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2020 Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services Degree Guide

In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it is important to have a well-rounded diet. Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition Services majors work with patients to oversee health and diet needs and help them reach goals.

This major involves classes in chemistry, physiology, nutrition, and biology to learn how to design nutrition plans and help ensure patients are receiving important nutrients. Professionals work in nursing homes, cafeterias, hospitals, schools, and offices where they can work closely with food and evaluate the nutritional needs of groups of people or individual patients.

Students interested in the Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition Services field often specialize in Clinical Nutrition, Dietetic Technician, Dietitian Assistant, or Bioethics/Medical Ethics.

Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services Degrees Decreasing

#137 Most Popular Major
6.1k Degrees Awarded
-11.6% Increase in Graduates

In 2017-2018, dietetics and clinical nutrition services was the 137th most popular major nationwide with 6,056 degrees awarded. This represents a 11.6% reduction in nutrition degrees awarded over the prior year's total of -6,757.

The United States has 130 different schools where you can get a degree in dietetics and clinical nutrition services. Our 2020 Best Colleges for Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services ranking analyzes 67 of these schools to determine the best overall colleges for dietetics and clinical nutrition services students. Explore this or one of our many other custom nutrition rankings further below.

Requirements for Getting a Degree in Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services

Students in the Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition Services major typically have strong critical thinking and analytical skills. They must observe patients' nutritional needs and create dietary plans to help patients receive all the nutrition they need to stay healthy or reach a certain goal. Strong interpersonal and communication skills allow students to work closely with others to help them face dietary concerns.

A degree in this field usually leads to a fulltime job in a variety of locations. Some Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition Services majors work for medical services in hospitals, nursing homes, or clinics, while other professionals are self-employed. Self-employment allows you to work closely with individuals or smaller groups of people while setting your own hours.

In order to earn a degree in Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition, students must complete an internship. This experience gives you hands-on experience within the field under the supervision of a trained professional. Students must also be licensed before working in this career field.

Prior Education for a Nutrition Program

dietetics and clinical nutrition services degree applicants generally need have finished high school or their GED. Many schools may also have GPA and SAT/ACT score minimums that must be met. Specific nutrition careers may require a certain level of degree attainment or additional certifications beyond that.

Types of Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services Degree

Nutrition degree levels vary. You can get anything from a award taking less than 1 year in dietetics and clinical nutrition services to the highest nutrition degree, a professional practice doctorate. Depending on the dietetics and clinical nutrition services degree you choose, obtaining your diploma can take anwhere from 1 to 4+ years.

Degree Credit Requirements Typical Program Length
Associate Degree 60-70 credits 2 years
Bachelor’s Degree 120 credits 4 years
Master’s Degree 50-70 credits 1-3 years
Doctorate Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation At least 4 years

A high school diploma or equivalent is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to nutrition, with approximately 30.5% of workers getting one. See the the most common levels of education for nutrition workers below.

Level of Education Percentage of Workers
High School Diploma 34.8%
Bachelor’s Degree 15.4%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate 13.8%
Less than a High School Diploma 13.5%
Master’s Degree 9.9%

53.2% of nutrition workers have at least a bachelor's. View the chart below to get an idea of what degree level most of those in dietetics and clinical nutrition services careers have.


The education level required is different depending on the nutrition career you are seeking.

Career Opportunities for A Degree In Nutrition Graduate

Below Average Number of Jobs
$33.1k Average Starting Salary
13% Growth Job Outlook 2016-26

Graduates work in many different locations where they deal with the dietary needs of others by planning meals, adding supplementary nutrition, and observing the effects of meal plans. Some graduates work in the cafeterias of schools, hospitals, and nursing homes, while other graduates have gone on to open their own practice.

Solid Growth Projected for Nutrition Careers

Want a job when you graduate with your nutrition degree? Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services careers are expected to grow 12.8% between 2016 and 2026.

The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to dietetics and clinical nutrition services.

Occupation Name Projected Jobs Expected Growth
Dietitians and Nutritionists 77,900 14.6%
Dietetic Technicians 36,500 9.3%

How Much Money Do Nutrition Grads Make?

Recently graduated dietetics and clinical nutrition services students earned an average of $33,082 in 2017-2018. Earnings can range from as low as $16,400 to as high as $54,600. As you might expect, salaries for nutrition graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.


Highest Paid Nutrition Careers

Salaries for dietetics and clinical nutrition services graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top 5 highest paying careers nutrition grads often go into.

Occupation Name Median Average Salary
Dietitians and Nutritionists $61,210
Dietetic Technicians $30,130

Getting Your Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services Degree

With over 456 different nutrition degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased nutrition school rankings to help you with this.

Study Areas in Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services

Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services is one of 34 different types of Health Professions programs to choose from.

Related Major Annual Graduates
Nursing 293,633
Allied Health & Medical Assisting Services 104,465
Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants 90,916
Health & Medical Administrative Services 87,058
Allied Health Professions 86,125

View All Nutrition Related Majors >


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