PUBH 7008 Environmental Epidemiology

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 401177

Coordinator Haider Mannan Opens in new window

Description Environmental Epidemiology is the study of the environmental causes of ill-health and disease with a view to prevention. It is a discipline that has changed significantly over time, more recently becoming concerned with complex systemic change such as global warming. Environmental Epidemiology encompasses a broad range of activities, from exposure assessment to adaptation planning, implementation and evaluation. The course aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills to understand and critically appraise evidence from the relevant literature, to design a study suitable for exposure and vulnerability assessment, and to develop appropriate health policy.

School Medicine

Discipline Epidemiology

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject

Pre-requisite(s) PUBH 7016


Students must be enrolled in a postgraduate program.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Describe the domain of environmental epidemiology
  2. Critically discuss issues in exposure assessment
  3. Explain important methodological and contextual challenges in environmental epidemiology
  4. Explain the strengths and weaknesses of the main types of study designs used in environmental epidemiology
  5. Debate contemporary issues in environmental epidemiology
  6. Compare and contrast the merits and roles of mitigation and adaptation in contemporary environmental challenges
  7. Undertake an exposure or vulnerability assessment for a defined population or community
  8. Design an epidemiological study to address an environmental exposure topic

Subject Content

1. Exploring the history and scope of environmental epidemiology: from local to global
2. Methods of exposure and vulnerability assessment
3. Study designs for environmental epidemiology
4. Incidents and disasters: Case studies of where biological, chemical and physical agents have been found to be detrimental to health. Case studies will include success stories, for example where epidemiology has been used as evidence for regulatory control
5. Environmental epidemiology in developing countries: contemporary issues associated with poverty and development
6. Global environmental change. The focus of environmental epidemiology has shifted towards more systemic problems. These will be explored under the themes of
- primary effects
- secondary effects
- tertiary effects
7. Using evidence from environmental epidemiology studies to inform policy to protect health


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Case Study Approx 1,500 words 35 N Individual
Report 3,000 words 65 N Individual