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Starting in 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration will require candidates to have a graduate degree before they are eligible to take the Registered Dietitian credentialing examination. At Southeast you’ll do more than prepare to ace the exam, you’ll gain the knowledge needed to make a difference in the field of nutrition. 

This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) as a Future Education Model, Future Graduate program. The Future Education Model standards strive to advance the field of nutrition while keeping public safety a priority. 

What You'll Do

The M.S. in Applied Nutrition is an intensive and rewarding 15 month program that prepares graduates to become Registered Dietitians. You’ll learn the skills and methods needed to thrive in the field of nutrition through in-depth coursework and in field experience. More specifically you’ll: 

  • Complete field experience at established sites, or an approved site of your choice. 
  • Be in contact with faculty and program directors by phone, email, and video conferencing for support while earning your degree. 
  • Access online study material to prepare for the Registered Dietitian credentialing examination. 

What Can You Do with an M.S. in Applied Nutrition?

Southeast’s applied nutrition program  provides you the prerequisite requirements to take the credentialing exam, while preparing you to be a leader in the field. 

Registered Dietitians work in a variety of settings, including hospitals or other healthcare facilities, corporate wellness, community and public health settings, universities and medical centers, private practice, food and nutrition-related business and industries, among others.  

Career Opportunities 

  • Nutrition Specialist 
  • Wellness Coach 
  • Nutrition Researcher 
  • Health Advocate 

Applied Nutrition by the Numbers

  • 98%

    Successful Outcomes Rate 

    Students graduating with degrees from the Department of Kinesiology, Nutrition, and Recreation report being employed or furthering their education six months after graduation.

  • $63k+

    Dietitians and Nutritionists

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, dieticians and nutritionists can earn an average of $63,090 annually.

  • 8%

    Projected employment growth through 2029

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment of dietitians will grow 8 percent from 2019 to 2029.

Online: Applied Nutrition Degree Map

Explore the courses you'll need to complete your degree

Applied Nutrition Curriculum

For students that are already credentialed as Registered Dietitians, the online graduate degree is available without the supervised learning component. Previously credentialed students can complete the degree in 34 credit hours.

Now accepting applications for the for the May 2022 cohort. Rounds of application review will occur in January, March and April. Apply by January 1 and receive an acceptance decision by February 1!

To be considered for the program, applicants must have:

  • A verification statement from an accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) 
  • A baccalaureate or advanced degree from a U.S. regionally accredited college or university, or a foreign degree evaluated as equivalent to at least a U.S. baccalaureate degree 
  • A minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale 
  • A minimum of 750 hours experience from a combination of any of the following experiences: 
    • Volunteer experience (unaffiliated with course requirements) 
    • Paid work experience 
    • Collegiate athletics 
    • Student organizations 
    • Other experiences 
    • Completed application and all required templates

Students enrolled in the Southeast Missouri State Undergraduate Didactic Program in Dietetics are eligible to apply to the MSAN program through the pre-select option.

Applicants that satisfactorily meet Pre-Select eligibility requirements will be provisionally accepted and notified within 48 hours of the application deadline unless there are more qualified applicants than enrollment capacity. If a pre-select applicant does not meet the minimum requirements, his/her application is automatically included in the regular applicant pool.

The pre-select application deadline is January 1, 2022.

The eligibility requirements for the pre-select option are as follows:

  • Enrolled in the Southeast Missouri State Undergraduate Didactic Program in Dietetics
  • Minimum 3.5 / 4.0 GPA
  • Minimum 1500 hours from any combination of paid work, volunteer, leadership, or collegiate athletics experiences.
  • Minimum combined GRE score of 300
Note: A Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Electronic Testing Services (ETS) Score Report is only required for those applying through the pre-select option, however applicants can provide GRE scores voluntarily. A combined quantitative + verbal score of 290+ is recommended. 

  • Supervised Experiential Learning Locations and Remote Distance Option
    • Field experience courses require in-person supervised experiential learning.  
    • All other coursework is 100% online. 
    • In your application, you will apply to your desired location option or options. 
    • Supervised experiential learning location options include: 
      • Southeast Missouri 
      • St. Louis, MO 
      • Southern Illinois 
      • Locations offered through the Nutritious Lifestyles (NLS) Option 
        • Florida (Orlando, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Sarasota, Jacksonville, Panhandle) 
        • Texas (Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, Houston, Lubbock) 
        • Louisiana (Shreveport, Baton Rouge, New Orleans) 
        • North Carolina (Raleigh, Charlotte area) 
        • Georgia (Atlanta) 
      • Anywhere in the United States through the Remote Distance Option 
        • (Note: Supervised experiential learning cannot occur outside of the United States) 
  • Registered Dietitians and students with a Dietetic Internship verification statement can complete the degree without the field experience courses. Email msan@semo.edu for more information about this option. 

Remote Distance Requirements 

To be considered for acceptance into the Remote Distance option of the MSAN program, applicants must meet all of the application and admission requirements and the following:  

  • Written commitment from qualified individuals that have agreed to precept the applicant. 
    • A minimum of 3 preceptors must be identified, with 1 preceptor from each of the following practice areas: clinical, food service management, and community. 
    • To determine if preceptors are qualified, applicants are required to arrange preceptors and rotation prior to applying. Applicants must provide preceptor resumes or curriculum vitae. Program Directors will evaluate credentials and determine if a preceptor is qualified for the rotation based on the relevance and level of the preceptor’s credentials and work experience.
  • Preceptor Qualifications: View Template
  • Remote Distance Rotation Schedule: View Template

To apply for acceptance into the MSAN program, follow these directions: 

  • Complete the graduate school application
    • Note: There is no cost to apply for U.S. Citizens and Permanent residents. There is a $40, non-refundable, application fee for International students (those who are not permanent residents or U.S. citizens) 
  • Download and complete the MSAN application document
  • Download and complete the Personal Statement Essay
  • Download and complete the Experience Record Template 
  • Download and complete the DPD Verification Statement Progress Template
    • Note: DPD Verification requires confirmation from DPD Director and is only required for students currently enrolled in a DPD program.
  • Download and complete Academic Advisor Expected Graduation Confirmation Template
    • Note: Graduation confirmation requires confirmation from yoru academic advisor and is only required for students currently enrolled in a DPD program.
  • Obtain unofficial transcripts and include them in the application email
    • Note: Pre-select applicants must also provide ETS GRE Score Report
  • Create a zip file with all required PDF files. Instructions are provided below. Click on the links or copy and paste them into a web browser.
  • Instructions for creating a zip file on windows device
  • Instructions for creating a zip file on apple device
  • Title the PDF file with your first and last name and the words MSAN Application (e.g. “John Doe MSAN Application”)
  • Email your application materials as the zipped file to msan@semo.edu
  • Include your first and last name and “MSAN application” in the subject line of the email.
  • If you are applying to through the pre-select option, also include “pre-select” in the subject line of the email.
  • Now accepting applications for the for the May 2022 cohort. Rounds of application review will occur in January, March and April.  Apply by January 1 and receive an acceptance decision by February 1!
  • Applicants will be notified of selection decisions and provided instructions according to the following timeline:
    • January 1 applicants will be notified by February 1, 2022 
    • March 1 applicants will be notified by April 1, 2022 
    • April 11 applicants will be notified by May 1, 2022 
    • Selected applicants are provisionally accepted once the Office of Admissions receives the official transcript. The Office of Admissions will send an acceptance letter and provide additional instructions.
    • Applicants are fully accepted once the Office of Admissions receives the applicant’s official transcript showing the conferred degree, and the MSAN directors have received the applicant’s DPD Verification Statement.”

Selection committee reserves the right to contact faculty, advisors, DPD Director, or supervisors/facilitators of experience for additional information. 

Email any application questions to msan@semo.edu  

If you are only applying to the MSAN program without the field experience option, and not applying to the MSAN with field experience options, you can apply at any time. Seats in courses are limited and the program operates on a sequential, cohort model. Therefore, if you are not accepted into the program prior to the start of a cohort or if the cohort is full, you may be placed on a waiting list to enter the program. A DPD verification statement, DI verification statement, or verification of RD credential are required for this option. 

To apply for the MSAN program using the pre-select option, applicants must follow the steps outlined in the Application Instructions and Materials section above.  

Applicants that satisfactorily meet Pre-Select qualifications will be provisionally accepted and notified within 48 hours of the application deadline, unless there are more qualified applicants than enrollment capacity.  

  • If the number of qualified Pre-Select applicants exceeds enrollment capacity, a tie is broken by total GRE score. 
  • In the event that a tie still exists after considering total GRE, a tie is broken by overall GPA, followed by DPD GPA, followed by Science GPA. 

Once pre-selected students graduate and receive their DPD verification statements, they must complete the following steps:  

  • Provide official transcripts that shows degree conferred to the Office of Admissions 
  • Provide a copy of their DPD verification statements to the MSAN directors 

Applicants who have completed an accredited Dietetic Internship program or who are already Registered Dietitians can complete the online courses without the field experience to earn this degree. See application instructions in Application Instructions and Materials section above for requirements and instructions. Email any application questions to msan@semo.edu 


  • FN600 Advanced Application of Medical Nutrition Therapy (3)
  • FN607 Food Science and Technology (3)
  • FN610 Strategic Management of Food Service Operations (3)
  • FN611 Foundations in Dietetics Practice (3)
  • FN615 Culinary Nutrition (3)
  • FN617 Applied Statistics in Health Sciences (3)
  • FN619 Metabolic Considerations in Performance and Wellness Nutrition (3)
  • FN620 Community Nutrition Programming: Advanced Concepts and Application (3)
  • FN622 Nutrition Counseling and Education: Advanced Concepts and Application (3)
  • FN624 Research Methodology (3)
  • FN628 Applied Nutrition Field Experience I (1)
  • FN629 Applied Nutrition Field Experience II (1)
  • FN645 Capstone Project in Applied Nutrition (1)
  • FN650 Professional Skills and Emerging Trends in Dietetics Practice (3)

  • For students who need the Nutrition and Dietetics Graduate Degree Program verification statement the total program cost for tuition and program fees is $14,714. That includes 36 credit hours at $386.50 per credit hour and program fees at $800. 
  • Note: This estimate does not include additional costs such as textbooks, transportation, etc. 
  • For students who are only completing the MSAN degree program without the field experience and do not need the Graduate Program verification statement, the total cost for tuition will vary depending on the number of courses you will take. Please email msan@semo.edu for an estimate. The general cost is $386.50 per credit hour. 

The MSAN program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) as a Future Education Model Graduate Program. 

Email: ACEND@eatright.org 
Phone: (800) 877-1600, ext. 5400 
Mail: 120 South Riverside Plaza / Suite 2190 / Chicago, IL 60606-6995 

ACEND accreditation overview 

Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master’s degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor’s degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR's Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before 12:00 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023. For more information about this requirement visit CDR's website. In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited Dietetic Internship program at Southeast Missouri State University are eligible to apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN. 

In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. Visit CDR's website for more information. 

More information about educational pathways to become an RDN. 

Because of the intensive workload for this program, all courses must be completed in order with the exception of the approved elective that may be taken during any semester, though it is recommended to be taken during the first summer semester.  

College of Education, Health and Human Studies

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is housed within the College of Education, Health and Human Studies. The college boasts programs that train students in mind, body, and soul. So, whether you want to teach, to care, to support, or to fix, we have a program to get you there.

Nutrition Instructor in the Department of Kinesiology, Nutrition and Recreation

"This program is intense, flexible, practical, and rewarding. In 15 months, you’ll earn a master’s degree in Applied Nutrition, complete over 1000 hours of experiential learning activities, complete a customizable capstone research project, and earn the verification statement required to attempt the Registration Examination for Dietitians. The didactic coursework is 100% online and you will apply the content in face-to-face field experiences at hospitals, food service operations, and community-based nutrition operations. This program provides an opportunity to apply the skills you have learned from your undergraduate and graduate coursework in real situations under the supervision of outstanding preceptors."

Joel Ramdial, MA, RD, LD

Headshot of Joel Ramdial, MA, RD, LD.

Online Learning at Southeast

When it comes to your success, we do whatever it takes. Online learning at Southeast takes the same reputable college courses taught by Southeast faculty and makes them available anytime, anywhere.

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Getting the Job

Your education is just one piece to launching an extraordinary career. Once you’ve mastered the material, you still have to find the job you want, make the right connections, sell your knowledge and experience—and if all this is giving you anxiety, don’t panic. SEMO’s Career Services office is here to help you with the next step. They’ll provide the expertise and support you need, so you’re landing your dream job in no time.


  • Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) Logo

M.S. in Applied Nutrition Pre-Select Option

Students in Southeast Missouri State University’s Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) may qualify for the MS in Applied Nutrition PreSelect Option. This allows qualifying applicants to secure a spot in the program prior to review of the entire application pool.

(573) 651-5184
Office Location
Kent Library 309
Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 4610
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701

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