The Dietetic Technician, Registered or DTR Exam is regulated by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR), the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’, also known as the Academy, credentialing agency. This exam was developed as a way to ensure that each DTR is held to the same standards of health, safety, and professionalism nationwide. All candidates seeking DTR credentials must take and pass this exam.
Who is Eligible?
To be eligible for the DTR exam you must have one of the following:
- An associate degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution or equivalent and the completion of an accredited dietetic technician program with a minimum of 450 supervised practice hours, or
- A bachelor’s degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution or equivalent and the completion of an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
There is an exam fee of $120, which must be paid during registration. Your authorization is good for up to one year.
CDR’s testing agency will send you an authorization to test email when your application has been approved. This will contain information on how to schedule your exam.
When and Where Can I Take it?
The exams are held over 250 Pearson VUE testing centers located throughout the U.S. and various international sites. You will be given access to a complete list of available times and dates for each location.
Most testing sites are open from 9 am to 5 pm Monday through Friday, with some being open on Saturdays as well. All DTR exams are computer administered.
Once you have scheduled your exam, you will be sent a confirmation email for your records. It is important that you keep this, as you will need to bring it to the testing site for admission.
Special accommodations are available for those who are disabled and are not able to test under normal conditions. Requests must be made during registration and supporting documentation must be provided for approval.
If you need to reschedule or cancel your exam appointment, you can do so by contacting Pearson VUE no later than 48 before your original exam. Changes cannot be made after this time period.
What Can I Bring?
It is important that you arrive on time to complete a check-in process prior to being seated for your exam. Those who arrive late will not be allowed to test that day and will need to reschedule.
Along with your admission confirmation, you will need to bring at least one original and valid government-issued photo ID. This must include your full name as it appears on your registration, signature, and a recent and recognizable photo. IDs with missing or incorrect information will not be accepted.
It is just as important that you do not bring any of the following items. These are strictly prohibited in the testing room and, if found with you, will result in your dismissal and the voiding of your scores.
- Cell phones and any other electrical devices
- Coats, hats, and any other outerwear
- Study materials, including paper, books, and calculators
- Purses, bags, or wallets
Most locations will have a small storage area to keep a few of these items during the exam. Erasable note boards, markers, and an on-screen calculator will be provided.
What is Covered?
Each Dietetic Technician Exam is slightly different in length; however, it will have no less than 110 and no more than 130 questions. no matter how long your exam is, it is important to note that 30 of these questions are unidentified pretest items and will not count towards your score.
The exam is broken into three domains or main sections.
- Nutrition Science and Care for Individuals and Groups (44%)
- Food Science and Food Service (24%)
- Management of Food and Nutrition Services (32%)
Exam sessions are three (3) hours long with two hours and 30 minutes for the exam, 20 minutes for an introductory tutorial, and 10 minutes for a post-exam survey.
How is it Scored?
The exam is scored on a scale of 1 to 50. You must receive a score of at least 25 to be considered passing. Your score will be available to you in paper form at the testing site once you have completed your exam.
If you pass, you will receive an email within three weeks afterward with information on how to maintain your certificate.
Those who fail the exam must apply for reauthorization it and, if approved, will be allowed to schedule another one for at least 45 days after your last attempt.
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