Quick Facts - MSNCHP
Master of Science in Nutrition and Clinical Health Psychology (MSNCHP)
- Bachelor's degree
- Cumulative 3.0 GPA minimum in undergraduate coursework and nutrition classes
- 3.25 GPA in the prerequisite classes and science coursework. See the prerequisite tab for more detailed information
- Recommended: volunteer experience relevant to nutrition
Length of Program
3 years, full time
- Mental health counselor
- Lifestyle/behavior change counselor
- Counselor for patients with eating disorders
- School counselor
- Mental health and substance abuse social worker
- Rehabilitation counselors
- Marriage and family counselor
- Nutrition consultant
- Nutrition educator
- Prevention and wellness coach or consultant
- Corporate wellness consultant
See examples of how our graduates use their nutrition and psychology degrees.
Where are Nutritionists Licensed?
Forty-six states have statutory provisions regarding professional regulation of nutritionists. To find specific scopes of practice for individual states, go to the state’s Department of Health Professional Licensing information page.
Where are mental health counselors licensed?
Every state has a specialized licensing program. In the state of Washington it is necessary to complete 3,000 post-graduate supervised hours before submitting an application to obtain licensure as a mental health counselor; however, you are eligible for employment as a counselor and to take the state licensing exam upon commencement.
Program Summary - MSNCHP
In the Master of Science in Nutrition & Clinical Psychology (MSNCHP) program, you'll study the dynamic relationship between nutrition and mental health.
The MSNCHP program integrates training in nutritional counseling and mental health counseling, leading to licensure as a mental health counselor. The program includes a supervised practicum with diverse patients and a wide range of patient complaints, including chronic disease (diabetes, hypertension), depression/anxiety, ADHD and eating disorders.
MSNCHP students must complete at least 118 credits (79 credits in residence) with a minimum 3.0 GPA. MSNCHP students must complete their degree within six years following matriculation into the program. A graduation requirement of the MSNCHP program is that students must complete 600 hours of supervised counseling (including hours in counseling classes at BCNH and its satellites and external practicum sites), of which 100 hours need to be in nutrition counseling.
In addition to the didactic and clinical experience, MSNCHP students are required to complete 10 hours of individual counseling or therapy before their counseling shift at the BCNH. Counseling may occur at the Bastyr Counseling Center or with a private counselor of the student's choice. Documentation of these hours is required.
Successful completion of a clinical competency exit examination is a requirement for students in the third year of the MSNCHP. This examination tests the minimal knowledge and skills required to perform nutritional and mental health counseling with diverse clients. The examination does not cover the whole curriculum and cannot substitute for any part of regular course requirements. Students are eligible to schedule the exit exam if they are in good academic standing, have completed or are concurrently registered for all required (non-elective) courses by the end of the term in which they want to take the exam, and are making satisfactory progress in the practicum.
Students are required to maintain a 3.0 GPA in their graduate course work. Bastyr graduates are qualified to provide exceptional nutrition and counseling services to individuals and institutions and contribute positively to the nutritional and mental health education of the community.
Students are expected to stay on track with the counseling curriculum. Students who wish to go off track must have permission from the director of clinical training.
Curriculum - MSNCHP
The curriculum table below lists the tentative schedule of courses each quarter. Next to each course is the number of credits per course (Crdt.), the lecture hours each week (Lec.) and the lab/clinic hours each week (L/C).
Expected Learning Outcomes
The Department of Nutrition and Exercise Science has established the following expected learning outcomes for all Master of Science in Nutrition programs:
- Biological/Medical Sciences
- Quantitative Reasoning/Critical Thinking/Research
- Whole Foods and Natural Medicine
- Physical Activity
- Promotion of the University's and the Department's mission and vision
Expected learning outcomes specific to MSN-Clinical Health Psychology are:
- Provide culturally appropriate nutrition and mental health assessment and individualized intervention strategies
- Effectively utilize a breadth of counseling and health behavior change skills as appropriate
- Continuously develop professional competence that reflects both supervisor feedback and self-assessment
- Display ethical behaviors in all aspects of counseling practice, case management and interdisciplinary collaboration of care
Curriculum and course changes in the 2013-2014 Bastyr University Catalog are applicable to students entering during the 2013-2014 academic year. Please refer to the appropriate catalog if interested in curriculum and courses required for any other entering year.Click here to download the PDF file.
Prerequisites - MSNCHP
Priority consideration is given to applicants with the following GPA scores:
- 3.25 in prerequisite coursework (all classes listed as specific prerequisites)
- 3.25 cumulative GPA in science prerequisites with a B or better in Human Physiology, Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry and Microbiology
- 3.0 in nutrition coursework
- 3.0 cumulative undergraduate coursework
Exceptional candidates who do not meet these priority standards will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Entering students must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college/university and must have completed the following courses:
|Human PhysiologyA full series of anatomy and physiology will meet this requirement.||5 quarter credits|
|Chemistry (science-major level with lab)Chemistry courses must include at least one course in organic chemistry.||3 courses|
|Nutrition||5 quarter credits or 3 semester credits|
|BiochemistryThe biochemistry course must be upper-level and must cover intermediary metabolism.||1 course|
|College Algebra||1 course|
|Abnormal Psychology||1 course|
|Developmental Psychology||1 course|
|Microbiology||3 quarter credits|
Clinical Training - MSNCHP
It is well documented that emotional and psychological imbalance can upset bodily systems just as much as poor nutrition. Become uniquely qualified to address the biochemistry of the mind and body with a Master of Science in Nutrition and Clinical Health Psychology (MSNCHP).
Your education at Bastyr University will include real-world clinical training at Bastyr Center for Natural Health, leading you to a professional credential in the fields of mental health counseling and nutrition, with job opportunities ranging from case manager at a community agency to working at an eating disorders clinic or owning a private practice as a counselor or nutritionist.
From time in the classroom to clinical training and beyond, you will be guided by Bastyr faculty members who are experienced nutritionists, whole-food dietitians, psychologists, counselors, researchers and experts on body-mind integration.
Diverse Patient Population
The unique approach of the MSNCHP program allows you to work with a range of clients during three quarters of clinical training at Bastyr Center, our Seattle teaching clinic.
The rotation begins in your second year with 11 weeks of clinical training as a counselor, putting your basic counseling and assessment skills to work as you assist clients with mental health issues and relational and psychological issues. In the second quater, the focus switches to nutrition counseling, allowing you to help clients with nutrition-focused issues, including chronic illnesses and food allergies.
The rotation culminates in the third quarter with a nine-week "Weigh to Go" weight management and lifestyle program, which integrates both the counseling and nutrition segments. You will co-facilitate group sessions and meet with program participants individually.
Patient Contacts/Training Hours
- The three quarters of clinical training at Bastyr Center amount to 132 hours, with each rotation focusing on a different area of study: counseling, nutrition and the integrated "Weigh to Go" program.
- This clinical training helps prepare you for a carefully chosen nine-month practicum at a community agency, working 16 to 20 hours a week, with 40 percent of your time working in direct contact with clients.
- Practicum site examples include Sound Mental Health, YWCA, Monarch Children's Justice and Advocacy Center and Compass Health.
Frequently Asked Questions - MSNCHP
Can I join both the CHP & Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) tracks?
Yes. It will take an extra year to complete your degree but it is possible. Because the DPD track has slightly different admission requirements it is recommended that prospective students apply for that track and then work with an advisor to add the CHP upon acceptance.
Can I join both the CHP & Nutrition Research tracks?
Yes, although students should be aware that class-schedule conflicts could arise. Core research classes and core psychology classes are not expressly accommodated in scheduling.
Is the MSNCHP program CACREP-accredited?
No. CACREP (Counsel for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs) is a national movement to standardize licensure and education for mental health counseling since mental health licensure requirements vary substantially from state to state. Our program is designed to meet the Washington state mental health licensure requirements and to prepare students to take the National Counseling Examination, which certain states require for licensure. Students planning to practice outside of Washington state following graduation should check on the individual licensing requirements for their state to determine whether additional coursework may be required.
What is the underlying psychological philosophy or emphasis of the program?
Bastyr University’s MSNCHP program does not rely solely on one paradigm, though the program has a unique focus in health psychology and as such incorporates the biopsychosocial model across all areas of curriculum. The curriculum also incorporates an array of theories so students can decide as providers what to offer their clients. The program also includes attention to diversity issues across the curriculum.
Is the Certified Nutritionist credential recognized outside of the state of Washington?
This varies by state. Students planning to practice outside of Washington state following graduation should check on the individual health professional licensing requirements for their state to determine scope of practice for nutrition services.
Will I be a licensed mental health counselor upon graduation?
No, you will be required to work as a mental health counselor with a supervisor signing off on your hours. In the state of Washington it is necessary to complete 3,000 post-graduate supervised hours before submitting an application to obtain licensure as a mental health counselor. However, you are eligible for employment as a counselor and to take the state licensing exam upon commencement.
Tuition for Master's & Doctoral Degrees
Average first-year costs for a typical credit load in the 2013-2014 academic year.The first year is considered fall, winter and spring quarters.
Average CreditsFirst year.
Tuition & FeesFees include a $25 quarterly student activity fee. See the University Catalog for a full schedule of fees.
Books & Supplies
TotalThe budget used to determine financial-aid eligibility allows for an additional $21,600 for a 9-month period of living expenses.
|Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine||78.5||$31,864||$6,425||$38,289|
|Master of Science in Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine||68||
|Master of Science in Acupuncture||66||$28,014||$3,300||$31,860|
|Combined BS/MS in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine||68||$28,630||$3,400||$32,576|
|Master of Science in Ayurvedic Sciences||37||$19,897||$1,850||$20,987|
|Master of Science in Nutrition (all tracks)Average first-year credit loads for nutrition master programs vary: Didactic Program in Dietetics (40 credits), Research (44), Nutrition and Clinical Health Psychology (47).||44||
|Master of Science in Midwifery $3,000 in extra transportation costs are automatically added for out-of-state students. Midwifery students living in Washington will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis for this addition.||42.5||$22,470||$2,125||$24,595|
|Combined BS/MS in Midwifery||42.5||$22,470||$2,125||$24,595|
|Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology||36||$22,470||$1,800||$24,270|
See also Financial Aid at Bastyr
PLEASE NOTE: For financial aid purposes, cost of attendance also includes $21,600 per nine months to cover room & board, transportation, and miscellaneous expenses.