Nutritionist Title Regulations
The Amendment of the Alberta Health Professions Act (HPA)
As per an announcement released by The Government of Alberta on September 8, 2016 there has been an addition to the professional titles that are to be used by the College of Dietitians of Alberta. The new addition to the College’s registered and protected titles is ‘Nutritionist’.
Registered & Protected Titles in Alberta
A title is registered and protected when it is included in the Alberta Health Professions Act. The nutrition regulatory body, in Alberta, is the College of Dietitians of Alberta, and only individuals that are members of this College can use its registered and protected titles.
Before September 2016 the title ‘Nutritionist’ could be used by anyone in Alberta to describe themselves as a professional in the Nutrition industry.
As of September 2016, the title ‘Nutritionist’ can only be used by members of the College of Dietitians of Alberta. To become a member of this college an individual need to complete a four-year undergraduate degree in a nutrition program approved by the College of Dietitians of Alberta. After completing the degree requirements, the graduates must complete either an approved internship through a hospital or Master’s program to be eligible to write a registration exam to obtain their license.
Other titles that are registered and protected in Alberta are: registered dietitian, dietitian, provisional dietitian, dietetic intern, and registered nutritionist.
In Canada, the term ‘nutritionist’ is not regulated/protected in every province. This means that in some provinces, anyone can call themselves a nutritionist, regardless of their education or professional experience.
What Titles Can Elevated Learning Academy Graduates Use?
Potential titles for graduates of the Elevated Learning Academy’s Applied Nutrition Science Diploma program include any of the unfollowing:
- Nutrition Practitioner
- Nutrition Coach
- Nutrition Consultant
- Nutrition Specialist
- Wellness Educator
- Wellness Coordinator
- Wellness Coach
A graduate can also create their own title as long as it is different from any of the protected titles.
Despite the new regulation regarding the 'Nutrition' title, graduates of Elevated Learning Academy's Applied Nutrition Science Diploma program can continue to be eligible for liability (malpractice) insurance, as they would have been prior to the regulation change. An insurance provider to consider is Lackner McLennan.
What This Means for Students Who Graduated Before September 2016
Individuals who graduated before these regulatory changes were made to the Alberta Health Professions Act only need to change their title to ensure it does not include any of the registered titles.
There have been no changes to the ability of Elevated Learning Academy’s graduates to work in the Nutrition industry upon graduation. Graduates are qualified to work in many different positions and can develop a strong career with an Applied Nutrition Science Diploma.
Potential Career Paths for Applied Nutrition Science Diploma Graduates
Potential career paths for graduates of the Elevated Learning Academy, Applied Nutrition Science Diploma program include:
- Weight Loss Clinics and Centres
- Sports Nutrition Clinics
- Health Food Stores
- Health-Conscious Restaurants
- Catering Companies
- Fitness Centres
- Private practice (mobile or stationary)
- Corporate Wellness
- Community Education
Comparison to Other Regulated Professions in Alberta
Alberta College of Pharmacists
The Alberta College of Pharmacists have registered and protected titles for both Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians, but there are still individuals who work in pharmacies that do not meet the educational requirements to use these titles. Therefore, they are usually referred to as Pharmacy Assistants and work alongside Pharmacists and Technicians.
Alberta College of Physicians
The Alberta College of Physicians have registered and protected titles for both Physicians and Physicians Assistants, but there are still individuals who work in medical clinics that do not meet the educational requirements to use these titles. Therefore, they are usually referred to as Medical Assistants and work alongside Physicians & Physicians’ Assistants.