The listing of a course description here does not guarantee a course’s being offered in a particular semester. Please refer to the published schedule of classes on the MyBU Student Portal for confirmation a class is actually being taught and for specific course meeting dates and times.
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SPH EH 750: Water Quality and Public Health
Graduate Prerequisites: EH 730 or permission of the instructor. For undergrads, course in biology or chemistry.
Adequate water supply and good water quality are critical to the public's health and for disease prevention. The processes for design and management of municipal treatment facilities and private water systems are examined -- with attention to climate change impacts. Considerations of historical contaminants (lead, cholera andfeces) and emerging contaminants (PFAS, pharmaceuticals and Harmful Algae) with regard to water treatment and sustainable solutions are emphasized. Water quality topics include standards and regulations and water quality analysis of drinking and surface waters. Social, political, and economic factors effecting water quality, treatment and access are discussed. Students are expected to participate in field sampling (during class time) in order gain useful skills.
SPH EH 757: Environmental Epidemiology
Graduate Prerequisites: EH 730 or consent from instructor.
This course introduces students to epidemiologic investigations of environmental health problems, a fundamental tool for building a sustainable and healthy future. Topics include perennial subjects such as the health effects associated with air and water contaminants and occupational exposure, as well as newer issues such as endocrine and metabolic disruptors, PFAS "forever chemicals", chemicals in consumer products, exposure to mixtures of compounds and environmental epidemiology of pets. The course emphasizes epidemiologic methods, particularly exposure assessment, confounding, and sources of bias. Students gain experience in the critical review and design of related epidemiologic studies. This course counts as concentration credit for epidemiology concentrators.
SPH EH 768: Toxicology for Environmental Health and Epidemiology
Graduate Prerequisites: *Can?t be taken together for credit with SPH EH 705
The Global Burden of Disease analysis shows that environmental factors contribute substantially to morbidity and mortality worldwide. This course is designed both to introduce fundamental concepts in toxicology and to delve more deeply into the critical elements that are necessary to explain the responses of populations to environmental hazards, with an emphasis on chemicals. This course will provide students with the tools to identify toxicological data that support the biological plausibility of a chemical exposure leading to an adverse health outcome, which is critical to strengthening associations identified by epidemiological analyses. This in-depth introduction includes toxicokinetics and toxicodynamics. Particulate matter, arsenic and perfluoroalkyl substance exposures, along with others, will be used as examples to demonstrate how toxicity and carcinogenesis can be induced in representative organs systems, including the respiratory, endocrine/reproductive, immune, and nervous systems.
SPH EH 771: Topics in Environmental Health
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH EH730
Two and four credit topics courses are offered throughout the academic year as a means of exploring new areas of study in the discipline. Topics vary by semester. Please refer to the print schedule for the specific area for any given semester.
SPH EH 795: Urban Biogeoscience and Environmental Health: From Research to Policy
This course prepares graduate students to address urban environmental challenges through hands-on training in a semester-long internship with the City of Boston, other cities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and/or private sector organizations to learn how cities are handling urban environmental challenges, including but not limited to mitigation and adaptation to climate change, protecting vulnerable populations from air pollution, and issues related to water quality and quantity. Additional requirements are one course in Biogeoscience (4 credits), one course in Environmental Health (4 credits), and one course in Statistics (4 credits).
SPH EH 797: Urban Biogeoscience and Environmental Health Applied Research Methods
This course prepares graduate students to address urban environmental challenges through hands-on training in a semester-long internship with the City of Boston, other cities, NGOs, and/or private sector organizations to learn how cities are handling urban environmental challenges, including but not limited to mitigation and adaptation to climate change, protecting vulnerable populations from air pollution, and issues related to water quality and quantity.
SPH EH 799: Urban Biogeoscience and Environmental Health Colloquium
This course introduces students to the fields of Urban Biogeoscience and Environmental Health through weekly reading, discussions, and seminars.
SPH EH 804: Field Methods in Exposure Science
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH PH 717 or SPH EH 730; or consent from instructor.
The process of assessing exposure is a critical component of occupational and environmental epidemiology, of determining compliance with health and safety regulations, and in conducting human health risk assessments. This course in exposure assessment covers the basic concepts and methods of study design, data collection, and data analysis/interpretation. Students analyze relevant case studies and conduct a study in which they develop their own exposure assessment strategy, collect and analyze data, prepare a final report, and present their findings. This class requires an outside of class time commitment.
SPH EH 805: Environmental Health Science, Policy and Law
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH EH 730; MPH integrated core courses or consent from instructor
This course teaches environmental and occupational health policy making. Our specific focus is on the examination of how scientific information (e.g., risk assessments, exposure analyses, epidemiologic studies, clinical case reports,) is used (or is not used) in policy decisions and whether these decisions explicitely protect people living in environmental justice communities. Students will learn how environmental health laws and regulations are made and challenged, and gain experience looking up laws, regulations and court decisions and will submit comments to timely rules in the public docket. Case studies feature international treaties, federal and state court cases, laws, regulations, and policies. Topic areas include air and water quality (including PFAS and microplastics), hazardous waste, environmental justice, worker safety, and climate change.
SPH EH 811: Intro GIS for Public Health
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH PH 717 or SPH EH 730; Or consent of instructor.
This course teaches principles and applications of Geographical Information Systems to analyze public health and climate data. Skills learned include basic mapping, creation and management of geospatial databases, raster and vector data structures, network-based spatial analyses, spatial statistics tools, and StoryMaps for presentations. Students develop a semester long project applying GIS skills to their field of interest, past topics included: climate change adaptation & mitigation, infectious disease transmission, health and health access disparities, sustainability studies, disaster preparedness, chronic disease epidemiology. The course includes lectures and computer lab exercises, uses ArcGIS software, and requires computer access, either personal or in the computer lab.
SPH EH 840: Advanced and Emerging Topics in Toxicology
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH EH 705 and SPH EH 730; Or Consent of instructor.
This advanced-level course builds on the content of EH705. The course uses a case study approach to teach the molecular mechanisms by which compounds exert their toxicity in addition to dose-response analyses that are applicable to regulatory toxicology. Experimental methods and toxicological data that are generated are presented and discussed for each of the case studies. The most recent literature is consulted to support the most up-to-date analyses of toxic mechanisms. Major topics include cellular mechanisms of action of toxicants as they relate to endocrine/reproductive toxicology, neurotoxicology, and immunotoxicology, and the use of these data in regulatory toxicology. Up and coming areas (e.g. microbiome) and contentious chemicals (e.g. glyphosate and PFAS) are included each year.
SPH EH 851: Advanced GIS for Public Health and Climate Research
The purpose of EH851: Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Public Health is to develop each student's capacity to design and carry out public health and climate-related geospatial analyses working with multiple GIS platforms. Students will learn how to design, create, and use a wide variety of spatial information to support analytic modeling. The emphasis will be on data integration from multiple sources to support urban health and climate change analyses including vector and remote sensing datasets. Students will explore existing case studies on how GIS is used to conduct climate change, urban health and sustainbility geospatial modeling and learn how to develop and apply similar models in their own field of interest. Topics include database design and implementation, data management, geoprocessing concepts and tools, automation of data processing and model building. Students who complete this course should be able to participate as a public health geospatial analyst in professional environments and research-oriented project teams and to work with non-GIS experts to help them understand and carry out spatial analyses.
SPH EH 866: Risk Assessment Methods
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH EH 730; SPH EH 730 may be taken concurrently or consent from instructor.
Nearly all regulatory authorities globally rely on risk assessment for decision- making. Students learn practical application of risk assessment methods to various environmental problems. The focus of the course is on human health risk assessment and teaches students to quantify the risk of adverse health effects from exposures to chemicals and microbiologicals in the environment. Students also can apply what they learn to evaluations of physical stressors . The strengths and weaknesses of risk assessment methods, the inherent uncertainties in each step, and the relationship between risk assessment and risk management are discussed. Students conduct a risk assessment and communicate process and findings in response to a community concern or other relevant topic.
SPH EH 871: Advanced Topics in Environmental Health
Two and four credits Environmental Health advanced topics classes may be available in any given semester. See the print or web-based School of Public Health semester schedule for more information pertaining to the advanced topics course for a specific semester.
SPH EH 872: Environmental Data and Exposure Modeling
Graduate Prerequisites: SPH EH 730 ; SPH BS 723 ; SPH BS 730; or consent from instructor
Suppose you need to analyze the potential risks of a proposed point source or a possible replacement chemical in a consumer product. To do this, you need to know exposures to a pollutant but you can't measure them for everyone. What do you do? Estimation of exposure is an essential skill for building a sustainable economy, evaluating regulatory compliance or permits, risk assessment, environmental epidemiology, examining environmental justice and other purposes. Students will learn how to use publicly available data and models to estimate exposure. This hands-on course develops skills in the assumptions behind and the use of equilibrium models, compartmental models and dispersion models--all widely used in the field. Sample problems include estimation of exposure from eating contaminated fish using sediment PCB concentrations, exposure to flame retardants or PFAS from biomonitoring (blood, urine) data, inhalation of air pollutants emitted by an industrial facility. This course is suitable for PhD students as well as MPH students who meet the prerequisites.
SPH EH 875: Case Studies in Environmental Decision Making
Environmental health decision making frequently occurs in complex situations and in the presence of uncertainty. In this course, students will examine 4-6 case studies about key and current topics in environmental health. Students will apply skills learned in prior courses (e.g., analytical methods for environmental management, risk assessment, exposure modeling) to evaluate and address questions related to these cases. This course will further develop skills in critical thinking, problem solving, data analysis, and communication, and is intended to promote hypothesis generation for projects to be conducted in the Capstone in Environmental Health and Management.
SPH EH 880: Capstone in Environmental Health and Management
The Capstone in Environmental Health and Management course provides a structured learning environment in which students develop, refine, and present a management solution for the student's self-identified environmental health question. The student will leverage publicly available data and information to support a management recommendation that will be shared with multiple audiences, including the legislature. This course integrates tools and methods taught in the required courses for the Environmental Health Data Analytics MS degree program.
SPH EH 914: Environmental Health Doctoral Seminar
Graduate Prerequisites: EH Doctoral students only. Consent of instructor required.
This is a doctoral-level seminar course. A new central topic in environmental health is covered each semester. Topics include carcinogenesis/mutagenesis, vaccine development and application, molecular epidemiology, microbial pathogenesis, etc. Each semester proceeds from an historical perspective, and includes both basic science and policy issues. Students are assigned readings from the literature for presentation as a formal lecture, with related discussion to be led by the student.
SPH EH 961: Directed Studies in Environmental Health
Directed Studies in Environmental Health provide the opportunity for students to explore a special topic of interest under the direction of a full-time SPH faculty member. Students may register for 1, 2, 3, or 4 credits. Directed studies with a non-SPH faculty member or an adjunct faculty member must be approved by and assigned to the department chair. To register, students must submit a paper registration form and signed directed study proposal form. Students are placed in a section by the Registrar?s Office according to the faculty member with whom they are working. Students may take no more than eight credits of directed study, directed research, or practica courses during their MPH education.
SPH EH 962: Directed Research in Environmental Health
Directed Research provide the opportunity for students to explore a special topic of interest under the direction of a full-time SPH faculty member. Students may register for 1, 2, 3, or 4 credits in any SPH academic department. To register, students must submit a paper registration form and signed directed research proposal form. Students are placed in a section by the Registrar?s Office according to the faculty member with whom they are working. Students may take no more than eight credits of directed study, directed research, or practica courses during their MPH education.