Paper Type

Doctoral Dissertation


Brooks College of Health

Degree Name

Doctor of Clinical Nutrition (DCN)


Nutrition & Dietetics

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Nutrition & Dietetics

First Advisor

Dr. Andrea Arikawa

Second Advisor

Dr. Laurie Wright

Third Advisor

Dr. Jenifer Ross

Department Chair

Dr. Andrea Arikawa

College Dean

Dr. Curt Lox


There is a large gap between minority representation in the field of dietetics and the United States population, and nutrition students need advanced cultural competence training in preparation for future work with diverse populations. Universal recommendations for delivering and evaluating cultural competence training in nutrition programs are non-existent, and students tend to lack understanding of how to develop this skill. Service-learning in underserved communities with reflective assignments have been used to develop cultural competence skills, but most reported results are anecdotal. This non-randomized mixed methods study sought to find out if a service-learning experience improves intercultural competence of nutrition students more than a self-guided approach. The intervention involved completing a pre-and-post IDI survey, a two-week service-learning experience in the city of New Orleans or self-guided approach with reflective assignments, and post-experience focus groups. Students were recruited through brief informational announcements during classes and via email. Wilcoxin Ranked Signs results indicated improved IDI scores for both the control and experimental groups and there was evidence of skill attainment when reflective assignments were compared to the Campinha-Bacote Model of Cultural Competence.

Included in

Nutrition Commons