Individualized Supervised Practice Pathways (ISPP)

Iowa State University ISPP is for holders of doctoral degrees, in nutrition or related fields, who desire to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist.

The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND®) has approved Iowa State University (ISU) to participate in the individualized supervised practice pathway (ISPP). If an applicant with a doctoral degree does not have a DPD verification statement, knowledge will be assessed using Prior Assessed Learning (PAL) to determine which, if any, DPD Foundation Knowledge Learning needs to be completed prior to starting supervised practice. You will receive access to the knowledge assessment activities after you have been accepted into the program. ISPP candidates have the same requirements for successful completion as other interns, with the exception of meeting the ISU Graduate College requirements. If you have a PhD, you may qualify for ISPP.

ISPP application checklist

  • Complete online ISPP application
  • Pay $100 nonrefundable application fee (via credit card).
    • Allow three weeks after all required materials have been uploaded for review and decision.
    • Application must be completed 3 months prior to anticipated start date.

After completing the online application, you will receive additional information about how to submit your required documents electronically. If you do not receive an invitation within two business days, contact us.

Required application documents

(All files must be in Microsoft Word or PDF format)

  1. Application Essay: 750 word essay about why you desire to become an RDN, what you will use RDN credential for, and how previous skill set/research complements RDN credential.
  2. Prior Assessed Learning application form (This information is used to determine individual supervised practice requirements.)
  3. Current CV
  4. Two letters of recommendation
  5. Transcripts showing doctoral degrees conferred
  6. DPD Verification Statement (if applicable)
  7. ISPP PhD Preceptor Commitment form or email from the preceptor agreeing to precept you and the specific rotation
  8. Proposed schedule that includes: facility and preceptor information and rotation dates. Information on selecting your preceptors and facilities can be found by clicking on the “facility search” link on the left side of this page and then searching for facilities by state.

Note: Finalized schedule must be completed 2 months prior to anticipated start date. Your actual start date is determined by submission and completion of required paperwork including affiliation agreements needed with the facility. You will not start in your facility until all required paperwork, including affiliation agreements, is in place.

Once your materials are reviewed and accepted, you will receive a link to register via email.  Payment in full via credit card is due upon registration.

Program costs 

  • Application fee: $100, nonrefundable
  • Program fees: $8000

Grants and Awards

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation provides awards and grants to support individuals with doctorates seeking to become RDNs.