Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics - USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology Admissions Skip to main content

Improve global nutrition and aging

The Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics (MSLND) program’s mission is to improve the lives of individuals by addressing the global need for professionals trained to provide nutrition and dietetics advice, information and recommendations. Our graduates will distinguish themselves with specialized knowledge of the nutritional needs of a global aging population. Students who complete the program are eligible to sit for the national Certifying Board for Dietary Managers (CBDM®) Credentialing Exam.

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Program Information

Delivery format

100% online or on-site

Typical Program Length

Full-time: 18-21 months
Part-time: 24-36 months


Spring 2024: October 15, 2023
Fall 2024: March 15, 2024
Post priority deadline: Rolling basis

International Applicants

Students are eligible for a STEM Visa

Is the Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics Right for Me?

The Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics is ideal if you want to pursue a career providing excellent nutrition, dietetics and lifespan health-related services and expertise to a variety of constituencies, including for populations outside the United States, school districts or community-based organizations.

The degree is designed for:

  • Individuals interested in practicing dietetics outside of the U.S.
  • Individuals interested in careers as dietary managers (CDMs)
  • Individuals interested in healthspan, longevity, wellness, nutrition and dietetics
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Career Opportunities for MSLND Graduates

  • Leadership in health and wellness
  • Nutrition program director
  • Dietetics services supervisor in healthcare facilities
  • School Foodservice Management Director
  • Wellness and Health Promotion Coaching

How Do I Earn My MSLND at USC Leonard Davis?

The Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics can be completed online through distance education or in-person and on a full-time or part-time basis. Four units of field practicum can be completed in foodservice, community or other areas of nutrition practice. Students will gain hands-on experience in the field and through research methods and exploration of evidence-based practices.

Students residing in Kentucky or Puerto Rico are not eligible to complete the Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics online via distance learning at this time.

What Will I Study in My Classes?

The MSLND program at USC Leonard Davis has strong relationships with community health professionals and programs serving individuals across the lifespan, and recognizes the increasing global role that nutrition and dietetics play in healthcare, policy and public and private sectors. Thus, the goals focus on assuring that the program produces competent, well-trained professionals who can promote healthspan and longevity through mastery of advanced knowledge of nutritional science and integrate scientific methodology, critical thinking and analytical research skills into nutrition practice. Graduates also employ effective communication for culturally diverse nutrition services, education programs and policies and demonstrate leadership skills in nutrition and dietetics practice and health/food systems development for individuals and organizations.

You’ll explore these subjects through your required and elective courses:

  • Fundamentals of Clinical Nutrition Screening and Assessment
  • Communicating Nutrition, Health and Longevity
  • Therapeutic Nutrition, Micronutrients and Macronutrients 
  • Food Production and Foodservice Management
View the full curriculum

What are the program requirements?

Successful completion of 38 units is required for graduation (28 units of didactic coursework, 4 units of field practicum and 6 units of research). The program provides students with coursework and field practicum needed to meet competencies for the national Certifying Board for Dietary Managers (CBDM®) Credentialing Exam. The program’s concentration area is nutrition, dietetics and lifespan health, and prepares graduates for careers in health, wellness, nutrition, dietetics.


Prerequisite courses must be completed before starting the program.

  • Physiology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, and Basic Human Nutrition or DPD Verification Statement in lieu of these 4 courses
  • All prerequisite courses must meet our minimum unit requirement in the semester system.  Courses taken on any other system, including the quarter system, must be converted to semester units.
  • Not required to complete all at USC
  • Complete this prerequisites template and upload it with your online application.
Application Requirements
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Complete supplemental application included as part of university application
  • In your university application, you must upload your resume and statement of interest
  • 2 letters of recommendation, either uploaded in your university application or mailed separately by your recommenders
  • Official transcripts should be mailed directly to our office, or submitted electronically. Students must declare all schools on the application and submit transcripts from all institutions attended (even if it was for just one semester) after high school:

USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology
Office of Admission and Student Services
3715 McClintock Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0191

On your university application, include your scholarship application—merit-based scholarships are available to qualified applicants. The GRE may be waived by having strong academics. If the GRE is required, you will be notified during the review process.

Statement of Interest

Your statement of interest plays an important role in helping our faculty consider your application for graduate study. The following prompt is designed to help you but is not an exhaustive list of information you should include in your statement. We recommend that your statement is within three to five double-spaced pages. The statement should be uploaded as part of the university application.

  • Tell us why you chose to apply to the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology
  • Tell us about your experiences in gerontology
  • Describe your educational and career goals
  • Please describe your strengths and weaknesses
How to apply

Learning that Fits Your Life

Whether you live halfway across the world or have a busy career, we make this program work for you. You can earn the MSLND degree online, through our robust digital course platform.

All your classes are streamed online, allowing you to interact with your classmates and professors in real-time. Learn more about our online education program.

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Stories and Spotlights

Educating leaders in nutrition and dietetics

Shauna Davis, MSNHL

Shauna Davis, who is focused on obtaining her Master of Science in Nutrition, Healthspan and Longevity (MSNHL), says the program has revealed a whole new world of possibilities.


Kayee Liu, MSNHL

Master of Science in Nutrition, Healthspan and Longevity (MSNHL) student Kayee Liu enjoys sitting down with patients and helping them develop healthy eating plans.

Alicia Miller, MSNHL

Shifting careers especially in the midst of the pandemic can be an incredible challenge, but for Master’s student Alicia Miller, nothing is more important to her than working on innovative ways to promote healthy aging.

Learn more and apply

Our community of ambitious students, eminent faculty and renowned alumni is waiting for you to join us. Our advisory team is ready to answer all your questions. Let’s continue the conversation.

Contact us Learn how to apply