Diet and exercise is a program for students interested in earning concurrent bachelor’s and master’s degrees focused on diet and exercise. Students are admitted to the university as pre-diet and exercise students and must apply for graduate admission at the beginning of the junior year and be accepted into the program. The program is designed so you can earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in five to six years. The program is administered jointly between the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition and the Department of Kinesiology.
- Program overview
- Application and admission
- Graduate study
- Research areas in diet and exercise
- Student learning outcomes
Strengths of the program
As public interest in health and disease prevention grows, students in diet and exercise major find themselves with a wide variety of job opportunities in cardiac rehabilitation, school nutrition, corporate health, public health, clinics, preventative medicine, sport enhancement, and sport nutrition. This fast-track program allows students to graduate with both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in just five years:
- The program meets the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) requirements for students to pursue accredited supervised practice/dietetics internships and then take the national exam to become a registered dietitian (RD)/ registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). The program also meets American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) requirements for students to pursue certification at the level of exercise physiologist.
- Iowa State University offers the only accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics within the in the State of Iowa, and it has been recognized by colleagues in the profession as a very well-respected and rigorous program.
- Diet and Exercise students have the opportunity to travel abroad with faculty members to communities in Peru, India, and other places around the world to learn first-hand about food and nutrition in those countries.
This accelerated academic program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics, the accrediting agency for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and prepares students for admission to accredited dietetics internships/supervised practice programs. Upon successful completion of the experience program, graduates are eligible to take the national exam to become a registered dietitian (RD)/registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) and work in a wide range of dietitian positions. Additionally, the program meets American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) requirements for students to pursue certification at the level of exercise physiologist. Graduates have expertise in exercise physiology and can apply for wellness positions as nutrition and physical fitness experts.
Scholarships and financial aid
Food Science and Human Nutrition and Kinesiology students in the College of Human Sciences need only to complete one online application to automatically apply for all department-level and college-level scholarships. Students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (AGLS) can also apply for AGLS scholarships.
Diet and exercise
2020-21 catalog requirements (PDF)
2020-21 sample 5-year plan (PDF)
Course sequence flow sheet (PDF)
Required coursework for admission
2020-21 Required coursework for program admission (PDF)
Meet students in your program through the FSHN learning communities.
Clubs and organizations
Connect with people who share similar interests in FSHN and across the ISU campus.
Students are also encouraged to become student members of professional associations/organizations and network with professionals within the career field.
Careers and internships
Possible careers with a degree in diet and exercise include:
- Wellness educator
- Dietitian and health fitness instructor
- Cardiac rehabilitation coordinator/dietitian
- Corporate wellness educator
- Health or wellness instructor
- Preventive medicine coordinator
- School nutrition wellness educator
- Sport enhancement specialist
Read about additional extensive career opportunities and salary information for Registered Dietitians. Graduates of the program are eligible to apply for admission to accredited dietetics internships/supervised practice programs. Upon successful completion of the experience program, graduates are eligible to take the national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration to become a registered dietitian (RD)/registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) and to practice in the field of dietetics. Read more about becoming a dietitian.
Prepare for your next job or internship with Career Services, where staff help you with job searches, interview preparation, and resume/cover letter review. As a student in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences or the College of Human Sciences, use the career services offices associated with your college.