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Academics

Plan of Study: Environmental Toxicology

A turtle in water with a plastic bag wrapped on its leg.The Department of Biological Sciences offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in environmental toxicology. 

Environmental toxicologists use various disciplines such as molecular biology, biochemistry, environmental chemistry, geochemistry, ecology, social sciences and computer science to determine the fate, effects and risks of toxicants with regards to the environment and human health. Our mission is to train new environmental toxicologists and address pertinent toxicological questions on chemical fate, bioavailability, biological effects, toxicokinetics and mechanisms of action. A focus on interdisciplinary approaches and sound science is fundamental to our education and research activities with participating faculty from the College of Science, the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences, and the Department of Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences. The program has produced numerous master’s and Ph.D. graduates who are now employed nationally and internationally in government, academic and industry positions.

Facilities supporting this research include the Clemson Light Imaging Facility, the Palmetto High Performance Computing Cluster, the Clemson University Genomics and Bioinformatics Facility, the Clemson Experimental Forest and the Eukaryotic Pathogens Innovation Center.

Female student working in lab, wearing masks. Frame from video.

Program Overview

What Do Our Students Say About Our Program?

“The environmental toxicology program — it’s very special," says Alyssa Whisel, a graduate student in the entox program. “It’s not something you can find at most schools, and specifically here at Clemson, it’s very close-knit. It’s like a community.” Watch the video to get an overview of the environmental toxicology graduate program at Clemson.

Watch the Video

Plans of Study

Woman in lab with a pipette and flask with green liquid.For more information about degree requirements and curriculum, review the most recent Graduate Student Guide for the Department of Biological Sciences. Course descriptions across the life sciences can be found in the University’s course catalog.

Graduate students in environmental toxicology work closely with their major adviser and graduate committee to craft a plan of study that is geared toward the student’s interests. Both the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in environmental toxicology train students in interdisciplinary fields including biology, toxicology, environmental chemistry and statistics.

Master of Science

M.S. students in environmental toxicology must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours, including:

  • EES 8430 or 8450 Environmental Engineering Chemistry I or II; three credits.
  • ETOX 6300 Toxicology; three credits.
  • ETOX 6370 Ecotoxicology; three credits.
  • Statistics: An appropriate graduate—level statistics course (e.g., STAT 8010, STAT 8050, etc.); three credits.
  • ETOX 8610 Seminar in Environmental Toxicology (every semester).
  • ETOX 8910 Masters Research; minimum of six credits; graded pass/fail.
  • All teaching assistants must take the GTA colloquium.
  • Electives: Common electives (list is not exhaustive) include ETOX/BIOL 8300 Mechanistic Toxicology, ETOX 8410 Procedures and Techniques in Ecological Risk Assessment, BIOL 6030 Applied Genomics, BIOL 6200 Neurobiology, BIOL 6800 Endocrinology, BIOL 8710 Concepts of Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology, BIOL 8710 Concepts of Ecology Evolution and Organismal Biology, BCHM 8140 Advanced Biochemistry, BCHM 8200 Genomics and Proteomics, CH 6130 Chemistry of Aqueous Systems, CH 8350 Chemical Kinetics, and MICR 6020 Environmental Microbiology.

A total of 24 formal course credits is required with at least 12 (at least half) at the 8000 level.

 

Doctorate (With prior M.S. Degree)

Ph.D. students entering the program who already have an M.S. degree must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours, to be determined based on a waiver of completed core courses.

 

Doctorate (With Prior B.S./B.A. Degree)

Ph.D. students entering with only a B.S./B.A. degree must complete 60 credit hours:

  • EES 8430 or 8450 Environmental Engineering Chemistry I or II (three credits).
  • ETOX 6300 Toxicology; three credits.
  • ETOX 6370 Ecotoxicology; three credits.
  • Statistics: An appropriate graduate—level statistics course (e.g., STAT 8010, STAT 8050, etc.); three credits.
  • ETOX 8610 Seminar in Environmental Toxicology (every semester).
  • ETOX 9910 Doctoral Research, minimum of 18 credits; graded pass/fail.
  • All teaching assistants must take GTA colloquium.
  • Electives: Common electives (list is not exhaustive) include ETOX/BIOL 8300 Mechanistic Toxicology, ETOX 8410 Procedures and Techniques in Ecological Risk Assessment, BIOL 6030 Applied Genomics, BIOL 6200 Neurobiology, BIOL 6800 Endocrinology, BIOL 8710 Concepts of Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology, BIOL 8710 Concepts of Ecology Evolution and Organismal Biology, BCHM 8140 Advanced Biochemistry, BCHM 8200 Genomics and Proteomics, CH 6130 Chemistry of Aqueous Systems, CH 8350 Chemical Kinetics, and MICR 6020 Environmental Microbiology.

A total of 12 formal course credits are required with at least half at the 8000 level or above.

Department of Biological Sciences
Department of Biological Sciences | 132 Long Hall, Clemson, SC 29634