Nutrition and Foods

Major: Nutrition and Foods
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Science (BS)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 184.5
Co-op Options: One Co-op (Four years); No Co-op (Four years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 30.0901
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 29-1031

About the Program

The Nutrition and Foods curriculum emphasizes the relationship between food, food choices, nutrient metabolism, and medical nutrition therapy to meet the health and nutrient needs of individuals and groups.

The BS in Nutrition and Foods requires four years of study and the completion of at least 180.0 credits. The curriculum is designed to provide a sound basis for careers in dietetics and the application of the principles of nutrition and food science to the nutritional care of individuals and groups such as in hospitals, community-based nutrition facilities, food or pharmaceutical industries, or food service.

The study of the biochemical nature of nutrients and foods, their interaction with the environment, and their eventual metabolic fate is a strong career path for more research-minded students and provides a unique base for graduate study.

About the Nutrition Program

Dietetics is the practical application of nutrition in the prevention and treatment of disease. Dietetics is an exciting and challenging profession because there are many diseases that are related to nutrition, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, cancer, diabetes and obesity.

The nutrition program at Drexel University is referred to as a Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) because it provides classroom training for students who want to become Registered Dietitians/Nutritionists (RD/RDN). Our Didactic Program in Dietetics is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza
Suite 2000
Chicago, IL  60606
800-877-1600 x5400
www.eatright.org

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the nation's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, most of whom are Registered Dietitians (RD) or Registered Dietitians/Nutritionists (RDN). Note that the "RD" and "RDN" credential are the same credential. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics included the "RDN" to reflect that "all registered dietitians are nutritionists, but not all nutritionists are registered dietitians." In addition, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics states that adding the word "nutritionist" to the RD credential allows for a broader notion of wellness.

To become an RD/RDN, students must complete a:

  • Minimum of a bachelor's degree with course work approved by ACEND. Course work typically includes nutrition and food sciences, chemistry, biochemistry, physiology, microbiology, community nutrition, nutrition counseling, basic and quantity food preparation, foodservice systems management and medical nutrition therapy. NOTE: As of January 1, 2024, the minimum of a Master's degree will be required to sit for the RDN exam.
  • An accredited, supervised practice program, also called a dietetic internship (DI) or Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway (IPP), at health-care facilities, community agencies and in foodservice operations. The internship must provide a minimum of 1200 hours of hands-on training.
  • Pass a national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration.

After successfully completing the BS program in Nutrition and all DPD-required courses with a C or better, students will receive a BS degree and a DPD Verification Statement. The Verification Statement is a certificate documenting completion of an accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics. At this time (prior to 2024), students need both a minimum of Bachelor’s degree and a Verification Statement to be eligible for a dietetic internship.

During the senior year, most students apply for admission into a dietetic internship. To have a good chance of getting accepted into a dietetic internship, students should do the following:

  • Maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) greater than 3.0 (this includes college courses regardless of where taken).
  • Work several hundred hours in dietetics-related work and volunteer experience (especially in the food and nutrition departments at hospitals and nursing homes and in community programs such as Women, Infants, and Children [WIC]).
  • Participate in activities that demonstrate leadership.

Mission, Goals, and Outcome Measures

Drexel University's Department of Nutrition Sciences, Nutrition and Dietetics Program integrates a foundation in the nutrition sciences with courses in the social sciences to provide the knowledge, skills, and professional values needed for successful entry into dietetic internships, graduate school, or dietetics employment. The learning environment is structured to allow students and interns to use current technology, to participate in conducting research, and to engage in experiential learning, including co-operative education for undergraduates.

GOAL 1

To provide quality didactic instruction and learning experiences to prepare graduates to be accepted into dietetic internships and graduate schools, or work in the field of dietetics.

  • Objective #1: Eighty percent of graduating BS students and 90% of graduating MS students will apply to an accredited dietetic internship.
  • Objective #2: Eighty percent of students who apply to dietetic internships or Individualized Supervised Practice Pathways (ISPPs) are accepted.
  • Objective #3: Seventy-five percent of students who apply to graduate school are accepted.
  • Objective #4: Eighty-percent of graduates of the Drexel University ISPP who e will be employed within 6 months of program completion.
  • Objective #5: Graduates of the didactic program in dietetics (DPD) will rate 10 aspects of their didactic and learning experiences an average of "4" or better, on a scale of 1=poor to 5=excellent.
  • Objective #6: At least 90% of students will complete the program within 150% of the expected time frame for the program (BS-DPD full-time = 4 years; BS-DPD part-time = 5 to 7 years; Masters of Science[MS]-DPD full time = 2 years; MS-DPD part-time = 4 years; ISPP full-time = 3 quarters or 1 year; ISPP part-time = 6 quarters or 2 years.

GOAL 2

To prepare graduates to become competent entry-level dietitians.

  • Objective #1: The program's first time pass rate on the entry exam for all tracks (BS-DPD, MS-DPD, and ISPP) will be 80% or higher.
  • Objective #2: Internship directors of graduates of the DPD will rate 10 aspects of the students' preparation for internship an average of "4" or better, on a scale of 1=poor to 5=excellent.
  • Objective #3: Employers of alumni of the ISPP will rate 10 aspects of the employees' preparation for entry-level practice an average of "4" or better, on a scale of 1=poor to 5=excellent.

GOAL 3

To increase diversity in the profession by recruiting and retaining students from under-represented groups and facilitating their success in the program.

  • Objective #1: At least 10% of student in all tracks (BS-DPD, MS-DPD and ISPP cumulatively) will be from under-represented groups.

For more information, visit the College's Nutrition Sciences web page.

Admission/Graduation Requirements

Admission Requirements

Drexel takes into consideration a number of criteria when determining admission, including the applicant's application, transcripts, courses in progress, two letters of recommendation, standardized test scores, essay, and special interests (list of extracurricular activities, employment, etc.). Applicants to the Nutrition and Foods program must have completed four years of high school mathematics (algebra I and II, geometry, and trigonometry) and two years of a laboratory science (biology, chemistry, or physics). Applicants should have a strong interest in, and aptitude for, the basic sciences that are required in the program.

To be considered as a transfer student, candidates should have completed a minimum of 24 college credits. Drexel operates on a rolling admission basis, which means that students will be notified about the admission decision as soon as possible after their files are complete.

Visit the Admissions web site for more information and to apply online.

Graduation Requirements

To receive a BS in Nutrition and Foods, students in the program must complete a plan of study of all required courses and enough elective courses to total at least 180.0 credits. An overall GPA of 2.0 or higher for all coursework undertaken at Drexel University must be earned to receive a BS.  A “C” or better is required in all courses in the Didactic Program in Dietetics to receive a Verification Statement.

For the current academic calendar, visit Drexel University Academic Calendars.

Degree Requirements 

Communications and English
COM 230Techniques of Speaking3.0
COM 345Intercultural Communication3.0
or COM 310 Technical Communication
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
Physical and Biological Sciences
ANAT 101Anatomy & Physiology I5.0
ANAT 102Anatomy & Physiology II5.0
ANAT 103Anatomy & Physiology III5.0
BIO 122Cells and Genetics4.5
CHEM 101General Chemistry I3.5
CHEM 102General Chemistry II4.5
CHEM 103General Chemistry III5.0
NFS 215Nutritional Chemistry3.0
NFS 217Nutrient Quality & Composition1.0
Humanities and Social Sciences
ANTH 101Introduction to Cultural Diversity3.0
or SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology
PSY 101General Psychology I3.0
Management and Computing
CS 161Introduction to Computing3.0
HRM 455Hospitality Human Resources Management3.0
ORGB 300 [WI] Organizational Behavior4.0
Foods, Food Safety, and Food Production
CULA 115Culinary Fundamentals3.0
FDSC 154Science of Food and Cooking4.0
FDSC 270Microbial Food Safety and Sanitation4.0
FDSC 350Experimental Foods: Product Development3.0
HRM 215Commercial Food Production4.0
Mathematics and Statistics
MATH 101Introduction to Analysis I4.0
MATH 102Introduction to Analysis II4.0
STS 345Statistics for the Health Sciences4.0
Nutrition and Food Sciences
NFS 100Nutrition, Foods, and Health2.0
NFS 101Introduction to Nutrition & Food1.0
NFS 203Nutrition II: Nutrition in the Lifecycle4.0
NFS 230Intermediate Nutrition4.0
NFS 265Professional Issues in Nutrition and Foods3.0
NFS 345Foods and Nutrition of World Cultures3.0
NFS 370Foodservice Systems Management4.0
NFS 391Community Nutrition4.0
NFS 415Advanced Nutrition I: Macronutrition4.0
NFS 416Advanced Nutrition II: Micronutrients4.0
NFS 431Nutrition Counseling4.0
NFS 443Medical Nutrition Therapy I3.0
NFS 444Medical Nutrition Therapy II3.0
NFS 445Medical Nutrition Therapy III3.0
NFS 475Advanced Seminar in the Dietetics Profession3.0
NFS 494Senior Project I2.0
NFS 495Senior Project II2.0
NFS 496Senior Project III2.0
Additional Requirements
UNIV NH101The Drexel Experience2.0
Free Electives30.0
Total Credits184.5

Writing-Intensive Course Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

A "WI" next to a course in this catalog may indicate that this course can fulfill a writing-intensive requirement. For the most up-to-date list of writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Writing Intensive Course List at the University Writing Program. Students scheduling their courses can also conduct a search for courses with the attribute "WI" to bring up a list of all writing-intensive courses available that term.

Sample Plan of Study 

BS Nutrition and Foods: 4 YR UG (with one co-op spring/summer junior year)

Term 1Credits
CHEM 101General Chemistry I3.5
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
PSY 101General Psychology I3.0
NFS 100Nutrition, Foods, and Health2.0
NFS 101Introduction to Nutrition & Food1.0
UNIV NH101The Drexel Experience2.0
 Term Credits14.5
Term 2
CHEM 102General Chemistry II4.5
CS 161Introduction to Computing3.0
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
MATH 101Introduction to Analysis I4.0
 Term Credits14.5
Term 3
CHEM 103General Chemistry III5.0
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
FDSC 154Science of Food and Cooking4.0
MATH 102Introduction to Analysis II4.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 4
ANAT 101Anatomy & Physiology I5.0
BIO 122Cells and Genetics4.5
NFS 230Intermediate Nutrition4.0
Free Elective3.0
 Term Credits16.5
Term 5
ANAT 102Anatomy & Physiology II5.0
CULA 115Culinary Fundamentals3.0
FDSC 270Microbial Food Safety and Sanitation4.0
NFS 215Nutritional Chemistry3.0
NFS 217Nutrient Quality & Composition1.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 6
ANAT 103Anatomy & Physiology III5.0
COM 345Intercultural Communication3.0
NFS 203Nutrition II: Nutrition in the Lifecycle4.0
NFS 265Professional Issues in Nutrition and Foods3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 7
ANTH 101
or SOC 101
Introduction to Cultural Diversity
Introduction to Sociology
3.0
COM 230Techniques of Speaking3.0
STS 345Statistics for the Health Sciences4.0
Free Elective6.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 8
HRM 215Commercial Food Production4.0
FDSC 350Experimental Foods: Product Development3.0
NFS 415Advanced Nutrition I: Macronutrition4.0
Free Elective6.0
 Term Credits17.0
Term 9
NFS 416Advanced Nutrition II: Micronutrients4.0
ORGB 300 [WI] Organizational Behavior4.0
Free Elective6.0
 Term Credits14.0
Term 10
NFS 391Community Nutrition4.0
NFS 443Medical Nutrition Therapy I3.0
NFS 475Advanced Seminar in the Dietetics Profession3.0
NFS 494Senior Project I2.0
Free Elective3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 11
NFS 370Foodservice Systems Management4.0
NFS 431Nutrition Counseling4.0
NFS 444Medical Nutrition Therapy II3.0
NFS 495Senior Project II2.0
Free Elective3.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 12
HRM 455Hospitality Human Resources Management3.0
NFS 345Foods and Nutrition of World Cultures3.0
NFS 445Medical Nutrition Therapy III3.0
NFS 496Senior Project III2.0
Free Elective3.0
 Term Credits14.0
Total Credit: 184.5

Minor in Nutrition

About the program

The minor in the Nutrition and Foods program is designed for students interested in enhancing their major with an application in human nutrition. The nutrition minor should be especially attractive to students in the premedical, biological, and behavioral neurological sciences, because it provides a background for enhanced employment and post-baccalaureate study opportunities in areas closely allied to their basic disciplines.

The minor consists of 25.0 credits. Interested students should consult with a faculty member within the Department of Nutrition Sciences to schedule courses appropriate for their background and goals.

Program Requirements

Required courses
NFS 200Nutrition I: Principles of Nutrition4.0
or NFS 230 Intermediate Nutrition
NFS 203Nutrition II: Nutrition in the Lifecycle4.0
NFS 315Nutrition in Chronic Disease4.0
Select four of the following courses:12.0-14.0
Pediatric Nutrition
Nutrition & Exercise Physiology
Advanced Nutrition I: Macronutrition
Advanced Nutrition II: Micronutrients
Perspectives in World Nutrition
Special Studies in Nutrition and Food
Total Credits24.0-26.0

Career Opportunities

Possible career opportunities in dietetics include the following:

  • Clinical Dietitians are specialists in medical nutrition therapy in hospitals, outpatient clinics, and private practices. They assess patient nutrition, develop dietary plans, provide patient counseling, and monitor patient progress.
  • Community Dietitians work in public health agencies, health and fitness clubs, Women, Infants, and Children and non-profit organizations with a focus on nutrition. They counsel people on food choices and direct programs in nutrition awareness and disease prevention.
  • Sports Dietitians work with professional sports teams, Olympic and/or University and College teams. They provide team and individual nutrition counseling, establish fueling stations, work with food service industry during travel, etc.
  • Management Dietitians specialize in clinical management or food service systems. They work in hospitals, nursing homes, school food service, cafeterias, restaurants, the airline industry, etc. They manage personnel, plan and conduct employee training programs, design food systems, and plan budgets.
  • Business Dietitians work in the food industry in product development and marketing, public relations, food styling, and menu design.
  • Consultant Dietitians are independent business people who work as consultants to sports teams, nursing homes, corporations, etc.

Facilities

The Center for Nutrition & Performance, located in the Daskalakis Athletic Center, provides a variety of nutrition services to the Drexel community, including workshops, lectures, support for athletic teams, and individual counseling. An employee weight loss program is available through the Center for Nutrition & Performance The Center for Nutrition & Performance also works with some professional teams, as well as internationally.

Bioscience teaching laboratories are available with networked computers and advanced digital image analysis capabilities. Both teaching and research laboratories contain a range of equipment including microscopes, centrifuges, chromatographs, spectrophotometers, scintillation counters, culture chambers, and densitometers.

Nutrition Sciences Faculty

Joan Rosen Bloch, PhD, CRNP (University of Pennsylvania). Associate Professor. Maternal and infant health outcomes with a particular focus on racial and ethnic perinatal health disparities.
Joseph Boullata, PharmD, RPh, BCSNP, FASPEN (University of Maryland). Clinical Professor. Nutrition-medication interactions; vitamin D metabolism; nutrition support.
Elizabeth Brooks, JD, IBCLC, FILCA (George Washington University). Instructor. Human lactation.
Charlene Compher, PhD, RD, CNSC, LDN, FADA, FASPEN (Drexel University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Nyree Dardarian, MS, RD, LDN, CSSD, FAND (Drexel University) Director, Center for Nutrition and Performance. Clinical Assistant Professor. Energy expenditure; sports nutrition.
Franceso De Luca, MD (Catholic University of Sacred Heart, Rome, Italy) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Angelo Del Parigi, MD (University of Bari, Italy) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Jonathan Deutsch, PhD (New York University). Professor. Social and cultural aspects of food, culinary education, culinary improvisation, recipe and product development; food sustainability.
Rose Ann DiMaria-Ghalili, PhD, MSN, BSN, CNSC (New York University, School of Education, Division of Nursing). Associate Professor. Nutrition and surgical recovery to improve the care of older adults undergoing surgery; nutrition assessment, inflammation, and health outcomes.
Garrison L. Draper, MSc, CSCS, USAW, ISPAS (Edith Cowan Univerity, Perth, WA) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting instructor
Susan Ettinger, PhD, RD, DABN, CDN (Columbia University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Debi Page Ferrarello, RN, MSN, MS, IBCLC, RLC (Jefferson University, Arcadia University). Instructor. Human lactation
Andrea Judge, MPH, IBCLC, RLC (University of North Carolina). Clinical Instructor. Human lactation
Joseph Kehayias, PhD (Indiana University). Professor. Body composition analyses; measurement of sarcopenia; osteoporosis; energy expenditure.
Tanya V.E. Kral, PhD (Pennsylvania State University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Beth L. Leonberg, MS, MA, RD (Colorado State University, Rowan University) Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics . Instructor. Pediatric nutrition.
Rachelle Lessen, MS, RD, IBCLC, LDN (Arcadia University). Instructor. Human lactation
Michael Lowe, PhD (Boston College). Professor. Prevention and treatment of eating disorders and obesity; effects of appetitive responsiveness and dietary restraint on eating regulation; psychobiology of obesity-proneness; empirical foundations of unconscious processes.
Janell L. Mensinger, PhD (City University of New York). Associate Teaching Professor. Behavioral health promotion strategies, treating obesity, clinical research methods, statistics. Body perception, obesity and eating disorders.
Brandy-Joe Milliron, PhD (Arizona State University). Assistant Professor. The development and evaluation of modifications in the natural environment to promote healthier living; farm to table school initiatives;
Juan Muniz, PhD (Oregon State University) Director, Nutrition Biochemistry Laboratory. Assistant Research Professor. Food microbiology; community-based research to assess pesticide levels in homes; prevention of health effects of pesticides for indigenous farmworkers.
Jennifer Nasser, PhD, RD, FTOS (Rutgers University). Associate Professor. Dopamine-mediated mechanisms of food intake regulation in humans and its impact on metabolic homeostasis, especially as it applies to obesity, eating disorders and aging.
Margaret O'Neil, PT, PhD, MPH (MCP Hahnemann University; Duke University; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). Associate Professor. Measurement of and interventions to improve physical activity and fitness levels and promote participation in children and youth with who are overweight/obese and those with physical disabilities (especially cerebral palsy).
Irene E. Olsen, PhD, RD, LDN (Tufts University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Jennifer Quinlan, PhD (North Carolina State University). Associate Professor. Food microbiology; microbiological quality and safety of produce, dairy and meat products in markets in high vs. low socioeconomics areas, Bacillus and Clostridium spores in food processing.
Sobhana Ranjan, PhD, RD (University of Delhi, India) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Barry Ritz, PhD (Drexel University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Patricia A. Shewokis, PhD (University of Georgia). Professor. Roles of cognition and motor function during motor skill learning; role of information feedback frequency on the memory of motor skills, noninvasive neural imaging techniques of functional near infrared spectroscopy(fNIR) and electroencephalograpy (EEG) and methodology and research design.
Sinclair A. Smith, MS, DSc (Boston University) Chair, Health Sciences. Professor. The use of magnetic resonance spectroscopy and near infrared spectroscopy to non-invasively study neuromuscular metabolism in humans; creatine supplementation on mitochondrial respiration; weight training studies.
Deeptha Sukumar, PhD (Rutgers University). Assistant Professor. Vitamin D and magnesium and bone mineral density; obesity and bone mineral density.
Alison Ventura, PhD (Pennsylvania State University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor. Factors that contribute to the development of eating behaviors and dietary preferences during infancy and early childhood.
Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, LDN, FACSM (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University) Chair, Nutrition Sciences. Professor. Prevention of obesity and diabetes across the lifespan; mineral metabolism and exercise; energy balance; sports nutrition.

Emeritus Faculty

Donna H. Mueller, PhD, RD (Temple University). Associate Professor Emeritus. Clinical nutrition; pediatric nutrition; nutrition in pulmonary diseases, especially cystic fibrosis; nutrition in developmental delay; dental nutrition; dietetic education and professional development.
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