Which curriculum should you choose…
Nutrition Science (NTS) or Applied Nutrition (NTSA)?

All first year and transfer students are automatically assigned to the Nutrition Science/NTS curriculum. However, you may decide that the Applied Nutrition/NTSA curriculum better suits your interests. Below are brief descriptions of the two majors to help you decide.

Nutrition Science/NTS:

The NTS major is designed to fulfill all of the prerequisites for medical school, which includes 4 semesters of chemistry (16 cr) and 2 semesters of physics (8 cr). Other health professional programs, such as optometry and physical therapy, typically have at least a 1 semester physics prerequisite, though they may require fewer than 4 semesters of chemistry. [Note that it is critical to check individual program expectations.]

An additional laboratory science class (2 cr) in the NTS major is designed to provide students with experience that can prepare them for laboratory-based graduate research projects or jobs as research technicians.

Applied Concentration/NTSA:

The NTSA applied concentration is designed to help students become qualified to consult and/or develop programming on healthy eating, weight management, diet planning and other public health-related activities necessary for improving quality of life and lowering health care costs, and/or to work with agricultural and food industries to help develop approaches associated with meeting these needs.  [Note that many of these positions will still require a graduate degree and/or certification as a Registered Dietitian for eligibility.]

Toward that end, it does NOT require physics (-8 cr) or the additional laboratory science class (-2 cr), and it requires 3--rather than  4--semesters of chemistry (-4 cr). Instead, students take 3 more hours in the Nutrition Elective category, 9 more hours in the Applied Elective category, and 2 more hours in the Free Elective category. This provides greater flexibility—through the wide variety of courses available on the Applied Elective list—to explore the disciplines and areas that intersect with nutrition, such as Agroecology, Communications, Extension Education, Food Science, International Studies, Nonprofit Studies, and Psychology.

Students who are interested in careers in nutrition specifically should choose the NTSA option.

Any decision that you make now is not a decision that can’t be undone. You can easily switch from one to the other by contacting Dr. Ash at sarah_ash@ncsu.edu .

Updated August 2010