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Official course descriptions taken from the UNC Graduate Record are below.
Additional courses may be added on a semester basis at discretion of the department. See UNC Registrar’s site for courses by semester.
Some titles link to the syllabus for that course. Please note that some syllabi are for past semesters, so dates will not apply to future semesters.
Examines key events that have shaped our understanding of the impacts of environmental agents on human health and uses them to introduce basic concepts in environmental health.
Presents the results of ongoing research projects in the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering. Topics and presenters are selected from among the departmental graduate students and faculty.
Required preparation, a background in chemistry and mathematics, including ordinary differential equations. Chemical processes occurring in natural and engineered systems: chemical cycles; transport and transformation processes of chemicals in air, water, and multimedia environments; chemical dynamics; thermodynamics; structure/activity relationships.
Students learn laboratory, field, and analytical skills. Provides a solid introduction to experimental research in environmental sciences and engineering. Students are provided with applications in limnology, aquatic chemistry, and industrial hygiene.
Required preparation, introductory biology, chemistry, and physics. Basic aspects of freshwater ecosystem function. Emphasis on trophic level interactions and integration of physical, chemical, and biological principles for a holistic view of lake ecosystem dynamics.
Permission of the instructor for nonmajors. Physical and chemical principles underlying behavior of particles suspended in air. Topics include rectilinear and curvilinear motion of the particles in a force field, diffusion, evaporation, and condensation, electrical and optical properties, and particle coagulation. Three lecture hours a week and two laboratory sessions.
Required preparation, major in a natural science or two courses in natural sciences. Studies origin of ocean basins, seawater chemistry and dynamics, biological communities, sedimentary record, and oceanographic history. Term paper. Students lacking science background should see MASC 101. No credit for MASC 401 after receiving credit for MASC 101.
Principles and applications of chemical equilibria to natural waters. Acid-base, solubility, complex formation, and redox reactions are discussed. This course uses a problem-solving approach to illustrate chemical speciation and environmental implications. Three lecture hours per week.
Required preparation, basic biology, chemistry through organic, calculus. Permission of the instructor for students lacking this preparation. Interactions of environmental agents (chemicals, infectious organisms, radiation) with biological systems including humans, with attention to routes of entry, distribution, metabolism, elimination, and mechanisms of adverse effects. Three lecture hours per week.
Required preparation, basic biology, chemistry through organic, math through calculus; permission of the instructor for students lacking this preparation. A practical introduction to the measurement of biological end-points, emphasizing adverse effects of environmental agents, using laboratory and field techniques. Two laboratory hours per week.
Fundamentals of occupational safety and ergonomics with emphasis on legislation and organization of industrial safety and ergonomic programs, including hazard recognition, analysis, control, and motivational factors pertaining to industrial accident and cumulative trauma disorder prevention.
Prerequisite, ENVR 422. An introduction to the health hazards associated with the various unit operations of industry. Field trips to local industries planned.
Prerequisite, CHEM 430. Required preparation, one course in biochemistry. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Biochemical actions of toxicants and assessment of cellular damage by biochemical measurements. Three lecture hours per week.
Required preparation, elementary differential equations course such as MATH 524. Focuses on chemical reaction rates and reaction mechanisms. Covers mole balances, rate laws, chemical kinetics, and reactor design. Principles are applied to any environmental system where chemical transformations must be described. Three lecture hours per week.
Prerequisite, PHYS 301. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. The physical properties of fluids, kinematics, governing equations, viscous incompressible flow, vorticity dynamics, boundary layers, irrotational incompressible flow.
Required preparation, math through differential equations and some familiarity with fluid mechanics. Conservation principles for mass, momentum, and energy developed and applied to groundwater systems. Scope includes the movement of water, gas, and organic liquid phases, the transport and reaction of contaminants. Three lecture hours per week.
Required preparation, a multivariate calculus course like MATH 233. Overview of geographical information systems (GIS) using the Arc GIS software, and introduction to advanced geostatistical functions for temporal GIS describing environmental and health phenomena distributed across space and time. Application to the spatiotemporal mapping of environmental water quality.
Required preparation, one course in probability and statistics. Use of quantitative tools for balancing conflicting priorities (such as costs versus human health protection) and evaluating uncertainties when making environmental decisions.
Intensive introduction to environmental management and policy, including environmental and health risks, policy institutions, processes, and instruments, policy analysis, and major elements of American environmental policy. Lectures and case studies. Three lecture hours per week.
A practical experience in a setting relevant to environmental health.
This course examines the relationship between environmental quality, human health and welfare, with particular attention to contamination in human environment; physical, biological, and social factors; trade-offs regarding prevention and remediation measures. Satisfies core School of Public Health requirement. Three lecture hours per week.
An introduction to relevant epidemiologic concepts that inform environmental science research. Learning objectives include discussing basic epidemiologic concepts and measures of disease occurrence in populations, explaining epidemiological study designs for studying associations between risk factors or exposures in populations, evaluating epidemiologic evidence, and comprehending basic ethical principles.
Required preparation, one year of biology. Environmental systems biology examines how environmental stressors influence the components of a biological system, and how the interactions between these components result in changes in the function and behavior of that system.
Permission of the instructor for nonmajors. The course material introduces the general concepts of assessing environmental exposures to chemicals in human populations. This includes the design of ecologic and personal monitoring studies, the techniques and equipment used for sampling and analysis, and interpretation of data.
Requires some programming experience and basic numerical analysis. Error in computation, solutions of nonlinear equations, interpolation, approximation of functions, Fourier methods, numerical integration and differentiation, introduction to numerical solution of ODEs, Gaussian elimination.
Prerequisites, COMP 116 and MATH 383. Numerical methods for solving problems arising in sciences and engineering. Solution of linear equations using direct and iterative approaches, solution of nonlinear systems of algebraic equations, solution of ordinary differential equations including single and multistep methods, and methods for stiff systems of ODEs and collocation methods for linear and nonlinear PDEs.
Requires an undergraduate course in differential equations. Contour integration, asymptotic expansions, steepest descent/stationary phase methods, special functions arising in physical applications, elliptic and theta functions, elementary bifurcation theory.
Prerequisite, ENVR 461. A first graduate-level course in physical principles relevant to environmental systems. Topics include dimensional analysis, tensor calculus, conservation of mass and momentum. Applications are considered from natural and engineered systems and across all relevant media. Focus is on the development of mechanistic representation of environmental systems.
This class is designed for graduate students planning for research in air pollution, emphasizing chemical kinetics and engineering approaches to problem solving in addition to atmospheric structure, meteorology, and modeling. We address problems of stratospheric and tropospheric ozone, particulate matter, and acid rain. We emphasize quantitative problem solving in homework.
Permission of the instructor. Directed readings or laboratory study of a selected topic. A written report is required in the form of an honors thesis (ENVR 692H).
Students complete honors research projects.
Directed readings or laboratory study. Written reports are required. May be taken more than once for credit. Six to nine hours per week.
Presentations by outside invited speakers, local faculty, advanced graduate students, and postdoctoral trainees. Topics will cover all areas of research in toxicology. One hour per week.
Required preparation, knowledge of basic human physiology and biochemistry helpful. Assessing health effects of air pollutants on normal and diseased human populations, including children. Physiology, cellular and molecular biology, immunology, genetics, dosimetry will be integrated. Three lecture hours per week.
Prerequisites, ENVR/TOXC/BIOC 442 or ENVR 430. ENVR/TOXC 707 and ENVR 470 are highly recommended. This course will provide students who already have good knowledge of the basic principles of toxicology and environmental health with real-life examples of how the information is integrated for the purpose of judging what chemical exposures may pose risk to human health.
Permission of the instructor for nonmajors. Use of mathematical models to design and evaluate regional water supply and treatment systems. Engineering and economic methods are incorporated into quantitative analyses of regional scenarios. Social and political aspects also discussed. Three lecture hours per week.
Prerequisites, MATH 661 and 662. Single, multistep methods for ODEs: stability regions, the root condition; stiff systems, backward difference formulas; two-point BVPs; stability theory; finite difference methods for linear advection diffusion equations.
Prerequisites, MATH 661, 662, 668, and 669. Nondimensionalization and identification of leading order physical effects with respect to relevant scales and phenomena; derivation of classical models of fluid mechanics (lubrication, slender filament, thin films, Stokes flow); derivation of weakly nonlinear envelope equations. Fall.
Permission of the department. For students outside the department who wish to undertake individual study of a specific problem in environmental sciences and engineering. The subject and requirements of the project are arranged with the faculty in each individual instance. One or more hours per week.
A practical experience in public health/environmental health sciences.
Consultation with the faculty and approval of subject and proposed program required. Permission of the instructor. May be repeated. Hours and credits to be arranged.
The technical report requirement for M.S.P.H., M.P.H., and M.S.E.E. candidates is satisfied by the extensive study of a problem in environmental sciences and engineering.
Other places to find views of courses offered by faculty in Environmental Sciences and Engineering (ENVR):