Announcing the Graduate Certificate in Sex, Health and Society

From July 2020, the Centre will be offering a new coursework Graduate Certificate course in Sex, Health and Society, providing expert multidisciplinary training for professionals and students in sex, sexuality and sexual health.

Classes for the Graduate Certificate in Sex, Health and Society begin online on 20 July. Applications are still open - if you'd like to be part of this exciting new course, contact course coordinator Associate Professor Christopher Fisher to find out more and have your questions answered.

This new flexible course is designed for professionals and students interested in a career in government, NGOs, public health, education, research, counselling, social work, policy, sexual health practice and related fields.

The Graduate Certificate in Sex, Health and Society will build students' knowledge around the social, psychological, behavioural and health aspects of sex, sexuality and sexual health, and emphasise the critical and practical skills involved in discovering rigorous solutions to complex problems.

Commencing in Semester 2, 2020 (27 July), this part-time course will offer four subjects over two semesters, with most coursework taking place online.

Each subject will also incorporate two days per semester of face-to-face teaching at La Trobe's City Campus in Collins Street. These days will be arranged consecutively, to minimise travel requirements for remote students, and will most likely be scheduled during the University's mid-semester break (28 September - 2 October in 2020) to avoid conflicts with other regular lectures.

The total cost for the course will be $12,700 ($6,350 per semester (0.5 EFTSL), with the course running over one year), with FEE-HELP available for eligible students. Subjects can be taken in any order, or one at a time over two years.

Applications will open in late March/early April 2020. Full details of the course and an Apply Now link can be found on the La Trobe University Graduate Certificate in Sex, Health and Society Course Page, and more information in the online University Handbook. For more information on applying for the course, please email

The course includes four subjects, available as fourth-year electives in La Trobe's Masters of Public Health and the Masters of Health Administration, and open to any fourth-year (Honours) or postgraduate students at La Trobe:

SHS4SR Research in Sex, Sexuality and Sexual Health

Semester 2, 2020

Exploring the interdisciplinary field of sex research and critical sexuality studies, this subject:

  • critically examines the history and discourses of sex research and sexuality studies
  • analyses ethical issues unique to modern sex research and sexuality studies including methodology and human rights
  • will help students develop skills to evaluate sex research and sexuality studies to justify solutions in practice (e.g., education, therapy, program development, research development, etc.)
  • argues for the use of sex research and sexuality studies to address health and human rights issues (e.g., normalizing diversity to address harmful stigma).

SHS4HS Principles of Human Sexuality

Semester 2, 2020

An introduction to multidisciplinary (history, sociology, biology, psychology, public health) knowledge of human sexuality. This subject will critically unpack:

  • the historical development of social, cultural and political attitudes about human sexuality
  • form and function elated to human sexuality
  • psycho-social sexual development
  • current trends in sexual behaviour and related health outcomes, e.g Sexually Transmitted Infections.

SHS4SC Sex, Sexuality & Sexual Health: Communication, Policy & Practice

Semester 1, 2021

An introduction to the role of communication, policy and practices to address issues in sex, sexuality and sexual health, this subject:

  • critically engages with an interdisciplinary view of the historical development of sex discourses in a variety of socio-cultural contexts
  • examines current trends in sex-related communications, policies and practices (e.g., health promotion)
  • includes practical development of an evidence-based, theoretically robust promotion program, including a communication strategy, supporting policy recommendations and program activities.

SHS4SD Sexual Bodies, Identities and Marginalisation

Semester 1, 2021

Examining diverse populations and issues across a spectrum of sexual bodies, identities and marginalisation (e.g., LGBTQIA+, disability, domestic violence, ageing), this subject:

  • critically appraises how sex and sexuality are socially constituted across diverse cultural contexts and within systems of power
  • integrates a multidisciplinary understanding of intersectionality to address sexual health and wellbeing of diverse populations
  • conducts high-level synthesis to recommend multi-faceted approaches to addressing complex issues in sex, sexuality and sexual health.