Goals and Competencies


The mission of the UAMS/CAVHS Dietetic Internship is to meet the need for dietitians in a rural state and in VA hospitals serving the nation’s veterans.

Program Goals

  • Goal 1: Prepare graduates through a curriculum based on the CADE core competencies in clinical dietetics, food service systems management, and community nutrition and health promotion for entry-level practice and to become registered dietitians.
  • Goal 2: Provide a well-rounded, supervised, learning experience that is based on current standards of practice and responsive to the needs of the State of Arkansas and the Veterans Health Administration System.
  • Goal 3: Provide knowledgeable and supportive professional faculty and staff who will mentor dietetic interns in the achievement of the goals of the program.
  • Goal 4: Prepare graduates in the development of skills to meet the changing needs of the profession.

Program outcomes data is available upon request.  The following outcomes are routinely monitored to assess progress toward these goals:

Outcome Measures for Goal 1:

  • The program will maintain a five-year pass rate average of ≥85% for first-time takers of the registration examination for dietitians
  • ≥90% of interns will complete the program within 14 months
  • ≥90% of graduates will pass the registration examination within 18 months of program completion
  • Total mean score of the program graduates’ registration examinations will exceed the total national mean score of first-time test takers of the registration examination
  • 100% of dietetic interns will complete a practice RD examination and 75% will score ≥62 before graduation
  • ≥85% of the dietetic interns will rate their overall preparation for entry-level dietetics with a score of 3 or above on the exit survey
  • ≥85% of graduates will rate their overall quality of preparation as a dietitian with a score of 4 or above on the one-year post-graduation survey
  • 85% of employers will rate the preparation of graduates as a score of 4 or above on the one-year post graduation survey

Outcome Measures for Goal 2:

  • 50% of the graduates will practice in the State of Arkansas or within the Veterans Health Administration System
  • Over a five-year period, 70% or more of program graduates who sought employment in dietetics will be employed in dietetics within three months of program completion
  • Over a five year period at least 30% of graduates will indicate they are working toward or have obtained an advanced degree or credential

Outcome Measures for Goal 3:

  • At least 50% of the preceptors will have an advanced degree or advanced credential
  • At least 75% of the dietetic interns will evaluate the preceptors’ role as mentors with a score of 3 or above

Outcome Measures for Goal 4:

  • ≥85% of the dietetic interns will indicate that attendance of the annual Arkansas Dietetic Association Meeting fosters the intern’s interest in professional organization participation
  • ≥80% of employers who return employer surveys will rate the graduates knowledge and proficiency in the employment setting as 4 or above
  • ≥90% of the graduates will report on the graduate survey that they have participated in continuing education activities

Educational Philosophy

Graduates of this program acquire the necessary skills to practice as entry-level dietitians in a wide variety of settings including hospitals, out-patient clinics, community and public health facilities, research, corporate wellness, school food service, and the food industry. The program is designed to utilize the unique variety of health care facilities in the Central Arkansas area.