Supervised Practice

Dietetics Preceptor Training Program

8 CPEUs https://acend-s-school.thinkific.com/courses/preceptor-training-course

Learning modules, self-assessments, and case-based activities

FREE for preceptors of dietetics students

Course Description: The Commission on Dietetic Registration is offering the Dietetics Preceptor Training Program to help preceptors of dietetics students prepare for and excel in their important role. It includes 7 modules covering:

  • Preparing for Your Role as Preceptor
  • Planning for Student Learning
  • Facilitating Student Learning
  • Assessing Student Learning
  • Communicating Effectively
  • Managing Your Time
  • Keeping Current

Supervised Practice Evaluation Forms

Rotation Packets


Selection Process for Rotation Sites:

Dietetic Interns are provided a list of facilities and are asked to rank their community choices. Performance in pre-requisite classes is part of the placement decision process by DI Director and Asst. Director but every effort is made to meet the Dietetic Intern’s preferences provided the facility is accepting supervised practice interns during that semester and space is available to accommodate the number of requests. If a greater number of requests are made as compared to available slots, placement will be done as fairly as possible. Please know that you may not always receive your first priority request but all of our preceptors are excellent and future considerations for placement will include consideration that first choice was not received previously.

Rotation Sites

The Dietetic Internship rotations for each Dietetic Intern will be tailored to include a wide range of clinical and practical experiences. The Dietetic Intern will meet the required competencies for a general dietetic internship. All of the sites employ registered dietitians (RD), including some of our own graduates!

Community / Public Health Nutrition:

The RD is recognized as the nutrition expert in the community. The community nutrition rotations provide interns with an understanding of the role of the nutritionist/dietitian in a variety of agencies and programs in the local community. Experiences include outpatient nutrition clinics, Houston Food Bank, and Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, and Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) and Brighter Bites. Dietetic Interns provide individual nutrition counseling, teach group nutrition education classes on various topics including obesity, breast feeding, healthy nutrition and diabetes management, organize health promotion events, and participate in a variety of community health and wellness projects. Additionally, nutrition research in the community is included to demonstrate the dietitian’s role in investigation and program evaluation.

Sites may include:

Foodservice Rotations:

Hospital and School Foodservice Rotations are planned to provide Dietetic Interns with a variety of food service systems and management experiences. For example, at Memorial Hermann Hospital Systems, Dietetic Interns learn about food production and procurement, food service systems, menu planning, recipe development, employee education, sanitation, safety, personnel management, catering and a number of other administrative experiences. They may participate in performance improvement, personnel management, and interdisciplinary leadership meetings. Through projects, meetings, and role plays, Dietetic Interns gain an understanding of skills needed in upper management and leadership roles.

Hospital Foodservice Management:

With the increasingly regulated field of hospital foodservice, the dietitian plays an important role in the accreditation process, quality evaluation, as well as fiscal accountability. In addition to getting hands-on experience with hospital foodservice systems, many detailed projects are completed by the that are used directly by the hospital administration.


School Foodservice:

Child health is a national subject of concern and the Michael & Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living is one of the primary centers investigating preventative measures to combat increases in childhood obesity and other nutrition related chronic diseases. The Dietetic Intern will experience firsthand the role of the School Foodservice RD to implement healthy lifestyle menus and education in various school districts around Houston. During the school foodservice rotation, for example with the Cy-Fair Independent School District, the Dietetic Intern will be exposed to food service operations in a school district and become familiar with the Federal School Breakfast and Lunch Program Regulations and Commodities System. In addition, the Dietetic Intern will be responsible for menu planning, nutrition education presentations for children in K-12 and employee in-service.


Clinical Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT) 

The RD is an important member of the healthcare team. In their final semester, dietetic interns spend the bulk of their time in clinical settings. Settings are hospitals in the Texas Medical Center and surrounding area which provide a wide variety of experiences from pediatrics to geriatrics, including such diseases as cancer, transplant, renal, cardiac, HIV/AIDS, trauma and burns. The Dietetic Interns will be supervised by RDs who specialize in MNT, many with advanced degrees and board certifications in their specialty areas. Each Dietetic Intern works with a children s diabetes camp during the summer which provides invaluable experience in the application of clinical MNT to everyday life.

A few of our clinical rotation sites include Texas Children’s Hospital, Memorial Hermann Hospital, Harris County Hospital District, and MD Anderson Cancer Center. A progression of Medical Nutrition Therapy supervised practice rotations begins with a general medical floor such as Rehabilitation Unit, Maternity Services or Outpatient Clinic with progression to higher acuity level units depending upon intern performance.

Progression to patient care with various disease states including but not limited to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disorders, overweight and obesity, pregnancy and lactation, renal disease, critical care is recommended.

A rotation on an intermediary care unit (i.e. CCU, Transplant) and / or intensive care unit (ICU, Trauma or Burn Unit) and practice with Enteral and Parenteral prescription calculations and recommendations is also recommended.

A final culminating Staff Relief rotation is required lasting a minimum of 1 week in which the Dietetic Intern is solely responsible for ½ – 1 patient care unit. The Dietetic Intern is expected to practice as an “entry level RD” with minimum supervision by the preceptor. All notes must be co-signed but the intern is expected to organize all work each day for the patient care unit and meet the clinical patient care and any other professional requirements as per the facility policies and procedures for all clinical dietitians.