Follow the step by step process or choose what situation that best describes you:
The Louisiana Board of Examiners in Nutrition and Dietetics (LBEND) requires all who wish to work as a dietitian in the state to be licensed. They also recommend all dietitians complete registered dietitian education in Louisiana that is mandated by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). This ensures that you are well prepared and well rounded as a licensed dietitian/nutritionist (LDN) and registered dietitian (RD) in the state of Louisiana. According to the Louisiana Dietetic Association, registered dietitians in the state have found work in food companies, business, industry, wellness centers, private practice, research centers, hospitals, nursing homes, clinics and schools. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) says that in May 2012, dietitians and nutritionists working in Louisiana averaged a yearly wage of $50,540.
A registered dietitian in Louisiana recently made news headlines when she spoke out on the excess of caffeine being put into our foods and drinks. Claudia Cormier, a registered dietitian with Healthy Lives at Our Lady of the Lake in Baton Rouge, noted that caffeine is now in drinks, jelly beans, gum and other foods, and that the American public should be concerned about the amount of caffeine their children consume in just one day due to the prevalence of these types of products. If you would like to find out how to become a registered dietitian in Louisiana and make a difference in the health of its citizens of all ages, read on.
In the state of Louisiana, you cannot work as a dietitian until you have completed education, experience and examination required for registered dietitians (RD) by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) and applied for licensure as a dietitian/nutritionist (LDN) in Louisiana. You must complete an ACEND (Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics) approved college educational program in dietetics.
ACEND-Accredited Educational Programs Leading to Registered Dietitian (RD) status in Louisiana:
What if I Wish to Become a Dietetic Technician, Registered (DTR) in Louisiana?
Are you interested in the discipline of dietetics and nutrition but want a shorter educational program? You might want to consider studying to become a Dietetic Technician, Registered (DTR) in Louisiana instead. DTRs work under the supervision of a Registered Dietitian (RD) in the same type of job settings, but usually study for two instead of four years and have an internship of 450 hours as opposed to 900 hours. They must also pass the CDR’s DTR nationwide exam. In Louisiana, a DTR educational program can be found at:
Coursework in a DTR program includes classes such as:
You must next satisfy Louisiana and the CDR’s requirement for 900 or more hours of supervised experience in nutrition and dietetics. This Dietetic Internship (DI) also must be approved by ACEND. DIs in Louisiana include:
Your next step along the pathway to becoming a registered dietitian in Louisiana is to pass the CDR’s Registered Dietitian nationwide exam. It is a three-hour exam taken on the computer, consisting of up to 145 multiple-choice questions. You are required to answer at least 125 questions for the exam to be scored properly. In addition, answers cannot be changed once entered nor questions skipped. You will pay about $200 to take the exam and register through the CDR’s website. PSI Exam Centers in Louisiana administer the test:
You will receive your score on the day of the exam. A scaled score of 25 or better (on a scale of zero to 50) is needed to pass. If you fail, you can re-take the exam in 45 days from your first attempt. When you pass this exam, you may legally use the credentials RD (Registered Dietitian) with your name.
Before you may legally work as a dietitian in the state of Louisiana, you must apply for licensure to the Louisiana Board of Examiners in Dietetics and Nutrition.
Once issued, you may use the initials LDN (Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist) in Louisiana only.
Maintaining Your Louisiana Dietitian Licensing
Your Louisiana license as a dietitian/nutritionist (LDN) is renewable every year. You may renew online or by mailing a renewal application. You must complete 15 hours of continuing education each year in dietetics and nutrition and submit this at the time of your license renewal. This may be satisfied by showing that you are still registered with the CDR as a Registered Dietitian (RD) and enclosing a current copy of your CDR card. Renewal fees range from $60 to 88, depending on when and how (online or via mail) you renew.
Maintaining your Registration as a Registered Dietitian in Louisiana
You must renew your registration with the CDR every five years, and complete 75 hours of continuing professional education (CPE) every five years. CPE activities must be approved in order to count for credit. Look at the CDR’s CPE Database and PDP Guide for guidance in finding and documenting CPE in Louisiana. Current CPE activities and courses for Louisiana that are listed on the CDR database include, but are not limited to: