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About Prior Assessed Learning (PAL) 

(This page has been updated to reflect new and expanded options to accommodate changes necessitated by challenges that have arisen secondary to the Coronavirus. 

Priority Nutrition Care participates in PAL or prior assessed learning. It is important to note that credit is granted for what you learned during your experience, not how many hours or years that you have worked.  This is characteristic of all PAL programs.

Credit may be given for the Community or Food Service rotations. It is rare that credit will be given for more than one rotation.

Credit is not given for the Clinical or Elective Rotations.

The credit awarded would shorten the length of your Internship for you. 

PAL credit may be awarded for the following learning if it can be aligned with Internship competencies:

  • previous employment experience
  • previous life experience
  • previous experience during DTR Program
  • previous experience from work completed prior to or during DPD program

There is an assessment fee of $150 per rotation which must be submitted with your PAL application. Separate applications must be submitted for each rotation.

The assessment is based on a portfolio which you would submit in which you would provide documentation of what you have learned relative to the competencies required in all internships.  This assessment is completed after a candidate is matched to the program.

Documentation may include, but is not limited to job descriptions, performance evaluations, narrative descriptions of experiences which are attested to by a manager or by providing examples of work product. Experiences completed in an ACEND accredited Dietetic Technology Program for which you received a verification statement and after which you passed the Registration exam will be considered.

Tuition remains the same. Application for PAL and documentation must be submitted at the direction of the Internship. Interested applicants should plan in advance in order to be ready to provide the necessary information.

Additional information will be provided as soon as you are matched to our program. You will be required to complete a worksheet which delineates competencies required in all Internships and descriptions of where, when, what you learned and the evidence you are submitting to document your learning for any competencies you are claiming credit for. The information and evidence must be submitted in a well-organized professional portfolio.

The following is a listing of the competencies you would be required to support with evidence of learning. The rotations to which these competencies apply are listed in parentheses next to each competency.

Example: If you wished to receive credit for work in community nutrition to be applied to the community rotation, you would be required to document learning for any of the competencies which are designated as (ALL) or (Community). You may receive up to 5 weeks of PAL credit for each of the Community, Food Service or Clinical rotations.

Domain 1: Scientific and Evidence Base of Practice

Integration of scientific information and translation of research into practice.

CRDN 1.1

Select indicators of program quality and/or customer service and measure achievement of objectives.  

CRDN 1.2

Evaluate research and apply evidence-based guidelines, systematic reviews and scientific literature in nutrition and dietetics practice.

CRDN 1.3

Justify programs, products, services and care using appropriate evidence or data.   

CRDN 1.4

CRDN 1.4    Conduct projects using appropriate research or quality improvement methods, ethical procedures and data analysis utilizing current and/or new technologies.

CRDN 1.5

Incorporate critical-thinking skills in overall practice.

Domain 2: Professional Practice Expectations

Beliefs, values, attitudes and behaviors for the nutrition and dietetics practitioner level of practice.

CRDN 2.1

Practice in compliance with current federal regulations and state statutes and rules, as applicable, and in accordance with accreditation standards and the Scope of Practice for the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Standards of Practice, Standards of Professional Performance, and Code of Ethics for the Profession of Nutrition and Dietetics. 

CRDN 2.2

Demonstrate professional writing skills in preparing professional communications. 

CRDN 2.3

Demonstrate active participation, teamwork and contributions in group settings. 

CRDN 2.4

Function as a member of interprofessional teams.

CRDN 2.5

Work collaboratively with NDTRs and/or support personnel in other disciplines. 

CRDN 2.6

Refer clients and patients to other professionals and services when needs are beyond individual scope of practice. 

CRDN 2.7

Apply change management strategies to achieve desired outcomes. 

CRDN 2.8

Demonstrate negotiation skills. 

CRDN 2.9

Actively contribute to nutrition and dietetics professional and community organizations.   

CRDN 2.10

Demonstrate professional attributes in all areas of practice.

CRDN 2.11

Show cultural humility in interactions with colleagues, staff, clients, patients and the public.

CRDN 2.12

Implement culturally sensitive strategies to address cultural biases and differences.

Domain 3: Clinical and Client Services

Development and delivery of information, products and services to individuals, groups and populations

CRDN 3.1

Perform Medical Nutrition Therapy by utilizing the Nutrition Care Process including use of standardized nutrition terminology as a part of the clinical workflow elements for individuals, groups and populations of differing ages and health status, in a variety of settings. 

CRDN 3.2

Conduct nutrition focused physical exams.

CRDN 3.3

Perform routine health screening assessments including measuring blood pressure, conducting waived point-of-care laboratory testing (such as blood glucose or cholesterol), recommending and/or initiating nutrition-related pharmacotherapy plans (such as modifications to bowel regimens, carbohydrate to insulin ratio, B12 or iron supplementation). 

CRDN 3.4

Provide instruction to clients/patients for self-monitoring blood glucose considering diabetes medication and medical nutrition therapy plan.

CRDN 3.5

Explain the steps involved and observe the placement of nasogastric or nasoenteric feeding tubes; if available, assist in the process of placing nasogastric or nasoenteric feeding tubes.

CRDN 3.6

Conduct a swallow screen and refer to the appropriate health care professional for full swallow evaluation when needed. 

CRDN 3.7

Demonstrate effective communication and documentation skills for clinical and client services in a variety of formats and settings, which include telehealth and other information technologies and digital media. 

CRDN 3.8

Design, implement and evaluate presentations to a target audience. 

CRDN 3.9

Develop nutrition education materials that are culturally and age appropriate and designed for the literacy level of the audience. 

CRDN 3.10

Use effective education and counseling skills to facilitate behavior change.

CRDN 3.11

Develop and deliver products, programs or services that promote consumer health, wellness and lifestyle management. 

CRDN 3.12

Deliver respectful, science-based answers to client/patient questions concerning emerging trends.

CRDN 3.13

Coordinate procurement, production, distribution and service of goods and services, demonstrating and promoting responsible use of resources.

CRDN 3.14

Develop and evaluate recipes, formulas and menus for acceptability and affordability that accommodate the cultural diversity and health needs of various populations, groups and individuals.

Domain 4: Practice Management and Use of Resources

Strategic application of principles of management and systems in the provision of services to individuals and organizations.

CRDN 4.1

Participate in management functions of human resources (such as training and scheduling).  

CRDN 4.2

Perform management functions related to safety, security and sanitation that affect employees, clients, patients, facilities and food.

CRDN 4.3

Conduct clinical and client service quality management activities (such as quality improvement or quality assurance projects).

CRDN 4.4

Apply current information technologies to develop, manage and disseminate nutrition information and data.

CRDN 4.5

 Analyze quality, financial and productivity data for use in planning. 

CRDN 4.6

Propose and use procedures as appropriate to the practice setting to promote sustainability, reduce waste and protect the environment.

CRDN 4.7

Conduct feasibility studies for products, programs or services with consideration of costs and benefits. (Elective)

CRDN 4.8

Develop a plan to provide or develop a product, program or service that includes a budget, staffing needs, equipment and supplies. 

CRDN 4.9

Engage in the process for coding and billing for nutrition and dietetics services to obtain reimbursement from public or private payers, fee-for-service and value-based payment systems. 

CRDN 4.10

Analyze risk in nutrition and dietetics practice (such as risks to achieving set goals and objectives, risk management plan, or risk due to clinical liability or foodborne illness).

Domain 5: Leadership and Career Management

Skills, strengths, knowledge and experience relevant to leadership potential and professional growth for the nutrition and dietetics practitioner.

CRDN 5.1

Perform self-assessment that includes awareness in terms of learning and leadership styles and cultural orientation and develop goals for self-improvement.

CRDN 5.2

Identify and articulate one’s skills, strengths, knowledge and experiences relevant to the position desired and career goals.

CRDN 5.3

Prepare a plan for professional development according to Commission on Dietetic Registration guidelines. 

CRDN 5.4

Advocate for opportunities in professional settings (such as asking for additional responsibility, practicing negotiating a salary or wage or asking for a promotion).

CRDN 5.5

Demonstrate the ability to resolve conflict.

CRDN 5.6

Promote team involvement and recognize the skills of each member.

CRDN 5.7

Mentor others.

CRDN 5.8

Identify and articulate the value of precepting.