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Bachelors in Nutritional Sciences


The Department offers the Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Nutritional Sciences. Two specializations (Dietetics and Nutrition) are offered under this major. The Nutrition specialization prepares students for graduate and professional schools, for careers in the food and food supplement industries, and for technical positions in nutrition research. The Department has a very strong undergraduate Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) that was fully accredited in 2006, and granted continuing accreditation in 2011, by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), the accrediting agency of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). The Dietetics specialization prepares students to apply for dietetic internships to become Registered Dietitians (RD). Registered Dietitians work in governmental agencies, industry, and in health care facilities as administrative and clinical dietitians, food service managers, and nutritional consultants. The DPD Director is Mary Marian, DCN, RDN, CSO.

Expected Learning Outcomes: 

1. Effectively communicate diet and nutrition information/knowledge to diverse populations.

2. Apply scientific evidence, best practices, and professional judgment when evaluating food- and nutrition-related problems.

3. Utilize multi-media resources to promote evidence-based nutrition information.

4. Identify nutrient utilization changes during various metabolic states.

5. Utilize food science and culinary principles in food preparation to recognize how food knowledge can improve nutritional  status.

Assessment Activities: 

SLO 1. Effectively communicate diet and nutrition information/knowledge to diverse populations

NSC 301 Nutrition Assessment: Lifecycle Nutrition serves as core class for all nutrition majors. Students practice application of concepts and lifecycle nutrition by conducting a diet analysis for a pregnant woman with a particular nutritional deficiency, develop a unique nutrition plan for this person with an adherence component.

Alumni Survey. The Alumni Survey is sent out _ years post graduation to students to assess program preparation from the student’s perspective. Selected question include: Evaluating and delivering effective oral and written communication to individuals and groups from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, Applying math and science principles to clinical nutrition, foodservice management and other work settings, Assessing dietetics-related problems and implementing appropriate solutions, Utilizing science and technology in your career, Maintaining intellectual curiosity and engage in self-initiated life long learning, Readiness for entry into dietetic internships, graduate school or entry-level practice in nutrition or a related field .

SLO 2. Apply scientific evidence, best practices, and professional judgment when evaluating food- and nutrition-related problems

NSC 310/325 Case Study: In their work on case studies students utilize critical thinking skills to develop a medical nutrition care plan (for cardiac, diabetes, renal, oncology, neurology and musculoskeletal disorders) utilizing the nutrition care process.

SLO 3. Utilize multi-media resources to promote evidence-based nutrition information

NSC 308 Presentation: Group presentations on metabolic disorders requiring students to work in groups, complete a review of the literature, explanation of pathophysiology of the disease, nutritional implications, present current research on the topic, and answer audience questions.

Graduating Study Exit Survey –Selected questions used in assessment include (q15-22): Writing clearly and effectively, increased study skills and methods, library and other information-research skills,  ability to solve problems,  ability to work independently, ability to work in groups, analyzing, synthesizing and evaluating complicated ideas,  and appreciating uncertainty when searching for answers.

SLO 4. Utilize the client-centered counseling model to promote behavior change related to diet, physical activity and lifestyle

NSC 408 Overview Quiz. Human Nutrition is the final nutrition course involving cellular utilization of nutrients in normal and disease states that all nutrition majors take. The capstone quiz is used to assess student knowledge and application on a cellular basis.

SLO 5. Apply food science and safety knowledge to food service management, policy and menu development

NSC 351R Video Assignment: Students select a topic from the class to complete additional research to fully understand the science behind the procedure, process or concept.  Then students  develop a 3 minute video to explain the topic to others by utilizing a demonstration or other visual aids.


Assessment Findings: 

In preparing our 2014 academic program review we determined that our previous assessment rubrics were not aligned properly to our student learning outcomes. In addition, during this academic review we were in process of approving our new 'Flexible Nutrition Option" which resulted from assessing both student and employer needs. The final approval of this option came after completion of our review and thus slightly altered our SLO's and assessment plan. Starting Fall 2014 we began collecting assessment data on particular core courses which will include data for all of our nutrition students and aligns with our restructured SLO's.

In this first year of collecting assessment data for our restructured SLO's, we have identified areas that we would like to further modify. Beginning in Fall 2015 we will develop and implement a pretest on nutrition assessment and biology in the NSC 101 course and use it as a posttest in our NSC 408 course. The development of the pre and posttest will replace the subset of questions currently used to assess SLO #4 in our NSC 408.

We are also looking closely at modifying our Graduate Exit Survey and our Alumni Survey to improve our indirect measure of our program.

Below you will find the rubric data from our first year of assessment post APR and a file summarizing the finding.


Change in Response to Findings: 

We have identified some initial improvements to our program assessment process as described in "Findings" above. These improvements will begin Fall of 2015 as we contiue to assess our program.

Based on our first year results we are likely to expand our rubric measurement from a scale of 1-4 to a scale of 1-6 to make it easier to identify areas in need of improvement.

We will collect 3 years of assessment data before coming up with any major changes in our program. This amount of assessment data should provide more clarity in areas in need of improvement and help in our developement of strategies for program change.

Updated date: Tue, 08/29/2017 - 10:48