Dietetics and Nutrition Management


Mary Harris, PhD, RDN
Program Director

Colorado State University
Gifford Building, Room 234
Fort Collins,
Colorado 80523-1571

Fax: (970) 491-3875
Tele: (970) 491-7462

About the Programs

The dietetics programs provide students with the competencies, knowledge and skills required of the dietetics professional for practice roles of today and the future. The program provides adequate freedom for the student to work both independently and in teams in order to build self-reliance, self-confidence and team building skills. The program helps students to develop critical thinking skills and problem solving ability in clinical and community nutrition and food service management.

The Dietetics & Nutrition Management concentration is appropriate for students who would like to become practicing nutritionists or dietitians. The Dietetics & Nutrition Management offers 3 options:
1. Accredited Dietetics Program
2. Gerontology Nutrition
3. Childhood Nutrition

It is important to emphasize that there are 3 steps to becoming a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) including:

  • completion of the ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
  • successfully obtaining and completing an accredited supervised work experience (internship)
  • taking and passing the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) credentialing examination.

The DPD is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (120 S. Riverside Plaza, Chicago, IL 60606-6995; phone: 312-899-0040, ext 5400).

Admission to the Dietetics and Nutrition Management concentration is open to all entering freshmen and transfer students. In the third year of the program students must qualify for the DPD by achieving minimum requirements. These are:

  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 in the first 60 credits of instruction
  • Achievement of a grade of "B" of better in all basic science and FSHN classes in first two years of the major.

It is particularly important to achieve and maintain a grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.2 or better and obtain volunteer experience to be competitive to obtain accredited supervised practice (dietetic internship) experiences.

Upcoming changes to RD requirements:

Starting in January 2024, all candidates for the national registration examination for registered dietitians (RD) will be required to have a master’s degree (MS). Students selecting the Dietetics major and wanting to become registered dietitians must give serious consideration to this timeline. In order to be eligible to take the registration examination for dietitians with a bachelor’s degree, students entering the major must complete their degree by spring 2022 and successfully obtain and complete an accredited 1200 hour supervised practice program on or before November of 2023.

Students who complete the Dietetic degree and/or internship after these deadlines will continue to be eligible to take the national registration examination for the Registered Nutrition and Dietetic Technician (NDTR). The NDTR works alongside the registered dietitian to provide nutrition care to patients in the community, hospital, school and long term care settings.

Also note, all of the options for a bachelor’s degree within Nutrition and Food Science are excellent preparation for the MS/RD track.

DPD Program Mission:

The DPD mission is to prepare dietetics students to be successful in obtaining accredited supervised practice programs and to become registered dietitians who are able to think critically, practice evidence based nutrition care and contribute to the health of the nation in meaningful positions.

The DPD has established goals and outcome measure which reflect the program's mission.

Goal 1. The program will prepare students for acceptance into accredited supervised practice programs (internships) and qualify to become registered dietitians.

Objective 1. 90% of students entering the program in the third year of the bachelor-level DPD are expected to complete the degree within 3 years (150% of time).

Objective 2. Over a 3-year period, 80% of students are expected to apply to supervised practice programs in the academic year they complete the program.

Objective 3. Over a 3-year period, 80% of those applying for supervised practice programs will be accepted.

Objective 4. Over a 3-year period, 90% of graduates will pass national registration examination for dietitians within one year of the first attempt.

Goal 2. The program will graduate students who are well prepared for supervised practice programs and entry level practice.

Objective 1. 90% or more of internship directors will judge the intern to be adequately prepared for supervised practice based on the survey of interns and internship directors.

Objective 2. 90% or more of graduates will judge themselves to be adequately prepared for employment.

ACEND Accredited DPD program outcomes are available upon request.

Option in Gerontology Nutrition:

This option contains all but one of the courses for the interdisciplinary gerontology minor including an undergraduate interdisciplinary Gerontology Minor. This option prepares students for careers working in gerontology. In the near future, those working in gerontology will require specific training such as completion of a certification, major or minor in gerontology. Students who complete this option are also eligible for credentialing by the Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Managers.

Option in Childhood Nutrition:

This option provides additional coursework in childhood and adolescent development and an undergraduate internship in the school nutrition program. This option prepares students for careers in school nutrition management. Students who complete this option are eligible for credentialing by the Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Managers.

Program Completion Requirements:

A B.S. degree will be awarded upon completion of the program.

Graduation requirements Curricula Checksheets 2017-18 for required concentrations:

Policies and Procedures of the DPD program are available on this website by clicking on this link Policies and Procedures

Program Calendar:

The program's academic calendar follows the University calendar. Scheduling and program calendar, including vacation and holidays can be found in the University Ramweb online:

Program Costs:

Costs of the program are consistent with University tuition and costs and are found in the University catalog online.:

Financial Aid:

Financial Aid is available. The University Financial Aid Office has developed an online/downloadable guide with step-by-step instructions for financial aid application.