The CDM Credentialing Exam—offered since 1985—is part of the competency assurance program for dietary managers. A Certified Dietary Manager, Certified Food Protection Professional (CDM®, CFPP® ) has the education and experience to competently perform the responsibilities of a dietary manager and has proven this by passing the nationally-recognized CDM Credentialing Exam and fulfilling the requirements needed to maintain certified status. CDM, CFPPs work together with Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) to provide quality nutritional care for clients in a variety of non-commercial settings and perform a myriad of specialized tasks.
The Certifying Board for Dietary Managers (CBDM) is the credentialing agency responsible for establishing and upholding policies for and the administration of the CBDM Certification Program. CBDM has autonomy in decision-making for all essential certification policies and activities as demonstrated in the CBDM Policies and Procedures Manual and in accordance with CBDM bylaws.
The CDM Credentialing Exam is administered by PSI Services, LLC (PSI). A survey is conducted and analyzed every five years, in which CDM, CFPPs are asked to review the exam content outline and identify the percentage of time spent performing tasks related to each category of the exam. CBDM then utilizes the survey results to finalize the exam content outline, and develops the exam based on this outline. The CBDM Certification Program is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). The Exam Content Outline is available here.
The CDM Credentialing Exam is intended to measure the knowledge and abilities of individuals who wish to enter, continue and/or advance in the discipline of managing and/or directing foodservice operations. Candidates applying for the CDM Credentialing Exam must show verifiable evidence of meeting formal education requirements (including coursework in nutrition and foodservice management) from an accredited post-secondary education institution as well as varying levels of non-commercial foodservice management experience required to competently perform the responsibilities of a Certified Dietary Manager, Certified Food Protection Professional.
Earning and maintaining the CDM, CFPP credential demonstrates to employers, surveyors and the public, that CDM, CFPPs have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform the responsibilities as included in the Exam Content Outline.
Pathway I: for graduates of an ANFP-approved foodservice manager training program. Candidate must submit a certificate of course completion and their name must appear on the official graduate list that is sent to ANFP by the college/school.
Pathway II: for graduates of a two-year, four-year or greater, college degree in foodservice management, nutrition, culinary arts, or hotel-restaurant management. Candidates must submit a copy of their transcript* with exam application. Transcript requirements must include a minimum of one course in nutrition and two courses in foodservice management.
Pathway III(a): for graduates of a comprehensive, minimum 90-hour, foodservice course curriculum, who also have two years of full-time non-commercial foodservice management work experience.** Candidates must submit a copy of their transcript* and employment verification with exam application. Transcript requirements must include a minimum of one course in nutrition and two courses in foodservice management.
Pathway III(b): for graduates of the classroom and online instructional portion of an ANFP-approved foodservice manager training program, who also have two years of full-time non-commercial foodservice management work experience.** Candidates must submit a copy of a certificate of course completion, their name must appear on the official graduate listing that is sent to ANFP by the college/school and they must submit employment verification with exam application.
Pathway IV: for current and former members of the U.S. military who have graduated from a military dietary manager, foodservice manager or culinary arts training program that is a minimum of 90 hours of foodservice management training. Candidates must submit their Joint Services Transcript (JST) as documentation of military training. Two courses in foodservice management and one in nutrition is required. Two years of noncommercial foodservice management experience is required as verified on the JST or the Employer Verification Form.
Pathway V: for graduates with an alternate two-year, four-year or higher degree. Candidates must have a minimum of five years of full-time non-commercial foodservice management work experience.** Candidates must submit a copy of their transcript* and employment verification with exam application. Transcript requirements must include a minimum of one course in nutrition and two courses in foodservice management.
*All coursework must be completed through an accredited post-secondary education institution and a passing grade of C or higher earned. The school must have been accredited when the individual graduated from the school's program.
**Non-commercial foodservice operations serve food as support within an institution such as hospitals, nursing homes, schools, military, correctional facilities, or community feeding programs and are typically subsidized by the institution from which they operate. They have third-party oversight by agencies such as The Joint Commission (TJC), local and/or state health departments, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), etc.
Individuals applying for the exam must meet CBDM criteria for eligible work experience.
For more information about related CBDM policy, please refer to the CDM Credentialing Exam Candidate Handbook.
For questions regarding the eligibility pathways, please contact CBDM at 800.323.1908 or info@CBDMonline.org.
Denial of Exam Eligibility
You may be denied a seat for the exam if you:
- Fail to meet one of the current eligibility pathways.
- Falsify any information on the examination application.
- Violate registration or examination rules. Disciplinary actions will be determined by the CBDM on a per-case basis.
- Fail to report address or e-mail changes to ANFP or CBDM resulting in you not receiving information crucial for the exam.
- Fail to submit proper documentation within the required time frame.
- Any evidence of falsification or misrepresentation relative to certification status.
Applicants who are denied eligibility have an opportunity to appeal to CBDM. To submit an appeal, you must do so in accordance with CBDM policy and use the CBDM Appeal Form.
CBDM will convene to hear appeals quarterly. Deadlines for submitting appeals are March 31, June 30, September 30, and December 31.
The decision of CBDM will be conveyed in writing to the appellant via e-mail and hard copy letter to the address on file in their record within 15 days of the CBDM's quarterly meeting after the above deadlines. An appellant may choose to appeal CBDM's decision by submitting their written intent to appeal to CBDM Appeals Committee at appeals@CBDMonline.org. The e-mail must also include the appellant's name, e-mail address, and mailing addresses in their ANFP record. The CBDM Appeals Committee will be presented the same appeal that the appellant submitted to CBDM. No new information will be presented. The decision of the CBDM Appeals Committee is final.
For more information about the appeals process, refer to the CBDM Guide to Maintaining Your CDM, CFPP Credential.
NFEF is proud to support grant opportunities for eligible nutrition and foodservice professionals and students. The CDM Credentialing Exam Grant will be awarded in the form of a $399 credit and will be set up on the recipient's online account at www.ANFPonline.org. If selected for this grant, the recipient will have 90 days from the notification date to qualify for the exam under a current pathway of eligibility and complete the exam registration process. After CBDM notice of eligibility and then notice from PSI, the examination services provider, with information on how to register for the exam, the recipient must schedule and complete the exam within 90 days. For more information about the CDM Credentialing Exam eligibility and exam administration policy and procedure, refer to the CDM Credentialing Exam Candidate Handbook.
Learn more at www.NFEFoundation.org.