Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions about the Master of Science, Clinical Nutrition program
Cost and Financial Aid
General Application
Pacific MSCN Pre-Requisite Courses
GradCAS
GPA
GRE
Admissions Process
Other Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions about the Master of Science, Clinical Nutrition program

How long is the program?

This accelerated hybrid program is designed to be completed in four trimesters (16 consecutive months). The required 1,200 supervised clinical practice experiential hours are included in this 59-unit program, embedded in coursework to meet all Commission on Dietitian Registration requirements to be eligible to take the RDN examination.

Is the program accredited?

Pacific's ACEND accredited MSCN Program is the first future graduate (FG) program in the future educational model (FEM) in the state of California and in all the west coast.

The University of the Pacific Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition Future Graduate (FG) Future Education Model Graduate Program has been granted candidate status by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190
Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 312.899.0040 ext. 5400
http://www.eatrightpro.org/ACEND

A new program that has been determined to be eligible to enroll students as the result of an on-site evaluation visit, but has not had a graduating class may be granted candidate status. The granting of candidate status denotes a developmental program, which is expected to mature in accord with stated plans and within a defined time period. Reasonable assurances are expected to be provided that the program may become accredited as programmatic experiences are gained, generally, by the time the first class is graduated. Graduates of a class designated as having candidate status have the same rights and privileges as graduates of an accredited program.

Learn more about ACEND® Candidacy for Accreditation.

Are courses online or in-person?

The majority of Pacific's MSCN courses are delivered via In-Person classroom instruction on our Sacramento campus, but also includes some Hybrid courses (combination of In-Person and Online instruction). Students’ Supervised Clinical Practice Experience (SCPE) courses (NUTR 287A,B,C) take place at clinical education sites throughout California and some out-of-state facilities.

Do I have to locate my own supervised experiential learning sites and/or preceptors?

The MSCN program is responsible for identifying SPCE clinical education sites and preceptors, and creates the rotation schedule for each student depending on site availability and student needs. It is not the responsibility of students to secure clinical placements. However, students are responsible for making arrangements for their housing and/or commuting plans to assigned clinical education sites, at the student’s expense.

Can I complete my supervised clinical practice experience (SCPE) rotations near my hometown?

The MSCN program determines clinical education site placements for each trimester depending on site availability, preceptor availability, and student needs. While student’s interests and residence location are elicited and reviewed, the MSCN program cannot guarantee that placements are near their residence. MSCN students can expect to be placed at clinical education sites throughout California. Out-of-state placements can also be considered and discussed with the student at facilities affiliated with Pacific. The program aims to provide adequate notice of placements, so students can make their arrangements for commuting or temporary housing, which is at the student’s expense.

Cost and Financial Aid

How much does it cost to attend the MSCN program?

Our program provides a helpful at-a-glance summary of Tuition and Estimated Expenses. Excluding living expenses which vary by student (housing/meals/transportation), our program expenses are approximately $71,057 for the 16-month program.

What kind of financial aid is available?

Financial aid packages are tailored to each individual's qualifications and program of study. Students will receive financial aid information once they are admitted and have accepted admission to the program. For answers to specific financial aid questions, applicants can contact the Office of Financial Aid department at 916.739.7158 or finaid@pacific.edu.

Are scholarships available?

There are two $2,000 available scholarships annually.

Do you offer teaching or graduate assistantships?

At the present time, teaching or graduate assistantships are not available.

General Application

Is it possible for me to visit the campus and talk with an advisor?

Our program offers information sessions and webinars throughout the year to help answer prospective student questions and tour our facilities. See our Events Page.

What is the deadline for submitting my application?

Our program is Rolling Admissions, so we review applications on an ongoing basis. We publish a priority deadline which ensure that your application is considered first. Students who apply after the priority deadline will be admitted on a space-available basis.

Does the Pacific MSCN program participate in the D&D Digital Computer Matching process like dietetic internships?

Our program does not participate in computer matching. Applications to the Pacific MSCN program are reviewed based on rolling admissions.

Do I need to submit an application into DICAS (Dietetic Internship Centralized Application Services)?

To apply to our program, you will submit an application in GradCAS™. Our future education model program does not use DICAS.

I am currently enrolled in an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) and am still completing the final quarter/semester of my program. Can I still apply?

Yes. DPD-students must submit a Declaration of Intent to Complete form signed by their DPD program director with their application in GradCAS.

Do you offer admission in the spring semester?

No. Due to the prescriptive nature of our program, we only admit students into the fall term.

Do I need to submit official transcripts to GradCAS and Pacific when I apply?

During the application process, you only need to submit official transcripts to GradCAS.

Pacific MSCN Pre-Requisite Courses

I am a student from an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD). Do I still have to enter my courses in the GradCAS Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Coursework section?

Yes, both DPD-students and non-DPD students must complete the Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Coursework section in GradCAS. The cumulative GPA of all Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses is used as the program’s Admission Requirement and must be 3.00 or higher.

I still have Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses that I need to complete. Does Pacific offer these courses?

Pacific does not offer these courses at this time. You may complete these courses from any accredited college/university. Kansas State University offers online courses in which non-degree-seeking students can take a class without enrolling in a program.

When do I have to complete all of my Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses in order to start the program in the Fall?

All Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses must be completed with official transcripts submitted before the program start date. Students cannot be concurrently finishing up prerequisite courses once the program has started.

Is the Food Preparation course I’ve already completed equivalent to Pacific’s prerequisite Experimental Foods course?

No. You must complete a food science course. This course is often called Experimental Foods (with lab) or Food Science (with lab) (4 units).

Can I count my Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT) course for both the Macronutrient and Micronutrient Pacific MSCN Course Prerequisites?

This is a good question and often depends on the curriculum of your program – and whether you are completing quarter or semester courses. Different programs also call these courses different names (for example, MNT, human nutrition, advanced nutrition). In general, you can only apply one of your courses completed towards one Pacific MSCN prerequisite course (you can’t list a single course to count as two prerequisites). You will need to carefully review the Course Descriptions and Course Objectives from your Course Catalog or class syllabi to determine which courses address macronutrient and micronutrient metabolism, and your department or major advisor may also be able to offer guidance on which of your courses best fulfill these prerequisites. If you still have questions, please contact us at nutrition@pacific.edu.

GradCAS

Where do I go to access the GradCAS application?

Go to GradCAS.liaisoncas.com.

What if my recommender does not want to fill out his/her letter of recommendation online?

GradCAS requires that all letters of recommendation be completed online. If your recommender does not want to complete the recommendation online, we suggest you ask another recommender. Do not use the recommendation forms that can be found on the university's webpage. The university recommendation forms will not be accepted by GradCAS or the program.

Can I submit more than the two required letters of recommendation?

No. You can only submit two letters of recommendation.

Do I have to submit a personal statement?

You do not submit a personal statement in your GradCAS application. However, you will need to submit responses to three short-essay questions

Is there are word limit for the Pacific MSCN short-essay questions?

Each short essay should be no more than 300 words. 

What is a priority deadline?

A priority deadline ensures that your application is considered first. Students who apply after the priority deadline will be admitted on a space-available basis.

My application status still says, "RECEIVED." Did I make the priority deadline?

In order to meet our Priority application deadline, your GradCAS application needs to have a status of "RECEIVED". Note, your application must be submitted to GradCAS by 11:59 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time) on the application deadline date in order to be considered "on-time". If you check on your application and you are at an "On Hold" or "Undelivered" status, please contact GradCAS regarding the status of your application at 617.612.2030.

What if my supporting documents (transcript, letters, etc.) don't get to GradCAS by the priority deadline?

GradCAS will continue to accept items (e.g. test scores, transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.) until July 1 and the program will review applications on a space-available basis.

GPA

Which GPA is used for Pacific’s MSCN program Admission Requirements, and what is the minimum GPA required to apply?

The GPA used for Admission Requirements is the cumulative GPA of all Pacific MSCN prerequisite courses.  The cumulative GPA of all Pacific MSCN prerequisite courses must be 3.00 or higher. Please contact Pacific’s Graduate Admissions if you need assistance on how to calculate the GPA. This GPA is also calculated in GradCAS.

GRE Exam

Is the GRE exam required?

The GRE exam is not required for admission. However, an applicant may submit GRE scores if they have taken the exam.

What is the code I need to use to have my GRE scores reported to GradCAS?

University of the Pacific's GradCAS code is: 2447.

Are my GRE scores too old?

If you have taken the GRE within the past 5 years, your scores are considered current.

Admissions Process

When will I find out if I was admitted?

All applicants will receive an admission decision, sent via email, from the Graduate School. A decision letter can be expected within 30 days of completing your application (applications submitted and all supplemental materials received). The MSCN program's goal is to make admission decisions as soon as possible to provide applicants sufficient time to make their graduate school plans.

If admitted to the program, when will I need to make my decision?

Student decisions (to confirm our offer of admission) are due two weeks after the date on your admission letter.

The Graduate School notified me that I have received Conditional Admission. What does this mean?

Conditional Admission applies to students who have not completed (or are not currently enrolled in) an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) and who have not yet completed all Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses. Once the student has completed all Pacific MSCN Prerequisite Courses with a grade “C” or above and provided official transcript(s) to Graduate Admissions, your conditional admission status will be changed to admitted.

What happens if I'm placed on the waiting list?

If you are placed on the waiting list, you will be asked to let our program know whether or not you want to remain on the waiting list by writing us at nutrition@pacific.edu. The admissions committee will meet and review those who remain on the waiting list and will begin notifying students on the waiting list as space becomes available.

Other Frequently Asked Questions

When do classes begin?

Classes typically begin the last Monday in August for the fall trimester.

Is it possible for me to work my full-time job while in your program?

This is an accelerated cohort-based program requiring more than 40 hours per week of committed time, so students cannot work a full-time job concurrently. Even part-time work may be challenging based on the rigorous curriculum and full-time course schedule.