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Best Online Degrees in: Nutrition

Editor’s Picks: Online Schools for Nutrition

Value
The University of Alabama wins the award for the best online nutrition bachelor’s degree for value, as it has a high return on investment (ROI), according to PayScale.com. In-state students can expect an ROI of 8.0% without financial aid and 9.2% with financial aid, while out-of-state students can expect an ROI of 6.6% without financial aid and 7.3% with financial aid. In addition, the University of Alabama is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as No. 31 on its list of top national public schools.

Flexibility
Kaplan University is ranked by student reviews on College Prowler as having A- flexibility. Student reviews also give Kaplan an A+ academic experience, according to College Prowler. Due to Kaplan’s dedication to providing a useful curriculum that can easily fit into busy students’ schedules, it is our winner for the best online nutrition bachelor’s degree for flexibility.

Technology Support
Kaplan University’s distance learning campus is ranked as No. 5 in technology support by student reviews on College Prowler. Kaplan provides extended and weekend service hours for students that need assistance accessing their classes, submitting assignments, or utilizing the Kaplan student portal. In addition, Kaplan also provides a list of frequently asked questions for quick help with common problems. Kaplan is therefore the winner of the award for best technology support.

Library and Research Support
The University of Alabama is the winner of the award for the best online nutrition bachelor’s degree for library and research support. The university’s library website provides quick access to resources, subject guides, and an ask-a-librarian page. Librarians can be contacted through phone, text, or email, and students can follow the library on multiple social networking websites.

Alumni Engagement
The winner of best alumni engagement is Kaplan University for having extensive alumni benefits, which are outlined on its alumni website. Graduates have access to a career network, a mentoring network, and multiple social networking pages. Students can also pursue ongoing learning opportunities and can network with each other.

New Online Student Orientation
Kaplan University is the winner of best new online student orientation. At Kaplan University, students participate in the Kaplan Commitment, which gives students the opportunities to adjust to classes and online learning for a period of time without having to pay for anything but the application fee. Students can determine if online learning works for them during that period of time, and only after deciding whether they want to continue the classes do they become financially responsible for them.

Explore a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition

Nutritionists and dietitians advise patients and clients on health and dietary needs and evaluate meal plans and develop new meal plans to promote healthy eating habits. Dietitians and nutritionists may work in hospitals, schools, and nursing homes, or may be self-employed and work as consultants for individual clients. They require communication skills to explain technical dietary requirements in an understandable way, and analytical and organizational skills to understand client goals and set up client-specific regimens.

Class Curriculum

In addition to core curriculum, nutritionist degree program course work may require science course work in anatomy and physiology, biochemistry, biology and genetics, and chemistry. Required nutrition course work usually consists of human nutrition, food chemistry, and nutrition assessment and planning. Advanced course work may cover sports nutrition, obesity and weight management, metabolic nutritional therapy, and dietetics.

  • Human Nutrition. Human nutrition emphasizes the functions of nutrient sources required for optimal health. The course may cover dietary habits for general health and current issues in nutrition. Students are also introduced to the chemical properties of food.
  • Food Processing. Food processing covers the principles and practices of canning, freezing, dehydration, pickling, and food manufacturing. The course studies concepts in preparation, processing, packaging, and additives. Advanced course work may study specific food processing such as meat or poultry, and their physical, microbiological, and functional characteristics.
  • Food Chemistry.Food chemistry studies the chemical and physical properties of food and its use, quality, and preparation. Food chemistry usually coincides with a lab requirement where principles and experiments in lab chemistry are applied.

Most nutrition courses will correspond with required reading in current nutritional or dietetic research. Assignments may require students to develop meal plans or menus, or conduct laboratory study or extensive research into diet and human performance.

Building a Career

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, dietitians and nutritionists had a median annual wage of $53,250 in May 2010. Dietitian and nutritionist employment is expected to increase 20% between 2010 and 2020. Hospitals, including state, local, and private facilities, employed 32% of dietitians and nutritionists in 2010, and 15% of dietitians and nutritionists were self-employed in 2010.

Dietitians may be registered through the Commission on Dietetic Registration, which is required or preferred by most employees. Most states require dietitian or nutritionist licensure through the state after obtaining a bachelor’s degree in a relevant area, including a dietitian, nutrition science, or food science degree program.

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