What is a PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health?
The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Environmental and Occupational Health at Drexel Dornsife is an advanced research doctorate program that equips students with the skills to identify, examine, and respond to important environmental and occupational health challenges.
This program trains students with the skills necessary to perform scientifically rigorous research to address pressing environmental and occupational health issues. Graduates of our program are well-prepared to assume leadership roles as public health scientists, researchers, and educators.
Why Pursue an Environmental and Occupational Health PhD at Drexel Dornsife?
Drexel Dornsife’s PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program offers a variety of unique benefits that prepare students for career advancement and professional skill development:
- Access to Renowned Faculty: Students engage with the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health's 11 faculty members, who conduct research on the ways that physical, chemical, radiological, and biological factors in the environments in which we live and work effect health, as well as ways to protect the health of communities and workers.
- Financial Support: Full-time students with research fellowships or graduate assistantships receive full tuition, 12-month stipend, and health insurance.
- Mentorship: Students are paired with outstanding faculty mentors with expertise in environmental and occupational health.
- Teaching and Research Opportunities: Students have hands-on opportunities to improve their professional skills.
- Cohort Size: Small cohort size ensures favorable faculty-to-student ratio.
Upon graduation of the PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program, students will develop competencies in the following areas:
- Evaluate basic principles related to environmental and occupational exposure assessment – including sources and characteristics of exposures, mechanisms, and methods for measuring and examining physical, chemical, biological, psychosocial and/or other exposures potentially related to human health.
- Analyze relationships between exposures and human health, including variation in impacts by social, behavioral, psychosocial, and other susceptibility factors.
- Critically evaluate and interpret published research in environmental and occupational health, from academic journals and other sources.
- Formulate testable hypotheses about critical knowledge and evidence gaps in environmental and occupational health.
- Develop and implement valid and reproducible study designs, including data collection strategies to test hypotheses using novel or current methods.
- Communicate research results through scientific manuscripts, presentations, and other forms to both scientific and lay audiences.
- Assess risks associated with physical, chemical, psychosocial or other exposures in environmental or occupational settings, and identify appropriate policies and other interventions for preventing or reducing these risks.
To learn more about the Environmental and Occupational Health PhD program, request more information to speak with an academic advisor today.
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The PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health Program seeks students who are interested in pursuing a rigorous doctoral education that explores chemical, radiological, and biological factors in the community and workplace, and how they impact health. The program offers a broad range of opportunities to learn and participate in research.
Admissions Requirements for the Environmental and Occupational Health PhD Program
Applicants to the PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program must meet the following requirements:
- Completed master’s degree with a concentration in public health or related sciences, or a completed bachelor’s degree with public health related work experience.
- Successful completion of undergraduate- and/or graduate-level coursework in epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental sciences, health policy, social sciences, and/or geography.
- Evidence of prior research or public health practice experience.
Students will be admitted on a competitive basis, and those with a demonstrated ability to integrate public health competencies and skills into public health practice will be preferred.
PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health Application Requirements
In order for your application to be reviewed, applicants must submit the following documents:
- Online application
- Official transcripts from every college-level institution you attended (academic records from institutions outside the U.S. must undergo a credentials evaluation).
- Official results from the GRE taken within the last 5 years
- English proficiency test score (TOEFL or IELTS), if applicable
- Three letters of recommendation from faculty or professionals who can evaluate the applicant’s potential for doctoral studies
- Resume or curriculum vitae
- Statement of Purpose and Objectives (including career goals, doctoral research interests and fit with a desired faculty mentor)
- Writing sample
To learn more about admissions and application requirements for the PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program, please visit the page below.
Learn more about Application and Admissions requirements
Occupational and Environmental Health PhD Program Curriculum
The Environmental and Occupational Health PhD program curriculum is rooted in hands-on research and analysis that encourages students to respond to significant environmental and occupational health challenges, while serving as leaders in the public health field.
Throughout the program, students will develop a course of study that will build their skills in areas including:
- Environmental Hazard Assessment
- Occupational and Environmental Epidemiologic Methods
- U.S. Environmental and Occupational Health Policy
The PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program requires two academic years of structured coursework, consisting of required core courses in the Dornsife School of Public Health, as well as directed dissertation research.
Students complete core Environmental and Occupational Health classes, with an opportunity to specialize in areas such as environmental epidemiology, injury prevention and control, occupational health and safety, industrial hygiene, or exposure assessment.
Required core courses in the program include:
- EOH 805 Evaluation for Identification of Environmental Hazards - 3 credits
- EOH 810 Environmental and Occupational Toxicology - 3 credits
- EOH 815 Environmental and Occupational Health Policy - 3 credits
- EOH 825 Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology - 3 credits
- EOH 800 Professional Development - 3 credits
- EOH 997 Dissertation Guidance in Environmental and Occupational Health - 9 credits
Students consult with their faculty mentor on all elective selections. Elective coursework must be aligned with the student’s research interests and dissertation focus.
Degree Requirements for the Environmental and Occupational Health PhD
To graduate with a PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health, students must meet the following academic requirements:
- A minimum of 90 quarter credit hours of course work beyond the bachelor’s degree or a minimum of 45 quarter credit hours of course work beyond the master’s degree
- A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.3
- Passing the doctoral comprehensive examination
- Passing the proposal defense
- Completing a dissertation of publishable quality
- Passing the final defense
To learn more about the PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health curriculum and to see plans of study, please follow the links below.
Review degree requirements and courses
Sample Plan of Study
What Careers are Open to a PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health?
Graduates of the PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health program enjoy successful careers in environmental and occupational health organizations, as well as corporate and policymaking organizations engaged in the field.
A PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health prepares individuals for unique career paths and leadership opportunities, including:
- Environmental Health Scientist
- Environmental and Occupational Epidemiologist
- Industrial Hygienist
- Occupational Health and Safety Engineer
- Project Director
A PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health provides a unique opportunity for a career focused on creating healthier environments in communities and workplaces.
PhD in Environmental and Occupational Health Salary Scale
While salary can range across industries, the median annual wage for occupational health and safety specialists was $76,340 in May 2020. The median annual wage for health and safety engineers was $94,240 in May 2020.
Develop the skills to become a public health leader and address pressing environmental and occupational health challenges. Start your application today.
Paying for Your Public Health Degree
95 percent of PhD students receive tuition remission, stipend, and health insurance.
In general, PhD students finance their education through a variety of sources, and the Dornsife School of Public Health provides financial support through training grants, scholarships, stipends, and working as a teaching or research assistant.
Explore scholarships and financial aid