Eligibility Requirements for the Certified Nutrition Specialist – Scholar (CNS-S) Credential
A candidate for the Certified Nutrition Specialist – Scholar (CNS-S) credential must meet the following four requirements:
1. Academic Requirement:
The candidate must –
A. Hold a Doctoral degree in nutrition or in a field of clinical healthcare (including, but not limited to, MD, DO, DC, DDS, Doctor of Nursing, ND, PharmD) from a United States regionally accredited college or university, or its foreign equivalent.
B. Have completed the following minimum for-credit coursework:
1. Nutrition (minimum of nine semester credit hours).
Examples of such course topics include but are not limited to: therapeutic nutrition, nutrition assessment, developmental nutrition, micro nutrients, macro nutrients, functional nutrition, nutrient depletion & drug/herb interactions, dietary supplements, nutritional disorders, pharmacology, and biomedical science courses that involve nutrition-related metabolic systems.
2. Biochemistry (minimum of six semester credit hours)
3. Physiology or Anatomy/Physiology (minimum of three semester credit hours)
4. Clinical or Life Sciences (minimum of twelve additional semester credit hours). These courses may be prerequisites for the above courses and include, but are not limited to: biology, micro-biology, chemistry, organic chemistry, botany.
“Regionally accredited” means an institution that was accredited, at the time the degree was awarded, by a regional accreditation body in the United States which is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the United States Department of Education.
Degrees from institutions outside the U.S. must be from that country’s equivalent of a regionally accredited U.S. institution.
2. Experience & Scholarship Requirement:
The candidate must demonstrate evidence of both experience and scholarship in nutrition in accordance with the following:
A. Experience: A minimum of the equivalent of three years experience in the nutrition industry, research, academia, writing, or clinical practice;
B. Scholarship: A minimum of five of any combination of the following:
1. Nutrition papers in peer-reviewed journals or trade journals;
2. Nutrition chapters in textbooks or reference books;
3. Non-professional nutrition books that are based on sufficient scientific research and have been reviewed and approved by the CBNS Credentials Council;
4. Nutrition-related patents; or
5. Comparable works of scholarship
The experience and scholarship may be completed after passing the CBNS Certifying Examination, however the candidate will not be awarded, and may not use, the CNS-S credential until both are completed and approved.
3. CBNS Certifying Examination: Must successfully complete the CBNS Certifying Examination.
4. Re-certification: To maintain the CNS-S credential, the individual must re-certify every five years and document 75 Continuing Nutrition Education credits, in compliance with the CBNS Continuing Education Policy.