Career Data

Dietetics and Nutrition

Dietitian

Career data updated last on 8/19/2014
Dietitian Nutrition for health is the goal of the dietitian. Registered Dietitians (RDs) have completed an intensive study of all aspects of nutrition and health. They plan nutrition programs to help both sick and healthy people who need to improve their nutrition. The responsibilities of registered dietitians vary according to their specialty. For example, they may plan meals and nutrition programs at large organizations such as universities and military dining services. Others, such as clinical dietitians, work as part of a health care team in hospitals or other health care institutions.
Salary hourly- $26.86 annually- $55,860
Significant Points According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of dietitians and nutritionists is expected to increase 9 percent during the 2006-16 projection decade, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Job growth will result because of increased emphasis on disease prevention, a growing and aging population, and public interest in nutrition.
Specializations Generally, dietitians can be classified as: Chief Dietitians Community Dietitians Clinical Dietitians Consultant Dietitians Research Dietitians Administrative Dietitians
Work Environment Dietitian or nutritionist in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, state or county health agencies, health clubs, corporate wellness programs, Universities and medical centers, or private practice. Most dietitians work a regular 40-hour week, although some work weekends.
High School Prep General college preparation is recommended: three courses in math including algebra I, algebra II and geometry, or a higher level math course for which algebra II is a prerequisite; three science courses including one biological science, one physical science and one lab course; four English units and two social studies units, including one in U.S. History; and two years of a second language.
Academic Requirements To qualify as a registered dietitian by the American Dietetic Association (ADA), you must meet specific course requirements and earn a baccalaureate degree or higher in dietetics, food and nutrition or food service management from an ADA-accredited program, complete a clinical internship or an approved pre-professional practice program (AP4) or 900 hours of supervised practice, or earn a bachelors degree from a college program that incorporates the practicum requirements into the educational program. After meeting these requirements, you may take the ADA examination to become a registered dietitian. Many states also require licensing by a state board. Must accrue 75 hours of approved continuing professional education every five years.

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