual pleasure, communication, pregnancy and reproduction, abortion, sexual violence, consent, masturbation, puberty, menopause and more[1]. It is vital for sexuality educators to present this content in a positive manner that is free of judgment and personal biases. Additionally, it is important that sexuality educators maintain confidentiality between themselves and clients[1]. Sexuality educators should also stay current on topics related to sexuality and sexual health. This may involve following journals related to sexuality in order to stay informed on recent sexuality research being conducted. In addition to this, sex educators may attend training sessions in order to continuously increase their knowledge base in relation to sexuality[1]. Overall, the primary goal of a sexuality educator is to provide the general population with knowledge related to sexuality in a positive environment.

[edit] Typical Workday

The typical work day for a sexuality educator can vary significantly based on the populations they work with and the current demand for work. Most days will consist of making lesson plans for future presentations, or presenting content to a group, sometimes both. Sexuality educators typically plan session with clients in advance. The timing of these sessions depends largely on the audience. In the case of elementary or high school classes, sessions are typically during regular class hours. Hours may vary more when working with extracurricular groups, adults, or colleges. As most sexuality educators in Canada tend to work somewhat independently due to the lack of governing board in Canada, they are allowed a fair amount of flexibility in when they schedule hours to work on lesson plans [2]. Additionally, with the rise of popularity of Vloggers (or Video Bloggers) on websites such as YouTube, many sexuality educators are now taking to the internet to provide education to a larger group of the population. A typical work day for these individuals may be different from those that are presenting lessons in person. In addition to preparing lesson plans and recording them, they must also edit and post these videos.

[edit] Educational Requirements and other Qualifications

There are no specific requirements for a sexuality educator in Canada as sex education is not officially recognized as being separate from health education. This means that accreditation as a sexuality educator is often achieved through the health education field. Despite the lack of official recognition of sexuality education as an independent field, there are organizations set up to provide additional training in this area. Perhaps the most popular of these is run by an organization titled Opt for Sexual Health [3].

In addition to these, a small number of universities in Canada offer sexuality studies, for example, York University’s Sexuality Studies Certificate [4].

[edit] Related Skills, Interests and Abilities

When entering the field of sexuality education, it is important that an individual have a passion for educating in a variety of environments. Comfort in discussing sensitive subject matter is vital. In some cases, the information being presented by the educator may not be received particularly positively, it is important that this person be able to address concerns of the audience and relay information in a positive manner. It is important to have an understanding and sensitivity to different opinions, cultural or religious beliefs[1]. Additionally, a sex educator must be able to present information subjectively without personal biases influencing the content.

[edit] Relevance of Psychology Undergraduate Degree

While a career in sexuality education does not have specific education expectations, an individual pursuing this field would benefit from an undergraduate degree in psychology for a number of reason. A knowledge of various disorders in the DSM, such as paraphilias or Gender Dysphoria would be beneficial when discussing topics related to sexuality. Theories related to the psychology of human sexuality may provide knowledge on topics such as anatomy and physiology, sexual orientation, gender identity, love and attraction, etc.. Additionally, theories regarding adolescent development might be useful when engaging in discussions about puberty, as the cognitive development that occurs during this time is very important. As well, as more thorough understanding of interpersonal interaction that might be obtained from studying psychology could be beneficial to educating others on topics in human sexuality.

[edit] Salary Potential

Potential salaries depend on the situation in which a sexuality educator is working. There may be differences in salary based on location, and the organizations they are working with. For example, an individual working in a major city will have a higher income than one working in a more rural area. However, on average, salaries for sexuality educators are around $49 210 annually[5].

[edit] Job Outlook

The projected job openings for this career are around 26000 in Canada between 2012 and 2022. The projected growth of this field is above average at about 15-21%[5].

[edit] To Know More

[edit] Notes and References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 How to Become a Sexual Health Educator - Sexual Health Educator Career. (n.d.). Retrieved February 13, 2015, from
  2. CurioCity by Let's Talk Science Content. (2009, January 1). Retrieved February 13, 2015, from
  3. Options for Sexual Health (2015). Retrieved February 13, 2015, from
  4. Sexuality Studies. (n.d.). Retrieved February 13, 2015, from
  5. 5.0 5.1 . 21-1091.00 - Health Educators. (2012). Retrieved February 12, 2015, from
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