The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) is an autonomous accrediting agency for education programs preparing students to begin careers as registered dietitians or dietetic technicians, registered. Programs meeting the accreditation standards are accredited by ACEND.
ACEND serves the public by establishing and enforcing eligibility requirements and accreditation standards that ensure the quality and continued improvement of nutrition and dietetics education programs that reflect the evolving practice of dietetics. ACEND defines educational quality as the ability to prepare graduates with the foundation knowledge, skills and/or competencies for current dietetics practice and lifelong learning.
ACEND-accredited programs will be valued and respected for preparing competent professionals for entry-level and beyond.
To achieve its mission and vision, ACEND established strategic goals. ACEND will:
- Demonstrate accountability to the public through the establishment and application of market responsive, rigorous standards that require programs to document academic quality and student achievement.
- Communicate clear ACEND expectations to assist programs in meeting quality accreditation standards.
- Enhance preparation for entry-level practice by requiring program self-examination to ensure quality improvement and planning for purposeful change.
- Encourage educational innovation and diversity in order to address evolving dietetics practice.
- Continually evaluate accreditation practices in order to maintain appropriate policies and procedures that ensure fair and consistent accreditation decisions.
- Provide opportunities for professional development and educational leadership.