Doctor of Clinical Nutrition (DCN)

Marketable Skills

This program will help Texas move forward towards its goal of increasing the number of citizens with postsecondary credentials. By creating the first DCN or Advanced Practice Doctorate program in the state, UTMB will offer dietitians in Texas an option to obtain a practice-centered doctorate as opposed to the traditional doctorate (PhD) that has been primarily tailored for individuals with a sole interest in a career in academia.

This DCN will provide more options for nutrition clinicians/practitioners to pursue education at the advanced level. The DCN program will target students’ interpersonal, cognitive, and applied skills. Successful graduates will be prepared with marketable skills and be recognized as content experts with enhanced credibility and ethical practice. Specifically graduates will be able to:

  • Practice as an advanced dietetic practitioner with expert-level competency in the application of the Nutrition Care Process.
  • Conduct comprehensive nutrition-focused physical examinations and interpret results using investigative reasoning and standardized language.
  • Incorporate advanced knowledge and techniques for identifying characteristics of malnutrition in practice.
  • Integrate foundational nutritional knowledge with critical appraisal to resolve or improve nutrition intervention.
  • Collaborate as the nutrition expert with other healthcare practitioners, industry partners, and academia.
  • Demonstrate competence in the use of evidence-based applications for nutrition interventions and practice.
  • Apply and adopt a global perception to professional practice by integrating cultural interpretations of food and nutrition into practice applications.
  • Demonstrate leadership by mentoring and training others in nutrition practices in diverse practice settings.
  • Apply innovative and adaptive skills in creating and disseminating sound nutrition information to the public.
  • Demonstrate competence in interpretation and critique of scientific health-related care literature using evidence-analysis methodology.
  • Design, conduct, analyze, and disseminate quality improvement and/or nutrition outcomes research projects.
  • Apply health behavior and educational counseling theories in research applications.

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