Master’s in Environmental Health Sciences (MPH)

Students in our program learn how vulnerable populations are affected by environmental exposures and how we can achieve sustainable communities that provide clean air, clean water, safe food, safe cities, a stable climate and safe workplaces. The curriculum prepares students to assess the health impacts of physical, chemical and biological agents in the environment and to advance means for their measurement and control.

Our program provides interdisciplinary training in epidemiology, biostatistics, mechanisms of toxicity, risk assessment, exposure science and policy analysis. Students learn to apply these skills to environmental health challenges in the San Francisco Bay Area, across the United States and around the world.

Curriculum

Our two-year program requires 48 units of graduate-level coursework, with both required and elective courses offered at the school—including epidemiology, biostatistics, toxicology, risk and exposure assessment, geographic information systems (GIS) for environmental public health, and environmental health policy and regulation—as well as additional elective coursework across the Berkeley campus.

Students in our program must also complete a full-time summer internship, as well as a capstone or thesis project demonstrating their ability to synthesize the core areas in the environmental health sciences, with application to an environmental health problem encountered in the real world. Students interested in a specialization in industrial hygiene may contact Professor Kathie Hammond for more information.

  • PH 142: Introduction to Probability and Statistics in Biology and Public Health (4 units)
  • PH 250A: Epidemiological Methods I (3 units)
  • PH 270: Introduction to Environmental Health Sciences (3 units)
  • PH 200L: Health and Social Behavior Breadth (2 units)
  • NUSCTX 110/PH 270B: Toxicology (4 units)
  • PH 245: Statistical Analysis of Categorical Data  (4 units)
  • PH 271E: Science and Policy for Environmental Health (3 units)
  • PH 292: EHS Masters Seminar (career pathways) (1 unit)
  • Electives (4-10 units)

Internship (full time) (3 units)

  • PH 200J: Health Policy and Management Breadth (2 units)
  • PH 270A: Exposure Assessment and Control I (3 units)
  • PH 292: EHS Masters Seminar (capstone preparation) (1 unit)
  • Electives (3-11 units)
  • PH 220C: Health Risk Assessment, Regulation and Policy (4 units)
  • PH 292: EHS Masters Seminar (capstone seminar) (3 units)
  • Electives (5-11 units)

Qualifications

Ideally, applicants should have completed one undergraduate course in chemistry and one undergraduate course in biology. An undergraduate course in mathematics (e.g., calculus, linear algebra or statistics) is also desirable.

  • Common undergraduate majors for admitted applicants: chemistry, biology, microbiology, molecular biology, nutrition, ecology, public health and environmental studies.
  • Common work experience for admitted applicants: Work experience is not required for admission, but successful applicants in past years have worked as lab technicians, student researchers, research assistants, community organizers, study coordinators and post-graduate fellows, as well as for the Peace Corps.

Employment

Our students are trained to become leaders in identifying—and preventing—adverse health impacts of physical, biological and chemical agents in the environment. Excellent career opportunities in government, the private sector, non-profit and non-governmental organizations, and academia are available for graduates. In the last few years, alumni have accepted positions in various organizations, including the California Environmental Protection Agency, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the City of Richmond, the California Department of Public Health, Cardno ChemRisk and Kaiser Permanente. Many of our graduates also enter into fellowships or continue their academic work in doctoral programs across the country.

Admissions Statistics

3.66 Average GPA of admitted applicants
78% Average Verbal GRE percentile scores of admitted applicants
68% Average Quantitative GRE percentile scores of admitted applicants