Steps to Become an RD

There are multiple pathways to become an RD. For more information on the process, visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics or the Comission on Dietetic Registration (CDR)

  1. Earn a minimum of a graduate degree and receive DPD verification statement.
  • UCSF Health's Dietetic Internship requires a conferred graduated degree and completed DPD verification statement to enter.
  • Other internships and graduate programs may be set up differently. 
  1. Complete a supervised practice requirement (minimum of 1000 hours). 
  • UCSF Health's Dietetic Internship meets this requirement. 
  1. Pass a national exam for RDNs. 
  • Once you complete your supervised practice at UCSF Health, you can schedule Registration Examination for Registered Dietitians through the CDR. 
  1. Meet requirements to practice in your state. 
  • Many states have regulatory laws (i.e. licensure) for food and nutrition practitioners. California does not have state licensure.
  • While state interpretations of statutes may vary, it is ACEND's considered opinion that the program meets the educational requirements for dietetics licensure and certification in all states. However, completing an ACEND-accredited academic program alone does not qualify an individual for licensure or certification as a dietitian in any state. Individuals should review their state's licensing statutes and regulations to understand the specific requirements, including supervised practice and examinations, needed to obtain a dietetics license. More information about state licensure and certification can be found at this link: State Licensure.
  1. Participate in continuing education. 
  • Dietitians must complete 75 continuing education credits per accreditation cycle. More information can be found from CDR here.