Environmental & Occupational Health PhD

Major: Environmental and Occupational Health
Degree Awarded: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Minimum Required Credits: 90.0
Co-op Option: None
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 51.2202
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 19-2041

About the Program

The Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH) equips students with the skills to identify, examine, and respond to important environmental and occupational health challenges, and to disseminate and translate findings. Students will benefit from engagement with interdisciplinary faculty in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health and the Dornsife School of Public Health’s emphasis on urban health and social justice. Students complete core EOH classes with an opportunity to specialize in areas such as environmental epidemiology, injury prevention and control, occupational health and safety, industrial hygiene, and exposure assessment. This program trains students with the skills necessary to perform scientifically rigorous research to address pressing environmental and occupational health issues. Graduates of the program are well prepared to assume leadership roles as public health scientists, researchers, and educators.

Students will take a comprehensive exam that requires them to synthesize coursework and demonstrate mastery of public health competencies. Students will then develop and defend a dissertation proposal and complete a dissertation of publishable quality and final defense.

Post-Baccalaureate Requirements and Post-Master's Requirements

Both post-baccalaureate and post-master's students are admitted into the doctoral program in Environmental and Occupational Health.

For post-master’s students in a related field, up to 45.0 credits earned toward a prior master’s degree may be applied toward the PhD. Students who have previously completed required courses at Drexel University (or their approved equivalents) as part of their master’s program may be waived from equivalent required courses. For non-Drexel students who have completed their master’s elsewhere, all courses will be evaluated to determine equivalency to the required courses. Students may be asked to provide evidence of such material to determine equivalency.

The decision to waive or require these courses for both Drexel and non-Drexel students is done in consultation with the faculty mentor and PhD program director, with consideration of factors including time since course or degree completion, grade in course, and current comfort level with material.

For post-baccalaureate students, students must complete a minimum of 90.0 credits.

Major Competencies

  • 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 valid and reproducible study designs, including data collection strategies to test hypotheses using novel or current methods
  • Apply appropriate and rigorous methods to analyze and interpret original data
  • 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

Additional Information

For more information about this program, please contact:

DSPH Academic Advising Team
Office of Education

Additional information can be found on the Dornsife School of Public Health website including admissions criteria and how to apply.

Degree Requirements

Required Courses *
BST 560Intermediate Biostatistics I3.0
EOH 800Professional Development3.0
EOH 805Evidence Evaluation for Identification of Environmental Hazards3.0
EOH 810Environmental and Occupational Toxicology3.0
EOH 812Environmental Exposure Science3.0
EOH 815Environmental and Occupational Health Policy3.0
EOH 825Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology3.0
EOH 830Seminar in Environmental Epidemiology3.0
EPI 560Intermediate Epidemiology3.0
RCRG 600An Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research0.0
PBHL 501Introduction to Public Health **0.0
Electives ***27.0
Dissertation Guidance in Environmental and Occupational Health
Total Credits90.0-108.0

Students are required to complete the TA Orientation and Preparation Course.


Foundational Public Health Learning Objectives: PBHL 501 is only required for students who do not have a degree from a CEPH accredited school.


Students are required to consult with their faculty mentor on all elective selections. Elective coursework must be aligned with the student’s research interests and dissertation focus. Students choose from an BST, CHP, EOH, EPI, HMP, or PBHL courses from the 500-999 level. Students can take additional 500-level or above electives across the University as long as they meet prerequisite and restriction requirements and receive faculty mentor approval.

Sample Plan of Study

First Year
EOH 8253.0EOH 8103.0BST 5603.0VACATION
EPI 5603.0EOH 8303.0EOH 8053.0 
PBHL 501*0.0RCRG 6000.0EOH 8123.0 
 9 9 9 0
Second Year
Electives9.0EOH 8003.0EOH 8153.0VACATION
 9 9 9 0
Third Year
EOH 9979.0EOH 9979.0EOH 9979.0VACATION
 9 9 9 0
Fourth Year
EOH 9979.0   
Total Credits 90

PBHL 501 is only required for students who do not have a degree from a CEPH accredited school.

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