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Human Sexuality Studies

Widener Video

 Betsy Crane

Shaping 'Pracademics'

Graduates of our doctoral program in human sexuality are practitioner-scholars, who can educate, conduct research, consult, or provide counseling and sex therapy.

Widener Video


Working with Veterans

Dual degree doctoral student Becky Dewar said she'd like to work with combat veterans on issues surrounding sexuality and disability.

Widener Video


Impacting the Community

Associate Professor Don Dyson explains how HSED graduate students benefit community partners.

Program Highlight


Degree Conversion

In March 2011, the Board of Trustees approved the conversion of the EdD in Human Sexuality Education to a PhD in Human Sexuality, which was determined to be the appropriate terminal degree for this program of interdisciplinary study.

Widener Video

Molly Wolf

Sexuality Archives

HSED alumna and reference librarian Molly Wolf discusses the growing collection of human sexuality-themed material at Wolfgram Memorial Library.

We have been producing leaders in the field of human sexuality for more than a generation.

Widener University's Center for Human Sexuality Studies houses the only fully-accredited doctoral program in human sexuality in the country. Our graduates are pioneering sexologists, and they play leadership roles as both clinicians and educators.

The human sexuality graduate programs prepare future and current professionals to teach, consult, provide counseling and therapy, and conduct research in a variety of settings on complex issues related to human sexuality.

Choosing one of our master's, doctoral, or dual-degree programs allows you to work towards becoming a certified sexuality educator, counselor, or therapist through a "Special Status Agreement" with the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT).

Since 1999, when the human sexuality program was transferred to Widener from the University of Pennsylvania, we have thrived, growing in the diversity of the students and the number of options for those who want to pursue a career in human sexuality education.

Is this program for you?

Whether you are a teacher, social worker, psychologist, nurse, counselor, clergy person, physician, or right out of college, these programs are for you if you want to:

  • Provide community education and training programs related to sexuality and sexual health.
  • Incorporate sexuality education in K-12 and health education classrooms.
  • Teach sexuality education at the college level.
  • Offer counseling or therapy with a sexuality specialization.
  • Engage in sex research and scholarship.
  • Work within communities of faith regarding sexuality issues.
  • Advise policymakers on issues such as HIV/AIDS, adolescent pregnancies, sexual orientation, gender, and power from a multicultural perspective.
  • Become a certified sexuality educator, counselor or therapist through the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT).

Programs can be completed as either a full-time or part-time student. We offer both clinical and educational tracks depending upon your personal and professional goals. Whether part-time or full-time, you can receive an individual Masters of Education in Human Sexuality or Doctor of Philosophy in Human Sexuality.

Flexibility to meet your needs

  • Reasonable tuition costs
  • Classes offered on weekends and weeknights for working professionals and commuters from across the country
  • Supervised field experience during practicum placement
  • Use of current educational philosophies and methodologies appropriate for all learning styles
  • Emphasis on affective learning

Graduates are able to:

  • Communicate, plan, implement, and evaluate human sexuality curricula using a variety of methods in a range of settings.
  • Access accurate, current knowledge of the literature in the field of human sexuality.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and proficiency as it relates to excellence in research.
  • Identify their own values on sexuality issues and assess their effect on their practice.
  • Use interviewing and therapeutic skills in human sexuality with individuals, couples, and families.
  • Acknowledge and accept the human diversity of age, gender, identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, race, and religion.
  • Be aware that professionals serve as role models and accept this responsibility.

Weekend and Weeknight Classes

Classes offered on weekends provide access to study for people working during the week and/or commuting from a distance. In fact, many of our students drive from within the Philadelphia metropolitan region or fly into the nearby Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) to take classes on Widener's Main Campus in Chester, Pa.

As a full-time student in one of the human sexuality programs, you would register for three courses. Each course requires that you attend two weekends of class. So, for example, a full-time student is required to attend six weekends of class per semester. As a part-time student, you will register for two courses, equaling four weekends of class per semester.

Weeknight classes provide students living locally with the option of having a class that meets for three hours each week throughout the semester.

How do I apply?

Submit an online application and mail your supporting documents to the Office of Graduate Enrollment Management.

*Please note that you should submit two (2) academic recommendations and one (1) professional recommendation. Contact our graduate assistants at 610-499-1378 or with any questions.