How do I start the application process to become licensed as a licensed dietitian nutritionist in Pennsylvania?


In Pennsylvania Registered Dietitians Nutritionists (RDNs) and Clinical Nutrition Specialists (CNSs) can apply for a professional license on the Pennsylvania Department of State’s online Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS). Applicants should begin by registering (Found on the left side menu) for an account.


How much is the application fee?

The State charges a non-refundable application fee of $95.00.


In addition to the application, what else is required to complete the process?

The State requires all health-related licensees to complete training in recognizing and reporting child abuse. Please refer to the page on Act 31for further details.


Applicants must also submit a Criminal History Records Check (CHRC) from the state police or other state agency from every state in which they have lived in the past 10 years.  These must be completed within 90 days from the date of the application. Pennsylvania residents will have an automatic application to the State Police and the fee for the background check will be added to the application fee, payable upon checkout.  The background check (PATCH) from the Pennsylvania State Police will be sent directly to the Board.


For applicants who have lived outside of Pennsylvania, in addition to the PATCH and in lieu of obtaining state background checks from every state of residence, an applicant may choose to complete an FBI Identity History Summary Check.


The State also requires the regionally accredited secondary school issuing the Board-approved degree (Bachelor or higher degree) to submit an official transcript.  The major course of study must be in human nutrition, food and nutrition, dietetics or food system management. Refer to the education requirements section of the statute for additional details.  This must be submitted directly to the Board by the school.


Finally, the Board requires proof of registration by the Commission on Dietetic Registration for Registered Dietitians-Nutritionists or the Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists for Certified Nutrition Specialists.  A statement of verification must be submitted directly to the Board by the certifying agency.  Registered Dietitians Nutritionists should request a Pennsylvania-specific verification statement be submitted.


What if I encounter issues during the application process?

If you are having issues with the login process, you can contact the Help Center.This will require your Social Security number to assist with access.

Or for login or any other issue,  you may submit a ticket to the PALS Support Desk.

If you need to directly contact the Board of Nursing

Phone: 717-783-7142 or email: ST-NURSE@PA.GOV