Sex Educator Training Classes

SFSI’s training staff will be spending Spring 2019 working on our curriculum. Unfortunately, as a result there will be no Spring 2019 training. The next training will occur in late Summer/early Fall 2019. If you would like an email when the application becomes available, click here.

Have a question? Check our FAQ here, then email

San Francisco Sex Information offers a unique class on human sexuality twice each year. It’s designed for anyone who wants to be a sex information resource for their community, including health educators, medical professionals, therapists, bloggers, youth workers, researchers, teachers, case managers, sex workers, and organizers.

The mission of the SFSI training is to train people to provide accurate, nonjudgmental sex information to the public. By the end of training, students should make significant progress in basic sex information, communication and education skills, and personal insight.

SFSI’s Sex Educator Training can be taken in two different ways:

    1. Single Semester Track. Take the training as an intensive, all during the same spring or fall and all with the same cohort of fellow students. You’ll experience 60+ hours of instruction in just over two months—more than most medical students receive during their professional education! You’ll hear from individuals and panels of speakers, as well as watch videos, slides, and films covering all aspects of human sexuality. This is the most direct way to become a SFSI volunteer. We highly recommend this route: it offers the tightest learning experience and valuable networking opportunity with your peers in the class.


  1. Multiple-Semester Track. If your schedule will not permit taking the entire training in one spring or fall, you can stretch the training over 2 training cycles by completing 2-3 weekends this training cycle and coming back to finish in the next training cycle. The first training weekend must be taken during your first training cycle, and the final day (which includes the endorsement exam and graduation) must be completed on your second cycle.


Training Schedule

The weekends for the Fall 2019 training are below:

8/24 & 8/25
9/7 & 9/8
9/21 & 9/22
10/5 & 10/6

Training starts at 10am and ends no later than 6pm each day.

Interviews for training are typically held three weeks before training begins. Interview meetings include an introduction to SFSI and to the training, and typically last about 90 minutes (more details below, in ‘Applying for Training’).


Course Content & Objectives

Basic Sex Information

One of the objectives of training is to impart information about human sexuality. While it is not possible to cover every aspect of sexuality and sexual behavior in detail, our aim is for participants to receive at least some information about as many areas of sexuality as possible. Full course participants should leave the training with at least a passing familiarity with core sexuality subject areas.

These include:

  • Consent and Communication
  • Aspects of Sexuality: Biology, Gender & Orientation
  • Research Skills
  • Anatomy
  • Sexual Technique
  • Fertility, Infertility, Pregnancy, and Birth
  • Birth Control and Abortion
  • STIs and Safer Sex
  • Sexual Variation and Taboo
  • Sex, Commerce, and Law
  • Trauma, Abuse, and Sexual Assault


Communication and Education Skills

A unique feature of our training is the emphasis on communication. Many of our graduates feel that the communication skills they learn from this class have helped them become more effective communicators in everyday life.

Students should be able to communicate information about human sexuality and their own sexuality to others, whether in an educational or private context. This includes the ability to:

  • Listen effectively.
  • Communicate about sex without becoming emotionally overloaded.
  • Ask pertinent clarifying questions.
  • Suspend judgments.
  • Present information in a way that is clear, comprehensible, and appropriate.

Throughout the training, students are exposed to information, ideas, lifestyles, practices, and opinions that may be unfamiliar or challenging. Our goal is that students develop increased insight about their own sexual desires, history, and attitudes. This includes:

  • Being aware of judgments and assumptions.
  • Being aware of how their own histories, families, contexts, and cultures have informed their feelings and attitudes about sexuality.
  • Being able to recognize emotional triggers that interfere with their abilities to process information about sexuality.


Applying for Training

Acceptance into SFSI’s training is competitive. There are two steps: an online application (link at the top of this page), and an interview session.

The online application is available from several months before a training begins up until an application deadline about a week before our interview sessions. Applications are submitted for one specific training, and so if you have submitted an application for a previous training but did not end up attending, you must submit a new one for any future training for which you wish to be considered.

The application provides a choice of signing up for one of two group interview sessions, or for indicating that you require an individual remote interview. Everyone who applies for a group session will be invited to attend that session.

Individual remote interviews consume far more time and effort from SFSI’s training staff, and so are reserved for those for whom attending a group session would be a significant hardship, usually due to distance or disability. Please note that being too busy to attend the interview session does not constitute a significant hardship. Training staff reviews the remote applications on a rolling basis and grants interviews to the strongest candidates.

In addition, for those requesting a remote interview because of distance (but not disability) we charge a $30 remote interview fee, payable via PayPal. We regret the need to charge, but in past seasons many remote interviewees who were accepted into the course declined to attend; the fee compensates the organization for the significant effort involved in interviewing remote candidates.

To summarize: selecting to attend a group orientation and interview session guarantees you an interview, after which both your application and your participation during the interview will be used to determine your acceptance into training. Requesting a remote interview means that your application will determine whether or not you are granted an interview, and then your participation in that in that interview will determine your acceptance into training.

For more information, please contact the training coordinator at



The tuition is $800 on a sliding scale that goes down to $350. If you have questions about your tuition, please talk to our training staff during your orientation.

  • Scholarships are available.
  • Training fees are due in full on your first day of class unless a payment plan is arranged in advance.
  • SFSI does not provide refunds for non-attendance.
  • SFSI is run entirely by volunteers! Your tuition forms our budget each term; payments above the minimum sliding scale allow us to offer scholarships to students in need. Our budget for each semester goes to rent (about half), panelist honorariums (about a quarter), and insurance and supplies (about a quarter).