Kinsey Institute offers continuing education initiative .

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The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction launched an online continuing education program. The program is certified by the American Psychological Association. Madelyn Knight Buy Photos

The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction launched an online continuing education program, which is certified by the American Psychological Association. The program began Oct. 4.

These courses can be taken by psychologists for professional credit and by anyone interested in learning more about each topic, according to an IU press release.

The program is led by Jessica Hille, the newly-appointed assistant director for education. This initiative is part of Kinsey’s overall mission to promote better understanding of human sexuality and relationships through research, outreach and education, according to their website.

Kinsey faculty designed their lectures based on American Psychological Association standards for people to earn professional credit. This is the first time the Kinsey Institute will offer education for APA credits. Normally, the institute staff attends conferences or organizesevents at IU for education opportunities, like the Kinsey Institute Lecture Series, Hille said.

The initiative includes modules on sexual consent, gender, sexuality, dating and casual sex, trauma and love. Lecturers include Justin Garcia, acting director of the Kinsey Institute, among other IU and Kinsey faculty members.

"The Kinsey Institute is a leading source of research and education on human sexuality," Garcia said. "Our new continuing education initiative is an opportunity to share information with those who want to learn more and who otherwise may not have received education and training on sexuality.”

The programs are available to the public through IU Expand, a university portal. It costs $30 for courses worth one credit and $40 for 1.5 credit courses.

Some current lecture topics include “Beyond binaries,” “The healing power of love: An oxytocin hypothesis” and “Consent and coercion: Sexual assault, sexual coercion and unwanted sex.” All courses currently offered are taught by Kinsey staff or affiliate staff from across the country and world.

The continuing education program has been in the making for over two years now, Hille said. Hille has led the program since her appointment in August. This program is important because the APA requires continuing education for its members and these courses allow for that, Hille said.

"The new education program, including the continuing education initiative, will allow us to focus our efforts and provide new educational opportunities to fill critical gaps in knowledge," Hille said.

In the next months and years, Kinsey will add more lectures to its online portal. In the spring, courses on consent communication and consensual non-monogamy will be added to the course catalogue, Hille said.

In addition to the continuing education program, Kinsey has partnered with the IU School of Medicine to offer a Human Sexuality and Health Scholarly Concentration for medical students at IU. Kinsey also added a Ph.D. minor in the sexual science research methods in human sexuality. Other upcoming education initiatives will include a research blog and podcasts.

“We are excited and honored to provide this new service and to continue to have a leadership role in encouraging greater understanding and acceptance of sexual and gender diversity," Garcia said.

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