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Student Resources

Forms and Documents

All graduate forms and documents including Application for Degree, Deadlines and Procedures for Graduation, Preliminary and Final Exam Scheduling are available on the Graduate School website.

CPD Post-Application Checklist


The Master of Science Coordinated Program in Dietetics, Nutrition & Exercise Physiology (M.S. CPDNEP) is designed for those individuals whose career goal is to become eligible to take the registration examination for dietitians through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

You can view our accreditation status granted by the Accrediation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) online here »

Graduates of the M.S. CPDNEP are expected to function effectively as entry-level dietetics practitioners in a clinical, administrative, or community setting. The supervised practice experience requirement is currently 1200 hours. The 1200 hours of supervised practice consists of 160 hours in a food management rotation, 440 hours in a clinical rotation, 200 hours in a community rotation, and 400 hours in an exercise physiology internship.

WSU M.S. CPDNEP Mission Statement

The mission of the WSU NEP MS CPD is to prepare competent dietetic practitioners who are capable in promoting optimum health and wellness for individuals and communities through the integration of nutrition and exercise physiology in a variety of dietetic career paths.

M.S. CPDNEP related to NEP Mission Statement

The M.S. CPD curriculum is integrated with the Program in Nutrition and Exercise Physiology by providing students with the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities for a variety of career settings such as: rehabilitation institutes, cardiac rehabilitation, sports nutrition programs, medical centers, nutrition clinics, community, work site wellness programs, food-service management, and healthcare supervision and promotion. The M.S. CP in Dietetics seamlessly aligns with the overall mission statement of the NEP program.


  • Goal One: The program will prepare graduates to be credentialed entry-level dietitians
  • Goal Two: The program will prepare graduates to test for certification as an ACSM Clinical Exercise Specialist (CES)
  • Goal Three: The program will prepare graduates to demonstrate a commitment to positively contribute to the health of individuals and communities through active participation and/or leadership in community/public service
Goals for the CPD include
  • Program retention and completion rates,
  • Statements of satisfaction from students and preceptors regarding the knowledge and skills demonstrated during the supervised practice experiences,
  • Pass-rate on Registration Examination for Dietitians and Exercise Specialist certification,
  • Satisfaction from surveyed graduates and employers indicating that an integrated exercise and nutrition background is advantageous for professional advancement, and
  • Level of desire expressed from surveyed graduates to participate in community/public service activities and/or serve in leadership positions in professional organizations.

Measurable Outcomes

(1)   At least 80% of the NEP students who have met the prerequisite requirements and have been admitted into the M.S. CPD will complete the M.S. CPD in one academic year or within 150% of the time planned for completion.

(2)   Graduates who elect to take the RD exam will achieve a first-time pass rate of at least 80% over a five-year period.

(3)   Of those graduates seeking positions in dietetics, 70% or more of CPD graduates who sought employment in dietetics will be employed within three months of program completion.

(4)   At least 90% of NEP CPD graduates will rate the NEP exercise internship as advantageous in obtaining employment.

(5)   Eighty-percent of surveyed CPD community and clinical preceptors will rate advantageous “3” or above for those students who have the interdisciplinary knowledge, skills and abilities of nutrition and exercise science disciplines.

(6)   At least 80% of all surveyed graduates from the NEP CPD will rate having the interdisciplinary training in exercise and nutrition as advantageous “3” or above when working with patients/clients.

(7)   Graduates who choose to test for ACSM CES and/or ACSM RCEP certification will achieve a first time pass rate of at least 70% over a three-year period.

All students admitted into the Masters of Science Coordinated Program in Dietetics will be required to have the CES credential or take the departmental exam that assesses the student’s exercise physiology knowledge, skills and abilities as defined by the American College of Sports Medicine for the Clinical Exercise Specialist certification.


Coordinated Program in Dietetics (38 credits)

Course Abbr. Title
NEP 501 Community Supervised Practice
NEP 505* Graduate Seminar
NEP 520 Research Methods
NEP 537 Advanced Medical Nutrition Therapy
NEP 540 Clinical Supervised Practice
NEP 551 Management Practices in Food Service
NEP 573 Nutrition and Exercise in the Community

*course may be repeated for credit



Course Abbr. Title
NEP 510 Foundations in Cellular Regulation
NEP 526 Community Health and Nutrition
NEP 580 Advanced Topics in Exercise Physiology
NEP 585 Clinical Exercise Physiology
MBIOS 513 General Biochemistry
NURS 521 Teaching, Learning and Evaluations
NURS 589 Psychometrics

Other course electives can be found at http://schedules.wsu.edu/. Electives must be preapproved by your MS CPDNEP faculty advisor.


Exam Requirement

Course Abbr. Title
NEP 702 Cumulative Exam


Bachelor's Degree Requirement

Applicants to the master’s degree in the coordinated program must hold a bachelor’s degree that satisfies one of the following prerequisite options:

  • Bachelor of Science in NEP from WSU.
  • Bachelor of Science in exercise science, or a related degree, from another university.
    • NEP 340, 435, 400, 402, 450, 458, 465, 470, and/or equivalent 478, 480, 479. (These courses may be taken from NEP during the first year of graduate school.)
  • Bachelor of Science in human nutrition, or a related degree, from another university.
    • NEP 463, 465, 476, 478, 479, 480, and 490. (These courses may be taken from NEP during the first year of graduate school.) Find class names here (pdf) »
  • Bachelor of Science degree that has been determined a satisfactory equivalent by our Student Services Office.

Please note: Prerequisites and prior coursework will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. For students who have not passed the Certified Exercise Specialist exam, prior learning in exercise physiology will be assessed.

For questions on degree equivalencies, evaluation of transcripts, or any else, please contact us! Email nep.advising@wsu.edu or call 509-358-7668.


Applications for admission are submitted to the WSU Graduate School, according to the requirements explained here »

The following additional items must be submitted to the WSU Graduate School via regular mail:

  • Recommendations: Obtain three letters of recommendations in time to include them in your application; two recommendations should be from instructors, and one from an employer.
  • GRE scores: Beginning fall 2014
  • Resume
  • Transcripts: Obtain sealed, official transcripts from each institution you have attended and have them sent to the following address:

    Graduate School
    Stadium Way
    French Administration Building, Room 324
    Washington State University
    Pullman, WA 99164-1030

General Admission Process Information

Applications will be processed by the Graduate School, and then sent on to NEP for receipt by the Academic Coordinator.

Our academic coordinator will perform an initial analysis of each application with respect to completion of all the necessary components. A checklist will be initiated that reviews whether the student has completed the prerequisites required for each M.S. degree.

The application packets, with checklists, will be submitted to the chair of the NEP admissions committee, who will make an initial determination regarding assignment of applications for the M.S. Coordinated Program in Dietetics, Nutrition and Exercise Physiology (CPDNEP) to the director.

The director will screen application packets and will then convene the committee to discuss the applications. A rubric will be applied to score the applications, followed by discussion.

Qualified candidates will then be invited to interview for admissions.

The application portfolio and the formal interview are rated using a point system.

Acceptance into the program is based on meeting the admission criteria, the student’s readiness for the program judged by the interview committee, and the availability of an adequate number of quality supervised practice sites for the community, clinical, and management rotations.

GRE Scores

GRE scores are required beginning fall 2014, they must be submitted at the time of application to the Graduate School.

Letters of Recommendation

Applicants will be asked to have three references: 2 from instructors, and 1 from an employer.


The members of the CPDNEP admissions committee will constitute the interview team. For students who live outside Washington state and are unable to travel to Spokane for an interview, video conference or telephone interviews will be arranged as appropriate. A rubric will be used to score performance at the interview.


Program Information

Yes, the M.S. CPDNEP program is accredited by the Academy of Nutrition Dietetics (AND) Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), formerly known as the Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education (CADE).
Read more on ACEND »

Each Coordinated Program (CP) accredited by ACEND must provide the required dietetics coursework and at least 1200 hours of supervised practice within an academic program leading to a bachelor's or graduate degree. Graduates of Coordinated Programs who are verified by the program director are eligible to take the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) certification examination for dietitians. Read more on the CDR »

The M.S. Coordinated Program in Dietetics, Nutrition and Exercise Physiology (CPDNEP) is a professional Master of Science degree program. The degree program does not require completion of a research thesis; instead a comprehensive exam at the conclusion of the program is required. This program is “coordinated” because it has both the dietetic coursework and 1200 hours of supervised dietetic practice. Our graduates are then eligible to take the registered dietitian (RD) certification exam.

The Certified Exercise Specialist (CES) credential is a healthcare professional certified by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) to deliver a variety of exercise assessment, training, rehabilitation, risk factor identification, and lifestyle management services to individuals with or at risk for cardiovascular, pulmonary, and metabolic disease(s). These services are typically delivered in cardiovascular/pulmonary rehabilitation programs, physicians' offices, or medical fitness centers. The CES is also competent to provide exercise-related consulting for research, public health, and other clinical and non-clinical services and programs.

To be eligible to take the CES exam, one must complete required coursework and complete 600 hours of practical experience in a clinical exercise program. There are 400 of the 600 internship hours built into the MS CPDNEP experiential hours.

If you are interested in taking the CES exam to become a certified exercise specialist, there may be additional undergraduate coursework required beyond the MS CPDNEP curriculum, depending on your background and previous education. Once you have been admitted to the program, an academic coordinator will work closely with you to develop an appropriate program of study. Read more on the ACSM »

A registered dietitian/nutritionist (RDN) is a highly trained food and nutrition expert who has met stringent academic and professional requirements, including:

  • Bachelor's degree with course work approved by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) ACEND. Coursework typically includes food and nutrition sciences, food service systems management, business, economics, computer science, sociology, biochemistry, physiology, microbiology and chemistry.
  • Completion of an accredited and supervised 6-12 month experiential practice program at a health-care facility, community agency or food service corporation.
  • Pass a national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration.
  • Complete continuing professional educational requirements to maintain registration.

Some RDNs hold additional certifications in specialized areas of practice, such as pediatric or renal nutrition, nutrition support, and diabetes education.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) was formerly the American Dietetic Association (ADA), and has nearly 70,000 members. It is the nation's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals.

  • AND's Mission: Leading the future of dietetics.
  • AND's Vision: AND members are the most valued source of food and nutrition services.

Affiliated Associations: There are 50 state dietetic associations, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the American Overseas Dietetic Association that are affiliated with AND. Within these groups, there are approximately 230 district associations. Read more about this »


Admission Information

No, transcripts will be evaluated only after an application has been submitted.

The minimum GPA to apply is 3.0. Please visit our Admission Information page for more information.
Prior to application, it is advised that you have completed or are in the process of completing the undergraduate prerequisites in Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Statistics, Psychology, Philosophy and Communication.

Yes, beginning fall 2014, GRE scores must be submitted at the time of application.

Yes, we welcome applications from international students. We follow the admission guidelines and requirements established by the WSU Graduate School (scroll down and click on "show" under International Requirements). International students must submit an application by the “priority” deadline of January 10th.

For more information on applying as an international student, review the international students Requirements Checklist on the WSU Graduate School website.

Also note that the graduate school will not directly accept non-US transcripts. Students who have obtained degrees from outside the US must have their transcripts evaluated externally. Application information for the Graduate School can be found on their website.

You will apply to the WSU Graduate School. Read more on this »

Graduate School Application materials and information are available on their website: gradschool/apply »

*On your WSU Supplemental Application, make sure to state that you are applying to the M.S. CPDNEP program (not B.S. NEP).

The most up-to-date information is on our website.

Degree Information

The length of time to complete the program is dependent on prior learning and coursework. Please refer to our prerequisites page (tab above) for information on additional coursework. You can expect to complete the M.S. degree in approximately two to three years, dependent upon prior coursework.

Due to the combined emphasis of our program (Nutrition and Exercise Physiology), there is additional undergraduate coursework that must be taken from the B.S. NEP program. This coursework can be completed while you are working toward your MS degree. These courses are also listed on the curriculum page (tab above).

In addition, our program positions you to become a Certified Exercise Specialist (CES). You will want to work closely with your advisor if you are interested in this option.

You can find out more information about financial aid resources, tuition and fees online at the WSU Spokane Student Affairs website: Finances.

Traditional forms of financial aid are available to domestic students enrolled in at least 6 credit hours. There are several scholarship opportunities available through the College of Pharmacy, which enrolled students may apply for during the first year. At this time, we are unable to offer graduate assistantships to M.S. CPDNEP students.

Internships and/or dietetics supervised practice experiences are located in Seattle, Tacoma, Puyallup, and Spokane, Washington.

Be advised that each student must be prepared to move in order complete the exercise internship and/or dietetics supervised practice experiences.