Dietetics Administration - MDA

College of Agriculture and Applied Sciences

About This Degree

The Utah State University Master of Dietetics Administration (MDA) prepares students to lead and manage people and projects, setting them apart as they enter the workforce or in their current career field.

The skills emphasized in the MDA program enhance management career options for graduates in clinical, community, food service, and entrepreneurial practice. Nationwide, there is a great need for professionally educated managers and leaders at the local, district, state, and federal levels.

What You Will Learn

Students within the program will build skills in leadership, problem-solving, decision making, financial management, human resource management, business, and more. The hands-on curriculum delivered by faculty gives students the education they need to land the career they want. The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). The MDA program offers two tracks.

Pre-RD MDA (Track 1): The Pre-RD track is for students who have completed undergraduate dietetics education but do not yet hold the Registered Dietitian credential. The pre-RD track provides a combination of coursework and supervised experiential learning to qualify to take the Registration Examination for dietitians (RD Exam).

For complete program information refer to

Post-RD MDA (Track 2): The post-RD track is for students who already hold the Registered Dietitian credential and are interested in pursuing a graduate degree. For students that completed the USU dietetic internship (DI), 26 graduate credits earned in the USU DI are applied to the MDA if the MDA is completed prior to the credit expiration limit of 8 years. In addition, 12 MDA core credits are required and 6 elective credits for a total requirement of 42 credits.

The MDA is also available to credentialed dietitians from non-USU degree programs or for those whose DI credits have expired. For students not using credits from the USU DI, 33 credits are required. These include 12 MDA core credits and 21 elective credits, of which at least 9 credits should be from the NDFS department.

Career And Outcomes

Career Opportunities

Graduates with an MDA can work in the following areas:

  • Child nutrition programs and school food service operations and management
  • Managers in food service operations in hospitals and nursing homes
  • Clinical nutritionists and clinical nutrition management
  • Public health programs and state health departments
  • Private practice
  • Health care clinical including clinic management
  • Outpatient counseling in eating disorders, diabetes management, bariatric surgery, dialysis, weight management, and other health care specialties
  • Sports nutrition, corporate wellness, pharmaceutical and nutraceutical sales, and other food and nutrition-related businesses

Job Outlook



Lacie Peterson

Program Director (Pre-RD MDA), Clinical Associate Professor
Office: SLSLCR 101D
Phone: 435-797-4244

Martha Archuleta

Program Director (Post-RD MDA), Professor
Office: 920 West Levoy Drive Taylorsville, UT 84123
Phone: (435) 797-4230

I am not a current USU student

I have not applied or been admitted, even if I've taken a USU Concurrent Enrollment course

I am a current USU student

I have been admitted and plan to attend, or continue attending USU


Admission Requirements

Pre-RD MDA Admission Requirements:

  • Applicants must be a graduate of an accredited nutrition/dietetics program with a DPD Verification Statement OR be in the process of completing an accredited nutrition/dietetics program and will receive a DPD Verification Statement or Foreign Dietitian Education program (FDE) upon completion.
  • Applicants with a DPD Verification Statement more than 4 years old at the time of application may have to meet additional requirements. Please review our Recency of Education Policy.
  • Applicants must have a DPD GPA of 3.0 or greater.
  • No Ds or Fs in any course on your DPD program's course list.
  • Approximately 400 hours of work or volunteer experience is required.
  • Applicants to the USU MDA must secure preceptors and training sites prior to the match.
  • Applicants must have technological competence.
  • Both bachelor's degree and DPD Verification Statement must be conferred prior to August 1st of the year a student plans to start the MDA.
  • The GRE is not required for admission.

For complete program information refer to

Post-RD MDA Admission Requirements:

  • Registered Dietitian Credential through the Commission on Dietetic Registration
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Must meet the requirements of the USU graduate school admissions

International students have additional admissions requirements.


The department has the following deadline:

  • Pre-RD MDA: December 1- February 15th
  • Post RD MDA: Fall semester - March 1st

Financial Aid

Financial aid for this degree may be available. Visit the graduate school website for more information. 


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