Latest Updates from ACEND

ACEND® Policy and Procedure Manual and Substantive Change Guidelines

The ACEND’s Policy and Procedure Manual and Substantive Change Guidelines have been revised and updated on ACEND’s website. These revisions provide additional clarification to better align with the revised U.S. Department of Education (USDE) recognition criteria which went into effect on July 1, 2020. The policy changes do not impact programs at this time. Program directors are encouraged to contact ACEND® staff with any questions.

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ACEND® Creates Guidance for Determining a Quality Master's degree

ACEND® has created a guidance document for programs wishing to assess the quality of their Master's degree. The document includes several different topic areas where Master's degree programs should provide elevated academic experiences compared to Bachelor's degree programs. Please note that these topics discussed in this document are guidance for programs. Please access the ACEND® Standards for ACEND® requirements.

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ACEND Proposed 2022 Accreditation Standards: Call for Comments

The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics has released the revised proposed 2022 Accreditation Standards for Nutrition and Dietetics Coordinated Programs , Didactic Programs, Internship Programs, Technician Programs and Foreign Dietitian Programs for a second round of comments. This draft of the 2022 Standards is the result of a planned five-year review cycle of the 2017 Accreditation Standards followed by one round of public comments completed in Fall 2020 to ensure compliance with USDE regulation. Copies of the draft standards documents can be found on the ACEND® website. Also posted on the website is a webinar that describes the recommended revised changes based on public comments and the rationale for these proposed changes.

This survey allows you to share any feedback you have about this second round of revisions of the 2022 Standards. The survey will take 5 – 10 minutes to complete. Please share this information with your constituents and colleagues.

We value your input! The survey will remain open until June 18, 2021.

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Legal and Ethical Admissions Processes that Promote Diversity Webinar: June 8, 2021

The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics invites you to a free diversity, equity and inclusion webinar. ACEND® continues its series of webinars to assist nutrition faculty in addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion in their programs. Research has shown that developing race-neutral and race-conscious admissions processes can improve the diversity of a program. This session will explore the legal and ethical opportunities and limitations of such processes. The speaker will also discuss how to create a holistic program application that promotes the inclusion of diverse students, while maintaining the rigor needed to ensure meeting the accreditation standards. All ACEND® stakeholders (faculty, administrators, preceptors, students, interns, etc.) are invited to attend.

Date: Tuesday, June 8, 2021
Time: 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. (Central time)
Cost: Free
CPEU: 1.5

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Virtual ACEND Program Director Workshop – Future Education Model Standards: August 5-6, 2021

Take advantage of ACEND®'s virtual training opportunity for program directors and other program constituents that are preparing for an upcoming Self-Study Report and Site Visit or are interested in learning about the Future Education Model Standards.

  • Thursday, August 5, 2021: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. (Central time)
  • Friday, August 6, 2021: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. (Central time)

The workshop will be limited to 30 participants so please sign up early.

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Spring 2021 Dietetic Internship Match Data

Each spring, graduates of didactic programs in nutrition and dietetics participate in a computerized match process run by D&D Digital for placement in a nutrition and dietetic internship program. The results of the first round of the April 2021 computer match and a comparison with the previous five years are shown below:

Graph of 2021 spring di matching

Key Points

  • There were 4% fewer participants in the Spring 2021 match compared to Spring 2020.
  • Of the 3462 dietetic internship openings available to be filled through the match (doesn’t include pre-select openings) only 2414 (70%) were filled through the match with 1048 (30%) positions still available after the match.
  • The spring match rate has steadily improved. 73% of applicants matched to a dietetic internship in Spring 2021.

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ACEND® Board Freezes the 2021-2022 Program Annual Accreditation Fee

To assist programs and their institutions during the COVID-19 pandemic, at its February 8, 2021 meeting, the ACEND® Board voted to retain the 2020-2021 fee amount and not increase the 2021-2022 annual accreditation fee for all ACEND®-accredited programs. The annual accreditation fee will remain at $2,125.00, the same amount charged in 2020-2021. To review the annual accreditation fees, access the Fee Schedule (Effective June 1, 2021 - May 31, 2024).

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ACEND® Board Discontinues the Future Bachelor (FB) Demonstration Program

ACEND® launched its Future Education Model (FEM) demonstration program pilot in 2017 and since has been collecting data to evaluate and monitor the success of the FEM Standards. Current data suggest the great benefit of competency-based education in preparing Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs), indicated by the number of programs that have applied to become a Future Education Model Graduate (FG) demonstration program, the pass rate on the registration exam for these programs, and the many benefits reported by faculty and students. This underlines the value of elevating the education of the RDN to the graduate level. Over the past four years, there have been few applications for the Future Bachelor’s (FB) Demonstration Program (<10% of total FEM applications) with less than 2% of total FEM students enrolled, suggesting limited support for a Nutrition and Dietetics Technician, Registered program at the bachelor’s level; therefore, on March 8, 2021, the ACEND Board voted to discontinue the FB demonstration program. Discontinuation of the FB demonstration program was not a desired outcome; however, ACEND is committed to a thorough and honest evaluation of its FEM Standards and programs. ACEND will continue to accredit Didactic Programs in Dietetics (DPDs) as the undergraduate nutrition and dietetics degree and will assist all FB programs (accredited and in process) that want to transition to the DPD Standards. Furthermore, ACEND will continue to accept applications for FG programs in future cohorts of FEM demonstration program.

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Reminders and Deadlines


Cohort 6 Applications for Demonstration Programs under the Future Education Model Accreditation Standards-Due December 6, 2021

The ACEND® Board has issued the call for applications for those interested in being part of cohort 6 demonstration programs under the Future Education Model Accreditation Standards. Applications for Future Graduate and Future Associate's degree programs are due December 6, 2021 at 11 a.m. (Central time).

A webinar series that presents an overview of the Future Education Model Accreditation Standards and the Accreditation review process is available.

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