Becoming a Dietetic Technician

When it comes to health and fitness, Dietetic Technicians play a key role in planning menus and preparing food for people with special focus on their nutritional needs. They examine how eating and drinking patterns influence our health conditions. Only they can prepare tasty, nutritious recipes for people that come with dietary restrictions.

The Dietetic Technicians work in tandem with the Dietitians to prepare diet schedule and food chart for those who have obesity and other diseases. They guide people on reducing the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart ailments etc. The Dietetic Technicians work at schools, day care facilities, gyms, nursing homes, private clinics, weight management clinics, government agencies, non-profit organizations and prisons.

Education Requirements: Aspiring Dietetic Technicians must get an Associate’s Degree in health studies, which may include general science, nutrition science and food service systems management. In addition, training in communication skills and data management is also needed, as they interact more with the patients and their families as well as the Dietitians.

After completing the degree, they can go for a training program offered by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). That will give them more exposure to practical work. In this 450-hour training program, they will learn the communication skills needed while dealing with the patients. They will also learn the basics of food chart preparations as per the dietary requirements of the patients.

A certification is necessary in order to get employment as Dietetic Technicians. The candidates must pass a national examination conducted by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) to get the certification.

Salary & Job Outlook:

The job outlook for Dietetic Technicians remains bright in the United States, as it is expected to grow by 18% during the period of 2012-22. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary of Dietetic Technicians was $26,260 in May 2012.