Education and Training For Nutritionists

To become a licensed or registered nutritionist, you need to obtain specific levels of education and training to meet state requirements. Licensing, certification, or registrations are required in forty-eight of the fifty states. To become a nutritionist, you will need to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in dietetics, food services, nutrition or a related area at a minimum. Required college courses may include nutrition, the study of food, biology, chemistry, institution management, mathematics, and physiology. Learning a foreign language such as Spanish or Chinese may also be useful.

Beyond the educational components, nutritionists need good oral and written communication skills. They need to be able to work with a variety of different types of people from healthy to sick to the young, and the old. Nutritionists also have to be able to effectively communicate with wide range of people from very young children to cardiovascular surgeons.

Once the aspiring nutritionist completes a Bachelor’s degree and the required coursework, they are able to take an exam for the Registered Dietitian credential, which is award by the American Diabetic Association. The credential is awarded after receiving a passing score on the exam and completing an internship in the field. Be sure to research the credentials and internships needed to practice in your state and for your area of specialization.

There are excellent schools that offer nutrition related programs in many parts of the U.S. In determining which school to attend, be sure to evaluate the reputation of the school, the quality of instruction, and talk to current or former students to get their feedback. Aspiring nutritionists should also consider which specialization best fits their strengths and interest. Whether it is in public health, schools, hospitals, or working for a professional sports team, a career as a nutritionist can present a variety of options.

By obtaining a Masters degree, nutritionists have better career opportunities when entering the field, particularly with positions in research, public health, or advanced clinical nutrition. Obtaining a masters degree can also help for career advancement.

ISO 9001 in Education and Training

While usually associated with manufacturing and service activities, ISO 9001 should be considered equally as effective as a management system for education and training programs. If we consider the desired outcome (learning), education and training is just another form of service; the product is the knowledge, skill and/or ability that is achieved by the program attendees. As with other services, the delivery of education and training incorporates the processes of design, development, verification, validation, delivery, subsequent correction and ongoing improvement. Therefore, when we try to apply the requirements of ISO 9001 to education and training activities, we find that it aligns exceptionally well with generally accepted practices.

A fundamental objective of any quality management system is to ensure that customer needs are met. In order to define these needs as they relate to education and training, we must first define the primary customer of this service – the program attendee. I’ve used the term “primary customer” in this discussion, as numerous ancillary customers may also be involved, including the parents of the attendee, the state which provides funding to the institution, and possibly even the country in which the activity is performed (as skill development contributes to the national economy). In the case of corporate training, we must also consider the needs of the individual’s employer, the industry they serve, as well as regulatory bodies or other interested parties. The list of potential customers can be as varied as the number of offerings that are available; identification of both primary and ancillary customers is a critical part of the initial needs assessment process, and is essential to the overall success of any education or training effort.

Once the above customers have been defined, their needs must be translated into terms that can be understood by the organization, and that can be further developed to serve as a measurement of an individual’s competency. Typically, these needs are reflected through the establishment of learning outcome statements, commonly referred to as learning objectives. Upon completion of specific portion of a program (or upon the completion of the program as a whole), the participant should be able to demonstrate a defined level of mastery of the course content, or be able to demonstrate the ability to perform a specific task or activity. To determine if these needs are satisfied, the participants performance throughout this entire process is monitored, and at defined intervals, the individual’s ability to meet a defined learning objective is measured against an established set of criteria (be it quizzes, examinations, demonstrations or other evaluation methods). Once the criteria established for competency is met, the objective is considered to be achieved. This process then continues until all established objectives have been met for the program, at which point a certificate or other form of recognition is awarded.

When considering what would be required to properly design, develop and document such a system to meet the requirements of ISO 9001, we find that there is very little difference between the approach needed to develop a system for this application, in comparison to approaches commonly used to develop systems which address manufacturing activities and other services. Proper design should begin with a review of the key processes used by the institution or organization, their ability to meet the customer needs established above and their overall degree of compliance with the requirements of the ISO 9001 standard.

System documentation required by the ISO 9001 standard, including a quality manual, and the six “system” procedures required by the ISO 9001 standard – the control of documents, the control of records, internal audits, the control of nonconformances, corrective action and preventative action all have a place in this system (as do the 19 types of records addressed in the ISO 9001 standard); they are just as relevant in this application as they are with their counterparts in other industries. Additional documentation, addressing the various activities performed by the organization will also be needed, as necessary to address the critical nature of the activities performed, as well as to ensure the customer needs defined above are met.

While the ISO 9001 standard does allow for an organization to take exclusion to the requirements found in Clause 7, there are relatively few instances where such exclusion would be justified. Typical education and training activities encompass Design and Development (instructional design), Purchasing (materials and services) Validation of Processes (pilot programs and peer reviews), Customer property (information) and even the Control of Measurement and Monitoring Devices (quizzes and examinations). While the specific processes used may vary between different organizations and offerings, almost every clause of ISO 9001 could conceivably apply.

Verify the Authenticity With Distance Education and Training Council

Distance Education and Training Council is an accrediting body which gives certification to the institutes providing distance education and online training and affiliate courses. Almost all accredited institutes work under the aegis of this council. It is essential for the establishment of legitimacy and authenticity of the online institutes.

Getting registered with Distance Education and Training Council is not an easy task. Many formalities and regulations have to be properly complied with as it the matter of future of young generations. Normally, the working of Distance Education and Training Council is administered by a team or Board of Governors entrusted with various duties and responsibilities.

To get verification, proper maintenance of records, good and well qualified faculty, and updated course material along with a comprehensive course curriculum is required. Usually, a provisional certificate is granted initially which is made permanent after a few years of regular monitoring of the performance of the institute.

Institutes possessing accreditation from this council are able to attract more prospects because of their validity. Institutes not having the registration may somehow manage to get people enrolled in their courses but this does not last long. Moreover, it becomes a matter of social reputation and brand image also.

Those thinking of getting enrolled in online training courses should first confirm the above mentioned features available with the institute. Properly documented papers and credentials are essential to be judged by the people seeking enrollment. This becomes more important as a fake institute can take away the money and leave you in between, thereby causing a loss of both time and money.