Most states require clinical nutritionists to hold at least a bachelor's degree in nutrition. Students who have a bachelor's degree in another subject can enroll in a certificate program in nutrition to meet the educational requirements for professional certification. Health care professionals can also take the certification courses. Programs provide students with an advanced understanding of how nutrition affects physiological and biological systems in the human body.
Certificate Program in Clinical Nutrition
Didactic courses in clinical nutrition program cover how the human body handles different forms of nutrition, while clinical courses demonstrate how nutrition can be used in clinical treatment programs. Other than nutrition and obesity, specific courses include:
- Human biochemistry
- Fitness and nutrition
- Advanced human nutrition
- Biochemistry of lipids
- Clinical nutrition
- Metabolism of vitamins
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 66,700 nutritionists and dietitians were employed in 2014. The median salary for these professionals was $57,910 as of May 2015 (www.bls.gov). The number of jobs for clinical nutritionists is predicted to rise by about 16% between 2014 and 2024.
Every state has its own certification and licensure requirements for nutritionists and dietitians. Some organizations offering certification specifically for clinical nutritionists include the American Board of Physician Nutrition Specialists and the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board. Certification candidates are required to have completed at least a bachelor's degree including or in addition to college-level courses in microbiology, human biology and biochemistry.
Certificate programs in clinical nutrition include traditional coursework and clinical units. Class subjects include fitness, human science, vitamin studies and obesity.