Nutritional Science, MS

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Be at the leading edge of nutrition science. Expand your knowledge and skill base with rigorous internships and your own research. Study a variety of nutrition disciplines including sports nutrition. Opportunities for practical application can give you the tools to create a path to the forefront of modern health.

The MS program in nutritional science prepares students to translate nutrition science into practical use for human health and wellness. Students immerse themselves in the latest nutrition topics and research partnered with accomplished faculty, developing practical understanding through internship experiences and their own guided research. Building on the scientific foundations of human nutrition, students learn strong writing and problem-solving skills, grow computer literacy, and increase interpretive expertise. Students are afforded research experiences grounded in the latest science that can match their own interests and goals.

Students who have completed an accredited didactic program in dietetics may also elect to apply to the ASU dietetic internship in order to meet the requirements to become a registered dietitian nutritionist More information is available at

Sports nutrition, a new track in the program, provides an option for students to select specialized courses in sports nutrition and exercise science and obtain hands-on training and research with sports dietitians and nutrition faculty who are experts in the field. Students in this track complete the same core nutrition graduate cour but take track-specific courses and electives that focus on sports nutrition, hydration, exercise physiology and other vital parts of the discipline. The culminating experience research is under the guidance of sports nutrition professors in the College of Health Solutions.

The maternal child health track provides an option for students to select specialized courses in maternal child health and obtain hands-on training with the nutrition and other faculty who work on nutrition-related health behaviors and outcomes across campus. Students in this track will complete the same core nutrition graduate courses but will take track courses and electives that focus on maternal child health competencies, including policy and advocacy, leadership development, communication, ethics, etc. They will complete their required research under the guidance of one of several faculty conducting nutrition-related maternal and child health research. Competitive funding may be available through the TRANSCEND Program for students in the maternal child health track.

At A Glance

Nutritional Science, MS

Plan of study

The Plan of study is the required curriculum to complete the program.

View Plan of Study

Certification and licensure

The College of Health Solutions prepares graduates for excellence upon entering the workplace. Since certification and licensure requirements vary by profession and from state-to-state, we recommend that you visit the ASU licensure website to determine if your program meets the requirements of individual state licensures or national certifications, as applicable. If you have specific questions, please contact your program director or degree coordinator.

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Additional Program Information

Application deadlines

  • MS degree and dietetic internship: Feb. 15
  • MS degree only: May 1

Degree requirements

Required Core (3 credit hours)
EXW 501 Research Statistics (3) or
NTR 502 Statistics in Research (3)

Restricted Electives (9 credit hours)
NTR 501 Research Methods in Nutrition (3)
NTR 503 Designing Health Behavior Change Interventions (3)
NTR 524 Chronic Inflammation and Metabolic Syndrome: The Common Pathway for Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes (3)
NTR 525 Complementary Nutrition (3)
NTR 527 Policies, Environment and Obesity Prevention (3)
NTR 529 Pediatric Nutrition (3)
NTR 532 Endocrine Pathophysiology and Nutrition (3)
NTR 533 Ethics and Policy of American Diets (3)
NTR 535 Nutrigenomics (3)
NTR 537 Evidence-based Nutrition (3)
NTR 551 Geriatric Nutrition (3)
NTR 553 Nutrition and Cardiovascular Disease (3)
NTR 555 Nutrition and the Athlete (3)
NTR 557 Nutritional Epidemiology (3)
NTR 598 Special Topics (3)

Open Electives (9 credit hours)

Research (3 credit hours)
NTR 500 Research Methods (3)

Culminating Experience (6 credit hours)
NTR 593 Applied Project (6) or
NTR 599 Thesis (6)

Additional Curriculum Information
Students choose three courses from the restricted electives list above for a total of nine credit hours. Other courses may be used with approval of the academic unit.

One research methods course is required. NTR 500 may be substituted with approval from the academic unit.

Students in the sports nutrition and maternal child health tracks complete specific course requirements for the track. Please consult with the academic advisor.

Admission requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the College of Health Solutions.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree (nutrition or science is recommended) from a regionally accredited institution. Students who are pursuing the Master of Science in nutritional science need to complete the following prerequisites: anatomy and physiology, biochemistry, general chemistry with lab, general nutrition for majors, microbiology, organic chemistry with lab, and statistics.

These courses are part of the ASU didactic program in dietetics required for ASU's BS degree in dietetics and to be eligible to apply for admission into an accredited dietetic internship to become a registered dietitian. If an applicant has completed a didactic program in dietetics from another university, these prerequisites are considered complete. Prerequisite courses can be in progress when the student submits the application; however, if the student is accepted into the Master of Science degree program, all prerequisites must be completed before the program begins in the fall semester.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. resume
  4. personal statement
  5. three letters of recommendation
  6. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

A resume that summarizes the academic, research, volunteer and employment experiences of the applicant needs to be submitted with the graduate admission application.

A personal statement that includes the following must be submitted with the graduate admission application:

  1. a description of the applicant's significant professional responsibilities
  2. the applicant's professional goals and the reasons for the desire to enroll in ASU's program
  3. the applicant's strengths that will allow the applicant success in the program and in reaching professional goals
  4. the applicant's personal research interests, described as specifically as possible and including any previous research experience, along with indication of any interest in being considered for the optional track in sports nutrition

Three letters of recommendation are required, including at least one from an instructor at the applicant's undergraduate school. Letters of recommendation can be submitted with the graduate admission online application.

A foreign language examination is not required for this program.

Finalists for admission are interviewed.

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