All Applicants Considered for Merit-Based Scholarships
This program is for students without undergraduate backgrounds in nutrition who want to complete the didactic requirements (DPD) for credentialing as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, a graduate-level academic program (MS) in nutrition and an accredited Dietetic Internship (DI).
The DPD/MS is a five-semester program. Upon successful completion of the program, you will receive a DPD Verification Statement and be awarded an MS degree. The Director, Dietetic Internship, and the Director, Programs in Nutrition will initiate the process of assessing and reviewing your prior learning in these courses before beginning the Dietetic Internship program. After successfully completing the Dietetic Internship (DI), you will receive the Dietetic Internship Verification Statement and be eligible to take the national registration exam.
Note that the DPD/MS Program in Nutrition is currently designated by US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as a STEM-eligible degree program. International students in F-1 student status may be able to apply for a 24-month extension of their 12-month Optional Practical Training (OPT) employment authorization. More information about STEM OPT eligibility is available from the BU International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO).
Research and Practicum
The MS degree program will prepare you to critically evaluate and implement the results of current research, solve problems and communicate effectively. You’ll study with faculty involved in research, education, administration, professional practice, communication and consulting. The MS degree requires a minimum of 32 graduate credits, completed with a minimum cumulative graduate GPA of 3.0 for graduate level courses (700-level or above).
As part of your program, you will develop a research proposal and complete a practicum experience. Practicum sites have included an outpatient eating disorder treatment program, a nutrition support team at a large urban hospital, a private practice focused on nutrition for athletes, a clinical research center at a large teaching hospital, an outpatient cardiovascular clinic at a suburban teaching hospital and the offices of a nationally distributed nutrition newsletter.
Verification and Accreditation
After satisfactory completion of the five-semester DPD/MS program, you will receive a DPD Verification Statement and be awarded an MS degree. The Director, Dietetic Internship and the Director, Programs in Nutrition will initiate the process of assessing and reviewing your prior learning in these courses before beginning the Dietetic Internship program. You are then eligible to enter into the Dietetic Internship (DI) program. If you choose to accept the DI appointment, you cannot participate in the National Computer Match.
The Didactic Program in Dietetics/Master of Science is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL, 60606-6995, 312-899-0400, extension 5400 (http://www.eatrightpro.org/acend).
Note: Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master’s degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. It is ACEND’s considered opinion that the program is designed to and does meet all state dietetics licensure and certification laws, though some states may interpret their statutes differently. Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited didactic
Dietetic (DI) Internship Program
The Dietetic (DI) Internship Program is a 29-week, full-time, six-credit course, begins in either January or June following successful completion of the DPD/MS. The DI has clinical sites at major teaching and community hospitals in the greater Boston area, which offer excellent opportunities for you to observe and participate in a wide variety of specialty areas of practice such as nutrition support, pediatrics, oncology, nephrology, cardiology, diabetes, surgical care, out-patient counseling, food service, and management. The DI is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995; Telephone: 312-899-0040 ext. 5400 (https://www.eatrightpro.org/acend). Learn more on our DI Program page.
Boston University Measurable Learning Outcomes
Our curriculum is guided by the achievement of specific learning outcomes. At the completion of the program, students will be able to:
- Conduct an effective dietary counseling session.
- Demonstrate the ability to interpret current research in nutrition and health.
- Demonstrate the ability to design research studies to answer current and relevant nutrition-related questions.
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