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    Saybrook University
   
 
  Apr 25, 2024
 
2023-2024 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum 
    
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2023-2024 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum

M.S. Integrative and Functional Nutrition


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Overview of Program


Saybrook's Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition was designed to educate the next generation of nutrition professionals. Graduates of this program will be prepared to apply advanced evidence-based nutritional approaches to effectively address conditions ranging from obesity and high blood pressure to depression and chronic pain. 
 
Integrative and functional nutritionists recognize how physical health is influenced by biological, environmental, behavioral, and emotional factors. They apply knowledge from biological and nutritional sciences to the results from comprehensive nutritional assessments to inform nutritional diagnoses and develop personalized nutrition care plans to help clients achieve optimal health and vitality. 
 
Declining global health dictates a greater need for well-trained, competent nutrition practitioners across healthcare settings.  This need is not being met by current educational models.  Thus, CIMHS has created a Master of Science degree in Integrative and Functional Nutrition to prepare future nutrition leaders in the health field. With courses that study nutritional biochemistry and physiology, functional nutrition assessment methodologies, and integrative nutritional therapies, this program equips its students with cutting-edge knowledge, skills, and competencies to be professional nutrition practitioners addressing world-wide health concerns of individuals and communities. 
 
For information on where Saybrook University meets, does not meet, or has not determined if the program meets licensure eligibility requirements for the state in which you wish to be licensed, please visit: https://www.saybrook.edu/admissions/professional-licensure-and-certification-disclosures/ 

Program Learning Outcomes


  1. Apply evidence-based integrative and functional nutrition approaches to comprehensively assess and promote the health and wellness of diverse individuals and communities.  
  2. Critically evaluate and utilize evidence-based resources to inform professional practice.  
  3. Explain the science of integrative and functional nutrition in health promotion and disease prevention and management to lay audiences and health professionals.  
  4. Apply knowledge of biochemical, physiological, and psychosocial sciences to assess nutritional status and design integrative interventions.  
  5. Identify and articulate the ethical, humanistic, and legal guidelines for professional nutrition practitioners.

Specializations


  • ​​Minor in Mind-Body Medicine 
  • Minor in Integrative Wellness Coaching​ 

Career Opportunities


he Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition at Saybrook University prepares students for advanced integrative and functional nutrition practice and exposes them to various complementary healthcare practices.  Additionally, this degree prepares individuals for advanced doctoral level studies in nutrition or other health-related professions. 
 
Saybrook University’s Masters of Integrative and Functional Nutrition degree program is designed to fulfill the current academic requirements for the Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS) exam. The Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists (BCNS) requires a graduate degree in the field of nutrition from a regionally accredited university, specific coursework, and 1000 hours of supervised experience.  The BCNS reviews each candidate individually, including current course descriptions, transcripts and experience to determine eligibility.  To learn more about becoming a CNS, see www.theana.org 
 
In addition, the program fulfills the current core academic requirements in nutrition of the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board (CNCB) for the Certified Clinical Nutritionist (CCN) credential. The CNCB reviews course descriptions, applicant’s transcripts, and academic programs to determine eligibility for the CCN examination. To learn more about becoming a CCN, see www.cncb.org 
 
The Master of Integrative and Functional Nutrition degree program does not lead to eligibility for the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN®) credential. 
 
Depending upon each state’s specific credentialing and practice requirements, graduates may consider careers in: 
 

  • Independent consulting and private practice 
  • Medical centers, hospitals, long-term care facilities, and other clinical care settings 
  • Higher education 
  • Health promotion and wellness education programs 
  • Yoga and wellness retreats, sports care facilities 
  • Culinary institutes, agricultural programs, schools, prisons, restaurants and corporate food service establishments 
  • Public health care, community organizations, legislature and policy settings 
  • Natural products and dietary supplement industries 
  • Research and development 
  • Nutrition, science, food, medical writing/journalism (non-technical, technical) 


Prospective students who are interested in taking courses within the Integrative and Functional Nutrition program at Saybrook, yet do not wish to undertake a master’s degree are encouraged to review the Certificate options described later in this catalog

Program Requirements


Admissions Requirements


  1. Applicants for the M.S. Integrative and Functional Nutrition program must: 
  2. Submit official transcripts showing completion of a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university, with a 3.0 or higher GPA; 
  3. Provide official transcripts showing completion of undergraduate or graduate-level science courses in the past ten years, with a minimum of a B in each, including 3 credit units from each: a) biochemistry or organic chemistry, b) anatomy and/or physiology, and c) human nutrition. Students lacking any of these courses may be admitted and will add these courses to their Saybrook program plan; 
  4. Upon request, some students may be required to provide a sample demonstrating academic writing skills. Writing samples and other Admissions documents must be solely and independently authored by the applicant, not professionally edited, and written within the past ten years. Writing samples will be analyzed to assess the applicant’s need for a graduate level academic course.  Note that if plagiarism is found, it may disqualify the applicant for admission. Plagiarism is defined in the Saybrook catalog section, “Policy on Academic Honesty (Plagiarism) and Authorship.” Applicants with challenges in academic writing may be accepted but will be required to take the academic writing class. 
  5. Submit a personal statement addressing their educational objectives; and 
  6. Submit a resume or curriculum vita.

University Learning Experience


Virtual Learning Experience (VLE) - Optional, Community Learning Experience (CLE) - Optional

All new students begin their studies with a Welcome Week. Welcome Week activities are held online during the week ahead of the start of the fall and spring semesters. Participation is strongly encouraged.

No face-to-face residential learning experiences are required for this degree.  However, students are invited to attend any of Saybrook’s face-to-face residential learning experiences or virtual learning experiences where they will meet other Saybrook students, faculty and staff. The integrative and functional nutrition department faculty will offer programming and participate in these learning experiences.

Program Specific Requirements


Transfer Credits 

Saybrook may accept up to six graduate transfer credits into the Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition from other regionally accredited colleges and universities prior to entrance. Transfer credits must be suitable for transfer to the intended degree and approved by the Department Chair. Credits are applied to the number of elective or required course credits needed for degree completion. 
 
For further details regarding transfer credit policies, consult the Institutional Transfer Credit Guidelines section of the University Catalog. 
 
Notes: 

Saybrook’s IWC Certificate program is specifically geared toward individuals who do not currently hold an ICF or NBHWC credential. 

Students who demonstrate equivalent professional learning to waive a required course(s) will be able to take elective course(s) in place of the waived course(s).  Available electives will be discussed with your academic advisor in your first term of enrollment. 

Students who hold the credential of Registered Dietitian through the Commission on Dietetic Registration are eligible for Advanced Standing and will receive a 6-credit reduction from the Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition program or a 9-credit reduction from the Ph.D. in Integrative and Functional Nutrition program.  This is the maximum allowance for credit reduction for these programs.  Credit reduction may be made by removal of required or elective courses and will be determined on an individual basis by the department chair or academic advisor. 

The Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) provides holistic training in the field of nutrition. IIN’s Health Coach Training Program includes coursework in nutrition, health and wellness, coaching techniques, business skills, and personal development. The articulation agreement with Saybrook University allows graduates of the IIN training programs to authorize six credits of graduate credit toward CIMHS masters and doctoral programs.

Credits/Hours


Saybrook’s Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition requires 40 credits for those students meeting prerequisite science course requirements, and 40-49 credits for those adding any prerequisite science requirements. Students write a Capstone paper in their final semester and must pass a final exam in order to graduate from the program.  No thesis is required.  

Mode of Delivery


Utilizing Canvas as the Learning Management System (LMS), IFN courses are delivered in a mostly asynchronous manner with weekly or biweekly due dates for assignments. IFN courses are supplemented with live Zoom videoconferences. Most IFN courses require attendance at 2-3 live videoconferences.

Length of Program


Saybrook’s Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition requires 40 credits for those students meeting prerequisite science course requirements, and 40-49 credits for those adding any prerequisite science requirements. The expected length of the 40-credit program is approximately 28 months for students enrolled full-time.      
 
Students earning a Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition can acquire complementary skills to enhance their professional practice by adding a Minor in Integrative Wellness Coaching or a Minor in Mind-Body Medicine to their degree program.  The addition of a Minor will add to the total credits of the student’s program and take approximately one to two semesters to complete.    
 
The degree completion time for a full-time student following the default course sequence will average 21 months to two years. Some students may complete degree requirements sooner and some may take longer to complete this degree. Those students incorporating prerequisite sciences, academic writing, or a Minor into their course plan may require longer to complete the degree. 

Required Courses


The 40-credit Master of Science in Integrative and Functional Nutrition (IFN) includes 16 credits of core courses, 6 credits of research courses, 15 credits of IFN electives, and 3 open credits.

Research Courses required of all MS IFN students (6 credits)


MS IFN Total Degree Requirements - 40 credits


Basic Science Pre-requisites (if required)


Total Degree Requirements with Basic Science(s): 39-48 credits


Optional: Minor in Mind-Body Medicine - 12 credits


MS IFN Total Degree Requirements with Minor in MBM - 48-60 credits


Optional: Minor in Integrative Wellness Coaching (IWC) - 9 credits


MS IFN Total Degree Requirements with Minor in IWC - 45-57 credits


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