Doctor of Clinical Nutrition

The Doctor of Clinical Nutrition program is clinically-focused and online, with emphasis on treating conditions and risk factors using dietary and nutritional interventions. Communities are struggling with an increasing burden of chronic, complex illnesses – many of which are perpetuated by suboptimal nutrition. To address the most challenging patient cases, we need expert practitioners, doctors of clinical nutrition, who can apply advanced evaluation and treatment strategies to find the underlying drivers of illness and help to resolve them. For this reason, our Doctor of Clinical Nutrition program utilizes a functional medicine model, enabling students to integrate the best available scientific evidence with a comprehensive, whole-person care approach. With this knowledge, doctors of clinical nutrition can also develop targeted, individualized prevention plans to help reduce the risk of chronic illness and support optimal physical, mental and emotional well-being for the patients and clients they serve.

Program Highlights:

  • Regionally-accredited program offered in collaboration with the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM).
  • Rigorous, clinically-applicable curriculum that is continually reviewed and updated with new research and findings.
  • Patient-centered approach to helping people achieve and maintain optimal wellness.
  • 100-percent online format.
  • Interactive online learning experience featuring distinguished instructors and dedicated course facilitators to help you succeed.
  • Eligible for financial aid.

Do you qualify?

The Doctor of Clinical Nutrition program is very specialized and requires a certain set of qualifications in order to apply. Please review the requirements below to ensure you qualify. Minimum Education: Master’s degree or equivalent in human nutrition GPA Requirements: Minimum graduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. *Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 please contact admissions. Required Courses (DCN):

  • Macro-/micronutrients
  • Whole food nutrition
  • Nutritional supplementation
  • Meal planning
  • Functional medicine

Connect with our admissions team if you have any questions about your qualifications, requirements or the program in general.

Program Pace

The doctor of clinical nutrition (DCN) program is a cohort program where students move through the two-year sequence with a group of peers and take a required set of courses for each of the eight quarters in the program. Explore the current university catalog to view courses offered, descriptions and course sequence.

Learning Outcomes

Recognizing the need for clinical nutrition practitioners with advanced training to assess and manage patients/clients experiencing complex chronic illness and to promote wellness through optimal body function, the doctor of clinical nutrition program prepares graduates to skillfully address the multifaceted health needs of the individuals they serve. Graduates of the DCN program will be able to:

  1. Apply appropriate patient/client evaluation methods to determine nutritional needs and clinical status.
  2. Create nutrition-focused care plans that incorporate scientific evidence and sound clinical judgment to promote therapeutic goals and wellness.
  3. Apply functional medicine tools and strategies that enable a whole-person approach to patient/client care.
  4. Model ethical methods of practice that accord with applicable principles of jurisprudence.
  5. Employ a collaborative approach to clinical nutrition care.


The doctor of clinical nutrition program includes 65 quarter credits over a two-year course sequence. Each quarter includes 7-11 credits and the courses are offered once a year for each cohort entering the program. The UWS catalog houses the curriculum, course descriptions, curriculum sequence and other helpful information about the program. View the current catalog.


Students are encouraged to check the library catalog for electronic versions of required and recommended textbooks before purchasing. The library carries a few copies all of the required and recommended textbooks in print and has been able to obtain electronic versions of many textbooks for all programs at UWS, saving students hundreds of dollars per term. To purchase books, please visit the UWS campus store. Find the DCN textbook list here.


Read about the esteemed faculty within the doctor of clinical nutrition program.

Requirements for graduation

The doctor of clinical nutrition degree is conferred upon the individual who has fulfilled the following requirements:

  1. Maintenance of enrollment eligibility through satisfactory academic performance, professional development and behavior, and non-academic behavior.
  2. Successful completion of all required courses, lectures, labs, practicums, and seminars with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on all required coursework.
  3. Successful completion of minimum graduation requirements as officially communicated to students through the university catalog, student publications, and other official documents of the university.
  4. Freedom from all indebtedness and other obligations to the university.