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nutrition and dietetics programs

Learn more about these specialized Master’s degrees providing flexibility in an in-demand field.

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Master of Arts in Foodservice Management and Dietetics (MAFMD)

Designed for:

  • Future leaders in foodservice management
  • Individuals interested in careers as dietary managers (CDMs)
  • Individuals interested in healthspan, longevity, wellness, nutrition, and dietetics
Learn more

Master of Science in Nutritional Science (MSNS)

Designed for:

  • Future Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) with DPD verification statement
  • Current RDNs who want a master’s degree
Learn more

Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics (MSLND)

Designed for:

  • Individuals interested in practicing dietetics outside the U.S.
  • Individuals interested in careers as dietary managers (CDMs)
  • Individuals interested in healthspan, longevity, wellness, nutrition and dietetics
Learn more

Compare the Programs

MS Nutrition, Healthspan and Longevity (MSNHL)MA Foodservice Management and Dietetics (MAFMD)MS Nutritional Science (MSNS)MS Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics (MSLND)
Designed forFuture Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)
  • Future leaders in foodservice management
  • Individuals interested in careers as dietary managers (CDMs)
  • Individuals interested in healthspan, longevity, wellness, nutrition, and dietetics
  • Future Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) with DPD verification statement
  • Current RDNs who want a master’s degree
  • 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
AccreditationACEND Accredited (*see note below)
Units44323238
Internship/Field PracticumYesYesYes
Delivery MethodOn-site or OnlineOn-site or OnlineOn-site or OnlineOn-site or Online
CertificationPrepares students to sit for Commission on Dietetics Registration (CDR) examPrepares students to sit for Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) examPrepares students to sit for Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) exam
Prerequisites11 prerequisite courses (or DPD Verification statement) and 40 shadow hoursNone
Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) Verification Statement or Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (CDR) Registration
Physiology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, and Basic Human Nutrition or DPD Verification Statement in lieu of these 4 courses
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*Master of Science in Nutrition, Healthspan and Longevity Accreditation

The degree program and supervised practice are accredited (9/8/2014) by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) and the registration exam requirements are set by the Commission on Dietetics Registration (CDR). Graduates receive a verification statement that enables registration for the exam and upon successful completion receive the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) credential.

ACEND can be contacted at:

  • Mail: 120 South Riverside Plaza
  • Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995
  • Phone: 800/877-1600, ext. 5400
  • Visit website

Master of Arts in Foodservice Management and Dietetics (MAFMD)

Program Description

The Master of Arts in Foodservice Management and Dietetics will prepare students to communicate principles and practices of lifespan nutrition related to health and longevity as well as evaluate principles and practices related to wellness.  At the end of this program graduates will be able to implement best practices in personnel management related to foodservice systems and sit for the national Certifying Board for Dietary Managers (CBDM®) Credentialing Exam.

Designed For

  • Future leaders in foodservice management
  • Individuals interested in careers as dietary managers (CDMs)
  • Individuals interested in healthspan, longevity, wellness, nutrition, and dietetics

Curriculum (32 units)

  • GERO 488: Food, Culture, Disease and Longevity in Italy and the Mediterranean (4 units)
  • GERO 500: Perspectives on a Changing Society: An Introduction to Aging (4 units)
  • GERO 512: Communicating Nutrition and Health (2 units)
  • GERO 515: Food Production and Foodservice Management (4 units)
  • GERO 567: Prevention of Chronic Diseases through Nutrition, Physical Activity and Lifestyle Changes (4 units)
  • GERO 577: Foodservice and Senior Living (2 units)
  • GERO 578 Revenue Management for Senior Living (2 units)
  • GERO 591 Field Practicum (2 units)
  • GERO 592 Multidisciplinary Research Seminar in Aging (4 units)
  • GERO 593: Research Methods (4 units)

Prerequisites 

  • None

Application Requirements

Learn more about how to apply.

Program Outcomes

  • Provide leadership in foodservice systems and aging using evidenced-based research and best practices and sit for the CDM exam. 
  • Effectively communicate with, counsel, and educate diverse populations about food and its societal and cultural relevance with a person-centered approach. 
  • Understand the importance of the biological, psychological and social aspects of aging especially as they relate to food production and consumption. 
  • Practice basic frameworks and public health models using systems thinking and best practices in food safety and production.
  • Independently produce and evaluate complex menus and formulate recipes.
  • Understand the aspects of senior living hospitality functions as they relate to foodservice. 

Career Opportunities

Foodservice management in:

  • Healthcare facilities
  • Schools
  • Senior living communities
  • Corporate wellness

Master of Science in Nutritional Science (MSNS)

Program Description

The Master of Science in Nutritional Science prepares graduates with advanced knowledge, skills, and intellectual maturity to become innovative leaders in healthspan and longevity.  This program gives students who have completed an undergraduate degree in nutrition an opportunity to earn a master’s degree with an emphasis on aging and wellness.

Designed For

  • Students with a Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) Verification Statement
  • Current Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)

Curriculum (32 units)

  • GERO 498: Nutrition, Genes, Longevity and Disease (4 units)
  • GERO 500: Perspectives on a Changing Society an Introduction to Aging (4 units)
  • GERO 518: Current Topics in Clinical Nutrition (4 units)
  • GERO 560: Micronutrients, Health and Longevity (4 units)
  • GERO 564: Multiple Chronic Conditions and Older Adults (4 units)
  • GERO 590: Directed Research  (4 units)
  • GERO 593: Research Methods (4 units)
  • Elective (4 units)

Prerequisites 

Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) Verification Statement or Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (CDR) Registration

Application Requirements

Learn more about how to apply. Applicants must include a DPD Verification Statement or Proof of RDN (CDR) Registration with their application.

Program Outcomes

  • Promote healthspan and longevity through mastery of advanced knowledge of nutritional sciences.  
  • Deliver and administer nutrition and dietetics programs in the private and public sectors. 
  • Assume leadership roles in the field of nutritional science with a focus on wellness and longevity
  • Effectively communicate with and respond to culturally diverse nutrition needs of older adults and their families. 
  • Demonstrate scientific methodology, critical thinking and analytical research application to nutrition practice through completion of a Capstone Project.  

Career Opportunities

  • Deliver and administer nutrition and dietetics programs in the private and public sectors
  • Careers in nutrition and dietetics, including:
    • working in hospitals
    • long-term care, university, and school foodservice programs
    • lifestyle and wellness coaching
    • scientific research
    • policy and advocacy

Master of Science in Lifespan, Nutrition and Dietetics (MSLND)

Program Description

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.

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

Curriculum (38 units)

  • GERO 488: Food, Culture, Disease and Longevity in Italy and the Mediterranean (4 units) OR GERO 498: Nutrition, Genes, Longevity and Disease (4 units)
  • GERO 511: Fundamentals of Clinical Nutrition Screening and Assessment (4 units)
  • GERO 512: Communicating Nutrition and Health (2 units)
  • GERO 513: Fundamentals of Nutrition: Macronutrients (2 units)
  • GERO 515: Food Production and Foodservice Management (4 units)
  • GERO 517: Advanced Therapeutic Nutrition (4 units)
  • GERO 560: Micronutrients, Health, and Longevity (4 units)
  • GERO 590: Directed Research (2 units)
  • GERO 591 Field Practicum (4 units)
  • GERO 593: Research Methods (4 units)
  • GERO 599: Special Topics (4 units)

Prerequisites 

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

Learn more about how to apply. Applicants must complete and upload this prerequisites template with the online application indicating completion of the 4 prerequisite courses.

Program Outcomes

  • Plan, deliver and administer nutrition and dietetics programs in the private and public sectors. 
  • Promote healthspan and longevity through mastery of advanced knowledge of nutritional science. 
  • Integrate scientific methodology, critical thinking and analytical research skills into nutrition practice. 
  • Demonstrate effective communication (both oral and written), contributing to culturally diverse nutrition services, education programs and policies. 
  • Demonstrate leadership skills in nutrition and dietetics practice and health/food systems development for individuals and organizations. 
  • Successfully sit for the national Certifying Board for Dietary Managers (CBDM®) Credentialing Exam.

Career Opportunities

  • Leadership in health and wellness
  • Nutrition program director
  • Dietetics services supervisor in healthcare facilities

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