How to become a registered dietitian

Follow the steps below and you’re on your way to becoming a registered dietitian nutritionist.

  1. Complete pre-dietetics option
  2. Complete OSU Didactic Program in Dietetics
  3. Apply for supervised practice (dietetic internships)
  4. Pass the Commission on Dietetic Registration's dietetic registration exam
  5. Gain licensure in your state of practice, if applicable
  6. Maintain continuing education


Step one

Complete pre-dietetics option

To be considered for admission to the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) within the Nutrition major, you must complete the Pre-Dietetics courses listed in the OSU academic catalog with a grade of B– or higher in each of the NUTR courses listed, a grade of C– or higher in each of the other courses listed, and a grade point average of 3.0 or higher for the listed courses as a whole.

Applicants to the Dietetics option must achieve an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher based on completing at least 60 quarter credits [OSU (institutional) and transfer]. At least 12 credits must be taken at OSU.

View pre-dietetics courses


Dietetics Application Deadline Monday, May 4 at 5 p.m.

To be considered for entrance into the Didactic Program in Dietetics cohort Fall 2020, submit your completed application materials to the dietetics advisor, Carey Hilbert, at by May 4, 2020 at 5 p.m.  For questions about completing your application, contact your CPHHS advisor or Carey Hilbert.


Step two

Complete OSU Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) coursework

Oregon State offers several degree options in which to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition.

Only the B.S. in Nutrition – Dietetics Option prepares students to become Registered Dietitian Nutritionists through a nationally accredited curriculum designed to prepare students for competitive application to supervised practice, also known as dietetic internships.

The Oregon State B.S. in Nutrition – Dietetics Option is a challenging science-based curriculum.

All NUTR prerequisites are available through Oregon State Ecampus, and other prerequisite courses can readily be found, with some attention to articulation, at other institutions. This allows you to work toward the Nutrition – Dietetics Option B.S. degree outside of Corvallis, OR.

The coursework for the final two academic years of the program are only available on the Corvallis campus.

Sample schedule


Step three

Complete your dietetic internship

Our DPD program prepares you to apply for supervised practice (dietetic internships). The Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) requires completion of a baccalaureate degree granted by a U.S. regionally accredited college or university or foreign equivalent in any discipline and completion of an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics to be eligible to apply for dietetic internships.

Upon completion of the B.S. in Nutrition – Dietetics Option at OSU, graduates are eligible to participate in the Dietetic Internship Centralized Application Services (DICAS) national application process used to award supervised practice positions (dietetic internships).

D & D Digital provides the online internship matching services for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Considerable coaching toward successful completion of this process is provided in the OSU DPD curriculum.

Please note: Effective January 1, 2024 all candidates will be required to have a master's degree. Those that attain the RDN credential prior to January 1, 2024, will be grandfathered in without meeting the minimum education requirement of a master’s degree.


Step Four

Pass the Commission on Dietetic Registration's dietetic registration exam.

After successfully completing current eligibility requirements and being validated by CDR, individuals are eligible to take the registration examination for dietitians.


Step Five

Gain licensure in your state of practice, if applicable.

Forty-seven states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia currently have statutory provisions regulating the dietetics profession or associated titles such as dietitian and nutritionist. Information on state licensure and certification is provided here as a service to dietetics professionals and state licensure boards.


Step Six

Maintain continuing education.

Credentialed practitioners are required to maintain certification through continuous learning in order to ensure professional knowledge and competence. To that end, the Commission on Dietetic Registration constructed the Professional Development Portfolio process, which provides practitioners with the tools to achieve these aims.