The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree in the field of Nutrition and Dietetics offers students opportunities to develop expertise in dietetic practice within the health and food systems, from disease prevention to palliation.
The MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics program is one of the educational programs offered through the Division of Clinical Public Health in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. It is administered by the Graduate Department of Public Health Sciences in partnership with the Department of Nutritional Sciences, the University Health Network , Toronto Public Health, and Compass Group Canada.
The dietetic education program (20 month) is accredited by the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP) and prepares students for eligibility for registration with a Canadian provincial dietetics regulatory body. At the end of the program, all students are expected not only to meet MPH degree requirements, but also to have completed 1250 hours of dietetic practical training and successfully demonstrated competence in all areas of the most current set of Integrated Competencies for Dietetic Education and Practice (ICDEP).
Registered Dietitians who have recently graduated from a PDEP-accredited program or its equivalent are welcomed to apply for the MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics, and if accepted into the program will be exempt from some of the courses that are dietetic practical training requirements as part of the accredited program.
Registered Dietitians with >5 years of career experience
The MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics (Advanced Standing) program is designed to provide experienced Registered Dietitians having a minimum of 5 years in practice (in Canada or internationally) with enhanced access to professionally relevant learning and leadership development.
For more information, read the Student FAQ.
Registered Dietitians will lead dietetic and professional practice within an evolving clinical public health landscape.
The MPH Nutrition and Dietetics program fosters caring and innovative dietetic leaders and practitioners within the evolving health and food system.
The curriculum provides robust academic and experiential opportunities to address the health and the social determinants of health of individuals, communities and populations from health promotion, disease prevention and treatment.
The program is governed by a unique partnership between the University of Toronto, University Health Network and Toronto Public Health, that embodies the clinical public health philosophy.
- Collaboration across Systems
- Ethical and Evidence-based Action
- Adaptability and Innovation
- Health Equity
- Interprofessional Lifelong Learning
- Critical and Reflexive Thinking
We believe that:
- As the complexity of dietetics increases, there is great potential for dietitians to lead and advance practice across the health and food systems beyond traditional roles;
- a new integrated systems approach to dietetic education using the model of *Clinical Public Health will best enable dietitians to adapt to the evolving health and food systems and address the health of individuals, communities and populations;
- *Clinical Public Health is the integration of health services across the lifespan, challenging traditional notions of medicine and public health to promote an effective approach to health and well-being, in individuals, communities and populations.
Program Learning Outcomes
Given our program Vision, Mission, Values and Philosophy, through this program, our students will:
- Model participative leadership including systems thinking, responsiveness to emerging nutrition issues, peer support and respect, and flexibility given the changing nature of the health landscape.
- Engage in the generation of knowledge and in critical evaluation of current and advanced research, in the area of nutrition and dietetics in the context of clinical public health.
- Assess, plan, implement and evaluate a nutrition care plan as a part of an interprofessional care team that meets the needs of the individual within the context of a broader population health lens.
- Assess, plan, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions that address the needs of groups, communities and populations, using a population health framework and health equity lens, while recognizing the needs of the individual.
- Lead and organize management and food services, using operational planning principles and systems thinking.
- Communicate issues and conclusions clearly, concisely and correctly in written, spoken, and visual forms, to a variety of audiences.
- Contribute productively to interprofessional teamwork through effective collaboration.
- Demonstrate critical thinking in problem solving and decision-making activities in complex and evolving contexts both inside and outside of the profession.
- Exhibit a professional level of initiative, personal responsibility, and accountability by effectively managing the use of time and other resources to achieve milestones and deadlines.
- Engage in reflective practice and action research in order to assess personal capacity and enhance professional practice.
- Participate in the analysis, strategic navigation, and evolution of standards and requirements relevant to dietetic practice.
With a comprehensive understanding of the foundations of practice in population and public health, nutrition care and management, and through the development of essential leadership, communication and professional practice skills, graduates will play a pivotal role in the future of nutrition and dietetics. Graduates will be highly competitive in the changing landscape of employment for health professionals. Currently graduates are employed in settings where nutrition professionals work such as hospitals, public health, government agencies, community health centres, family health teams, community food agencies and the food industry.
Applicants must have completed a four year degree with specialization in Human Nutritional Sciences from a Canadian food/nutrition university program that is accredited or recognized by the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP), or the equivalent. For individuals who completed their undergraduate dietetics education outside of Canada, courses must be assessed by the College of Dietitians of Ontario. In order to obtain this assessment, applicants must apply to the College of Dietitians of Ontario. The CDO assessment must be included with the on-line application to the program.
Students who completed their undergraduate studies in Canada, at a program that is not recognized or accredited by the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP), are advised to apply to an accredited undergraduate university dietetics program to have their courses assessed and to complete outstanding course requirements.
Note: Applicants to DLSPH MPH programs are required to have successfully completed the equivalent of one half credit undergraduate statistics course. Graduates of undergraduate degree programs that are accredited or recognized by the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP), or equivalent, meet this requirement through the research methods and statistical analysis component of those dietetic education programs.
The program starts in September each year.
Students are required to complete 10.0 Full Course Equivalents (FCE) within the maximum time limit of 3 years as a full-time student. Most full-time students complete their degree within 2 years. The 10.0 FCE include a series of MPH degree-required courses, Nutrition and Dietetics field-specific courses, and practica, as well as electives chosen by students. Elective courses may be selected from other Public Health fields as well as other University of Toronto departments with the Program Director’s approval. All students are enrolled in CHL5004H Introduction to Public Health Sciences in the first year of study. This course begins earlier in September than regularly scheduled graduate courses.
|Course Code||Course Title||FCEs|
|Term 1 – Fall||3.0|
|CHL5004H||Introduction to Public Health Sciences1||0.5|
|CHL5220H||Introduction to Quantitative Research (or an approved elective)||0.5|
|CHL5300H||Public Health Policy||0.5|
|CHL5650H||Foundations of Practice I||0.5|
|CHL5651H||Foundations of Practice II||0.5|
|CHL5652H||Foundations of Practice III||0.5|
|Term 2 – Winter||1.5|
|Required MPH Practicum +
Required Practicum Extension
|Term 3 – Summer||1.5|
|Optional MPH Practicum +
Optional Practicum Extension
|Terms 4 – Fall||1.5-2.5|
|CHL5654H||Nutrition Programs and Strategies||0.5|
|CHL5656Y||Nutrition & Dietetics Culminating Project (Fall-Winter course)||1.0|
|Nutrition Science course and/or electives|
|Term 5 – Winter||1.5-2.5|
|CHL5811H||Introduction to Qualitative Research||0.5|
|Nutrition Science course and/or electives|
Students who wish to qualify for registration with a provincial dietetics regulatory body must complete three FCE of practica and three Foundations of Practice courses.
Students who are Registered Dietitians are required to complete one 8-week practicum (1.0 FCE). Additional electives replace the second practicum and the three Foundations courses.
For more information, read the Student FAQ.
Preparation for Doctoral Studies
The MPH program in Nutrition and Dietetics does not require students to complete a thesis. However, students have the opportunity to complete research practica and research papers, and are eligible for many PhD programs. Applicants wishing to pursue doctoral studies should familiarize themselves with the specific admission requirements of doctoral programs of interest.
Completing an Emphasis
What is an Emphasis?
An emphasis is an area of professional focus within our practical dietetic training program. It incorporates additional required coursework, and specific practical training assignments to allow students with targeted professional interests to experience greater involvement and enhanced mentoring relationships in the area of dietetic practice where they hope to make their career.
Is an Emphasis consistent with a Clinical Public Health approach to dietetic training?
The MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics program remains committed to a clinical public health philosophy: developing comprehensive expertise in dietetic practice within the health and food systems, from disease prevention to palliation. And all students in the program receive training across all areas of dietetic practice to meet the standards for entry to the profession.
Recognizing the overall clinical public health focus of this program and the need to prepare all students for fundamental dietetic competency at entry to practice, we believe there is room for some students to customize their program more closely to their professional aspirations. With additional classroom learning, focussed placements, and the opportunity to develop mentoring relationships with professionals in their particular area of interest, we feel this emphasis will enhance their learning experience and better prepare those students to apply their skills in their preferred area of practice.
Do all MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics students need to apply for an Emphasis?
An emphasis is not required for the successful completion of the MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics program. It will be an option for students who begin the program with a deep interest in a particular area of dietetic practice.
NB: MPH- Nutrition and Dietetics students who enter the program having already completed a program of practical dietetic training (including Advanced Standing students) are not eligible to apply for an Emphasis.
Can students complete an Emphasis and a Collaborative Specialization?
An emphasis may be compatible with students’ interest in relevant Collaborative Specializations, but we recognize that scheduling all of the various program requirements will be a challenge. Students who wish to complete both an Emphasis and a Collaborative Specialization will need to work with the Program Director to plan their course and placement selections carefully.
NB: Students in the MPH-Nutrition and Dietetics program will not be permitted to complete more than one Emphasis during their MPH program.
MPH: Nutrition & Dietetics – Advanced Standing
Applicants who have completed a dietetic internship, have at least 5 years of relevant professional work experience as a Registered Dietitian, and are members in a regulatory body of dietetics may be interested in the MPH: Nutrition and Dietetics – Advanced Standing option.
Frequently Asked Questions
Please review the information in the MPH: Nutrition & Dietetics Frequently Asked Questions page.
You can also watch our latest webinar.
Dietitians of Canada
The College of Dietitians of Ontario
The Department of Nutritional Sciences
University Health Network Clinical Nutrition
Toronto Public Health
Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice
Compass Group Canada LinkedIn/ Instagram