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RD Examination—Eligibility Requirements

Option 1—Dietetic Internship


Completion of a bachelor’s degree granted by a US regionally accredited college/university (or foreign equivalent)

  1. Completion of an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
  2. Completion of an ACEND accredited Dietetic Internship (DI) (minimum of 1200 supervised practice hours)
   
 

Option 2—Coordinated Program


  1. Completion of a bachelor’s degree granted by a US regionally accredited college/university (or foreign equivalent)
  2. Completion of an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) Coordinated Program (CP) (minimum of 1200 supervised practice hours)
 

Individualized Supervised Practice Pathways (ISPP)


In 2011, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics announced the development of ISPPs (pronounced "iss-pees") which are intended to add supervised practice capacity through ACEND-accredited dietetics programs. For more information click here. There are two ISPP options:

   

Option 3—DPD Graduate


  1. Completion of a bachelor’s degree granted by a US regionally accredited college/university (or foreign equivalent)
  2. Completion of an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
  3. Did not match with a DI.
  4. Completion of an ACEND accredited DPD ISPP (minimum of 1200 supervised practice hours)
 
 

Option 4—Doctorate Degree Graduate


  1. Completion of a doctorate granted by a US regionally accredited college/university (or foreign equivalent)
  2. Completion of an ACEND accredited doctorate ISPP (minimum of 1200 supervised practice hours)
 

Individuals with Foreign Degrees


Each country has their own credentialing agency with policies and procedures that an individual must comply with to meet registration eligibility requirements and become credentialed in that country. Individuals who want to be credentialed as a RD in the US must comply with CDR’s eligibility and examination requirements.

If your degree is from outside the US, you are required to have your transcript evaluated by an approved Foreign Degree Evaluation Agency. A detailed course-by-course evaluation is recommended. After receiving your evaluation report, you will need to contact the program director of an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) or Coordinated Program (CP) to request they review your transcript and foreign degree evaluation report. They will determine to what degree your prior learning meets current requirements and counsel you regarding any additional coursework needed to complete their program requirements.

Option 5—Registration Eligibility Reciprocity


Registration eligibility reciprocity is extended to individuals who completed all certification requirements (academic, didactic, experiential, and examination) in the country with whom CDR has an agreement. CDR currently has reciprocity agreements with the following foreign regulatory boards.

  • Dietitians of Canada (DC) (Valid through December 31, 2018)
  • Dutch Association of Dietitians/Ministry of Welfare, Public Health and Culture (NVD)
  • Philippine Professional Regulation Commission (PRC)
  • Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute (INDI)

If you have completed certification requirements with one of the above credentialing bodies, please follow the instructions on the International Registration Eligibility Application.

   
 
   

Option 6—Canadian Registered Dietitian


Individuals who were educated in Canada, are graduates of a Partnership in Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP) accredited program, and who are licensed as a Canadian RD (or equivalent provincial designation) may apply for registration eligibility with CDR by filling out the Canadian Registered Dietitian Application and attaching the required documentation. This documentation includes a letter from Dietitians of Canada (DC) which bears the original signature of the DC designated official and that confirms current active DC membership.

Beginning January 1, 2024, Canadian RDs who meet the above requirements and who have completed a graduate degree will continue to be able to apply for eligibility to take the registration examination for dietitians.  Those who have completed a baccalaureate degree will be eligible to take the registration examination for dietetic technicians.

 

Option 7—International Dietetics Programs


Graduates of ACEND accredited IDE programs (determined to be “substantially equivalent” by ACEND) are eligible to take the entry-level registration examination for dietitians provided they apply for registration eligibility to CDR on or before July 1, 2019. Registration eligibility applications from graduates of “substantially equivalent” programs will not be considered after July 1, 2019. Graduates of Foreign Dietitian Education (FDE) programs are not eligible to take the RD exam but are eligible to apply to a Dietetic Internship.

There are five international programs in dietetics that have been recognized by ACEND under the IDE or FDE Standards. The only international program that is accredited by ACEND as an IDE is the American University Beirut.