Nutrition courses in nursing school

  1. Hello students! I have been a nurse for awhile now, and am working on a Master's Degree in nutrition and will become a dietitian next year. I am trying to get a feel for how nutrition is taught in nursing schools these days. I graduated from an ADN program in 1987 and I did not have a specific course in nutrition, but nutrition concepts were given in my nursing courses. The specific questions I have are:

    1. Do you have a specific course in nutrition that is required, and if so how many credits and what is the title?

    2. If you do or do not, are you in an ADN, diploma, or BSN program?

    3. Is your course taught through the school of nursing and taught by a nurse, or is it through a nutrition department and taught by a dietitian?

    4. In your nutrition course, is medical nutrition therapy and/or nutrition support discussed?

    Thank you all very much, and good luck with school!
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   BrandyBSN
    Originally posted by Squirrel
    Hello students! I have been a nurse for awhile now, and am working on a Master's Degree in nutrition and will become a dietitian next year. I am trying to get a feel for how nutrition is taught in nursing schools these days. I graduated from an ADN program in 1987 and I did not have a specific course in nutrition, but nutrition concepts were given in my nursing courses. The specific questions I have are:

    1. Do you have a specific course in nutrition that is required, and if so how many credits and what is the title?

    2. If you do or do not, are you in an ADN, diploma, or BSN program?

    3. Is your course taught through the school of nursing and taught by a nurse, or is it through a nutrition department and taught by a dietitian?

    4. In your nutrition course, is medical nutrition therapy and/or nutrition support discussed?

    Thank you all very much, and good luck with school!
    1: Yes, 3 credit hours, named "Human Nutrition"
    2: BSN Program
    3: Taught through the nursing program at the university, taught by a registered dietiian and certified diabetes educator.
    4: yes, concentration of fat and water soluable vitamins, protein consumption related to tissue regeneration, electrolyte managment, etc.

    Hope that helps!

    BrandyBSN - May 18th HERE I COME!
  4. by   Mkue
    Same as Brandy described. We also have to do a 2 week diet analysis for ourselves, and type a report about what we learned and print out data, CD came with our 80.00 book. ALSO a minimum 10 page paper is due on a subject in nutrition along with a 10 min. presentation of our paper, i.e. hand outs ect. Instructor has at least a Masters with multiple bachelor degrees, not sure exactly what all they are in, she is excellent.

    I think there is also some type of Nutrional Chemistry that must be taken.. yikes.

    My research paper is on MRE's. I thought that would be kinda interesting to know exactly what they consist of and the fact that they are included in food aid drops.

    Oh and the instructor is really tough, we also have to write a reflective journal for ea. class and turn it in, you have to really work your butt off for a C. And this is a BSN program.
  5. by   live4today
    As an AAS nursing graduate, in my particular nursing course of study, we most certainly did have a course in nutrition, and it was a tough course at that! Of course, I "Aced" the course, but I sweat bullets to get that 'A', too!

    The course was taught by one of the nursing professors who specialized in nutrition - electrolyte imbalance(s), minerals, water and fat soluable vitamins and their role in the human body, etc. As a matter of fact, I still might have my Nutrition and Essential Vitamins and Minerals Textbook from college somewhere in our stowed away boxes in the garage.

    I don't know how any nursing student is allowed to get by without taking a course of this nature. Why, it's one of the most essential courses a nurse should have! Shame on any college for not having one mandated for their nursing students to take!

    Every single one of our Nurse Instructors/Professors were Master Degree "minimum" instructors - a requirement by the college I attended.
  6. by   StudentSandra
    1. Not a seperate class.

    2. ADN

    3. Our classes are taught by MSN's.

    4: Nutrition is covered in & along with all areas of study. Vitamins, protein consumption related to tissue regeneration, electrolyte managment, etc. We use Mosby's Essentials of Nutrition and Diet Therapy.
    Last edit by StudentSandra on Mar 24, '02
  7. by   Agnus
    Niether my ADN nor my BSN programs required a seperate course. However, before enrolling in either I took a nurtrition course. Taught in the Natural Science Department.
    My ADN program is rated as one of the top in the nation. BUT on the Nation League For Nurising (NLN) exam that is taken at the end of the program (too see how you will do on boards), Nutrition is an area where students do poorly. So the instructors give you about 2 pages of Nutrition handout to memorize for this exam.
    TH nutrition course I took at another school was excellent ant I would recomend it to every adult to take.

    For the most part I find my collegues (grads of diffrent schools) (those I work with) are extreemly weak in nutrition.
    Last edit by Agnus on Mar 27, '02
  8. by   mario_ragucci
    Monkey see - monkey eat :-)

    1. Do you have a specific course in nutrition that is required, and if so how many credits and what is the title? 4 CREDITS - FOOD AND NUTRITION

    2. If you do or do not, are you in an ADN, diploma, or BSN program? RN IN 2004 - 2 YEAR PROGRAM

    3. Is your course taught through the school of nursing and taught by a nurse, or is it through a nutrition department and taught by a dietitian? TAUGHT BY A DIETITIAN - NOT CONNECTED WITH NURSING

    4. In your nutrition course, is medical nutrition therapy and/or nutrition support discussed? YES AND NO. A GREAT DEAL WAS COVERED, BUT NO ASPECT WAS COVERED IN DEPTH, EXCEPT OUR OWN DIET STUDIES WE DID ON OURSELVES.

    IN MY CLASS, I WAS THE ONLY MAN. IT DID SEEM STRANGE TO ME THAT NO OTHER MEN WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT HOW FOOD BECOMES ENERGY FOR US. THE WOMEN WERE THERE TO ACCOMPLISH A REQUIREMENT FOR NURSING, LIKE ME, BUT I WAS CURIOUS. WHEN IT CAME TO ANSWERING QUESTIONS AND TALKING ABOUT FOOD AND NUTRITION, IT WAS MORELIKE A BIBLE STUDY, WITH EVERYONE JUST DIRECTING THEIR THOUGHTS TO CHAPTER AND VERSE FROM THE BOOK. NO ONE REALLY THOUGHT ABOUT THE MATERIAL.

    SQUIRREL - I WISH YOU TAUGHT ME FOOD AND NUTRITION, ONE ON ONE, FOR A WEEK. I STILL REMEMBER HOW YOU ENLIGHTENED ME. :-)
  9. by   pkmom
    It was part of my ADN. It was taught by an overweight biology prof. 3 hrs.
  10. by   OBNURSEHEATHER
    Originally posted by pkmom
    It was part of my ADN. It was taught by an overweight biology prof. 3 hrs.
    LOL!

    Back to the topic at hand...

    1. 3 credit hours

    2. ADN

    3. Taught by dietician.

    4. Not technically connected to nursing, but probably 75% of the class were nursing students, so she often related the info to nursing. I think there may have even been a (very brief) test that was about some of the major disease processes and their dietary implications.

    Sorry if the info was sketchy, it was about 6 years ago!

    Heather
    Last edit by OBNURSEHEATHER on Mar 27, '02
  11. by   Lausana
    [LOL, Mario, I think I love you...in a 'bulletin board' way, hehe...you crack me up...:kiss We had 1 guy in our Nutrition class too, a couple others at first but they dropped. He was great, he'd just sit and "learn" as we had women talk before class!]

    Mine was a 3hr. course, Food & Nutrition...book was Essentials of Nutrition, don't remember who it was by. It was taught by a registered dietition, with a masters, she worked at a local hospital and schools. It was for an ADN program, but it's also required for the BSN too.

    We had several different small projects--diet analysis, case study/questions, food labeling, etc. and a larger internet research project on a related topic of our choice. It was a very interesting class and I learned a lot, but our teacher was a little obsessed about making sure we knew how to "feed a diabetic", lol, I think she saw so many people who were clueless when they came in to the hospital she must want to beat her head against the wall, but it became a standing class joke for us!.
  12. by   CountrifiedRN
    I'm in an ADN program, and while nutrition was not a separate class, it was a separate unit that we had class time for during the first semester. Our book was "Nutrition and Diet Therapy", but we focused primarily on the basics like what are proteins, carbs, and fats and what is their function in the body; what are the necessary vitamins and minerals and what are their functions; and age related changes for nutrition. At the end of the semester we briefly touched on disease specific diets. We will review dietary needs for specific diseases/conditions/age groups as we study those areas. We are taught by our regular instructors, all of whom have masters or higher.

    We are also encouraged to study on our own, and to seek out dieticians to discuss our patients diets during clinicals. We address dietary needs for every patient care plan that we do. Basically we provide a rationale for the patients precribed diet and analyze if it's adequate for the patient.

    Oh yeah, we also had to do a diet analysis on ourselves in the first semester, based on three days of average eating. What a rude awakening that was!
  13. by   Squirrel
    Thank you all very much for responding!!!!

    I really appreciate the time each one of you took to answer my questions! I thought that most BSN schools had a separate nutrition course, but I was not sure of ADN or diploma programs. By the way, are there still diploma programs out there?
    There is so much research out there regarding nutrition and disease prevention, and I hope the lastest research is being incorporated into your courses. Once again, thank you all!
  14. by   StudentSandra
    Yes, there are still Diploma programs.

    http://www.allnursingschools.com/find/

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Nutrition courses in nursing school