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Master of Professional Studies in
Nutritional Sciences

Courses

The Master of Professional Studies in Nutritional Sciences is a 30- to 39-credit online program offering a strong foundation in evidence-based advanced practice, with a focus on leadership in various nutrition practice settings including clinical, research, community, and management.

Most students will complete the degree program in two years (based on taking two courses per semester).

The MPS in Nutritional Sciences offers an Experiential Track, which is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) and may lead to the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) credential. This track requires completion of a minimum of 39 credits, which includes the 30 master's degree credits, plus a minimum of 9 additional credits for the optional Experiential Track.

The Experiential Track of the MPS in Nutritional Sciences is a full-time 24-month program that runs from summer semester year one through spring semester year two and includes three consecutive semesters of supervised experiential learning during year one (fall, spring, and summer). The Experiential Track supervised experiential learning semesters can be completed in-residence or at a distance.

  • In-residence: Requires students to live within a drivable distance to one of the two geographic locations for supervised experiential learning — University Park, PA, and surrounding areas OR Harrisburg/Hershey, PA, and surrounding areas. All field placements are arranged by the program, and applicants may indicate preference of location upon application.
  • Distance: Students can live anywhere in the United States; students must locate their own supervised experiential learning sites as part of the distance location.

Required Courses (27 credits)

  • 3
    credits

    Review of different studies that utilize various nutrition research designs and data analyses.

    • Prerequisite

      NUTR 850, STAT 500

  • 2
    credits

    Development of the skills necessary for effective leadership within the field of nutrition.

  • 4
    credits

    Integration of biochemical, physiological, and hormonal processes involved in nutrient metabolism and function in humans.

  • 3
    credits

    Evaluation of assessment methods and interpretation of results to assess and diagnose nutritional status of individuals and groups.

  • 3
    credits

    Advanced study of acute and chronic illnesses and conditions and how these events influence the nutritional needs of patients.

  • 3
    credits

    Application of relevant theories, models, and strategies designed to disseminate nutrition information with a focus on voluntary behavior change.

  • 3
    credits

    Application of theories and counseling techniques to the nutrition care process in different practice settings with diverse patients/clients.

  • 3
    credits

    Exploration and application of concepts essential to effective leadership within the nutrition profession.

    • Prerequisite

      NUTR 801

  • 3
    credits

    Descriptive statistics, hypothesis testing, power, estimation, confidence intervals, regression, one- and two-way ANOVA, chi-square tests, diagnostics.

    • Prerequisite

      one undergraduate course in statistics

Culminating Capstone Experience (3-5 credits)

  • 3–5
    credits

    Completion of a capstone project involving research and application of leadership principles in nutrition practice.

    • Prerequisite

      NUTR 540, NUTR 850

Experiential Track Courses (9 credits)

  • 3
    credits

    This course provides an opportunity to acquire an in-depth knowledge of food systems management and develop the skills necessary to guide practice in the management and leadership of food and nutrition service operations.

  • 2
    credits

    Supervised, professional oriented, off-campus, non-group instruction, including field experiences, practicums, or internships. Written and oral critique of activity required.

  • 2
    credits

    Supervised, professional oriented, off-campus, non-group instruction, including field experiences, practicums, or internships. Written and oral critique of activity required.

  • 2
    credits

    Supervised, professional oriented, off-campus, non-group instruction, including field experiences, practicums, or internships. Written and oral critique of activity required.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.

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