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Accreditation Information


School of Adult and Graduate Education

Traditional Admissions

How to Become an RDN

In order to become a registered dietitian nutritionist an individual must:

  • Complete a minimum of a Bachelor's degree* and obtain a DPD Verification Statement
  • Complete a minimum of 1000 supervised practice hours through an accredited dietetic internship and obtain a DI Verification Statement
  • Successfully pass the national registration examination for registered dietitian nutritionists.

*Like other health care professions, RDNs must take and pass a national board registration examination to earn the RDN certification. The RDN exam is a computer-based exam that covers the content in the three major areas of dietetics: clinical, community, and food service.

After graduation and preparing for the RD exam:

Interns who successfully complete the CCC DI will obtain a DI Verification Statement from the internship director and will then be eligible to sit for the national registration examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Interns who pass the registration exam* will have earned the registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) credential. After the RDN credential is obtained, state licensure or certification may be applied for if applicable. 
In addition to RDN credentialing, many states (including Pennsylvania) have regulatory laws for dietitians and nutrition practitioners. Frequently these state requirements are met through the same education and training required to become an RDN.  Please refer to the Academy's information on licensure statutes.

For more information about educational pathways to become an RDN please visit the Academy's Information for Students.

A note about changes to dietetics education requirements:

*Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master's degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). In some states, graduates also must obtain certification to practice. Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited dietetic internship at Cedar Crest College are eligible to apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN. For more information about educational pathways to become an RDN please visit https://www.eatrightpro.org/acend/students-and-advancing-education/information-for-students