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Nutrition Science Major

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Nutrition Science

3,334 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
1,182 Master's Degrees Annually
#98 in Popularity
$83,600 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Nutrition Science Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many nutrition science graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 3,334
Master’s Degree 1,182
Doctor’s Degree 152
Graduate Certificate 105
Associate’s Degree 20
Undergraduate Certificate 1

What Nutrition Science Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to nutrition science were asked what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. They weighted these areas on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.

Knowledge Areas for Nutrition Science Majors

According to O*NET survey takers, a major in nutrition science should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:

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  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

Skills for Nutrition Science Majors

The following list of skills has been highlighted as some of the most essential for careers related to nutrition science:

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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Abilities for Nutrition Science Majors

A major in nutrition science will prepare for your careers in which the following abilities are important:

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  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

What Can You Do With a Nutrition Science Major?

People with a nutrition science degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Biological Science Professors 15.1% $82,550
Dietetic Technicians 9.3% $27,140
Dietitians and Nutritionists 14.6% $60,370
Life Scientists 9.0% $78,190
Molecular and Cellular Biologists 8.0% $79,590
Natural Sciences Managers 9.9% $123,860

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition Science?

3,334 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
83% Percent Women
39% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This is a less frequently chosen undergraduate major. Only 3,334 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in nutrition science in 2019, making it rank #98 in popularity. The major attracts more women than men. About 83% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of nutrition science majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Nutrition Science Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 434
Black or African American 138
Hispanic or Latino 576
White 1,739
International Students 201
Other Races/Ethnicities 246

Geographic Diversity

Students from other countries are interested in Nutrition Science, too. About 6.0% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • China
  • Saudi Arabia
  • India
  • Taiwan
  • South Korea

How Much Do Nutrition Science Majors Make?

Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary

Data from the U.S. Department of Education shows that nutrition science students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a bachelor’s degree made a median starting salary of $28,500 per year. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $26,900 (25th percentile) and $31,400 (75th percentile).

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It is possible that some of these people may have taken positions that were not related to nutrition science.

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $61,210 to $97,340 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to nutrition science. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Nutrition Science Major  ( 61210 to 97340 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some degrees associated with nutrition science may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to nutrition science have obtained the following education levels.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 5.8%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 13.1%
Some College Courses 1.3%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 1.0%
Bachelor’s Degree 19.2%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master. 6.7%
Master’s Degree 12.3%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 0.7%
Doctoral Degree 23.2%
Post-Doctoral Training 16.7%

Online Nutrition Science Programs

In 2018-2019, 129 schools offered a nutrition science program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 1 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 1 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 5 1
Bachelor’s Degree 7 3
Post-Baccalaureate 1 0
Master’s Degree 86 14
Post-Master’s 5 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 46 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Nutrition Science Worth It?

The median salary for a nutrition science grad is $83,600 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 110% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $874,000 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to nutrition science.

Major Number of Grads
Other Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 37,392
Biological & Physical Science 29,278
International Studies 7,967
Interdisciplinary Studies 6,609
Behavioral Science 3,731
Natural Sciences 2,571
Cognitive Science 2,275
Sustainability Science 2,194
Human Biology 1,460
Peace Studies & Conflict Resolution 1,310
Gerontology 1,281
Human Computer Interaction 1,272
Science, Technology & Society 1,171
Mathematics & Computer Science 1,105
Computational Science 927
Systems Theory 917
Museum Studies 801
Dispute Resolution 668
Historic Preservation 433
Multicultural & Diversity Studies 424
Classical & Ancient Studies 303
Marine Science 275
Cultural Studies & Analysis 227
Biopsychology 165
Medieval Studies 108
Accounting & Computer Science 71
Maritime Studies 45
Holocaust Studies 40

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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