ITEHP Mission, Goals, and Learning Outcomes

Integrated Toxicology & Environmental Health Program (ITEHP)*

University Program in Environmental Health (UPEH)*


*Note: Duke’s over-arching Integrated Toxicology and Environmental Health Program (ITEHP) encompasses both those students directly admitted to the training program via the University Program in Environmental Health (UPEH) NIEHS T32 training grant mechanism as well as those admitted into other programs who elect to complete the course requirements to receive the Certificate in Environmental Health.  This is an admitting, but not a degree-granting program.  The ITEHP name used throughout the program’s mission statement, goals, and learning objectives is inclusive of both ITEHP and UPEH. 


Program Mission Statement

The mission of the Duke Integrated Toxicology and Environmental Health Program (ITEHP) is to prepare pre-doctoral students from a variety of backgrounds and educational disciplines for participation as rigorously trained research scientists active in environmental health careers. The field of environmental health is inherently interdisciplinary in nature, and participation in the ITEHP develops holistic thinking skills in trainees to better enable them to perform cutting edge research and to solve real-life problems in this field. This is achieved through the program’s focused classroom instruction largely completed during the first two years of training and laboratory rotations followed typically by two to three years of focused research.


Program Goals

  1. Didactic Training: To cultivate graduates with a broad understanding of exposure science, toxicology and ecotoxicology, environmental health, statistics and epidemiology, and risk assessment; deep knowledge in specific disciplines such as environmental exposures and underlying biological response mechanisms; and critical scientific thinking skills.
  2. Research: To train students in a wide range of cutting-edge research skills (laboratory, field-based, or computational) necessary to successfully navigate the merging of basic science with human and environmental health; analysis, interpretation, and presentation of research results; and ethical and responsible research conduct.
  3. Career Development: To rigorously prepare students for careers in the complex interdisciplinary fields of exposure science, environmental toxicology, and environmental health and disease through training in scientific responsibility and ethics, management and mentorship, teaching, and science communication.


Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

By the completion of this program, ITEHP graduates will:

  • Emerge proficient in how to best delineate environmental exposures, characterize the mechanisms underlying molecular and cellular responses, and define the health outcomes associated with such exposures as evidenced through their successful completion of coursework and exams.
  • Demonstrate expertise in knowledge and methodologies in their selected specialty within the field of toxicology and environmental health, as evidenced by their high-quality final seminar presentation, thesis dissertation, and related publications.
  • Possess holistic critical-thinking skills, enabling them to lead as real-world problem-solvers, as demonstrated through their thoughtful journal and research discussions and their progression through their selected thesis research project.
  • Demonstrate agile science communication skills through participation in presentation, teaching, and mentorship opportunities through their training.
  • Acquire a mindset of integrity and continued learning through participation in responsible conduct of research (RCR) training throughout their training program.

Page last updated 01May2020