MPH Environmental Health Track

orientation 08/2015

Penn's Environmental Health Track offers a curriculum designed specifically for applicants to the interdisciplinary Master of Public Health Program who are interested in mastering skills in identifying, investigating, ameliorating, and communicating about environmental health risks. Key strengths of this track include the MPH Program’s ability to provide mentored Capstone experiences, especially focused on the urban environment and communities with an aging industrial infrastructure, such as Philadelphia and its many surrounding areas.

  • Learn more about the competencies of the environmental health track.

The fourteen course units (14 CU) required for the MPH in Environmental Health track are described below. Students must take a minimum of 11 CU under the PUBH prefix.

Core MPH Requirements (9.0 CU)

  • PUBH 501 Introduction to Biostatistics
  • PUBH 502 Introduction to Principles and Methods of Epidemiology
  • PUBH 503 Environmental and Occupational Health
  • PUBH 504 Public Health Theories & Frameworks
  • PUBH 505 Public Health Policy and Administration
  • PUBH 506 Methods for Public Health Practice
  • PUBH 507 Public Health Law & Ethics
  • PUBH 508 Capstone I
  • PUBH 509 Capstone II

Required Fieldwork Experience 125 hours: Students within the Environmental Health Track will identify (with assistance from MPH program staff and faculty) a practical community-based experience through the established network of community partnerships with the Outreach and Education Core of Penn’s Center for Excellence in Environmental Toxicology (CEET).

Additional competencies specific to specialized knowledge in Environmental Health are acquired through 3 required environmental public health courses to be chosen from among the following:

Environmental Health Required Track Electives (1.0)

Environmental Health track students must choose one of the following courses:

  • PUBH 517: Geography and Health
  • PUBH 523: Epidemics, Emergencies, and Environmental Threats 

Environmental Health Electives (2.0)

Environmental Health Track students will choose two additional electives with environmental health content from across the University's offerings. Please note:

  • Not all courses listed below are offered each year; please see individual departmental websites and the registrar's course listing for current offerings.
  • Foundation courses listed above can also count as Environmental Health electives if not taken as the foundation course.
  • At least 2 of the 5 courses taken in addition to the Core MPH requirements listed above must have a PUBH prefix.

The courses listed below are approved Environmental Health Track electives, but should be considered just a starting point in building your Environmental Health Track curriculum. We encourage students to propose additional courses that meet their learning goals and environmental health competencies for approval as an Environmental Health Track elective (please contact Moriah Hall with questions).

If there is a course you are interested in taking that is not listed here, please contact your academic advisor with the course syllabus to discuss the relevance of this course to your public health training. 

  • ENVS 541: Modeling Geographical Objects
  • OPIM 761: Risk Analysis and Environmental Management
  • PUBH 519: Issues in Global Health
  • PUBH 558: Health & Disease For Public Health Practitioners
  • PUBH 599: Independent study project with Environmental Health faculty
  • PHRM 623: Fundamentals of Pharmacology
  • LAW 634: Environmental Law
  • CPLN 531: Introduction to Environmental Planning and Policy
  • CPLN 621: Metropolitan Food Systems
  • CPLN 675: Land Use and Environmental Modeling
  • CPLN 635: Water Policy
  • ENVS 605: Bioremediation
  • VCNS 631 Ecological Epidemiology
  • VPTH 633: Ecotoxicology
  • GEOL 640: Environmental Investigations and Reporting
  • EAS 501: Energy and Its Impacts: Technology, Ecology, Economics, Sustainability
  • OPIM 761: Risk Analysis & Management

Other Electives (2.0 cu)

Students in the Environmental Health Track will choose 2 additional cu to make up the full complement of 14 cu for the MPH degree. Note: At least 2 of the 5 courses taken in addition to the Core MPH requirements must have a PUBH prefix.

Capstone Culminating Experience

The Capstone is a culminating experience required for graduation in the Master of Public Health Program. Read more about capstone. Students within the Environmental Health Track will identify and carry out a Capstone project that addresses their key environmental health interests and learning goals.