An online graduate degree to help you answer your calling

Samford’s online Master of Science in Nutrition prepares students and dietitians for positions in health care, community, education, research, and leadership in nutrition programs.

Students choose a concentration in either Clinical Nutrition or General Nutrition, and they are required to complete a capstone/culminating research project in nutrition science, clinical nutrition, community nutrition, or public health. All classes are offered online, and students may pursue either full-time or part-time study.

The course work, research experiences, internships, and certifications prepare students for careers in academia, hospitals, long-term care, schools, wellness programs, industry, government, and public health. Students applying through the Dietetic Internship Centralized Application System (DICAS) have the opportunity to complete course work towards a Master of Science in Nutrition and practice experiences necessary to become a Registered Dietitian.

Please note: If you are not currently a registered dietitian or do not hold a bachelor's degree in the field of nutrition, this program does not provide eligibility to sit for the National Registration examination to become a registered dietitian, nor does it provide eligibility to apply to a dietetic internship.

Samford's program will:

  • Provide you with an advanced knowledge of the field of nutrition sciences
  • Improve and strengthen your analytical and research skills
  • Prepare you to take leadership roles in the nutrition profession, influencing and contributing to nutrition services, education, programs and policies
  • Develop your oral and written communication skills for the education of nutrition professionals, allied health professionals, students, clients and others in the general public

Application Process

Application Schedule

  • Application Opens:  November 1, 2020
    • Applicants are admitted on a rolling basis.
  • Application Closes: July 1, 2021
  • Entry Month: August 2021

The steps below outline the application process for the online Master of Science in Nutrition program. To apply, you are required to submit both an application through AHCAS as well as a Master of Science in Nutrition Supplemental Form. 

The steps below outline the application process for the Master of Science in Nutrition program. To apply, you are required to submit an application through Allied Health Centralized Application Service (AHCAS).

  • Obtain student copies of your college transcripts to assist you in completing the coursework section for the application. 
  • Create an application account at AHCAS. Once the account is created, an instruction manual can be found under the question mark icon on the top right of the page. The AHCAS system simplifies the process of applying to Samford programs. Compete one application and send it along with other information to our centralized service. The AHCAS system will verify your application for accuracy, calculate your GPA and send your materials to the Master of Science in Nutrition program.
  • Complete the form, submit it to the registrar's office of each institution attended and instruct them to enclose the form with your official sealed transcript. Transcripts must be sent to the AHCAS Transcript Department:
    • AHCAS Transcript Processing Center
      P.O. Box 9127
      Watertown, MA 02471
  • AHCAS accepts official transcripts sent directly from the registrar's office only. Please send transcripts as early as possible and no less than four to six weeks before the application deadline due to the time needed by AHCAS to verify your application.
  • If course work is completed in an institution outside of the United States, an international credential evaluation is required reporting prior university. Samford accepts evaluations from World Education Services (WES), found at or AACRAO International Education Services (IES), found at
  • Pay the initial service fee of $115 when submitting the AHCAS application.
  • Submit three letters of recommendation from 1) current or previous professor; 2) supervisor; and 3) a Registered Dietitian or another current or previous professor. These letters of recommendation will be submitted through AHCAS. The references should attest to the applicant's academic ability and potential.
Please fill out all sections of the application.
  • Submit official test scores to Samford University – Code: 1302
  • The preferred browsers for AHCAS are Google Chrome or Firefox.  If you need any assistance, please contact the AHCAS technical support team at 617-612-2883 or email at The customer service office is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST.

Admission Requirements

  • Possess a baccalaureate degree in any field from a college or university that holds institutional accreditation, or be in the senior year of undergraduate study
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Achieve a C or better in all prerequisite courses from a college or university that holds institutional accreditation. All prerequisite courses must have been completed within 10 years prior to application. Required prerequisite courses include mathematics, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, anatomy and physiology I and II, and introductory nutrition
  • Submit valid GRE, MCAT, or DAT scores (Please note: This entry exam requirement has been waived for the 2021 application cycle.)
    • GRE minimum scores: Verbal, 153: Quantitative, 144; Analytical, 4.0 
    • MCAT equivalent of 492
    • DAT minimum score of 14
  • Submit three letters of reference through the application system. References should be from 1] a current or previous professor, 2] a work supervisor and 3] a registered dietitian or another current or previous professor
  • American citizens who learned English as a second language must score at least 550 (paper), 213 (Computer) or 80 (Internet) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Must complete 24 credit hours as a full-time student in a U.S. college or university that holds institutional accreditation. We cannot issue an I-20 for this program at this time.
  • If accepted, a non-refundable fee of $1,000 is required to secure admission into the program. The fee is applied to the first semester’s tuition.
  • Exceptions to any of the admission requirements may be considered on an individual basis.

Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Science in Nutrition, graduates will:

  • Demonstrate mastery of advanced knowledge of nutrition.
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge and learning of a specialty area in the field of nutrition.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in scientific methodology and critical thinking.
  • Demonstrate effective communication (both oral and written) skills.
  • Demonstrate attributes of professional development consistent with the field of nutrition.


Clinical Nutrition

The clinical nutrition concentration is ideal for the current registered dietitian-nutritionist (RDN) who does not yet have a master’s degree, or a candidate with an undergraduate degree in dietetics who wishes to pursue RDN credentials. This degree combined with the RD credential prepares graduates for a career in clinical dietetics in a variety of settings, including private practice, consulting, or community and public health work. Its coursework emphasizes nutrition science with specific applications to clinical nutrition practice, health promotion and disease prevention.

General Nutrition

The general nutrition concentration is ideal for the candidate seeking advanced knowledge of the field of human nutrition prior to pursuing medical school, physician assistant school, dental school or doctoral program. Additionally, it prepares graduates for a career in research, foodservice management, administration in nutrition services, public health programs, or nutrition and health communications. Career options will vary depending on your status as a registered dietitian-nutritionist.

Plan of Study


Based on the recommendations of the Council on Future Practice Visioning Report of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics released in 2012, the Commission of Dietetic Registration (CDR), at its April 2013 meeting decided to move the entry-level registration eligibility education requirements for dietitians, beginning in 2024, from a baccalaureate degree to a minimum of a graduate degree. The need to elevate entry-level Registered Dietitian education to a graduate level is consistent with the knowledge, skills, and research base required in the field of nutrition and dietetics. Further, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicates that many dietitians have advanced degrees and that employment of dietitians is expected to increase an average of 16% from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for all occupations.

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