Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology
Dr Lisa Ryan
Nutrition and dietetics professionals are recognised experts in human nutrition science and are best placed to improve the nutrition of individuals and populations. Nutrition is a relatively new and poorly understood profession in Ireland. While dietitians deal with clinical populations and are thus covered by the newly formed body CORU, registered nutritionists deal with healthy individuals and populations and thus have no legal requirement for professional accreditation which has led to confusion as to their level of competence and scope of practice.
This T&L initiative seeks to develop professional competence in the discipline of Nutrition in HEIs in Ireland. It will encourage and facilitate networking and professional development in Nutrition. The initiative has two key elements:
• Establishing a Community of Practice in the area of Nutrition
• Developing a framework for the development of competency-based assessment in Nutrition
Employers are demanding that nutrition graduates are registered nutritionists (registration is voluntary via the Association for Nutrition). To ensure that nutrition educators in HEIs are creating courses that develop students capable of becoming registered nutritionists, we need to develop capabilities in competency-based assessment and create a framework that can be used throughout Ireland.
A competent nutrition workforce is essential to maintain and improve the health of the Irish population. Quality teaching and learning are essential to produce a competent workforce.
NutriPD seeks to develop and grow professional competence in Nutrition and to lead to a framework for competency-based assessment which can be rolled out to all HEIs delivering Nutrition courses in Ireland.