The Dietetics Program at Murray State University is a degree track (option) of the BS degree in Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Management. It is part of the Department of Applied Health Sciences in the College of Health Sciences and Human Services. The program began at MSU in 1969 and is officially referred to as the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD). Didactic refers to classroom instruction.
Students complete a Bachelor of Science degree which includes 42-44 hours of university studies requirements, 45-46 hours of core classes for the area, and 30-31 hours of classes for the dietetics option. These courses prepare students to attain the core knowledge identified as necessary by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). The curriculum aims to develop problem-solving skills and provides a foundation in the biomedical, nutritional, behavioral, managerial, and clinical sciences and prepares graduates with the competencies needed to enter and contribute to the profession of dietetics.
Students who graduate with a degree in dietetics are prepared for entry into an accredited dietetic internship program. An internship consists of 1500 hours of supervised work experience that meets the requirements for entry level competency as established by ACEND. Internship programs are available at universities and health care facilities throughout the nation, including Murray State. Acceptance into an internship is a very competitive process. Each year there are many applicants who do not receive an internship appointment. Applicants are evaluated based upon work experience, college performance (grades), volunteer activities, score on the GRE, as well as other factors. Successful completion of an internship program and a passing grade on the national certification exam are required to become a Registered Dietitian (R.D.).