Didactic Programs in Dietetics
The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) is the accrediting agency for education programs preparing students for careers as registered dietitian nutritionists or nutrition and dietetics technicians. For more information, visit the ACEND website.
ACEND® can be contacted by:
Mail: 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, Illinois 60606-6995
Phone: 800/877-1600, ext. 5400
The mission of the West Virginia University Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) is to prepare students for entry into supervised practice programs in dietetics leading to eligibility for the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist by providing an in-depth educational experience with practical applications and a strong community nutrition component.
Goal 1. The program will prepare graduates for a career in dietetics.
- Objective 1a. At least 60% of program graduates apply for admission to a supervised practice program prior to or within 12 months of graduation
- Objective 1b. At least 60% of graduates who apply are admitted to a supervised practice program
- Objective 1c. The program’s one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) no the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%
- Objective 1d. At least 80% of program students complete the program/degree requirements within 3 years (150% of program length)
- Objective 1e. At least 90% of graduates will be satisfied or very satisfied with faculty advising during the program
Goal 2. The program will provide graduates with basic knowledge and skills that will prepare them for continued professional growth and development in the field of nutrition and dietetics.
- Objective 2a. At least 80% of graduates will be confident or very confident in their competency in basic sciences required for competency in the field of nutrition and dietetics
- Objective 2b. At least 80% of graduates will be confident or very confident in their ability to integrate basic knowledge and managerial skills related to nutrition and dietetics.
- Objective 2c. At least 80% of graduates will feel confident or very confident in their written and oral communication skills to effectively impact lifelong societal and professional developments critical to nutrition and dietetics
- Objective 2d. At least 80% of graduates will feel confident or very confident in their problem solving and critical thinking skills to effectively impact lifelong societal and professional developments critical to nutrition and dietetics.
- Objective 2e. At least 80% of graduates will feed confident or very confident in their depth of knowledge relative to human nutritional sciences.
- Objective 2f. At least 90% of supervised practice program directors will report that they are satisfied or very satisfied with the knowledge and skills of program graduates.
Program outcomes data are available on request.
Becoming a Dietitian
The path to become a registered dietitian nutritionist includes a college degree,
completing a dietetic internship from an ACEND-accredited program, and passing
the national registration exam. At WVU, students who wish to become a registered
dietitian nutritionist must:
- earn a bachelor’s degree and complete the Didactic Program in Dietetics with a cumulative GPA of 3.0;
- apply for and complete an ACEND-accredited dietetic internship program or Individual Supervised Practice Pathway;
- pass the Commission on Dietetic Registration’s dietetic registration exam;
- gain licensure if required in your state of practice;
- maintain continuing education. Note that in 2024, a graduate degree will be required to be eligible to take the Commission on Dietetic Registration exam. In addition to the ACEND-accredited DPD, WVU offers an ACEND-accredited dietetic internship associated with a master’s degree. An undergraduate degree from WVU does not guarantee acceptance into the WVU dietetic internship.
Dietetics at WVU
Students who are admitted to WVU can be admitted to the DPD by declaring Human Nutrition and Foods as a major. Information about admission to WVU and how to apply can be found on the WVU Admissions website.
Students in the DPD are required to complete core courses as well as courses in
food science, nutrition, food service management, sociology, psychology, economics,
chemistry, biology, physiology, and microbiology and required electives for the
DPD. A comprehensive list of courses is available through the
WVU course catalog.
Students who wish to apply for a supervised practice program after graduation must
have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and at least a C- in all HN&F courses
to receive a verification statement..
During their senior year, students who will complete the DPD course requirements
with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are eligible to apply for a dietetic internship by
participating in a national computer-based matching system. Acceptance into an
internship is competitive and is not guaranteed.
A dietetic internship typically involves an additional one to two years, depending on the site and whether or not graduate study is included. Upon completion of the internship, the graduate is eligible to take a national examination sponsored by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN).