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California State University, Long Beach
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences

Didactic Program in Dietetics

Alternative Pathway - Becoming a Nutrition & Dietetic Technician, Registered

In addition to preparing students to be eligible for continued education towards becoming a Registered Dietitian Nutrition, the DPD at CSULB also prepares graduates to immediately be eligible to become a Nutrition & Dietetic Technician, Registered (NDTR or DTR), often called a “diet tech” in the field. NDTRs are nationally credentialed food and nutrition technical practitioners who have met the following criteria to earn and maintain the credential:

  • Completion of all academic requirements for a minimum of a bachelor’s degree at a U.S. regionally accredited university or college and course work accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), the credentialing agency of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). The Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) at CSULB fulfills this step in the path to becoming a NDTR. Students must earn a “C” or better in all relevant DPD coursework.  
  • After completing the degree and dietetics coursework, successful completion of the Registration Examination for Dietetic Technicians, a national credentialing examination, administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) is required. CDR’s NDTR certification program is fully accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the accrediting arm of the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE). Accreditation by the ICE reflects achievement of the highest standards of professional credentialing.
  • Complete 50 hours of continuing education every five years to maintain NDTR registration.

NDTRs are educated and trained at the technical level of nutrition and dietetics practice for the delivery of safe, culturally competent, quality food and nutrition services. They are an integral part of healthcare and food service management teams and work under the supervision of RDNs when in direct patient/client nutrition care in practice areas as hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, retirement centers, hospices, home health-care programs and research facilities conducting patient/client screens, gathering data and performing assigned tasks to assist RDNs in providing medical nutrition therapy.

If you are a DPD alumni who has received your verification statement and would like to register for the NDTR exam, please visit Register for the NDTR Exam.