Career Information Hotline

Toll Free 1-800-661-3753

Edmonton 780-422-4266

Guest Account Sign In Sign Up
Occupational Profile

Dietitian

Dietitians assess, develop, implement and evaluate food and nutrition strategies and programs; develop and analyze food and food products; manage food service systems; promote food security and safety; and conduct research.

  • Avg. Salary $75,761.00
  • Avg. Wage $45.33
  • Minimum Education 5 years post-secondary
  • Outlook N/A
  • In Demand High
Also Known As

Clinical Dietitian, Community Dietitian, Registered Dietitian, Registered Nutritionist

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

51%
51%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
NOC & Interest Codes
The Dietitian is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Dietitians and Nutritionists
NOC code: 3132
DIRECTIVE

Interest in co-ordinating and developing educational materials for various audiences; and in planning, evaluating and conducting nutrition education programs

INNOVATIVE

Interest in studying and analyzing current scientific nutritional studies, in conducting research to improve the nutritional value, taste, appearance and preparation of food and in aiding in the prevention and/or treatment of inadequate nutrition

SOCIAL

Interest in consulting to provide nutrition counselling and consulting to health professionals, dietetic interns, community groups, competitive sports teams, government, the media and individuals

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation. 

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Apr 10, 2017

Duties and responsibilities vary from one position to another but, in general, dietitians:

  • assess the nutritional status of individuals and communities
  • develop, implement and evaluate nutritional interventions and programs
  • manage food service operations or clinical and community nutrition services
  • work with individuals, families, consumer groups, communities and industry to help them apply nutrition principles
  • develop and deliver food services, nutrition education programs and health promotion programs 
  • conduct basic and applied research in food, nutrition, health promotion and food service systems management.

Dietitians work primarily in health care, health promotion, food service management, education, business, private practice, research or a combination of these settings:

  • Clinical dietitians work as part of health care teams to provide nutrition counselling and plan and direct nutritional care.
  • Community or public health dietitians assess the nutritional needs of the communities they work in and develop programs and services to improve nutritional well being, support access to healthy foods, and reduce the risk for chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.  
  • In government settings, dietitians develop and implement public policy (for example, nutrition labelling, food fortification, nutrition standards for school programs) to improve the nutritional health of the population.
  • Administrative or food service management dietitians manage nutrition and food services in hospitals, industrial organizations and businesses (for related information, see the Food and Nutrition Manager profile).
  • In education settings, dietitians co-ordinate dietetic education programs at post-secondary institutions, hospitals and the community at large. They educate the public about nutrition for health promotion and disease prevention; promote workplace health and wellness; provide basic and advanced nutrition training to students, health care professionals and paraprofessionals and teach dietetic practice, nutrition, food chemistry or food service management in schools, colleges and universities (for related information, see the Secondary School Teacher, College, Technical or Vocational Instructor, University Professor profiles) .
  • In business settings, dietitians assist food and pharmaceutical companies, marketing associations and food service providers by providing food and nutrition expertise in product research and development, sales, marketing and communication.
  • Research dietitians work in the research laboratories of universities and food and pharmaceutical companies or support practice-based research initiatives in clinical, community or food service settings. They may conduct laboratory research (for example, study the effects of diet on cancer treatment), social science research (for example, investigate the impact of health policies or behaviour change) or evaluate program effectiveness. In universities, they also may have teaching responsibilities.
Working Conditions
Updated Apr 10, 2017

Working conditions depend on the type of workplace and may vary considerably. Dietitians generally work weekdays but may be on call outside of these hours or required to deliver programs evenings or weekends.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Apr 10, 2017

Dietitians need the following characteristics:

  • critical thinking skills
  • an interest in science and foods
  • good communication skills
  • innovative and flexible
  • honest, ethical and caring
  • self-assured, sincere and diplomatic
  • practical and results oriented.

They should enjoy co-ordinating and developing education materials and programs, analyzing information and solving problems, and working with people.

Educational Requirements
Updated Apr 10, 2017

The minimum education requirement is a four year degree in foods and nutrition followed by an internship that has been approved by the College of Dietitians of Alberta.


Required Education

The following schools offer programs and courses that meet this occupation’s educational requirements. Other eligible programs and courses may be available.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

To practice as a Registered Dietitian, individuals must complete the dietetic internship. In Alberta, the University of Alberta's Integrated Dietetic Internship is the only approved program of this type. Individuals enter the internship through a competitive selection process that takes place in their third year of university studies. Internship is a professional placement or practicum which takes place after a student's third or fourth year of university at approved sites across Alberta.

Certification Requirements
Updated Apr 10, 2017

Dietitian/Registered Nutritionist

Dietitians assess nutritional status and develop, implement and evaluate food and nutrition strategies and interventions to promote health and treat illness; apply food and nutrition principles to the management of food service systems and to the development and analysis of food and food products; promote optimal health, food security and food safety through the development and delivery of food and nutrition education, programs and policies; teach, manage and conduct research in the science, techniques and practice of dietetics; and provide restricted activities authorized by the regulations.

Legislation

Under Alberta's Health Professions Act and Registered Dietitians and Registered Nutritionists Profession Regulation, registration with the College of Dietitians of Alberta (CDA) is mandatory if you meet identified competency requirements and provide professional services directly to the public, provide food and nutrition professional services that are used by other regulated members and individuals to provide services directly to the public, teach the practice of the profession to members or students of the profession, or supervise registered members who provide services to the public. Registered members who are authorized by the College may perform restricted activities specified in the Regulation. Only registered members may use the protected titles Registered Dietitian, Registered Nutritionist or Dietitian, or the initials RD.

Education

Registration requires successful completion of: (1) an approved bachelor's or master's degree program in foods and nutrition, (2) an approved dietetic internship or practicum, and (3) the Canadian Dietetic Registration Examination (CRDE).

Working in Alberta

Dietitians who are registered and in good standing with a regulatory organization elsewhere in Canada may be eligible for registration in Alberta if registered dietitians in the two jurisdictions have similar responsibilities and competencies. For more information, see "What if I am already certified in another province or territory?" and the Alberta regulatory authority (below).

To find more information on the certification process for internationally educated dietitians, see Dietitian Registration Process on the AlbertaCanada.com website.

Contact Details

College of Dietitians of Alberta
1320, 10123 - 99 Street
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada  T5J 3H1
Phone number: 780-448-0059
Toll-free phone number: 1-866-493-4348
Fax number: 780-489-7759
Website: www.collegeofdietitians.ab.ca

Employment & Advancement
Updated Apr 10, 2017

Dietitians work in a wide variety of workplaces including:

  • hospitals, long-term care facilities and home care programs
  • clinics and community health units
  • social service agencies
  • correctional services
  • food processing, food service and catering companies
  • pharmaceutical companies
  • schools, colleges and universities
  • government agencies
  • the Armed Forces
  • non-profit and community organizations
  • research facilities
  • fitness centres.

Some dietitians are self-employed consultants who provide expertise in nutrition, diet therapy and food service to individuals, institutions, corporate health and wellness programs, and the media.

Dietitians are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 3132: Dietitians and Nutritionists. In Alberta, 84% of people employed in this classification work in the Health Care and Social Assistance (PDF) industry.

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the  Health Care and Social Assistance industry)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Apr 10, 2017

For information about current collective agreements in the public and not-for-profit sectors, see the Health Sciences Association of Alberta website.

Dietitians and nutritionists
NOC code: 3132

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $36.28 $38.17 $36.74 $36.65
Overall $42.99 $49.77 $45.33 $44.93
Top $46.95 $50.70 $48.67 $48.73

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Public Administration
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES
Health Care & Social Assistance

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

51%
51%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

N/A

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

N/A

2015 Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
  • Mathematics
  • Science
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
  • Health, Recreation and Human Services
    • Foods
    • Health Care Services
    • Human and Social Services
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Health Care and Medical Sciences
  • Human Ecology, Fashion and Food Sciences
Other Sources of Information
Updated Apr 10, 2017

College of Dietitians of Alberta website: www.collegeofdietitians.ab.ca

Canadian Healthcare Association website: www.healthcarecan.ca

Dietitians of Canada website: www.dietitians.ca

Health Sciences Association of Alberta website: www.hsaa.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Dec 05, 2012. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

Was this page useful?
Top