Master of Science in Nutrition

Questions? 503.552.1660 / Toll-free 877.669.8737 or admissions@nunm.edu

It’s widely understood that nutrition plays a significant role in health and disease. Many of today’s health challenges – chronic disease, diabetes, obesity and more – can be managed or alleviated through nutrition and lifestyle changes. The old adage “you are what you eat” has never been truer. NUNM’s Master of Science in Nutrition (MScN) program is built around our longstanding philosophy, Food is Medicine, highlighting the benefits of whole, unprocessed foods and individualized diets. Our curriculum is designed to get students out of the classroom and into our state-of-the-art teaching kitchen. By focusing on clinical nutrition, our graduates are trained to plan menus and cook healthy, nutritious meals appropriate for a variety of dietary needs and medical conditions.

Nutrition is a dynamic science with new research findings constantly being published. Our MScN program is evidence-based and integrates nutritional biochemistry and pathophysiology with advanced clinical nutrition education. An active-learning curriculum provides a solid foundation in holistic nutritionist and food systems, complemented by skill training in cooking, teaching and nutritional counseling.

Students learn to match nutritional therapies to basic diagnoses; design individualized meal plans for clients; identify nutrition resources for various environments; and analyze nutrient content of diets to best facilitate dietary changes associated with optimizing health. Our graduates also receive a solid foundation in holistic nutrition and food systems, complemented by skill-training in cooking, teaching and nutrition counseling. They’re prepared to apply their training in a variety of professional settings, from health and nutritional counseling to nutrition research and much more.

Students may choose to complete the program in one or two years, or take it concurrently with another degree program. A unique feature of our program is the ability to customize your MScN curriculum with focused electives, allowing you to study specific areas of your interest. The nutrition focus options include clinical, community, culinary and environmental.

Student Experience

“Helping people become holistically healthy,” Amber Anderson, MScN (’16), talks about her experience at NUNM and learning a holistic approach to nutrition.

Can’t make it to Portland for classes? Join our Master of Science in Nutrition Online program!

Career Options:

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of dietitians and nutritionists is a growing field—a field projected to continue to expand in the next decade. Our graduates are providing vital and professional expertise in careers as varied as nutrition consultants and educators and counselors; therapeutic chefs; food and nutrition authors and writers, bloggers. You’ll find our graduates in integrative health centers and schools; non-profits; corporations and small businesses; wellness centers; health food stores and grocery stores…and that’s just for starters. This field is wide open as more people learn about the importance of nutrition. When you receive your online Master of Science in Nutrition degree, you will be highly qualified to launch a career in the growing field of nutrition including:

  • Discuss nutritional science and how it impacts human health and metabolism
  • Describe the digestion, absorption, distribution and metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients
  • Explain basic human physiological mechanisms and pathophysiology
  • Detail biochemical pathways influenced by macro- and micronutrients
  • Correlate nutrition’s influence on disease prevention and risk
  • Perform nutritional assessments
  • Analyze nutrient content of dietary patterns and facilitate dietary changes associated with optimizing health
  • Perform effective nutrition counseling resulting in a client’s successful implementation of lifestyle behavioral changes
  • Apply skills in cooking, recipe development and meal planning
  • Match nutritional therapies to medical diagnoses
  • Design individualized meal plans for clients
  • Develop and implement nutrition and cooking curriculum in one-on-one and group settings
  • Identify, assess and address the interactions among the many issues associated with nutrition and the community
  • Effectively communicate with healthcare practitioners, the scientific community and the general public in written documents and oral presentations

Learn more

NUNM’s Master of Science in Nutrition program fulfills the current academic requirements for the Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS). The Board of Certified Nutrition Specialists (BCNS) requires a graduate degree in the field of nutrition from a regionally accredited  university, specific coursework, and 1,000 hours of supervised experience.  BCNS reviews each candidate individually, including current course descriptions, transcripts, and experience to determine eligibility. To learn more about becoming a CNS, visit NutritionSpecialists.org.

Program News

Faculty Highlight

Andrew Erlandsen, ND

Dr. Andrew Erlandsen earned his Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree from National College of Natural Medicine in 2011 (now known as National University of Natural Medicine). As an assistant professor at NUNM, Dr. Erlandsen teaches a variety of nutrition courses in the ND, MSOM, MSiMR and MScN programs. He also teaches courses in clinical research and mentors MSiMR students on their thesis projects.

Dr. Erlandsen also works with the Food as Medicine Institute at NUNM. The Institute provides nutrition education for individuals, families and communities in order to nourish healthy relationships with whole foods and the use of food as medicine to prevent and reduce chronic disease.

In addition to teaching at NUNM, Dr. Erlandsen maintains a private clinical practice in Beaverton, Oregon. He sees patients of all ages, for both acute and chronic concerns, and utilizes the principles of naturopathic medicine to lead his patients to better health.

Program Options

The Master of Science in Nutrition program may be taken concurrently with the following programs.

  • MScN

    Admissions Requirements for MScN

    Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

    A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

    Prerequisite Courses

    Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

    General Biology 1 Human-related biology course required; Anatomy & Physiology strongly recommended.
    General Chemistry 1 Biochemistry strongly recommended
    Mathematics 1 Algebra or Statistics preferred.
    Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
    • General Biology — 1 Course
      Human-related biology course required; Anatomy & Physiology strongly recommended.
    • General Chemistry — 1 Course
      Biochemistry strongly recommended
    • Mathematics — 1 Course
      Algebra or Statistics preferred.
    • Psychology — 1 Course
      Any general psychology course 100-level or higher

    A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

    Documents & Essays

    Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

    Required Documents and Essays for the MScN Program

    • Resume

      A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

    • MScN: Career Goals

      Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

    Estimated Program Cost

    First-Year Tuition & Fees for MScN*
    Credits 33
    Cost/Credit $448
    Tuition $14,784
    Fees** $660
    Total $15,444

    * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

    ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the MScN program.

    Total MScN Degree Credits

    • Core program credits

      49

    • Elective credits

      15

    • Total required credits

      64

    • ND/MScN

      Admissions Requirements for ND/MScN

      Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

      A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

      Prerequisite Courses

      Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

      Biological Sciences 2 Science-major level. Competencies may be met through courses such as: cell biology, anatomy, physiology, microbiology, genetics, botany, etc. Content should cover cell biology. Lab work required.
      Chemical Sciences 4 Science-major level. Two sequential courses in both general and organic chemistry; biochemistry may serve as a substitute for one organic chemistry course. Lab work required for the general chemistry series.
      General Physics 1
      Mathematics 1 Must be in algebra, calculus, or statistics.
      English Composition 1
      Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher.
      Social Sciences & Humanities 2 Courses in the areas of anthropology, archaeology, economics, geography, history, law, linguistics, politics, psychology, sociology art, religion, philosophy, literature, music and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.
      • Biological Sciences — 2 Courses
        Science-major level. Competencies may be met through courses such as: cell biology, anatomy, physiology, microbiology, genetics, botany, etc. Content should cover cell biology. Lab work required.
      • Chemical Sciences — 4 Courses
        Science-major level. Two sequential courses in both general and organic chemistry; biochemistry may serve as a substitute for one organic chemistry course. Lab work required for the general chemistry series.
      • General Physics — 1 Course
      • Mathematics — 1 Course
        Must be in algebra, calculus, or statistics.
      • English Composition — 1 Course
      • Psychology — 1 Course
        Any general psychology course 100-level or higher.
      • Social Sciences & Humanities — 2 Courses
        Courses in the areas of anthropology, archaeology, economics, geography, history, law, linguistics, politics, psychology, sociology art, religion, philosophy, literature, music and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.

      A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

      Documents & Essays

      Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

      Required Documents and Essays for the ND/MScN Program

      • Resume

        A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

      • Personal Statement

        Please write a 2–3 page personal statement, which should include: the development of your decision to become a naturopathic physician or CCM practitioner; recent steps taken to further explore this career path; qualities and/or attributes you might bring to NUNM that might distinguish you from other applicants. (double spaced)

      • ND: Primary Care

        While you might not choose to ultimately practice as a primary care physician, you will be trained as such at NUNM and will be expected to work with all patients without bias or discrimination. Please discuss how you anticipate dealing with the following situations while you are a student at NUNM: a) Providing healthcare to patients who may differ from you in terms of gender identity, religion, political viewpoints, race, sexual orientation, etc. b) Providing treatments that you may have conflicting personal beliefs around but are necessary parts of your naturopathic education, including but not limited to administration of immunizations, pharmaceutical drugs, homeopathy, hormone therapies for patients undergoing gender transitions, etc. (maximum 1,000 words, double spaced)

      • MScN: Career Goals

        Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

      Estimated Program Cost

      First-Year Tuition & Fees for ND*
      Credits 82.75
      Cost/Credit $448
      Tuition $37,072
      Fees** $777
      Total $37,849

      * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

      ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the ND program.

      The above tuition numbers reflect only the cost of the primary program (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine). Concurrent degree plans are established individually and each term is priced accordingly. The credit hour fee is consistent across all graduate programs.

      Total ND Degree Credits

      • Core program credits

        286

      • Elective credits

        16

      • Total required credits

        302

        Total MScN Degree Credits

        • Core program credits

          49

        • Elective credits

          15

        • Total required credits

          64

        • DSOM/MScN

          Admissions Requirements for DSOM/MScN

          Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

          A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

          Prerequisite Courses

          Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

          General Biology 1 Science-major level preferred with lab; cellular biology recommended.
          General Chemistry 1 Science-major level preferred with lab.
          Physics 1 Must include mechanics.
          Mathematics 1 Algebra or Statistics preferred.
          Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
          Humanities 1 Courses in the areas of art, religion, philosophy, literature, music, and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.
          • General Biology — 1 Course
            Science-major level preferred with lab; cellular biology recommended.
          • General Chemistry — 1 Course
            Science-major level preferred with lab.
          • Physics — 1 Course
            Must include mechanics.
          • Mathematics — 1 Course
            Algebra or Statistics preferred.
          • Psychology — 1 Course
            Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
          • Humanities — 1 Course
            Courses in the areas of art, religion, philosophy, literature, music, and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.

          A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

          Documents & Essays

          Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

          Required Documents and Essays for the DSOM/MScN Program

          • Resume

            A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

          • Personal Statement

            Please write a 2–3 page personal statement, which should include: the development of your decision to become a naturopathic physician or CCM practitioner; recent steps taken to further explore this career path; qualities and/or attributes you might bring to NUNM that might distinguish you from other applicants. (double spaced)

          • DSOM #1

            Please discuss the specific factors that drew you to apply to the DSOM Classical Chinese Medicine program at NUNM.

          • MScN: Career Goals

            Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

          Estimated Program Cost

          First-Year Tuition & Fees for DSOM*
          Credits 56.75
          Cost/Credit $448
          Tuition $25,424
          Fees** $1,567
          Total $26,991

          * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

          ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the DSOM program.

          The above tuition numbers reflect only the cost of the primary program (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine). Concurrent degree plans are established individually and each term is priced accordingly. The credit hour fee is consistent across all graduate programs.

          Total DSOM Degree Credits

          • Core program credits

            257

          • Elective credits

            10

          • Total required credits

            267

            Total MScN Degree Credits

            • Core program credits

              49

            • Elective credits

              15

            • Total required credits

              64

            • MScN/MScGH

              Admissions Requirements for MScN/MScGH

              Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

              A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

              Prerequisite Courses

              Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

              General Biology 1 Human-related biology course required; Anatomy & Physiology strongly recommended.
              General Chemistry 1 Biochemistry strongly recommended
              Mathematics 1 Algebra or Statistics preferred.
              Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
              Social Science 1 Any course from the following disciplines: psychology, public health, sociology, anthropology
              • General Biology — 1 Course
                Human-related biology course required; Anatomy & Physiology strongly recommended.
              • General Chemistry — 1 Course
                Biochemistry strongly recommended
              • Mathematics — 1 Course
                Algebra or Statistics preferred.
              • Psychology — 1 Course
                Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
              • Social Science — 1 Course
                Any course from the following disciplines: psychology, public health, sociology, anthropology

              A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

              Documents & Essays

              Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

              Required Documents and Essays for the MScN/MScGH Program

              • Resume

                A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

              • MScN: Career Goals

                Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

              • MScGH Personal Statement

                Please share what interests you about this program, why you believe you’re a good match for the program, and what you hope to do in the future with this degree. (2000 words max, double spaced)

              Estimated Program Cost

              First-Year Tuition & Fees for MScN*
              Credits 33
              Cost/Credit $448
              Tuition $14,784
              Fees** $660
              Total $15,444

              * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

              ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the MScN program.

              The above tuition numbers reflect only the cost of the primary program (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine). Concurrent degree plans are established individually and each term is priced accordingly. The credit hour fee is consistent across all graduate programs.

              Total MScN Degree Credits

              • Core program credits

                49

              • Elective credits

                15

              • Total required credits

                64

                Total MScGH Degree Credits

                • Core program credits

                  50

                • Elective credits

                  12

                • Total required credits

                  62

                • MScN/MSiMR

                  Admissions Requirements for MScN/MSiMR

                  Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

                  A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

                  Prerequisite Courses

                  Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

                  General Biology 1 Science-major level preferred with lab.
                  General Chemistry 2 Science-major level preferred with lab.
                  Mathematics 2 Must be pre-calculus, calculus 1, or statistics.
                  English Composition 1
                  Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
                  Social Science 1 Any course from the following disciplines: psychology, public health, sociology, anthropology
                  • General Biology — 1 Course
                    Science-major level preferred with lab.
                  • General Chemistry — 2 Courses
                    Science-major level preferred with lab.
                  • Mathematics — 2 Courses
                    Must be pre-calculus, calculus 1, or statistics.
                  • English Composition — 1 Course
                  • Psychology — 1 Course
                    Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
                  • Social Science — 1 Course
                    Any course from the following disciplines: psychology, public health, sociology, anthropology

                  A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

                  Documents & Essays

                  Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

                  Required Documents and Essays for the MScN/MSiMR Program

                  • Resume

                    A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

                  • MScN: Career Goals

                    Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

                  • MSiMR: Background and Goals

                    Please speak to your career goals, background in research or research-related interests, and what interests you about integrative medicine research. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

                  Estimated Program Cost

                  First-Year Tuition & Fees for MScN*
                  Credits 33
                  Cost/Credit $448
                  Tuition $14,784
                  Fees** $660
                  Total $15,444

                  * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

                  ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the MScN program.

                  The above tuition numbers reflect only the cost of the primary program (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine). Concurrent degree plans are established individually and each term is priced accordingly. The credit hour fee is consistent across all graduate programs.

                  Total MScN Degree Credits

                  • Core program credits

                    49

                  • Elective credits

                    15

                  • Total required credits

                    64

                    Total MSiMR Degree Credits

                    • Core program credits

                      60

                    • Elective credits

                      8

                    • Total required credits

                      68

                    • MSOM/MScN

                      Admissions Requirements for MSOM/MScN

                      Completion of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent

                      A GPA of 3.0 or higher (strongly recommended)

                      Prerequisite Courses

                      Prerequisite courses are designed to ensure entering students are academically prepared for the curriculum of the program. Prerequisite courses may be substituted with comparable coursework if the learning objectives are met at the determination of the Admissions Committee, utilizing the evaluation procedures set by that committee.

                      General Biology 1 Science-major level preferred with lab; cellular biology recommended.
                      General Chemistry 1 Science-major level preferred with lab.
                      Physics 1 Must include mechanics.
                      Mathematics 1 Algebra or Statistics preferred.
                      Psychology 1 Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
                      Humanities 1 Courses in the areas of art, religion, philosophy, literature, music, and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.
                      • General Biology — 1 Course
                        Science-major level preferred with lab; cellular biology recommended.
                      • General Chemistry — 1 Course
                        Science-major level preferred with lab.
                      • Physics — 1 Course
                        Must include mechanics.
                      • Mathematics — 1 Course
                        Algebra or Statistics preferred.
                      • Psychology — 1 Course
                        Any general psychology course 100-level or higher
                      • Humanities — 1 Course
                        Courses in the areas of art, religion, philosophy, literature, music, and other related fields will satisfy this requirement.

                      A grade of C or better is required for all prerequisite coursework. Candidates may apply while in progress.

                      Documents & Essays

                      Applicants are required to submit essays to be considered for admission. Essays provide applicants the opportunity to share their background, abilities, interests and experiences, and how these will make them a good candidate for the programs at NUNM. Applicants should share some personal experiences and genuine thoughts in their essays. Explaining why you are applying to NUNM and how you would enrich that community is also helpful. The Admissions Committee will look for writing ability, as well as content when reading the essays.

                      Required Documents and Essays for the MSOM/MScN Program

                      • Resume

                        A chronological resume of work, educational, and volunteer experience. Include work experience, internships, research, activities, publications, community service, and any honors/awards received.

                      • Personal Statement

                        Please write a 2–3 page personal statement, which should include: the development of your decision to become a naturopathic physician or CCM practitioner; recent steps taken to further explore this career path; qualities and/or attributes you might bring to NUNM that might distinguish you from other applicants. (double spaced)

                      • MSOM #2

                        Please discuss the specific factors that drew you to apply to the Classical Chinese Medicine program at NUNM.

                      • MScN: Career Goals

                        Speaking to your background in nutrition, interests, and philosophy around nutrition, please share how you plan to use nutrition in your career. (maximum of 1,600 words, double spaced)

                      Estimated Program Cost

                      First-Year Tuition & Fees for MSOM*
                      Credits 43.25
                      Cost/Credit $448
                      Tuition $19,376
                      Fees** $1,567
                      Total $20,943

                      * The prices listed above reflect an estimate based on the 2019-2020 academic year.

                      ** Click the dollar amount to see an itemized list of fees for the MSOM program.

                      The above tuition numbers reflect only the cost of the primary program (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine). Concurrent degree plans are established individually and each term is priced accordingly. The credit hour fee is consistent across all graduate programs.

                      Total MSOM Degree Credits

                      • Core program credits

                        213

                      • Elective credits

                        6

                      • Total required credits

                        219

                        Total MScN Degree Credits

                        • Core program credits

                          49

                        • Elective credits

                          15

                        • Total required credits

                          64