Travis Sky Ingersoll, PH.D, MSW, M.ED is a social work professor, sexuality educator and researcher based in Philadelphia. His research publications include cross-cultural studies regarding the fear of intimacy,gender roles, suicidal ideation, and implementing clinical interventions to residents of elderly communities. His current research projects include the role of male involvement in domestic violence agencies, and collaborative cross-cultural projects focusing on investigating connections between body image, eating disorders, fear of intimacy and sexual anxiety among U.S. and Chinese college students.
As a sexuality educator, Dr. Ingersoll has taught semester-long classes, guest-lectured and facilitated interactive workshops in person and via distance-learning technologies both domestically and internationally on a variety of topics such as: Cross-cultural sexuality, sexual health, sex throughout the lifespan, sexually transmitted infections, sexual orientation, intimate relationship violence, media’s role in the promotion of sexual violence among men, trans-realities and the gender spectrum, how to utilize the Fear of Intimacy Scale in clinical settings, clinical social work skills, and producing sexuality scholarship in a multitasking world.
In addition to teaching and research, Dr. Ingersoll has developed anti-homophobia curriculum and sexuality policies for retirement communities and assisted-living facilities and retirement communities.
Q: What exactly is sexual health education?
A: Sexuality is much more than sexual feelings or sexual intercourse. It is an important part of who people are and what they will become. It incorporates all the feelings, thoughts, and behaviors associated with masculinity and femininity, being attractive and being in love, as well as being in relationships that include sexual intimacy, sexual activity and sensuality. Sexual Health Education can be viewed as any education related to the Circles of Sexuality Model.
Sexuality is much more than just sexual intimacy or sexual behavior. Human sexuality is a significant part of what it means to be human. It includes our identities, our bodily sensations, our experiences, our relationships, our behaviors, our health, our pleasure, and many more aspects of oneself. The Circles of Sexuality Model present a comprehensive approach to human sexuality that includes: Sensuality (body image, human sexual response, skin hunger, fantasy), Intimacy (caring, sharing, loving, risk-taking, vulnerability), Sexual Identity (gender identity, gender role, sexual orientation, gender bias), Sexual Health and Reproduction (physiology and anatomy of reproductive organs, sexual reproduction, feelings and attitudes toward reproduction), and Sexualization (flirting, seduction, sexual harassment, withholding sex, rape) (Advocates for Youth, 2007).
A final circle, Values, was not in the original model but was introduced by Satterly and Dyson (2010). The "Values" Circle highlights the importance of examining how our personal values affect our relationship with the different circles; it is the lens by which a person perceives, interprets and understands all of the Circles of Sexuality.
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"Sexuality Concepts for Social Workers"
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