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Master of Professional Studies in Sexual Health

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Understanding the personal, sociocultural, and biological bases for sexual health is integral to success in the health care and education fields. The Master of Professional Studies in Sexual Health is a fully online, 30-credit, stackable degree program developed in partnership with the Institute for Sexual and Gender Health in the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Why Choose the MPS in Sexual Health?

Using the Human Sexuality Certificate as a core component, the MPS in Sexual Health meets the unique needs of aspring or current sex therapists, sex educators, and others working in related practices. Students in this program acquire applied skills and disciplinary knowledge that are essential to success after graduation.

  • It’s innovative. Earn two graduate certificates while completing the MPS in Sexual Health. Boost your professional portfolio with three career-advancing credentials.
  • It’s timely. Learn up-to-date, evidence-based practices in sexual health along with a broad overview of the human sexuality field.
  • It's accessible. Our fully online degree is open to qualified applicants from around the globe.
  • It’s relevant. The foundational coursework of this degree will count toward the Core Knowledge Area requirements of the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT) for their Sex Educator, Counselor, and Therapist certifications.

The degree features:

  • faculty who are professional experts working at the cutting edge of sexual health disciplines.
  • applied final projects that let you take your learning into the real world.
  • a diverse and inclusive student environment.


What Is a Stackable Degree?


The Sexual Health degree consists of two stackable graduate-level certificates and six credits of elective coursework that serve to support each student’s individual professional or disciplinary interests. You can choose to earn individual certificates in addition to the master’s degree, or you can choose to earn only the master's degree. In order to earn all three credentials, students must apply to each program.

Each HSEX course meets the requirements of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) and is approved for 35 CE credits. These CE credits may be applied toward AASECT certification and renewal of certification. Completion of this program does not ensure or guarantee AASECT certification. For further information on AASECT certification, please contact info@aasect.org.


Curriculum 12 Credits

Core Certificate A – required

12 crs

Core Certificate B

  • Sex Therapy Certificate
    • HSEX 6311 Health Care for Trans and Gender Diverse Adults
    • HSEX 6211 Dimensions of Sexual Functioning
    • HSEX 6212 Sex and Relationship Therapy
    • HSEX 6213 Sexual Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care
12 crs

Elective Courses
Students choose six credits of elective coursework in consultation with their advisor and the Director of Graduate Studies. Possible elective credits include the following online courses:

  • Any HSEX course not used to fulfill core certificate A or B requirements
  • IBH 6232 Sexual Health and Gender (3 cr)

Approved in-person course options:

  • PUBH 6081 Sex, Sexuality, and Sexual Health (2 cr)
  • LAW 6036 Reproductive Rights (3 cr)
  • PUBH 6011 Public Health Approaches to HIV/AIDS (3 cr)
  • PUBH 6605 Reproductive and Perinatal Health (2 cr)
  • PUBH 6627 Sexuality Education Curricula and Controversy (1 cr)
  • PUBH 6675 Women’s Health (2 cr)
  • FSOS 4101 Sexuality and Gender in Families and Close Relationships (3 cr)

Other courses not listed, online and in person, are permissible with approval by the Director of Graduate Studies.

6 crs
Total 30 credits


Fall Application Deadline: March 15

Spring Application Deadline: October 15

Admission to the Sexual Health program is competitive and all applications are reviewed to ensure a good fit for academic success. Notification of admission decisions is made four to six weeks after the application deadline.
We strive to be equitable in the admissions process. Our program thrives with the inclusion of students from different backgrounds and cultural experiences. Our admissions committee reviews applications holistically, including all components of the application, and does not require standardized test scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). If you have questions about the admission requirements or would like advice on how to put together application materials, please contact us.

Minimum requirements:

  • bachelor's degree from an accredited post-secondary US institution or its foreign equivalent
  • an undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.00*
  • a commitment to the field of human sexuality through previous study, work, volunteer service, professional organizational involvement, etc.

The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is not required.

* In exceptional circumstances, promising applicants with lower GPA may be considered for the program. Explanation for GPA, and evidence that academic success at the graduate level is achievable, must be addressed in the application (extenuating circumstances).

If you have completed or are currently admitted to the Human Sexuality (HSEX) Certificate, please contact enrollment advisor Steve Wicks (wicks191@umn.edu) for application instructions. It may be possible to reuse some previous application materials.

  1. First, access the online application.
  2. All required application materials must be attached electronically to your application.

Applicant Statements

  • Professional statement: 1−2 pages articulating your career goals as related to the degree
  • Diversity statement: Optional
  • Extenuating Circumstances statement: If your undergraduate GPA is below 3.0, please provide an explanation

Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation are required. Letters should be solicited from professional contacts who can provide a candid assessment of your abilities (including strengths and weaknesses), personality, character, and potential for graduate-level academic success and professional achievement.


Unofficial transcripts or academic records for each institution (even if you didn’t receive a degree) should be uploaded directly to the online application. International students should also upload an English translation if the transcript is not in English. If possible, make sure the institution has put your name on the transcript/record.

Resume or CV

Submit a current resume or curriculum vitae.

GRE Scores

The GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) is not required.

Application Fee

A nonrefundable application fee is due on submission.

International Students

If your native language is not English, please submit scores from the TOEFL, MELAB, or IELTS English proficiency examination. Read more about required scores.

  • Required TOEFL scores are 84 or above, with section scores of at least 21 on writing and at least 19 on reading.
  • Required IELTS score is 6.5 overall with 6.5 section scores for both writing and reading.
  • Required MELAB score is 84.

Note that because this program is delivered online, the University of Minnesota cannot grant Sexual Health students a student visa.

How to Register for Graduate-Level Courses BEFORE Being Admitted to a Master’s Degree Program

Follow these steps to register:

  1. Download and submit a Registration Request for Graduate Credit for Nondegree Students Form. Registration for nonadmitted students is not available online.
  2. Send the form to the department offering the courses for authorization. This form must be used each term until you are admitted to a program.
  3. Upon authorization, the department offering the graduate course will forward the form to the registrar or provide you with further instructions.
  4. You will receive confirmation and payment instructions by email.

More information can be found on the One Stop page for nonadmitted students.

Tuition, Fees, and Financial Aid

We want to ensure you have access to the education you want. Find out more about financial aid or talk to our scholarship advisor.

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