Choosing Distance Sites and Preceptors

Distance intern candidates are required to provide the preceptor's name and site location for the clinical (acute/hospital) and community sites as part of application to the program. At that time, the date of rotation is not needed; a "yes" from the preceptor is adequate. See the Forms and Resources link for the preceptor form. 

Distance interns are expected to locate their remaining sites and preceptors over the course of summer prior to the start of the internship year. For distance interns, a tentative schedule is due by October 31 of the Introduction to Internship Course. If needed, elective sites and preceptors can be arranged later, even into the rotation semester. This policy exists to accomodate for networking and pursuing additional opportunities that may arise while meeting new people during rotations. 

For scheduling, interns should start with rotations such as Foodservice, Community, or WIC.  Interns are REQUIRED to complete the Long Term Care rotation BEFORE starting the Clinical rotation. Generally, the Clinical (Acute/Hospital) rotation should be towards the end of the internship experience. Aim to begin the Clinical Rotation May or later of the internship year.  

Following the completion of FN 6200 Introduction to Dietetic Internship course, interns will begin rotations in January along with the start of BGSU's Spring Semester. Interns who plan to start rotations prior to the start of BGSU's Spring semester, must obtain approval from the DI Director. Contact the DI program director for more information.

Interns who have previous work experience relevant to a required supervised practice rotation may be eligible to apply that experience towards alternative supervised practice hours. The employment position must have been in a managerial role, however, a shift manager role is not eligible. This consideration is determined on a case-by-case basis and is subject to the guidelines set forth by ACEND. Contact the DI program director for more information.

Minimum requirements for preceptors:

•  At least three sites must include Registered Dietitians as the primary preceptor – these are typically acute care sites, long term care sites, and WIC. 

•  Preceptor information forms must be submitted for any preceptor who will supervise the intern and verify completion of experiences.

•  Preceptors must be able to document appropriate continuing education for the previous two years.  Submission of their Professional Development Portfolio is desirable.

•  New preceptors must be willing to review the preceptor web page and schedule a phone conference with the director to clarify expectations

Minimum site requirements:

•  Clinical sites (including acute care, sub-acute care, long term care or hospice) must be accredited by the Joint Commission or other appropriate accreditation agency.

•  Sites must be willing to enter into an Affiliation Agreement with Bowling Green State University.  Site generated Agreements will be reviewed by the Office of General Counsel for compatibility with the laws of the State of Ohio. 

•  Site information forms must be completed for any site at which the intern will have patient/client contact, interaction with facility employees beyond their preceptor or the general public, or act as a representative of the facility.  This requirement may be waived for experiences that involve shadowing only for one week or less.

Find a Preceptor

Clinical Site

Considerations in choosing a clinical site:
  • Community hospitals
  • Medical centers
  • Sub-acute/long term acute care facilities (LTACH).  
  • Long term care/convalescent care/nursing homes/ skilled nursing facilities do not meet this requirement
Look for sites that can provide the following experiences/skill development:

  • Nutrition screening
 and assessment
  • Charting in the medical record

  • Development of nutrition care plans

  • Interaction with members of the health care team

  • Interaction with patients

Consider sites that can provide experience in areas such as:

  • Dialysis

  • Cardiac rehabilitation

  • Diabetes self management

  • Weight loss

  • Individual medical nutrition therapy

Clinical rotation hours: 320

Your primary preceptor must be a registered dietitian. The site selection and preceptor application forms for your primary clinical rotation must be submitted with your application. Additional forms may be submitted after acceptance into the program.

In addition to an acute/sub-acute care rotation, you must also complete a long term care rotation.

Long-term care rotation hours: 96

Community Site

Considerations in choosing a community nutrition site:
  • Public Health Departments

  • Area Agencies on Aging

  • Cooperative extension

  • American Heart Association

  • American Cancer Society

  • Alzheimer’s Association

  • Migrant Head Start

  • United Way
  • Head Start
  • Food Banks
  • WIC
  • Supermarket Dietitians
  • Cooperative Extension
  • SNAP-Ed
  • Family Nutrition Program
Look for sites that can provide the following experiences/skill development:

  • Development of communication skills
  • Written articles
  • Program lecture or display development
  • Grant writing
  • Educational materials

  • Development of management skills
  • Budget development
  • Strategic planning
  • Employee scheduling

Consider sites that can provide experience in areas such as:

  • Coalition development

  • General health screenings

  • Working with under-served, vulnerable populations

  • Marketing of nutrition education programs and services

Community rotation hours: 128

It is preferred that the primary preceptor be a registered dietitian, however, other health care professionals may be appropriate. The site selection and preceptor application forms for your primary community site rotation must be submitted with your application to the program. Additional forms may be submitted after accepted into the program. 

You must also include a WIC experience.

WIC rotation hours: 64

Food Service/Management Site

Considerations in choosing a food service rotation site:

  • Hospitals

  • Long term care facilities

  • School nutrition services

  • University dining services

Look for sites that can provide the following experiences/skill development:

  • Budget development

  • Employee scheduling

  • Employee hiring process

  • Disciplinary/termination process

  • Quality assurance monitoring

  • Menu/recipe development

  • Costing of menu items

  • Develop specifications for food items and equipment

  • Sanitation and safety procedures

Your preceptor must be a registered dietitian, food service director and/or food service supervisor. It is preferable that a non-RD preceptor hold the Certified Dietary Manager credential. Site selection and preceptor application forms can be submitted after acceptance into the program.
  You can also consider getting clinical management experience in addition to experience in a food service setting.

Food Service/Management rotation hours: 128

This rotation can be completed in a healthcare, school or University setting. Keep in mind that interns are required to schedule an experience in which you will work with school age children. If your foodservice rotation is in a setting that does not include school aged children, another rotation will need to meet that criteria.

Please note: the required hours have been temporarily decreased to 1000 by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  It has been proposed that these changes be made permanent in the 2022 Accreditation Standards for Nutrition and Dietetics Internship Programs (DI).

Supervised Practice Hours Summary

Acute Care
Food Service/Management 128
Community 128
WIC 64
Client Education/MNT (individuals or group) [can include dialysis] 64
Long term Care 96
Electives/Wellness 144
Orientation/Introduction to Dietetic Internship** 56
Total 1000*

*These hours represent minimums – any rotation can be extended to and count towards the electives hours.   This is also contingent on the intern meeting entry-level competency based on completion of the required experiences.

**These hours are accumulated through the completion of case studies, trainings and simulations.

Additional Information

By applying to the BGSU Distance Internship option, interns do so with the understanding that they are required to secure all rotation types and preceptors. If a site/preceptor cannot be located, the DI Director will assist by offering contacts in the intern’s geographical location, as known and available to the director. For successful and timely completion of the program, it is critical that interns do not procrastinate reaching out to preceptors and organizing the rotation schedule.

For interns who leave or are dismissed from a site prior to completing required competency or time at the site, the internship director is not responsible for replacing that site. For interns who elect to refuse to comply with site requitements for any reason, the burden of replacing the site, preceptor, or completing supervised practice hours falls to the intern. Interns who are dismissed from a site due to disciplinary action relevant to the site are subject to additional disciplinary action relevant to the DI program’s policies and procedures.  

Distance interns are responsible for connecting the DI Director to each preceptor via email to initiate the affiliation agreement process. For distance sites that BGSU DI has an active affiliation agreement, distance interns are responsible for connecting the DI Director to the preceptor in advance of the rotation. 

Updated: 02/06/2024 05:07PM