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Kelly Lootz
Recruitment & Outreach Manager
School of Health Sciences
University of the Pacific
Administrative Building Room 100
3200 Fifth Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95817

Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions about the Master of Science, Clinical Nutrition program

  • How long is the program?
      This hybrid program is designed to be completed in four trimesters (16 consecutive months).  The 1,200 supervised clinical practice experiential hours are included in this 59-unit program, embedded in required coursework, and meet all requirements to be eligible to take the RDN examination.
    • Is the program accredited?
      The University of the Pacific School of Health Sciences’ Nutrition and Dietetics Education Program has been granted candidate status by the Accreditation Council for Education (ACEND)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.
      *The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) released the FutureEducation Model Accreditation Standards for programs in nutrition and dietetics ( These accreditation standards integrate didactic coursework with supervised experiential learning in a competency-based curriculum designed to prepare nutrition and dietetics practitioners for future practice.

          Cost and Financial Aid

          • How much does it cost to attend the MSCN program?
            Go to Tuition and Fees to see current costs.
          • 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
          • 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.

          • 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.


          • 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?
            Yes, you may include a total of four (4).
          • What is the prompt and length requirement for the personal statement?
            The prompt for the personal statement is "state why you have chosen to pursue the MSCN degree and your professional goals upon completion of your MSCN degree." While there is no minimum for the statement, the maximum should not exceed 5,500 characters.
          • 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.


          • What is the minimum GPA required to apply to Pacific's MSCN program?
            The minimum GPA required to apply is 3.0 for all degrees or the last 60 credit hours for DPD students.
          • I have a graduate degree. When I calculate my overall GPA, should I include my graduate course grades?
            Yes. The nutrition program will be looking at your last 60 units of study. This would include all post-baccalaureate coursework (if applicable).

          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.
          • 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 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 become 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?
            No, this program is a full-time, cohort-based program.