New York Medical College

School of Health Sciences and Practice

Environmental Health Sciences Course Descriptions


ENV 5001 Environmental Influences on Human Health
This survey of the major environmental determinants of human health covers physical, chemical and biological sources of exposure; routes of exposure in humans; etiology of environmental disease and mortality; and the complexities of environmental public policy. Topics include airborne pollution, contaminated water and food, solid and hazardous waste, and risk assessment as a tool for regulation. Students have the opportunity to tour a local public works facility.

ENV 6001 Principles of Occupational Health
This course explores the historical background of work and health, recognition and prevention of occupational disease and injury, hazardous exposures at the workplace, including chemicals, ionizing radiation, noise, stress and shift work, injuries and disorders by organ system, and considers selected groups of workers such as agricultural and construction workers.

ENV 6005 Industrial Hygiene
Designed to familiarize professionals with the methods used by industrial hygienists in the prevention of occupational diseases, this course covers such topics as the physical form of air contaminants, air sampling and analysis, engineering controls, and the preparation of survey protocols.

ENV 6006 Public Health Engineering
Environmental, sanitation, and engineering problems are explored. Topics include communicable and non-infectious diseases, water and waste water treatment, solid waste, food protection, vector control, and noise.

ENV 6009 Air Pollution
This course explores air pollution in terms of measurements and control, pollutant dispersion, air quality standards and health effects. The legal and enforcement aspects of air pollution control and the nature and quantity of atmospheric emission from vehicles, incinerators and specific industries are reviewed.

ENV 6010 Principles of Food Safety and Hygiene
The course explains what safe food is and how to provide it; the classes supply information on the FDA Food Code, and public health related aspects of food safety. Students will learn to determine and define safe food handling practices. Included in the course will be HACCP & Sanitation techniques, which provide information on safe and regulatory compliant practices ranging from purchasing and receiving food to properly washing the dishes. This course also provides insights into common regulatory compliance issues such as correcting time and temperature abuses, cross-contamination, personal hygiene practices, biological, chemical and physical hazards; proper cleaning and sanitizing; waste and pest management; and the basic principles of HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points).

ENV 6013 Safety Engineering and Occupational Health
This course focuses on current aspects of safety engineering and occupational health, with emphasis on safety program management and evaluation. Course content is directed toward areas covered by the Certified Safety Professional Board examination.

ENV 6014 Ergonomics
This course focuses on ergonomics as a multidisciplinary preventive science concerned with the design and redesign of work environments, work stations, machines, tooling, office organization, selection of equipment and methods of material handling based upon human characteristics and capabilities, and training employees in using equipment and performing tasks in a more healthful and comfortable manner. The course also focuses on the investigation of environmental factors such as light, acoustics, temperature, humidity, and air quality, which affect employees and the manner in which they conduct their work.

ENV 6015 Safety Assessment and Monitoring
This course employs a case analysis method in examining advanced ergonomic topics, safety design, disaster planning, safety performance evaluation, accident investigation and analysis, and safety analytical methodology. Professional practice modules are included.

ENV 6017 Pollution and Waste Management
Principal man-made contaminants of air, water, and soil stemming from habitats, transportation, industry, and agriculture are examined. Also reviewed are water and sewage treatment, recycling of resources, methods of treatment and disposal of solid waste, and control and preventive measures designed to alleviate the adverse effects of hazardous chemicals.

ENV 6018 Fundamentals of Toxicology
This course stresses basic concepts essential to the understanding of the action of exogenous chemical agents on biological systems. Principles underlying the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination of chemicals are discussed. Toxic kinetics, specific classes of toxic responses, and experimental methods used to assess toxicity are reviewed. Emphasis is placed on developing the skills necessary to approach toxicology as a quantitative science.

ENV 6025 Environmental Epidemiology and Risk Assessment
This course features the population approach to environmental and occupational health problems. Epidemiologic research methods and study design issues are explored, focusing on disease clusters, surveillance activity characterizing human exposure, biomarkers, summary risk assessment, and communication. Public awareness, policy implications, and impact upon legislation are also addressed.

ENV 6026 Public Health and Water Quality
This course addresses drinking water and waste water systems from a public health perspective and closely examines the water quality regulations impacting these two public works areas. The course provides an historical overview and includes discussion of the health effects of water-related diseases. Water quality criteria, water standards, regulations and physical-chemical technologies are examined, along with regulatory monitoring and reporting, through the review of case studies. Watershed and reservoir management, protection and storage, and household plumbing are also examined. Field trips are arranged.

ENV 6027 Environmental Law and Management
This course provides an overview of the applicable legal processes designed to address public health and environmental concerns.  The goal of environmental law is to achieve safe water, air and the environment. 
NYMC Faculty and Distinguished Environmental Legal Experts will guide this course from the inception and historical basis of environmental law through the methods employed for functional execution of the statutes and regulations at the Federal, State and Local levels.  Special focus is assigned to the projected evolution of legal processes needed looking forward at 21st century environmental issues. 

ENV 6028 Radiation Hazards and Protection
This course provides the student with the principles of radiation safety and health. Radiation safety is that area of environmental health science that addresses the protection of the individual and population groups from the harmful effects of ionizing radiation, both in the community and at the workplace. Course lectures cover fundamental topics in radiation safety and exposure control, including physics of radiation production,
atomic and nuclear structure, interaction of radiation with matter, and the health effects of chronic and acute radiation exposure.

ENV6029: Food Safety Policy
The course provides an overview of policy approaches to ensure the safety of food. Recent cases and stories, including tainted strawberries, infected chickens, E. coli and Salmonella infections, and mad cow disease have added to these concerns. Both nationally and globally, people are not only demanding more food, but also a safe supply of food. Globalization of the food supply has increased the risk of spreading food-borne diseases internationally. Food safety issues are thus increasingly tied to global trade agreements and are the most important cause of non-tariff trade barriers. Public concern towards the residues of pesticides used in agriculture and food production has led to changes in pesticide use and environmental policies worldwide. Safety issues also drive these policy changes. For example, recently passed Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) in the U.S. demands new standards for pesticide residue tolerances in raw and processed foods. Food Safety issues is also controversial for the products developed through genetic engineering and biotechnology. In addition, new safety standards are being considered for the food produced through organic agriculture.

ENV6030: Food, Bugs, and Poisons - The Science of Food Safety
The course provides an overview of the science underlying several key areas of food science and regulator concerns, including: contaminants, adulterations, spoilage, and chemical and biological threat. The curriculum includes a study of the scientific basis of food handling, regulatory law, regulatory inspection and enforcement. The interplay between science, regulatory decisions, and the interpretation of food law will he highlighted. Using case study analysis, students will be given the opportunity to examine approaches for determining best practices in food safety including addressing scientific, regulatory and administrative guidelines.

ENV 6041 Genetic and Environmental Factors in Human Disease
Diseases and maladies result from complex interactions between an individual’s genetic make-up and the environmental agents and microbes that he or she is exposed to.  In our daily environment mold, air pollution, cleaning solutions and pesticides and dust mites can pose a recurrent health challenge.   Heritable genetic factors cause some people to respond distinctly when exposed to the same environmental agent.  As a result, some individuals are unlikely to develop a disease through an environmental insult, while others are much more vulnerable.  Recently scientists have gained insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying these individually unique responses connection between genetics and environmental factors, and how that connection may influence human disease.  This course explores these emerging determinants of environmental disease.

ENV 6042 Public Health Risk Assessment
This course will provide a basic understanding of the use of risk assessment principles in public health decision-making as it relates to exposure from environmental chemicals. The course will include the basic principles, concepts and applications of risk assessment, including exposure assessment, hazard identification, dose-response evaluation, risk management, risk communication and uncertainty/variability. The major goal of the course is to introduce students to the real world applications of environmental human health risk assessment.

ENV 6043 Environmental Health Policy
This course explores the complex and frequently contentious process of environmental policy development and formulation. All levels of government are examined, but the primary focus is at the federal level and the role of the EPA in implementing policy. Topics include: stages of the policy life cycle; the political context of policy formation; economic aspects of environmental regulation; role of the judiciary in policymaking; and, case studies in policy.

ENV 6044 Exposure Assessment and Monitoring Metrics
Exposure assessment is an essential tool for understanding, managing, controlling, and reducing occupational health risks in large and small workplaces. Data from exposure assessments are used in improving conditions in the workplace as well as in toxicology, epidemiology, and engineering studies. While important gains have been made in creating new methods and detecting even lower exposures for some substances and agents, numerous important challenges remain. For example, the benefits of exposure assessment are still not realized in many workplaces. Many substances, agents, and stressors lack exposure methods. Exposure data are not currently aggregated on a national basis to support improved priority setting for occupational health. This course focuses on existing techniques as well as the development of new approaches for the measurement and control of the same four broad stressor categories, chemical, physical, biological and ergonomic stressors in public and private workplaces and environments.

ENV 6045 Industrial Toxicology
Toxicology is the study of adverse effects of chemical agents (xenobiotics) on living organisms.  In this course, principles underlying the absorption, distribution, biotransformation, and elimination of foreign chemicals from the body are presented.  Experimental methods and animal models used to assess toxic effects of chemicals are discussed.  Toxic effects of specific chemicals, i.e., pesticides, metals, solvents and vapors, and radioactive chemicals are also addressed.  Major air pollutants and contaminants of soil and water that pose a risk to humans are reviewed.  Methods of risk assessment, and governmental legislation and regulations designed to limit exposure to hazardous chemicals are considered.

ENV 6047 Molecular Basis of Environmental and Occupational Health
This course explores the effect of environmental risk factors on human health and/or human diseases through the discipline of DNA RNA (genomics), protein (proteomics) as molecular basis to predict the causes of human health implications/diseases or to assess a biased systemic response on human health intervention following the exposure of environmental factors which include pathogen (bacterial, virus, fungi, etc.), chemical exposure, biological weapon, radiation exposure, stem cell, birth control and misusage of medicine. It also provides an understanding of the underlying human disease pathogenesis, diagnostic workflow for detection, assessment and measurement. The concept of molecular basis of environment approach can reduce risk factors as well as make prediction with advanced diagnostic measurement which enhances the detection level of environmental factors that affect human health. With advent of molecular medicine or personalized genomics in clinics, this course helps students to understand the interaction between healthcare and environment capability (i.e., pharmacogenomics and metabolomics) and how to apply those featured biotechnology mounted interpretation skills. This course also describes the methodology of risk assessment skills along with integrative bio-technology features which include the field of molecular basis toxicology, bioinformatics, drug discovery and monitoring personalized human health with functional and systemic biology which are supplemented with cutting-edge of modern nanotechnology and biomedical imaging applications.

ENV 0000 Children and the Environment
This course will introduce students to the importance and effects of environmental exposures in early life on health and development. A central focus of this course is the discovery of, mechanisms underlying, and the prevention of diseases in children that are associated with exposures to harmful contaminants in the environment. A brief introduction to developmental toxicology and the influence of environmental exposures in early life on health and development across the entire human life span with an emphasis on “windows of toxicity” will be presented. How healthy environments protect children’s health and nurture growth and development will also be discussed.

ENV 6092 Seminar in Environmental Health Science
This seminar explores new and novel areas relevant to environmental health science. The course also serves as a venue for responding to opportunities for engaging in notable speakers in the operational and policy areas of environmental and occupational health.

ENV 7090 Field Experience in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
An opportunity to apply theory by working in an approved public health organization or equivalent is provided to the student. Field work is supervised by a faculty member who serves as liaison to the health organization.

ENV 7091 Directed Research in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
This course provides advanced study and research in an area chosen by the student in consultation with the professor as well as opportunities for work on special problems.

ENV 7093 Tutorial in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
This course involves comprehensive individual study of a specific topic, guided by the professor.

ENV 7095 Thesis
Under special circumstances, and with prior approval of the department chair, Environmental Health students my write a thesis as an alternative to the Environmental Health capstone course
It is expected that the thesis will include some independent research and integration of skills acquired by the student through coursework. The thesis includes formulation of research questions, methods to carry out the inquiry and presentation of results of the research. Some theses may require approval of the University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) prior to initiation of any thesis work. Students should work through their department chair/program advisor to determine if their thesis will require IRB review. Students must maintain regular contact with their Program and Thesis Advisors during their thesis work.

ENV 7096 Environmental Health Capstone (Culminating Experience for On-Campus Students)
The capstone is a culminating experience designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of knowledge and skills they have acquired through their Masters in Public Health (MPH) education. Students will work cooperatively in groups on real-time public health issues appropriately applying theory, methods and tools learned in the MPH program.
Note: Approval of the Department Chair or Advisor is required for enrollment

CORE 7098 Environmental Health Comprehensive Examination (Distance Education Students Only)
The Comprehensive Examination is the culminating experience for distance education students. This is a proctored comprehensive examination that covers all core areas of knowledge offered by the School of Health Sciences and Practice as well as the program areas of knowledge offered by the Environmental Health Science Department (see core and program requirements). Distance Education students must earn a minimum score of 80% to complete this degree requirement. More details regarding content and preparation will be available upon registration for this examination. This exam is offered in spring and fall semesters only. (Note: There is no credit awarded for the comprehensive examination. The cost of the exam is equivalent of 1 credit.)


Page updated: April 28, 2015