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Certification Renewal Criteria and Policies
The applicant for renewal of AASECT certification should respond to the following issues when completing the application for certification renewal. A link to applications for each certification can be found on the Certification Overview page.
To avoid a lapse in appearing in the “Locate a Professional” Directory, please send in your Certification Renewal application at least 6 weeks prior to the expiration date of your certification.
Reminder: AASECT performs a 10% random audit on all certification renewal applications. If your application is selected for the audit process, you will be notified by the national office.
- AASECT Philosophy Concerning Certification: AASECT, by conferring certification on a number of its members, recognizes that the member: 1) has chosen as a specialty the field of human sexuality; and 2) is committed to and demonstrates a high level of professional education, accountability and ethical standards.
- Length of Certification: Designation of AASECT Certification will be for a period of three (3) years. Renewal certification will be for a period of three (3) years.
- Good Standing in AASECT: Applicants for renewal must be members in good standing and will be current in payment of membership dues and certification fees, otherwise certification is not possible.
- Continuing Professional Education Related to Sexuality: The minimum requirement for certification renewal is twenty (20) AASECT Continuing Education (CE) credits. CE credits used for Certification Renewal are subject to the review and approval of the Certification Steering Committee and must align with AASECT policies, ethics and positions.
Note: For credits from AASECT sponsored or AASECT approved CE credits (one CE = one AASECT credit). For credits from Non-AASECT sponsored or non-AASECT approved credits (two CEs = one AASECT credit).
Note: While a general SAR fulfills the experiential requirement for an applicant’s initial certification as a sex educator, counselor, or therapist, AASECT also recognizes that an AASECT-Sponsored/Approved Topical SAR (one that expands upon one area, e.g., a BDSM SAR) or an AASECT-Sponsored/Approved Advanced SAR (one that offers a deeper exploration across multiple topics derived from a general SAR, e.g., a Silver SAR) may fulfill some of or all the required Continuing Education credits. Therefore, Topical and Advanced SARs may count towards certification renewal at a 1:1 hourly ratio.
These credits may be obtained in the following ways:
1. Straight-forward method
Twenty (20) AASECT sponsored or AASECT approved CE credits.
2. Alternative method
Five (5) or more AASECT sponsored or AASECT approved CE credits plus up to fifteen (15) credits of any combination of the following, not to exceed 5 credits in any one combination:
- Face-to-face supervision with an AASECT certified supervisor (one hour of supervision = one AASECT credit). Please note that this is for certification renewal only and does not apply to first-time AASECT Certification applicants.
- Non-AASECT sponsored or approved sexuality education (two hours = one AASECT credit*( see above formula), up to a maximum of five AASECT credits.
- Publication of a paper in a professional journal or a chapter in a text book. The content must address some aspect of sexuality and the journal or book must meet AASECT criteria as determined by the Certification Committee. Only one article in a journal or one chapter may be counted toward certification renewal (one article or chapter = three AASECT credits).
- Development of a teaching tool, e.g., a video, audio tape or manual addressing problematic or developmental issues encountered during practice and training). The Certification Committee will determine whether the teaching tool meets AASECT criteria and only one teaching tool may be counted toward certification renewal (one teaching tool = three AASECT credits).
- Designing or conducting a training or enrichment program for AASECT members (two hours of presentation = one AASECT credit, up to a maximum of five AASECT credits).
- Designing or conducting a teaching experience for a non-AASECT setting or one not sponsored by AASECT. The Certification Committee will determine whether the teaching experience meets AASECT criteria and only one teaching experience may be counted for certification renewal. AASECT Certified Sex Therapist & Counselor Renewal: two hours of presentation = one AASECT credit, up to a maximum of five AASECT credits. AASECT Certified Sexuality Educator Renewal: one hour of presentation = one AASECT credit, up to a maximum of 15 AASECT credits.
- Authoring & publishing a book or editing of collected works, books and journals. The manuscript must appear as a recent publication (published within the certification renewal period). The Certification Committee will determine if the book or edited work meets AASECT criteria. Only one authored or edited work may be counted toward certification renewal (one authored/edited work = five AASECT credits).
- Members who are certified supervisors and who provide supervision for candidates in the process of becoming AASECT Certified Sexuality Educators, Sexuality Counselors, Sex Therapists or Supervisors may count a portion of their supervisory hours toward certification renewal (one hour of supervision = one AASECT credit, up to a maximum of five AASECT credits).
- Beginning 1 April 2022, the AASECT Board recognizes and rewards AASECT’s countless volunteers for their work, without which AASECT could not serve its members at the current standard of quality. To these ends, Committee Chairs for Certification, Communication, Treasurer , PESC, PRMA, Outreach, Personnel, Bylaws, Ethics, Nominating, VP of Membership and Strategic Planning, may award up to 5 credits total every two years for leadership, service, or organizational support on an AASECT-approved/sponsored committee, task force, national conference, open house, etc. In the future, a rubric from the PESC might recognize additional service outside of AASECT to benefit the educational, counseling, and therapy needs of our global community. Please Note: regardless of how many volunteer credits AASECT’s members might earn over their active certification period, they may use only 5 of those towards their certification renewal. This is not to limit their volunteer opportunities by any means, but rather to encourage a more robust experience on the path to recertification.
Documentation and Fees:
1. AASECT strives to create the potential for as close to a paperless certification renewal process as possible through the following procedures:
- AASECT Certified Sexuality Educators, Counselors, Sex Therapists and Supervisors have the total responsibility for maintaining a record of their continuing education and professional activity as it relates to their certification renewal.
- Documentation of continuing education, or professional activity which may be relevant to one’s continuing education (See 5 above), must be legibly enumerated on the form, AASECT Certification Renewal Application, with the total CE credits claimed clearly noted. Candidates for certification renewal will affirm by signing this form that they have in their possession documentation that will verify the education and professional experience stated on the form.
- The AASECT office will, from time to time, conduct random audits of the applications for certification renewal in order to verify the accuracy of the material reported on the AASECT Certification Renewal Application form. Should the audit of a member's records show deficiencies between the information listed on the application and the documentation provided during an audit to support claims concerning CE activity the matter will be referred to the AASECT Certification Steering Committee for review and possible action.
2. Applicants for renewal will pay a non-refundable processing fee of $150. *Please note: Renewal fees for Certified Sex Therapist Supervisor, Certified Sexuality Counselor Supervisor, and Certified Educator Supervisor will be $50.
Payment and Application Submission
Certification renewal materials will be submitted to the AASECT national office by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Please submit no more than 2 PDF files containing all supporting documentation.
To pay your certification renewal fee online, please email email@example.com. Payments by check should be made payable to AASECT Certification Renewal and mailed to the AASECT National Office.
- The 20 Continuing Education (CE) Credits that are required for certification renewal must be completed by the expiration date of the member's original certification or the expiration date of the last certification renewal. It is expected that this continuing education is related to the field of sexuality education, counseling or therapy.
- Once certified, you will be required to renew your AASECT Certification every three years and renew your AASECT membership yearly. All certified members will be sent a courtesy notice starting six months in advance of their certification expiration date and periodically thereafter, until one month after the certification expires, at which time the member will be notified that the certification has expired. AASECT membership renews each year at the end of the calendar year and is required to keep Certification valid.
- AASECT will perform random audits of certification renewal applications. Every 10th renewal application that is received will be flagged for audit, and the applicant will be asked to supply copies of all CE certificates that are listed in the application. The renewal application and all supporting documentation will be reviewed by the chair of the appropriate certification committee.
Certified members who allow their certification(s) to lapse for more than three (3) months but no more than one (1) year because of non-payment of membership dues or certification renewal fees and wish to have their certification re-instated will need to submit the following:
- A statement, in writing to AASECT, explaining the circumstances for the lapse in certification(s).
- Documentation of completion of the required number of CE credits needed for certification renewal, acquired within one (1) year prior to certification re-instatement.
- A completed certification renewal application. All renewal applications can be found by clicking 'Certification' above, then navigating to your Certification type.
- A copy of the most recent certification certificate issued by AASECT.
- Documentation of current membership in AASECT, with dues paid in full. For information on renewing your membership please click here.
- Payment of the certification renewal application fee(s).
- Payment of the re-instatement fee (equal to the amount of the certification renewal fee).
Cases of Certification lapses of more than one calendar year will be brought to the Certification Steering Committee for review and discussion. Additional hours of supervision and/or re-application may be required.
Please Note: During the lapsed period, no member may identify him/herself as an AASECT Certified Professional. AASECT Membership Agreement, 1.B. The name of the lapsed member will also be removed from the Locate a Professional site. AASECT By-Laws, Sections H. & I
Members may sometimes find themselves in hardship situations (health issues, family issues, loss of employment, or other unforeseen life circumstances) and decide to put a ‘voluntary hold’ on their AASECT Certification(s). To initiate a ‘voluntary hold’:
- In a timely manner, notify the headquarters office in writing regarding the particular circumstances that necessitate putting the AASECT Certification(s) on hold, giving the start date and the reason(s) for the ‘voluntary hold.
- Give an estimate of the planned length of the ‘voluntary hold.
- AASECT Staff will acknowledge/confirm the official start of the ‘voluntary hold.
Please Note: No member may identify him/herself as an AASECT Certified Professional while the certification is on ‘voluntary hold.’ AASECT Membership Agreement, 1.B Additionally, the name of the member whose certification is on hold will be removed from the Locate a Professional site. AASECT By-Laws, Sections H.
To re-activate certification after being on ‘voluntary hold’:
- Complete the appropriate certification renewal application(s).
- Submit a copy of the acknowledgment letter of the Voluntary Hold from AASECT.
- Send a copy of the certification certificate that was valid before the start of the Voluntary Hold.
- On a case-by-case basis, some additional hours of supervision from an AASECT certified Supervisor may be required.
- Complete the required number of CE Credits needed for certification renewal, acquired within one (1) year prior to certification re-activation.
- Have current AASECT membership, with dues paid in full.
- Pay the certification renewal application fee(s).
- Pay a re-activation administrative fee.