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The Environmental and Integrative Toxicological Sciences (EITS) Doctoral Program

The discipline of toxicology applies knowledge from related disciplines to understand how toxic agents cause harm to humans and animals. For example, understanding how heavy metals damage the brain requires knowledge of biochemistry, molecular biology and other disciplines. Accordingly, rigorous training in a basic science discipline plus learning how chemicals, drugs and naturally occurring toxins can cause harm forms the cornerstone of toxicology training at MSU.

To provide both of these, the IIT at MSU offers a “dual major” doctoral program. Each student engages in graduate education in a partnering basic science doctoral program that matches the student’s scientific interests. With this as a foundation, the EITS gradaute program provides customized and coordinated training that enables a student to launch a successful career in the science of toxicology.

EITS Training

Upon completion, the student receives a PhD in his/her chosen discipline with a dual major in Environmental and Integrative Toxicological Sciences.

Many IIT-affiliated faculty are leaders in the discipline of toxicology and dedicated to research and training of graduate students. As an EITS toxicology trainee, you will gain knowledge and expertise through an interactive program of courses, research, seminars, and scientific meetings and by being an active member of the scientific community at MSU.

What to Expect

As a student with an interest in toxicology graduate education at the doctoral level, you will enter MSU through one of our cooperating disciplinary programs, engage in laboratory rotations and complete your first year of coursework. During this time you will learn techniques, experience diverse areas of research, get to know prospective faculty mentors, and decide on a lab and advisor for your thesis research. Toward the end of your first year, you will apply for and enter into the EITS doctoral program in toxicology.

An incoming student chooses among three curricular tracks with different course requirements: the “Biomedical Toxicology Track” serves students entering with a strong background in mammalian biology and with interest in mechanisms of toxicity. The “Food Toxicology and Ingredient Safety Track” serves students interested in the safety of food-borne and consumer product ingredients. Students entering with backgrounds in disciplines other than mammalian biology (e.g., chemistry, engineering, etc.) may choose the “Environmental Toxicology Track”, which emphasizes fate of chemicals in the environment, bioremediation and ecotoxicology. During the ensuing years, you will complete research on your thesis project. In the process, you will present your work at scientific meetings, complete a Ph.D. qualifying exam, write research reports for publication and participate in seminars and other EITS-sponsored gatherings. Your time as a doctoral student will culminate with a presentation of your research to the MSU scientific community and a “defense” of your thesis before your thesis committee. Upon graduation, you will be well prepared for a career in toxicology.

Please see the directory of affiliated doctoral programs for a list of programs that partner with EITS, including addresses and phone numbers of key contacts for each department program.


Apply to EITS

If you are already a student in a partnering MSU Graduate Program, consider applying to EITS:

EITS Application (pdf)

Graduate Handbook (pdf)