JavaScript DHTML Drop Down Menu By Milonic Dietetics Education and Credentialing Requirements for Individuals with Foreign Degrees - ACEND International Fact Sheet from the Academy

a Publication for members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

  • Normal Size Larger Size Largest SizeText Size
  • Print this Page
  • Email this Page
  • Bookmark this Page
Stay Informed

Dietetics Education and Credentialing Requirements for Individuals with Foreign Degrees

  1. What is reciprocity and with which countries does CDR have reciprocity agreements?
  2. My education, training and credentials were completed outside of the United States and its territories. What do I do first?
  3. How do I become a Registered Dietitian credentialed by the CDR?
  4. Where can I find a list of ACEND-accredited didactic and supervised practice programs?
  5. What will be required to receive a verification statement from a Didactic Program in Dietetics program director?
  6. When I receive my DPD verification statement, how can I complete the supervised practice requirements?
  7. How can I complete both didactic coursework and supervised practice requirements in a Coordinated Program in Dietetics?
  8. I've completed a DPD and DI or a CP and have original verification statements from my program director. How do I establish eligibility to write the Registration Examination for Dietitians?
  9. Why do I need original verification statements? What is the purpose of obtaining a verification statement?
  10. How does the process differ to become a Dietetic Technician Registered?
  11. Once I obtain my RD or DTR credential, can I practice anywhere in the US?

  1. What is reciprocity and with which countries does CDR have reciprocity agreements?

    Reciprocity means that individuals who have completed the education and credentialing requirements in one country may be eligible for another country's credentialing examination if the two countries have entered into an agreement to allow this. CDR currently has registration eligibility reciprocity agreements with the following foreign dietetic associations and regulatory boards: Dietitians of Canada; Dutch Association of Dieticians and Ministry of Welfare, Public Health and Culture; the Philippine Professional Regulation Commission; and the Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute.

    Individuals who have met the qualifications established by these associations and regulatory boards should contact CDR directly at 312/899-0040, ext. 5500, to obtain information regarding establishing registration eligibility under the provision of CDR's reciprocity agreement with these associations and regulatory boards. If you are qualified under the provisions of a reciprocity agreement, proceed to the second item under the Questions Regarding Education and Credentialing Requirements section and follow this process before submitting the Registration Eligibility Application. It is important to note that all individuals who establish registration eligibility under the provisions of a reciprocity agreement must successfully write the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

  2. My education, training and credentials were completed outside of the United States and its territories. What do I do first?

    The first step is to have your academic degree validated as equivalent to the bachelor's or master's degree conferred by a  US regionally-accredited college or university. The summary section of the evaluation report MUST state "From a regionally accredited institution." Nonprofit agencies that perform this specialized service are listed here. Contact the agency for current information, procedure and costs.

  3. How do I become a Registered Dietitian credentialed by the CDR?

    In order to become a Registered Dietitian, an individual must complete the following three-step process:

    • Complete ACEND-accredited academic coursework in a Didactic Program in Dietetics and a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a US regionally-accredited college or university or foreign equivalent
      — Obtain an original verification statement from the Director of the ACEND-accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics documenting completion of these requirements.
    • Apply to, enroll in and complete ACEND-accredited supervised practice requirements in a Dietetic Internship for registration eligibility.
    • Pass the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

    Or:

    • Complete the didactic (academic) practice requirements and supervised practice requirements concurrently through an ACEND-accredited Coordinated Program in Dietetics
    • Pass the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

  4. Where can I find a list of ACEND-accredited didactic and supervised practice programs?

    We publish a complete list of all ACEND-accredited dietetics education programs. Programs are listed by program type: Didactic Program in Dietetics, Dietetic Internship and Coordinated Program and by state within each listing. This listing also provides a direct link to Program Directors through their e-mail address when available. Specific guidelines for acceptance, prerequisites, program content and financial aid, as well as an application, should be requested directly from each program.

    View the complete list »

  5. What will be required to receive a verification statement from a Didactic Program in Dietetics program director?

    Although all DPD programs must comply with the ACEND Accreditation Standards, each program is uniquely designed. For this reason, requirements to obtain the DPD verification statement may vary from one program to another. You may wish to contact one or more of the DPD Program Directors in your geographic area concerning the evaluation process. It is important to note that policies and procedures and costs for the evaluation may vary from one institution to another. Because additional coursework is likely to be required, you may need to enroll in the college or university before your transcripts will be evaluated. Using the program's policies, the Director will review the equivalency report of your previous academic preparation from one of the evaluation agencies listed below, plus copies of all transcripts. Following this evaluation, you will be advised regarding the additional coursework necessary to meet the academic requirements for the verification statement. Verification statements signed by the DPD Program Director will be issued after completion of all academic requirements. This Verification Statement is proof of completion of ACEND academic requirements (refer to the RD flowchart).

  6. When I receive my DPD verification statement, how can I complete the supervised practice requirements?

    You must complete an ACEND-accredited Dietetic Internship. The application process is competitive and an applicant may apply to any number of DI Programs. A computer matching process with specified deadlines is used for most DI appointments. The DPD Program Director and the listing of the ACEND-accredited Programs below are all resources for you in the application process. Contact the DI program director for application materials and to verify application deadlines.

    Upon completion of a Dietetic Internship, you will receive Verification Statements signed by the Program Director. This verifies completion of the supervised practice requirement for registration eligibility (refer to the RD flowchart).

    Additional information about supervised practice programs and computer matching can be obtained by calling the Academy Accreditation Team at 312/899-0040, ext. 5400.

  7. How can I complete both didactic coursework and supervised practice requirements in a Coordinated Program in Dietetics?

    If you complete registration eligibility requirements through the Coordinated Program, the CP Program Director will complete the same type of evaluation process. Again, the evaluation includes review of the equivalency report of your previous academic work from one of the evaluation agencies listed below, plus copies of all transcripts. Following this evaluation, you will be advised regarding the additional coursework necessary to complete the academic requirements, while also completing the supervised practice portion of the program(refer to the RD flowchart).

  8. I've completed a DPD and DI or a CP and have original verification statements from my program director. How do I establish eligibility to write the Registration Examination for Dietitians?

    The DI or CP Program Director will submit the registration eligibility information electronically to CDR. Then, CDR will mail confirmation of eligibility to you. Subsequently, you will receive an application for the registration examination from the testing agency. Upon achievement of a passing score on the exam, you will become a Registered Dietitian (refer to the RD flowchart).

    CDR publishes a Study Guide for the Registration Examination for Dietitians. To purchase the guide (Catalog number 062506) call the Academy Sales and Customer Service Team at 800/877-1600, ext. 5000 or 312/899-0040, ext. 5000.

  9. Why do I need original verification statements? What is the purpose of obtaining a verification statement?

    They are as important as obtaining a degree and often needed for similar purposes. Verification statements are documents that are awarded upon completing an ACEND-accredited dietetics education program. These are official documents that are necessary as proof that you have successfully completed the required education (academic and supervised practice) according to standards outlined by ACEND. You need original verification statements (not photocopies) not only for the Dietetic Internship application process but also for Academy membership, employment and state licensure.

  10. How does the process differ to become a Dietetic Technician Registered?

    The process is similar in that all academic degrees must be evaluated by one of the foreign degree validation agencies in the list of Independent Foreign Degree Evaluation Agencies below. This evaluation and copies of all transcripts then need to be reviewed by a Director of an ACEND-accredited Dietetic Technician Program or a Didactic Program in Dietetics. Refer to the ACEND-accredited programs below. Additional coursework and supervised practice may be required to obtain an original verification statement of completion of the Dietetic Technician Program or a Didactic Program in Dietetics. After you have obtained the verification statement, the program director will submit your registration eligibility application to CDR. Then, CDR will mail confirmation of eligibility to you. Subsequently, you will receive an application for the registration examination from the testing agency. Upon achievement of a passing score on the exam, you will become a Dietetic Technician, Registered (refer to the DTR flowchart).

    The Commission publishes a Study Guide for the Registration Examination for Dietetic Technicians. To purchase the Guide (Catalog number 063006) call the Academy Sales and Customer Service Team at 800/877-1600, ext. 5000 or 312/899-0040, ext. 5000.

    If you have completed a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a US regionally-accredited college or university, or foreign equivalent, and have a verification statement from the Director of an ACEND-accredited DPD program, you may submit the registration eligibility application to CDR. A Registration Eligibility Application for Dietetic Technicians may be obtained by calling the Commission on Dietetic Registration at 312/899-0040, ext. 4764. All original documents as outlined in the application materials must be attached to the application. The complete application must be submitted by the designated postmark deadline date. Written confirmation of receipt of the application will be forwarded to you. Upon achievement of a passing score on the exam, you will become a Dietetic Technician, Registered. This option could be considered by graduates of ACEND-accredited DPD programs who do not receive an appointment to a Dietetic Internship and want to be credentialed as a Dietetic Technician, Registered (refer to the DTR flowchart).

  11. Once I obtain my RD or DTR credential, can I practice anywhere in the US?

    Many states have enacted laws that regulate the practice of dietetics. It is important that you contact the state regulatory agency where you plan to practice before obtaining employment to obtain information on their requirements and regulations. A list of state regulatory agencies can be obtained on the CDR Web site. If your state is not among this list then it does not have licensure/certification. If you need further assistance, you may obtain information from the Academy's Washington office by calling 202/371-0500. Please be aware that registration as a dietitian or dietetic technician with CDR, state licensure and membership in the Academy described in the section Questions Regarding Academy Membership are separate processes (refer to the RD or DTR flowchart).