The Toxicology and Environmental Health Ph.D. program teaches an essential core of knowledge in toxicology, environmental health, occupational hygiene, epidemiology, and biostatistics. Students gain the experience and tools needed to specialize in the field through elective courses, field studies and laboratory rotations. 

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Requirements

The doctoral program in Toxicology and Environmental Health is a 58-credit (minimum) professional degree. Dependent upon entry level qualifications, all PhD students will complete a minimum of 12 credits in Toxicology and Environmental and Occupational Health, two Laboratory Rotations for 3 credits each, 3 credits of Environmental Health seminar, 6 credits each to cover the Basic Biostatistics and Epidemiology courses, 1 credit in Scientific Ethics, and 6 credits in each of two specialized areas:

  • Advanced Epidemiology and Biostatistics
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Pharmacology
  • Pathology/Immunology/Microbiology 
  • Environmental Science/Ecology/Climate
  • Environmental Justice

Students without prior training in physiology are recommended to take mammalian physiology or an equivalent course before matriculation, or during the first semester. Attendance at Environmental Health Seminars is required even if students are not enrolled in the seminar class that semester. 

Competencies

Upon graduation a student should be able to: 

  • Synthesize toxicological and environmental health knowledge identifying opportunities to advance the field of toxicology and environmental health.
  • Develop testable hypotheses that will advance the field toxicology and environmental health.
  • Design and conduct research studies, analyze data and test hypotheses that advance the science of toxicology and environmental health.
  • Effectively communicate results of research to the scientific community.
  • Communicate research results in a way that makes new knowledge accessible to policymakers and stakeholders.
  • Demonstrate commitment to environmental health equity.
  • Demonstrate commitment to engaging impacted communities and populations in applied, action-oriented environmental health research.

Curriculum

  Course Credit
Toxicology & Env. & 
Occupational Health
MIEH 720 Principles of Toxicology 3
MIEH 740 Risk Assessment 3
MIEH 770 Law and Policy in Env. Health 3
MIEH 771 Exposure Assessment 3
Basic Epidemiology and Biostatistics EPIB 610 Epidemiology I 3
EPIB611 Epidemiology II 3
EPIB 650 Biostatistics I 3
EPIB 651 Biostatistics II 3
Advanced Epidemiology*
(examples)
MIEH xxx Molecular Epidemiology Env. Health 3
MIEH 760 Spatial Epidemiology 3
EPIB 655 Longitudinal Data Analysis 3
Environmental Justice* MIEH 770 Law & Policy 3
MIEH 730 Environmental Justice 3
MIEH 740 Risk Assessment 3
Advanced Env. Science/Ecology/Climate* (examples) MEES 698E Ecosystem Restoration 3
MEES 608C Diseases in Chesapeake Bay 3
AOSC 633 Atmospheric Chem & Climate 3
Analytical Chemistry* Discuss options w/advisor 3
Pharmacology* Discuss options w/advisor 3
Pathol/Immunol/Microbiol*
(examples)
MIEH 773 Foodborne, Waterborne and Airborne Infectious Disease 3
CBMG 688L Bacterial Pathogenesis 3
CBMG 699X Host Pathogen Interactions 3
Other Requirements EPIB 641 Ethics in Public Health 1
TOX 609 Methods in Toxicology (Lab Rotation) 6
MIEH 688 Environmental Health Seminar 3
HLTH 665 Health Behavior 3
HLSA 601 Health Service Administration 3
Dissertation TOXI 899 Dissertation 12

* Choose two areas of specialization for at least six credits in each area. For the two sets of 6 credits of specialization the table only lists some examples of specialization and courses to meet the requirement for this PhD program. To meet the specific criteria students are advised that in addition to those suggestions, students may take advantage of additional courses offered, e.g. in Pharmacology, on any of the campuses of the University System of Maryland, as long as they take the indicated number of hours of credit from courses offered in each subject area of specialization. The areas of specialization and specific courses are subject to pre-approval by their advisor and final approval by the examining committee.

Dissertation

After passing the written and oral qualifying examinations the student will be admitted to candidacy and the examining committee will serve as the thesis committee. The candidate will then write a dissertation research proposal in consultation with the committee, submit the written proposal to the committee at least 2 weeks prior to a scheduled oral defense of the proposal, and finalize the proposal following the oral defense. During the course of the research, the candidate will meet with the committee at least once every six months and the mentor/chair will submit a progress report, signed by all committee members, to the director of the Toxicology and Environmental Health Track at UMCP following each meeting. The Ph.D. dissertation shall contain a minimum of three chapters containing complete papers published or submitted for publication to peer-reviewed scientific journals prior to the examination, together with such introductory, summary, and supporting materials as deemed appropriate by the thesis committee. The procedures for the dissertation defense and examining committee are as specified in the Graduate School Catalog.