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Dietitian License Requirements in Oklahoma

Oklahoma dietitians are licensed by the Oklahoma State Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision. They are known as Licensed Dietitians or LDs. Prospective dietitians must meet requirements for education, supervised practice, and examination. A practitioner may meet some requirements while working under provisional licensure.

A candidate can meet most requirements by achieving certification through the Commission on Dietetic Registration. The Oklahoma State Board will also need to evaluate legal and professional background.

Select an Oklahoma Licensed Dietitian Topic:

Educational Standards

The prospective dietitian will need to earn a baccalaureate or post-baccalaureate degree through a regionally accredited college or university. International education can be used to meet this requirement if it would be accepted as transfer credit by a regionally accredited institution.

The graduate must meet coursework requirements. Education may be accepted if the individual has 24 semester hours in any of the following fields: dietetics, foods and nutrition, human nutrition, or food management. Education can also be accepted on the basis of having 30 semester hours of coursework that is specifically designed to train a person in the job role. The overall purpose of the 30 semester hours should be to train the professional to apply scientific principles of nutrition to the care and education of people across the lifespan and under varying conditions (for example, different economic, psychological, and physical circumstances). In this instance, the coursework must include at least 18 semester hours that are drawn from the qualifying fields of dietetics, human nutrition, foods and nutrition, or food systems management.

By completing an ACEND-accredited program, a person can be assured of meeting academic requirements for national certification and Oklahoma licensure. The prospective student can search for accredited programs on the ACEND website (http://www.eatrightacend.org/ACEND). There are two types of initial program: coordinated and didactic. Didactic is the more common program type, but a student who enrolls in a didactic degree program should be aware that he or she will need to meet supervised practice requirements post-degree.

The ACEND website lists one Oklahoma-based coordinated program, taught at the undergraduate level. It lists four Oklahoma-based didactic programs. There are both undergraduate and graduate program options.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has also provided some information about Oklahoma programs (http://oknutrition.org/education.htm).

Degreed professionals may wish to contact accredited programs about transcript evaluation.

Supervised Practice Requirements

The prospective dietitian must complete an internship or other approved pre-professional program. The program must be approved by the Advisory Committee on Dietetic Registration. Graduates of coordinated programs will have met this requirement by the time they earn their degrees; they will be ready for the next stage: examination.

Students who will be completing didactic programs may use the ACEND directory to locate approved internships. The ACEND website lists three accredited in-state internship programs. They have varying areas of emphasis (for example, health and wellness or nutrition research) as well as varying timeframes. In some cases, internship hours are accrued in conjunction with a graduate degree. All accredited internships are at least 1,200 hours. This is the case around the nation. Students go through a centralized matching process unless they have ties to a program that pre-selects its interns.

Examination Requirements

The Board has approved the examination that is offered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration. A candidate can be approved after completing an internship or other CDR-approved pre-professional experience.

The Board will accept documentation of registration or documentation of passing examination scores.

Provisional Licensure

A person who has met education requirements may be granted provisional license.

An applicant for provisional licensure will need the signature of a supervising dietitian. The Board will require transcripts.

The Renewal Process

Licenses are renewed on an annual basis. The Board typically sends out renewal notices but notes that this is not statutorily required.

The Application Process

Oklahoma has an online application process. Some supplemental materials will be required. Instructions and supplemental forms can be found on the website of the State Board (http://www.okmedicalboard.org/dietitians#forms-resources).

The applicant will need to submit an EBC Authorization Form, authorizing an extended background check.

A notarized copy of a registration card can be used to verify both education and training.

Applicants will need to submit verification from any and all states where they have held licensing.

The applicant will sign a notarized statement; he or she will attach a small photograph before notarization.

Documents can be mailed or delivered to the Oklahoma State Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision in Oklahoma City.

Applicants should make sure that required materials are received at least 30 days before a Board meeting. Temporary authorization may be granted prior to Board review. A temporary letter authorizes practice under supervision.

Licensed Dietitians in Oklahoma

The Medical Board has provided Licensed Dietitian statistics by county (http://www.okmedicalboard.org/statistics/LDsByCounty.html). In urban counties like Tulsa and Oklahoma, the ratio of citizens per dietitian is in the 2,000 to 3,000 range. In some counties, though, there is just one dietitian for tens of thousands of citizens -- or no dietitian at all.

Additional Information

Oklahoma dietitians are under the jurisdiction of the Oklahoma Medical Board (http://www.okmedicalboard.org/dietitians). The Board can be reached by telephone at (405) 962-1400.Laws are found in the Dietitian Practice Act (http://www.okmedicalboard.org/dietitians#laws-rules). Requirements are further described by Board rule.

The Oklahoma Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the state professional association (http://oknutrition.org/). The organization can provide scholarship information (http://oknutrition.org/ADAF-scholarahips.htm) as well as information about practice and credentialing.

The Center for Nutrition Advocacy has provided an information page about Oklahoma licensure, describing the current law as licensure without exclusive scope of practice (https://www.nutritionadvocacy.org/oklahoma). Prospective dietitians and nutritionists should be aware that laws can change.