Educational and Professional Requirements

Registered Dietitians (RDs) or Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) are food and nutrition experts who have met the following criteria and earned the RD or RDN credential:

  • Enroll in an Accredited Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) or Coordinated Program in Dietetics (CP) at a U.S. regionally accredited university or college (or foreign equivalent)
  • Complete the DPD or CP program and obtain at least a bachelor’s degree in dietetics with the verification statement
  • Apply to an ACEND-accredited Dietetic Internship (DI), Coordinated Program in Dietetics or an Individual Supervised Practice Pathway (ISPP) offered through an ACEND accredited program
  • Complete 1000 hours of supervised practice through an ACEND accredited DI program and receive the verification statement
  • Apply for registration eligibility with the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR)
  • Receive a passing score on the national registration examination for dietitians administered by CDR (refer to CDR’s website at:
  • Maintain R.D. credentials by completing continuing professional educational requirements


Source: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Careers in Dietetics: Becoming a Registered Dietitian or Registered Dietitian Nutritionist.  “Educational and Professional Requirements”

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 order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor’s degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR’s Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before 12:00 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023. For more information about this requirement visit CDR’s website:

In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. For more information about state licensure requirements click here.

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Contact Information
Cathie Ostrowski
Martin Hall, Suite 233
(919) 760-8419
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The Internship Program in Nutrition and Dietetics is currently granted accredited status by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606 | (312) 899-5400