The master's didactic program in dietetics (MSN/DPD) fulfills the academic and competency requirements for registered dietitian eligibility. The Bastyr MSN/DPD allows students to complete a didactic program while pursuing a Master of Science in Nutrition.
The program requirements are over and above the degree requirements outlined by the University. Verified graduation from the DPD program provides students with the technical and academic knowledge to compete for a an ACEND-accredited supervised practice program, the second step to becoming a RDN with the third step being the successful pass on the RDN Exam.
The mission of the MSN-DPD program at Bastyr University is to prepare graduate students for supervised practice leading to eligibility for the CDR credentialing exam to become registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) who will be agents of change in bringing the perspective of whole foods, environmental awareness of food choices, and integrative medicine into their dietetic-and nutrition-related practices.
Program Goal 1: The Bastyr University MSN-DPD program will prepare graduates to become successful dietetic interns.
The Bastyr University MSN-DPD program will prepare qualified graduates with the knowledge and tools to incorporate whole foods nutrition, environmental awareness, and integrative medicine into their dietetic/nutrition practice.
1. Specified percentages of respondents from the MSN-DPD Alumni Survey conducted every 2 years will rate their preparation as ‘3’ (‘adequately prepared’) or higher on a scale of 1 to 5 in each of the following areas:
2. Specified percentages of respondents from the MSN-DPD Alumni Survey conducted every 2 years will report their ability to incorporate the following into their dietetic/nutrition practice at least ‘occasionally’ or more, or at least ‘3’ on a scale of 1 to 5:
3. Specified percentages of respondents from the MSN-DPD Alumni Survey conducted every 2 years will rate their level of preparedness post-graduation as a ‘3’ (‘adequately prepared’) or higher on a scale of 1 to 5 in each of the following dietetic practice areas:
Program outcomes data available upon request from the program director.
Verified graduation from the MSN/DPD enables a student to apply for ACEND-accredited supervised practice program. Although the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Science will assist all graduates in supervised practice placement, completion of the DPD does not guarantee acceptance into a supervised practice program.
Graduates are able to critically evaluate the scientific literature and incorporate current research and innovative advances in nutrition into the fundamentals of nutritional science and dietary planning. Graduates are also able to support the ecological well-being of the planet through promotion of improved eating habits.
Successful completion of the Bastyr MSN/DPD requires maintenance of a 3.00 GPA on a 4.0 scale, completion of 300 hours of volunteer/work experience,* achievement of a passing score (75 percent) on the exit examination, and completion of self-tracking of specified learning outcomes.
MSN/DPD students must complete a minimum of 78 credits. All MSN/DPD students must have a minimum 3.00 grade point average with a minimum of 64 credits in residence. In addition, 300 hours of paid work and/or volunteer experience in clinical nutrition, food service management and community nutrition are required to graduate. A grade of 75% or greater is required to pass the DPD exit exam. Students must also complete self-tracking of specified learning outcomes. MSN/DPD students must complete their degree within five years following matriculation into the program. A student will not receive his/her verification statement until all requirements for the MSN/DPD are met.
The Master of Science in Nutrition with Didactic Program in Dietetics (MSN/DPD) at Bastyr University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, (800) 877-1600, ext. 5400, email: firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.eatright.org/acend a specialized accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Bastyr University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Entering students must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college/university and a minimum GPA of 3.0 in their undergraduate degree. Priority consideration will be given to applicants with a 3.0 GPA in nutrition prerequisites, a 3.25 cumulative GPA in all prerequisites and a 3.25 cumulative GPA in science prerequisites, with a B or better in Human Physiology, Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry and Microbiology. Exceptional candidates who do not meet these priority standards will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Chemistry (science-major) **
*A full anatomy and physiology series will meet this requirement.
**A minimum of one chemistry course must include an in-person lab.
***The biochemistry course must be upper-level and must cover intermediary metabolism.
****The nutrition course must include macro- and micronutrients, lifecycle, and physical activity.
All applications are reviewed on an individual basis and decisions regarding admissibility are made by the Admissions Committee. Please contact the admissions office for more information.
Want to take these prerequisite courses with us? Find out more about our Post-Baccalaureate Program.
Want to know which classes fulfill these prerequisites? Review these Course equivalency guides
The MSN/DPD curriculum integrates the student's knowledge and skills related to the physical, behavioral, cultural, ecological, legislative, community and clinical aspects of human nutrition. The course work focuses on four main areas: nutrition, foods, basic sciences and counseling skills. Basic and advanced nutrition classes build the didactic knowledge underlying community and clinical nutrition. Core food courses build competencies in knowledge of whole foods and food composition, handling, preparation and distribution. Clinical practicum develops experiences, attitudes and values important to the competent dietetic intern.
The curriculum table below lists the tentative schedule of courses each quarter. Next to each course is the number of credits per course (Crdt.), the lecture hours each week (Lec.) and the lab/clinic hours each week (L/C). Course descriptions are available in the Course Catalog. Bastyr University’s academic calendar is followed for program schedule, vacations, holidays, and leave of absence.
The Department of Nutrition and Exercise Science has established expected learning outcomes in the following areas for all Master of Science in Nutrition programs:
Expected learning outcomes specific to the MSN-Didactic Program in Dietetics are called knowledge requirements for registered dietitians (KRDNs) and include:
The attached PDF is the curriculum for students starting in Fall 2019. Please note that changes to the curriculum may still occur before the start of the Fall 2019 academic year. For the 2018-2019 course catalog, click here.
Time spent in classrooms and studying for tests is just one component of a nutrition education. As a student pursuing the Master of Science in Nutrition with Didactic Program in Dietetics (MSN/DPD), you also will put scientific theories and counseling instruction into practice through supervised clinical training at Bastyr Center for Natural Health.
This real-world experience prepares you to become a registered dietitian, with guidance through this process from experienced whole-food dietitians on Bastyr's faculty.
With an average of 35,000 patient visits annually, Bastyr Center allows student clinicians to interact with a variety of clients, ranging in age from children to seniors. Through this clinical experience, you'll learn to recognize health conditions and support clients in dealing with their concerns, including:
Chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease
Weight-related dietary changes
Food allergies and sensitivities
Clinical training at Bastyr Center, combined with the external work experience required of MSN/DPD students, gives you a competitive edge that results in a higher dietetic supervised practice program placement rate compared with other schools across the nation.
To graduate, you must complete 92 hours of clinical training at Bastyr Center.
In addition to clinical training, you also must complete a total of 300 hours of paid work or volunteer experience in clinical nutrition, food service management and community nutrition.
Bastyr University malpractice insurance is in effect for MSN/DPD students (at no cost to students) during the course of their program.
Prior to beginning clinical training (i.e., Clinical Nutrition Practicum 1 & 2), students are required to complete a background check, TB testing, hepatitis B immunization (or submit a waiver) and CPR certification. Students may also be required to purchase a lab apron and a chef knife for food-related courses. The total estimated cost for these requirements is $310 to $420.
Kenmore, Washington campus
2 years, full-time
This degree program prepares students to be eligible to apply for ACEND-accredited supervised practice programs. The successful completion of a supervised practice program, in turn, supports eligibility to sit for the registration examination for dietitians. The Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) credential offers a scope of practice in medical nutrition therapy in hospitals, clinics, private practice and public health organizations. Registered dietitians with a master’s degree may also work in corporate wellness, food service management, food and nutrition consulting and writing, and community health.
Additionally, a graduate degree supports academic careers in universities, administrative positions in government and public health organizations, and research positions in clinical and other types of research laboratories.
See examples of how our graduates use their nutrition degrees.
In addition to successful completion of a Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD), to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) a student must accomplish the following:
To practice as an RDN, one must also obtain state-specific certification or licensure, as applicable. Additional information regarding state licensing agencies and requirements can be found at: https://www.eatrightpro.org/advocacy/legislation/all-legislation/licensure. Potential applicants should also be aware that effective in 2024, a master’s degree will be required to take the credentialing examination for registered dietitian nutritionists. For more information regarding careers in the field of dietetics, visit www.eatright.org