What is a preceptor and how many do you need?

A preceptor is a highly accomplished professional who provides practical experiences and training to a dietetic student or intern. 

WHAT DOES A PRECEPTOR DO?

  • Meets regularly with you and guides you through the daily operation of the facility
  • Demonstrates skills and professional behaviors and is a role model
  • Observes the intern practicing those skills and behaviors and provides feedback
  • Evaluates assignments from the KADDI curriculum and projects he or she gives you
  • Approves your weekly time log
  • Gives feedback to the program director.

HOW MANY PRECEPTORS DO YOU NEED?

ONE for each site where you plan to do rotations lasting longer than one week. 

  • Medical Nutrition Therapy rotation (8-12 weeks) - Preceptor(s) must be a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN). Facilities may include hospital, skilled nursing/rehabilitation center, long-term acute care center, dialysis center and outpatient nutrition counseling. You may contract to go with a dietitian who consults at different facilities. 
  • Foodservice rotation (8 weeks) - may be an RDN, but may also be a food service or Certified Dietary Manager or head chef.
  • Community rotation (4-8 weeks) - RDN is preferred, but may also be a public health professional such as a Registered Nurse or Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES). Fitness trainers may not serve as primary preceptors.

NOTE:  If you plan to do clinical and foodservice rotations in the same facility you need only one preceptor and one facility form. Contact the KADDI program director if you have a question about whether a site or preceptor is appropriate. The email is KADDI@consultingdietitians.com

HOW MANY SITES DO I NEED?

  • Medical Nutrition Therapy- KADDI recommends you do 6-8 weeks at the same site. This gives you time to get to know the facility and be ready to do a one-week staff relief at the end. You may choose up to two sites. Facilities may include hospital, skilled nursing/rehabilitation center, long-term acute care center, dialysis center and outpatient nutrition counseling. You may contract to go with a dietitian who consults at different facilities. 
  • Foodservice - a healthcare facility or school district works well for the 8 weeks of this rotation. You may choose to go to two sites if you want to get a varied experience. 
  • Community - at least one site is required. KADDI recommends that you go to at least two (and you may go to as many as four) places. Here are some suggestions: State Department of Health or Women Infant and Children's (WIC) contract agency, public or private school (1-2 weeks), dialysis centers or nephrology offices, pediatric or adult obesity clinic or bariatric surgery center, Veteran's Administration or other outpatient clinics (MOVE!, diabetes, etc.), Head Start, assisted living centers, meals on wheels, grocery store dietitian, senior nutrition sites, wellness clinics, YMCAs or other athletic clubs, state Cooperative Extension Agencies, SNAP education, or dietitians in private practice who take physician referrals, do sports counseling, etc.

YOU WILL NEED TO COMPLETE:

  • a facility (site) form for each place you will go
  • a preceptor form for the professional who will supervise you at each site
  • find these forms under the APPLY AND FORMS tab

How Do I Find a Preceptor

This document gives suggestions about how you can secure preceptors.

KADDI Summary Sheet

This sheet gives an overview of the KADDI program. If you or the preceptor need more information about the curriculum, email the program director at KADDI@consultingdietitians.com.