Registered Dietitian Nutritionists Requirements

Educational and professional requirements of Registered Dietitian Nutritionists

Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) are food and nutrition experts who have met the following criteria to earn the RD credential:

  • Completed a minimum of a master’s degree at a US accredited college/ university or foreign equivalent and course work accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics.
  • Completed an ACEND accredited supervised practice program at health-care facility, community agency, or a foodservice corporation or combined with undergraduate and graduate studies. Typically, a practice program will run six to 12 months in length.
  • Passed a national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR.) For more information regarding the examination, refer to CDR’s website at
  • Completed continuing professional educational requirements to maintain registration.
  • Michigan Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is working with local and state representatives to obtain licensure for RDN’s in Michigan.

The Henry Ford Hospital Dietetic Internship qualifies as an ACEND-accredited supervised practice program.

Some RD’s hold additional certifications in specialized areas of practice. These are awarded through CDR, the credentialing agency for the Academy, and/or other medical and nutrition organizations and are recognized within the profession but are not required. Some of the certifications include pediatric or renal nutrition, sports dietetics, nutrition support, and diabetes education.
In addition to RDN credentialing, many states have regulatory laws for dietitians and nutrition practitioners. Frequently, these state requirements are met through the same education and training required to become an RDN.

In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. Currently 48 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia have statutory provisions regulating the dietetics profession or associated titles such as "dietitian" and "nutritionist." Michigan and Arizona are the only two states that do not have licensure.

Information for Applicants
Interested in applying to one of our programs, call (800) 436-7936.

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