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Dietetics Program Policies and Procedures

Students enrolled in the Clemson University Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) are expected to comply with all Clemson University policies and procedures outlined in the Undergraduate Announcements (https://www.registrar.clemson.edu/html/catalog.htm) and the Student Handbook (http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/index.html).  In addition to Clemson University policies, program specific policies have been developed in compliance with accreditation standards set forth by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND®) and apply to all students enrolled in the DPD.

Dietetics Program Admissions Policy
A registered dietitian (RD) or registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) is a food and nutrition expert who has completed multiple layers of education and training accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND®) and credentialed by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). To become a RD or RDN, students must complete three steps.  The steps include 1) completing a specially designed, ACEND®-accredited bachelor’s or master’s degree curriculum; 2) completing an ACEND®-accredited dietetic internship program; and 3) passing the nationally-recognized Registration Examination for Dietitians administered by CDR.  Successful completion of Clemson University’s B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition with a concentration in Nutrition and emphasis in Dietetics fulfills only the first step of this three step process to become a RD or RDN. The Dietetics emphasis curriculum is an ACEND®-accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD).

Students who select the Dietetics emphasis must complete a formal application and meet specific criteria for acceptance. The demand for dietetic internship positions greatly exceeds the number of available positions. Due to the competitive nature of dietetic internship acceptance, minimum grade criteria in specific DPD courses are required for Dietetics emphasis acceptance.  Acceptance and successful completion of the Dietetics emphasis curriculum will not guarantee acceptance into a dietetic internship, step 2 in the process of becoming a RD or RDN.

Two application times for admission into the Dietetics emphasis are available, one at the beginning of the spring semester and one at the beginning of the fall semester. Students following the B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition with a concentration in Nutrition curriculum as freshmen are encouraged to apply during the spring semester of their sophomore year. Students who have transferred or changed their major into the program may apply during either the spring or fall semester based on when they attain the criteria for emphasis admission. Students must be formally admitted into the Dietetics emphasis before they are permitted to take coursework designated “Dietetics Emphasis Only.” A delay in application once a student has achieved the admission criteria may result in additional semester(s) and a delay in graduation. 

For Dietetics emphasis admission, students must meet the following criteria:

  1. Documented attendance at a dietetics program information session discussing the steps to become a registered dietitian/registered dietitian nutritionist, held fall semester.
  2. Complete a minimum of 60 credit hours by the end of the semester in which the student is applying.
  3. Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.20.
  4. Complete the following courses with a C or better:
    •  Biology 1030 and 1050 (or Biology 1100)
    •  Biology 1040 and 1060 (or Biology 1110)
    •  Chemistry 1010
    •  Chemistry 1020
    •  Chemistry 2230 and 2270
    •  Biology 2220
    •  Psychology 2010
    •  Economics 2000 or 2120
  5. Complete the following courses with a B or better:
    •  Food Science 1010
    •  Nutrition 2030
    •  Nutrition 2160
  6. Complete the Dietetics Emphasis Application Form by January 5th for potential fall semester admission and September 5th for potential spring semester admission.

The DPD director will review the applications and make decisions concerning acceptance into the Dietetics emphasis. Students will normally receive notification through their Clemson University email regarding the status of his/her application prior to fall or spring advising and registration depending on the application and acceptance period. Students who meet all outlined criteria will be automatically accepted into the Dietetics emphasis.  Students who do not meet the criteria or have a GPA greater than 3.0 but less than 3.2 will be conditionally accepted.  Students who are conditionally accepted will normally have their final acceptance determined by mid-May or mid-December following posting of the semester grades to their transcripts. If a required course was taken elsewhere, it will be the student’s responsibility to send an official transcript to the DPD director.

Students are allowed to apply up to two times. Therefore, a student should not apply until he or she is certain he or she has met or can meet the admission criteria, including completion of the required coursework. Upon acceptance into the Dietetic emphasis, students must complete the “Change of Academic Program” form to formalize selection of the “Dietetics” emphasis.

Once in the Dietetics emphasis, a student may complete the curriculum and graduate with a GPA ≥2.00. However, to receive a signed Declaration of Intent and/or Verification Statement, students must comply with the GPA, grade and other requirements indicated in the “Declaration of Intent and Verification Statement Policy”.

Dietetics Program Assessment of Student Learning Policy
Student learning is assessed in each course within the dietetics program as outlined in the course syllabus. The course syllabus is provided to students by the course instructor when the course commences. Student assessment is conducted periodically in each course through assignments, quizzes, exams, term papers, projects, or reports. At minimum a mid-term and end-of-term evaluation is made available to the student in accordance with the Clemson University Mid-Term Evaluation, Final Examination, and Grade Report policies. Information regarding these policies is available on page 26 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

Students are responsible for using individual course evaluation for self-assessment of success in the program and dietetics profession. Students are encouraged to meet with course instructors to discuss specific strategies to maintain and improve academic performance. Program faculty members are encouraged to review student performance in their classes on a periodic basis and counsel students accordingly.

Dietetics Program Advising Policy
Clemson University’s Advising Policy is followed to monitor student academic, professional, and ethical performance and behavior; to facilitate early detection of academic difficulty; to support student retention in the dietetics program; and to counsel students regarding alternative career pathways and degree programs, as applicable. The Clemson University Academic Advising Policy is available on page 8 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

All students in the dietetics program are assigned an academic advisor when they enter the Food Science and Human Nutrition, B.S. – Nutrition Concentration degree program. Once a student is admitted into the dietetics program, the DPD Director serves as the student's academic advisor. Dietetics program students are required to meet with their assigned academic advisor at least twice per academic year – once during fall semester prior to registering for spring semester courses and once during spring semester prior to registering for fall semester courses. Students will not be cleared for semester registration until after they have met with their assigned academic advisor. Additional information regarding academic advising is available at http://www.clemson.edu/academics/advising/index.html.

Students evidencing sub-par performance in one or more program courses will be advised to seek academic assistance through the course professor or graduate teaching assistance during office hours, academic coaching through the Academic Success Center, and/or academic learning strategy consulting through the Academic Success Center. Students will also be encouraged to attend Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) sessions, formal and informal one-on-one and group tutoring sessions, formal and information study groups, and academic success workshops, all available through the Academic Success Center. Information regarding these and other academic support services is available through the Academic Success Center website at http://www.clemson.edu/asc/.

Students who demonstrate a documented pattern of sub-par course performance over more than one semester and therefore minimal chances of success in the dietetics program (as defined by the Dietetics Program Declaration of Intent and Verification Statement Policy) will be advised to consider an alternative major, concentration, emphasis area, and/or career pathway. Students will be directed to seek additional career counseling and degree program advisement through the Center for Career and Professional Development. Students may be advised to complete the Strong Interest Inventory, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, or TypeFocus career assessment (https://career.sites.clemson.edu/michelin_career_center/career_development_recruiting/assessment.php) and meet with a career counselor to review results. Information on the Center for Career and Professional Development Career Counseling Services is available at https://career.sites.clemson.edu/michelin_career_center/career_development_recruiting/counseling.php.

Dietetics Program Student Retention and Remediation Policy
In addition to the Dietetics Advising Policy, the Clemson University Academic Eligibility Policy is followed for monitoring student academic performance, providing early detection of academic difficulty, and facilitating student retention and remediation when successful academic progress is not achieved. Student retention and remediation is further supported through the Clemson University Repeating Courses Passed, Repeating Courses Failed, and Academic Forgiveness Policies. Information regarding the Academic Eligibility Policy is available on page 26-27 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017. Information regarding the Repeating Courses Passed, Repeating Courses Failed, and Academic Forgiveness Policies is available on page 27 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

Dietetics Program Disciplinary/Termination Policy
The Clemson University Academic Integrity Policy, Academic Misconduct by Former Students Policy, Revocation of Academic Degrees Policy, and the Clemson University Student Code of Conduct are followed regarding student disciplinary/termination procedures. Information regarding the Academic Integrity Policy is available on page 30-31 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017. Information regarding the Academic Misconduct of Former Students Policy is available on page 33 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017. Information regarding the Revocation of Academic Degrees Policy is available on p. 33-34 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017. Information regarding the Student Code of Conduct is available at http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/code-of-conduct/ and in the Student Handbook at http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/code-of-conduct/codeofconduct2014.pdf.

Dietetics Program Declaration of Intent and Verification Statement Policy
A Declaration of Intent form signed by the director of the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) verifies the student’s intent to complete the baccalaureate degree and/or ACEND® minimum academic requirements. This intent is based upon the courses that a student has already completed and the projected courses that the student has yet to complete. These remaining courses are documented on the Declaration of Intent form. This form is completed during the last semester of intended degree and dietetics program completion and allows students to apply for a dietetic internship during this final semester.

A Verification Statement is an official document signed by the director of the DPD certifying a student has successfully completed both a baccalaureate degree and the program’s ACEND®-accredited dietetics coursework requirements. The Verification Statement can only be issued after a student has completed all degree and DPD course requirements.  A signed Verification Statement is required for admission to a dietetic internship program.

Due to the competitive nature to secure a dietetic internship, specific criteria are required to receive a signed Declaration of Intent and/or Verification Statement through Clemson University’s Didactic Program in Dietetics. Such standards will prepare students for the rigor and expectations of a dietetic internship.

To receive a signed Declaration of Intent and/or Verification Statement, a student must meet the following academic and professional requirements:

  1. Earn a minimum of a baccalaureate degree from a U.S. regionally accredited college/university. Earning a B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition through Clemson University fulfills this requirement.
  2. Complete all the academic requirements of a dietetics education program accredited by ACEND®. Completing all academic coursework required by Clemson University’s B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition with a concentration in Nutrition and emphasis in Dietetics fulfills this requirement.
  3. Demonstrate an overall minimum GPA of 3.00 based on all completed college coursework.
  4. Complete all DPD-required NUTR and FDSC courses with a B or better.
  5. Complete all other DPD-required coursework with a C or better.
  6. Adhere to Clemson University’s Academic Integrity Policy (see Undergraduate Announcements – https://www.registrar.clemson.edu/html/catalog.htm).
  7. Be in good standing with Clemson University under the Student Code of Conduct (see http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/code-of-conduct/).

Students may retake courses to achieve the above requirements to be eligible for a Verification Statement. Doing so may result in additional semester(s) and a delay in graduation. 

Prior to graduation, the DPD director will contact students to request required information to verify that all of the stated criteria have been met for receiving a Declaration of Intent and/or Verification Statement.  Students who took applicable DPD coursework elsewhere will be required to provide official transcripts from colleges/universities attended to verify course grades before a Verification Statement is issued to the student.  Upon conferred graduation, completion of DPD requirements, and fulfillment of the above specified Verification Statement criteria, students will be mailed six original Verification Statements sent to the address provided by the student. An original copy of the Verification Statement will also be maintained in the department.

Receipt of a Verification Statement does not guarantee acceptance into an ACEND®-accredited dietetic internship program. Acceptance into an ACEND®-accredited dietetic internship program cannot be guaranteed.

Dietetics Program Insurance Policy
Students enrolled in the dietetics program are expected to maintain personal health insurance coverage. A student health insurance plan may be purchased through the Student Insurance office in Redfern Health Center. Students enrolled in six or more on-campus credit hours during each fall and spring semester or three or more on-campus credit hours during each summer session are required to pay a student health fee to cover select professional health services in the event of illness or injury. Information on the Student Health Fee is available at http://www.clemson.edu/campus-life/student-health/health-fee.html. Students enrolled in the dietetics program are not required to carry professional liability insurance, and the dietetics program does not purchase professional liability insurance for students.

Dietetics Program Travel Policy
The Department of Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Sciences purchases special risk accident insurance for students traveling in University vehicles for University-related travel (i.e., academic requirements and related events). Students are required to hold personal vehicle insurance when traveling in their personal vehicles. Policy information is available at http://www.clemson.edu/administration/risk/accident-insurance/.

Dietetics Program Illness/Injury Policy
A student enrolled in the dietetics program who becomes ill or injured while on Clemson University’s main campus should seek medical attention through Redfern Health Center. A student who becomes ill or injured when Redfern Health Center is closed or while away from Clemson University’s main campus (more than 30 miles) may be required to seek urgent care through an alternative facility. The Department of Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Sciences holds affiliation agreements with various facilities to which students travel for University-related business. These agreements make provisions for appropriate care should a student become ill or be injured while in that facility.

Dietetics Program Complaint Policy
A student enrolled in the dietetics program that has an academic complaint or appeal concerning the program or faculty should follow the informal or formal Clemson University grievance policies to resolve the issue. Dialogue should occur with relevant faculty (those directly involved in the complaint or appeal), the DPD Director, the Chair of the Department of Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Sciences, or the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Life Sciences. Information on the Grievance Policy is available at http://www.clemson.edu/administration/ogc/legal-topics/grievances.html. Information on the Academic Grievance Policy is available on page 31-33 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

If the complaint is against the dietetics program, specifically as it relates to ACEND® accreditation standards, policies, or procedures, the student should discuss the complaint with the DPD Director. If the complaint directly involves the DPD Director or satisfactory resolution is unable to be sought through the DPD Director, the student should discuss the complaint with the Chair of the Department of Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Sciences. A written complaint should be completed for purposes of documentation. The written complaint should include:

  • Student name and contact information (address, phone number, email address).
  • The ACEND® standard, policies, or procedures being violated by the issue.
  • The steps already taken to address the issue, including individuals involved.
  • A succinct description of the complaint, including individuals involved.
  • A succinct description of the outcome(s) desired in resolution.
  • Signature of the complaintant.

In the event that a student is unable to obtain grievance resolution through the above policies and procedures and the complaint relates to ACEND® accreditation standards, policies, or procedures, the student should submit the complaint in writing directly to ACEND®. Written complaints against the dietetics program should be submitted to ACEND® only after all other options with the program and institution for addressing the complaint have been exhausted. The procedure and related forms for filing a complaint against an accredited program may be found on ACEND®’s website at http://www.eatrightacend.org/ACEND/content.aspx?id=6442485390.

ACEND® may be contacted at:   
Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL  60606-6995
(800) 877-1600 ext. 5400
Email: acend@eatright.org
Website: www.eatright.org/ACEND

Dietetics Program Assessment of Prior Learning Policy
Clemson University’s policies are followed regarding assessment of prior learning and granting credit for dietetics program coursework completed elsewhere. Applicable policies as outlined in the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017 include the following:

  • Transfer Credit – p. 12-13 and 25
  • Advanced Placement Credit – p. 13-14 and 25
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) Credit Policy – p. 13
  • Dual Enrollment – p. 13
  • Credit by Examination – p. 25
  • Learning Experience – p. 25
  • External Education Experience – p. 25

Dietetics Program Completion and Graduation Policy
The Clemson University Graduation Requirements are followed regarding dietetics program completion and graduation. These requirements are outlined on page 29-30 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017. Dietetics program completion and graduation is equivalent to completion of all Nutrition concentration and Dietetics emphasis course requirements as defined by one’s declared catalog year in DegreeWorks and conferral of the B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition degree. Students are encouraged to complete all dietetics program and degree requirements within 150% of the program length (or 6  years) after enrolling in Clemson University; otherwise additional coursework may be required to fulfill program and graduation requirements.

Dietetics Program Verification of Student Identity for Distance Instruction Policy
Distance instruction via Clemson Online is offered for a limited number of dietetics program courses. Dietetics program students are advised to complete their coursework in-residence during the academic year. Distance instruction is reserved for a small percentage of dietetics program students, namely those working ahead in their program, catching up in their program, studying abroad, or repeating a course.

Distance instruction is facilitated through Clemson’s online learning management system (LMS). Students are assigned a unique username and password in accordance with the Clemson University Username and Password Policy for logging into and completing coursework within the LMS. The LMS tracks time and date of log-in and IP address. This data may be used to confirm student access, support student identification, and detect irregularities. The Clemson University Username and Password Policy is available at http://www.clemson.edu/ccit/about/policies/userid_password_policy.html.

Distance instruction courses may use Remote Proctor Now (RPNow) to proctor online examinations or require students to find an exam proctor locally through which exams are transmitted and completed under direct supervision. Students are responsible to secure remote proctoring services as required by distance course specifications. Students are responsible for payment associated with such services. Information on Remote Proctor NOW is available at https://www.clemson.edu/ccit/learning_tech/ccit_training/ott/software_secure/. 

Withdrawal and Refund of Tuition and Fees
Clemson University’s Withdrawal Policy and Refund of Academic Fees Policy are followed when students withdraw from the DPD. Clemson University’s Withdrawal Policy is available at http://www.registrar.clemson.edu/html/withdraw.htm and on page 30 of the Undergraduate Announcements. Clemson University’s Refund of Academic Fees Policy is available at http://www.clemson.edu/finance/student-financials/refunds/ and on page 16-17 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

Scheduling and Program Calendar
Clemson University’s Academic Calendar is followed for DPD course scheduling, including vacations and holidays. Clemson University’s Academic Calendar is available at http://www.registrar.clemson.edu/html/Acad_Cal.htm.

Protection of Privacy of Student Information
The privacy of student information is protected in accordance with The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) as outlined in the Clemson University Student Handbook and Undergraduate Announcements. Policy information is available at http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/universitypolicies/family-education-rights-and-privacy-act.html and on page 2 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

Access to Personal Files
Student access to personal files is protected in accordance with The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) as outlined in the Clemson University Student Handbook and Undergraduate Announcements. Policy information is available at http://www.clemson.edu/studentaffairs/student-handbook/universitypolicies/family-education-rights-and-privacy-act.html and on page 2 of the Undergraduate Announcements 2016-2017.

Access to Student Support Services
Students enrolled in the dietetics program are provided access to a variety of student support services offered to all students at Clemson University. These services include, but are not limited to, academic success, career and professional development, computing and information technology, financial aid, mental health and counseling, health services, student disability, and testing. Information about each service may be accessed as listed below.