Entry into the Master of Dietetics

Use this prerequisite guide to help you best prepare for Deakin's Master of Dietetics. Take the next step towards becoming an accredited practising dietitian and build advanced skills that allow you to improve the health and wellbeing of the individuals and communities you work with.

Our Master of Dietetics is accredited by Dietitians Australia (DA), which means that the entry requirements to our course and equivalent courses at other universities must adhere to the DA’s guidelines. To be eligible for consideration for entry into our Master of Dietetics, you must have completed a three-year undergraduate degree in a relevant (cognate) area within the last 10 years.

These areas include:

  • nutrition
  • food science
  • health sciences
  • exercise science
  • biomedical science
  • allied health
  • science
  • nursing.

Choose dietetics at Deakin

We have a strong history in dietetics, with over 40 years of excellence in teaching and research. Our Master of Dietetics features 21 weeks of hands-on professional practice placements throughout, so you’ll graduate job ready and with professional networks already in place. Sixty per cent of our Master of Dietetics places are held for Deakin graduates.

Prerequisite units

As per the Deakin University and DA guidelines, you must demonstrate that your learning from your bachelor degree (or a combination of a bachelor degree and postgraduate study) covers human biosciences and food and nutrition science. The relevant Deakin units are listed below.

Biochemistry content

2 Deakin credit points* (or equivalent) of chemistry (typically in first year)

2 Deakin credit points* (or equivalent) of biochemistry (typically in second year)

Human physiology content

2 Deakin credit points* (or equivalent) of human biology (typically in first year)

2 Deakin credit points* (or equivalent) of human physiology (typically in second year)

If an exercise physiology unit has been completed at level 2 (a second-year unit e.g. HSE201 Exercise Physiology), it must be combined with one of the units above or one of the below options:

Human nutrition/food science content

You are also required to have completed at least 4 credit points* (or equivalent) of human nutrition/food science study covering content relating to:

  • nutrition principles
  • food science
  • lifespan nutrition
  • diet and disease.

Our undergraduate units at Deakin that cover nutrition/food science content are:

The required prerequisite units can also be completed as single subjects from any university offering similar units. However, you should make sure that units not undertaken at Deakin are equivalent to the content of the Deakin units.

Please note: Deakin is not able to pre-assess eligibility of units undertaken at other institutions, it is best to apply for the Master of Dietetics and then your units will be assessed as part of your application.

Frequently asked questions

You may have more questions relating to entry into our Master of Dietetics. Whether it concerns course structure or the application process, we're here to help you.

If I've completed a postgraduate course from a relevant area, does that meet the entry requirements?

If you've completed a postgraduate course from a relevant area, for example Deakin's Master of Human Nutrition or Graduate Certificate of Human Nutrition, and have not also completed a relevant undergraduate degree, you need to do so in order to be eligible for our Master of Dietetics. Deakin’s postgraduate courses in human nutrition don’t automatically qualify you for entry into our Master of Dietetics as stand-alone courses.

However, if you’ve completed an undergraduate degree in certain study areas (e.g. science, sport and exercise science or health sciences), the units from your undergraduate degree (covering biochemistry and human physiology) combined with those in your postgraduate human nutrition degree (nutrition/food science), may satisfy all prerequisite units.

Our postgraduate units at Deakin that cover nutrition/food science content are:

If I have completed an undergraduate course from a non-cognate area, does that meet the entry requirements?

If you have graduated from an undergraduate degree in a non-cognate (i.e. non-related) study area such as arts, business or engineering, you must also complete a three-year bachelor degree (or combined degree) from a relevant/cognate area, such as the Bachelor of Nutrition Science.

Can I apply for the Master of Dietetics course if I haven’t met all of the prerequisites?

In order for our Master of Dietetics to be offered over the 18 month timeframe and still be eligible for accreditation by Dietitians Australia, significant nutrition knowledge must be demonstrated before commencing the course. You’ll need to ensure that you have completed all of the prerequisites for our Master of Dietetics (exact prerequisite units will vary depending on your study pathway).

How many hours per week are students required to attend on-campus classes?

In the first semester, campus contact hours will be around 20 hours per week, including the need to attend 11 full teaching days at metropolitan hospitals. For the final two semesters, you should assume that your time commitment will be a full-time workload from Monday to Friday. This time commitment is due to the 21 weeks of professional practice, as well as additional teaching workshops that occur as intensive full-time teaching blocks on campus in between placements.

Can I study the course part-time?

The typical part-time study mode isn’t possible with our Master of Dietetics, as each of the professional practice units have full-time placement components of varying lengths together with intensive teaching blocks on campus.

It’s possible to reduce your load in each semester (e.g. by taking only one unit in the second semester of the course), but the units you do take need to be completed in full-time mode, e.g. HSN747 Clinical Dietetic Practice requires 10 weeks of full-time clinical placement, HSN745 Community Nutrition requires 7 weeks of full-time placement and HSN742 Food Service Management requires 4 weeks of full-time placement.

All of these units have at least one week of full-time teaching in the week prior to placement commencement. Due to the prerequisite requirements of each unit within the course, you’ll need to carefully consider how you’ll undertake the course part time.

What is the application assessment criteria?

Applicants are assessed based on academic performance and relevant work or volunteer experience.

What supporting documents are required for the application process?

When applying online you will be required to upload all supporting documents at the last step of the application process. These are:

  • academic transcripts**
  • the Prerequisite Units Checklist
  • details of relevant professional work and voluntary experience in a health or nutrition-related area – this is usually best done with a brief CV
  • video personal statement.

Written professional references are not required for the Master of Dietetics, as these are not part of the application selection process, even though the online system may ask for these.

**Deakin students are not required to submit transcripts as we can access your results via our database. If you are waiting on final official results from your university at the time of the closing date for applications, you should still submit your application and provide all of your results from your degree that you have on hand at the time.

Careers in dietetics and nutrition

Discover the difference between nutritionists and dietitians, and the range of career options available in the food industry and beyond.

Learn more about careers in dietetics and nutrition

Please note: The information published on this webpage was correct at time of publication. For the latest entry requirement information for our Master of Dietetics please refer to the course page.

Visit the Master of Dietetics course page for more information.