Education for Healthy Future

Degree programme objectives

The aim of the bachelor's study programme "Environment and Health" is to educate students to deep understanding the impacts of the environment on human and ecosystem health, with “health” being understood not only as the physical health of an individual, but also as a summary of the other needs of mankind fulfilled by the environment. The program focuses on the preparation of university-educated professionals with interdisciplinary knowledge of biological and chemical disciplines and well-orientated in complex environmental problems and their contexts, causes, consequences and solutions at different levels. Particular attention is paid to the contamination of the various environmental compartments with toxic substances and the related direct and indirect effects of these substances on the quality of the environment and human life. Through its interdisciplinary concept and emphasis on the understanding of the chemical and biological nature of environmental problems and their impacts, the study program in the conditions of university education in the Czech Republic is unique.

In the courses led by excellent experts the students will learn about the properties of the individual environmental compartments, their possible degradation and contamination, the behavior of toxic substances in the environment and their effects on human health, other living organisms, natural communities and whole ecosystems. The educational objectives of the program emphasize the development of both theoretical knowledge and practical skills of students in the form of a series of seminars, laboratory practices, field exercises and excursions. The development of the students is promoted by the highly-equipped research and teaching infrastructure of RECETOX. Students will also acquire important transferable skills such as work with information and data, their analysis and critical assessment, interpretation, presentation and communication skills, the ability of scientific discussion, the preparation of a scientific text and linguistic competence (English). Contact with the practice is provided in the form of seminars with the participation of experts, excursions and student placements in practice.

The program will prepare students for independent professional work in the field of environmental pollution assessment and regulation and related impacts on humans and ecosystems not only in the Czech Republic but in the context of Europe and the global world. Graduates will have a unique interdisciplinary education at the interface between biology and chemistry, allowing for an excellent orientation in environmental, toxicological, ecotoxicological, environmental, and epidemiological issues. Given the growing environmental degradation with negative impacts on human health and ecosystems, such profile of the programme graduates is highly desirable in contemporary society. The programme is suitable for all students who have a positive attitude to the natural sciences, especially biology and chemistry, are interested in environmental issues and want to contribute to solving environmental problems in their future profession. The curriculum is also the best preparation for entry into follow-up master programs focusing on toxicology, ecotoxicology, environmental chemistry, environmental epidemiology and related fields.

Study plans

Studies

  • Objectives

    The aim of the bachelor's study programme "Environment and Health" is to educate students to deep understanding the impacts of the environment on human and ecosystem health, with “health” being understood not only as the physical health of an individual, but also as a summary of the other needs of mankind fulfilled by the environment. The program focuses on the preparation of university-educated professionals with interdisciplinary knowledge of biological and chemical disciplines and well-orientated in complex environmental problems and their contexts, causes, consequences and solutions at different levels. Particular attention is paid to the contamination of the various environmental compartments with toxic substances and the related direct and indirect effects of these substances on the quality of the environment and human life. Through its interdisciplinary concept and emphasis on the understanding of the chemical and biological nature of environmental problems and their impacts, the study program in the conditions of university education in the Czech Republic is unique.

    In the courses led by excellent experts the students will learn about the properties of the individual environmental compartments, their possible degradation and contamination, the behavior of toxic substances in the environment and their effects on human health, other living organisms, natural communities and whole ecosystems. The educational objectives of the program emphasize the development of both theoretical knowledge and practical skills of students in the form of a series of seminars, laboratory practices, field exercises and excursions. The development of the students is promoted by the highly-equipped research and teaching infrastructure of RECETOX. Students will also acquire important transferable skills such as work with information and data, their analysis and critical assessment, interpretation, presentation and communication skills, the ability of scientific discussion, the preparation of a scientific text and linguistic competence (English). Contact with the practice is provided in the form of seminars with the participation of experts, excursions and student placements in practice.

    The program will prepare students for independent professional work in the field of environmental pollution assessment and regulation and related impacts on humans and ecosystems not only in the Czech Republic but in the context of Europe and the global world. Graduates will have a unique interdisciplinary education at the interface between biology and chemistry, allowing for an excellent orientation in environmental, toxicological, ecotoxicological, environmental, and epidemiological issues. Given the growing environmental degradation with negative impacts on human health and ecosystems, such profile of the programme graduates is highly desirable in contemporary society. The programme is suitable for all students who have a positive attitude to the natural sciences, especially biology and chemistry, are interested in environmental issues and want to contribute to solving environmental problems in their future profession. The curriculum is also the best preparation for entry into follow-up master programs focusing on toxicology, ecotoxicology, environmental chemistry, environmental epidemiology and related fields.

  • Learning Outcomes

    After successfully completing his/her studies the graduate is able to:

    • apply in practice the theoretical and practical knowledge of biological disciplines (biology and physiology of plants, animals and humans, microbiology, genetics, molecular biology, ecology) with a deep understanding of the mechanisms and contexts
    • apply in practice the theoretical and practical knowledge of chemical disciplines (organic, inorganic, analytical and physical chemistry, biochemistry) with a deep understanding of the principles and mechanisms
    • apply the basic experimental methods of these disciplines and use relevant instrumentation to study specific problems, interpret correctly the results obtained, formulate and discuss conclusions
    • understand current environmental problems, their contexts, causes, consequences and discuss possible solutions
    • use the knowledge about environmental compartments, their degradation and pollution, environmental fate of substances and their effects on organisms including humans with an understanding of the principles and mechanisms
    • understand interdisciplinary relationships between environmental compartments and organisms, the environment and pollutants, and pollutants and organisms including humans
    • carry out sampling of environmental samples, analyses of their properties and contaminants content, toxicity and ecotoxicity tests, basic examination of the functions of the human organism and correct interpretation of all results
    • plan and implement biological, chemical, toxicological, ecotoxicological and environmental-chemistry experiments and studies, including suggestion of appropriate methods, statistical analysis, interpretation and presentation of results
    • independently search, process, synthesize and critically analyze scientific information from various sources
    • combine the abovementioned knowledge and skills in analyzing environmental problems, assessing their impacts on humans and ecosystems at local and global level and finding solutions
  • Occupational Profiles of Graduates

    The graduates of the Bachelor's degree program Environment and Health at Masaryk University MU have wide interdisciplinary knowledge and practical skills in the field of chemical pollution of the environment and its consequences for human health and ecosystems. They focus on complex environmental issues, their contexts, causes, consequences and solutions. They are internationally competitive experts on toxic contaminants, their behavior in the environment, toxicity and ecotoxicity. They can offer to future employers not only extensive knowledge of biology, chemistry and environmental issues, but also a range of practical skills from performing laboratory and field methods to work with scientific information and statistical analysis of data. They are capable of critical thinking, creative professional work, and independent decisions. They can apply their knowledge and skills to new environmental challenges and seek solutions. Graduates of the study become persons qualified to handle highly toxic chemicals according to Act No. 267/2015 Coll.

    Graduates of the program can apply as experts in the behavior and effects of chemical substances in the environment in the industry, water management, agriculture, food production, health, science and research, regional and national governance, wherever its required to deal with chemical substances and regulate them, in waste management, environmental protection, environmental management, public health protection, prevention and related legislation.

    Typical work activities for which the graduate is prepared are qualified sampling of water, soil and air, their chemical, physical and biological analyses; toxicity and ecotoxicity testing; impact assessment of chemicals on living organisms; conducting experiments and studies on environmental pollution and its impacts; development of expert opinions on toxic substances in the environment and their effects; control and management activities in this area; evaluation and approval of pesticides, fertilizers and veterinary medicines; assessing impacts of industry, agriculture, transport and uranization on the environment; preparing policies, strategies and legislation to protect the environment against toxic substances; environmental education; assessment and elimination of environmental risks; implementation and assessment of contaminated sites remediation.

    Graduates are ready to work as a sampling technicians; an analysta in a chemical, biochemical, environmental or medical facility; employees in basic or applied research, but also to hold positions as an environmental specialists in the state administration; independent consultants for environmental pollution, toxicology and ecotoxicology; business ecologists; specialists of industrial ecology; environmental managers; environmental specialists for chemicals; environmental risk / environmental impact assessors (EIA) / product and service life-cycle assessors (LCA); officers for environmental protection / air protection / water protection / agricultural soil protection / waste management / public health protection and inspectors in these areas.

    Graduates are also well prepared for continuing studies focused on toxicology, ecotoxicology, environmental chemistry, environmental epidemiology and related fields.

  • Practical Training

    In the programme, the emphasis is given that the theoretical knowledge and practical skills transferred to students are incorporated into the context of applied practice. Students are required to take a mandatory excursion to the CHMI observatory during the E2030 Field Exercise. As an optional subject, they have the course E0100, where they can choose from a range of possible internships at co-operative organizations (CHMI, ÚKZÚZ, Českomoravský cement, SITA, Laboratoř Morava and others) or they will design an intership where they would like to. This practice is 2-3 days and is recognized on the basis of the student's internship report. Linking teaching with practice is also strongly encouraged by the involvement of professionals from various institutions to the E1000, E2000, E3000, E4000, E5000 and E6000 seminars. Here they have the opportunity to present their expert topics, but also their work, organization and its focus. Given that the Environment and Health is an academic programme, longer-term practice is not required.

  • Goals of Theses

    The bachelor's thesis must show that the student is able to be oriented in the given topic, actively search and analyze the relevant information and produce well the written work. The thesis corresponds to the classic scientific publication. It must be written in a clear and logical manner, in a formal language and in a functional and uniform style.

    The thesis may be based on processing of available information about the current issue, field measurements, laboratory experiments, or a combination of the above. It can be a work that evaluates in a new way data acquired or published by someone else. In the case of bachelor's thesis is not a prerequisite and criterion the originality of the results, a significant contribution to science or subsequent publishability but original processing. If the work is based on literature review and no data is obtained, emphasis must be placed on critical re-analysis, reorganization, or meta-analysis of available data and information.

    The text must contain citations of the literature from which the essential information was drawn. In particular, the definitions, theses, new findings, concrete results, numerical data and images taken are quoted. The bachelor thesis should utilize mainly foreign journals information and should contain at least 20-30 cited literature sources. The total thesis size is at least 30 pages. The total thesis size is at least 30 pages. Formal requirements are specified at the faculty level by Dean's Decree 5/2014 (http://www.sci.muni.cz/NW/predpisy/od/OD-2014-05.pdf) and there is also a recommended template (http://www.sci.muni.cz/NW/STUD/SablonyPraci/Sablona_word(docx).docx).

  • Access to Further Studies

    A graduate of a Bachelor's degree program may, after fulfilling the conditions of admission, continue in any follow-up Master's program at the Faculty of Science, or at other universities in the Czech Republic and abroad. The graduate is especially well-prepared for programmes focusing on toxicology, ecotoxicology, environmental chemistry, environmental epidemiology and related fields. However, the graduate is primarily prepared for the follow-up Master's program Environment and Health.

Basic information

Type
Bachelor's degree programme
Profile
academic
Degree
Bc.
Length of studies
3 years
Language of instruction
Czech Czech

44
number of active students

Faculty of Science
Programme guaranteed by
Programme guarantor