340.680.01 | AY 2013-2014 - 4th Term | 4 Credit(s)
MW 1:30:00 PM
  • Contact Information
    Eliseo Guallar
    Ana Navas-Acien
    Laura Zheng
  • Course Learning Objectives

    Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

    • Identify the major environmental and occupational risk factors for health-related outcomes in human populations
    • Explain the key methodological issues relevant to the identification and estimation of the burden of disease caused by environmental factors
    • Describe the pattern of burden of disease in a country using standard fertility and mortality indicators, estimates of disease burden measured in Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs), data on disease incidence, prevalence, risk factors and geographic distribution and the concept of epidemiologic transition
    • Describe and analyze environmental and occupational health problems, and discuss exposure-disease relationships in human populations
  • Course Description
    Introduces the key health effects of environmental and occupational exposures and the epidemiologic methods used to identify and estimate those effects. Emphasizes the interplay of methodological issues, including the assessment of environmental exposures and the understanding of specific disease processes in identifying the health impact of environmental exposures in the population. Students learn about environmental and occupational exposures (including water and air pollution, food contamination, ionizing radiation, persistent environmental pollutants and emergent environmental exposures) and key methodological issues relevant for these exposures in population studies (including study design, exposure assessment and biomonitoring, disease clusters, dose-response relationships, susceptibility, geographic analysis, and evidence synthesis).
  • Intended Audience
    • doctoral and masters students in Epidemiology and Environmental Health Sciences. • doctoral and masters students in other programs who are interested in evaluating the population effects of environmental exposures.
  • Methods of Assessment

    • Mid-term paper. • Final exam. • Class participation.

    Additional Faculty Notes:

    Grading is based on:

    • Midterm written assignment (30%): Distributed on April 16, Due on April 23
    • Final exam (60%): May 14
    • Class participation (10%)
  • Prerequisites
    • Introductory level course (or higher) in epidemiology.

    Additional Faculty Notes:

    • 340.601 Principles of Epidemiology and 340.608 Observational Epidemiology, or
    • 340.751 Epidemiologic Methods 1, 340.752 Epidemiologic Methods 2, and 340.753 Epidemiologic Methods 3
  • Required Text(s)

    Additional Faculty Notes:

    Readings for this course will consist of journal articles and textbook chapters that will be provided prior to each lecture.  An updated reading list will be available on the CoursePlus website.

    There is no required textbook for the course.  The following three books may be useful and will be placed on reserve at the Welch Library:

    • Baker D, Nieuwenhuijsen MJ, eds. Environmental epidemiology:  Study methods and application.  Oxford, UK:  Oxford University Press, 2008.  368 pp.  ISBN: 978-0198527926.

    General book on environmental epidemiology that may serve as an introduction to the topic for students with limited background in environmental health sciences.


    • Thomas DC.  Statistical methods in environmental epidemiology.  Oxford, UK:  Oxford University Press, 2009.  352 pp.  ISBN: 978-0199232895.

    Technical book on statistical methods in environmental epidemiology useful for students with advanced methodological training.


    • Checkoway H, Pearce N, Kriebel D.  Research Methods in Occupational Epidemiology.  2nd edition.  New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.  392 pp.  ISBN: 978-0195092424.

    Intermediate-level description of epidemiological methods with applications to occupational epidemiology, recommended for students that need a refresher on epidemiological methods.


  • Course Schedule

    Please see the course Session for a full list of dates and items for this course.

  • Academic Ethics Code

    Students enrolled in the Bloomberg School of Public Health of The Johns Hopkins University assume an obligation to conduct themselves in a manner appropriate to the University's mission as an institution of higher education. A student is obligated to refrain from acts which he or she knows, or under the circumstances has reason to know, impair the academic integrity of the University. Violations of academic integrity include, but are not limited to: cheating; plagiarism; knowingly furnishing false information to any agent of the University for inclusion in the academic record; violation of the rights and welfare of animal or human subjects in research; and misconduct as a member of either School or University committees or recognized groups or organizations.

  • Course Organization

    The course consists of a series of lecture and laboratory exercise sessions.  Lectures will be held 1:30 to 3:30 pm on Mondays (2 sessions), and from 1:30 to 2:30 pm on Wednesdays.  Labs will be held from 2:30 to 3:30 pm on Wednesdays.

  • Disability Support Services
    If you are a student with a documented disability who requires an academic accommodation, please contact the Office of Student Life Services at 410-955-3034 or via email at dss@jhsph.edu.