Doctoral Studies

Ecotoxicology - Field

Brief description of field

Major objective of the Ecotoxicology is to study and understand the fate and effects of chemicals (and other stressors) released by human activities on living organisms in ecosystems (including also effects in humans but focusing more specifically on other biota). Ecotoxicology studies effects of xenobiotics and biotoxins at all levels (i.e. understanding biochemical and cellular mechanisms of toxicity, studying effects in individuals as well as in populations or communities).

Studies focus on interactions between (i) environmental characteristics (bioavailability, biotransformations), (ii) levels of stressors in the environment, and (iii) their biological effects (acute or chronic including genotoxicity).

Ecotoxicology studies the influence of environmental stressors on all major functional groups of organisms (producers, consumers, destruents) in both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. The activities also include application and development of information and modeling tools. One of important aims of ecotoxicology is to transfer the basic research results to the practical use in environmental risk assessment and rational protection of ecosystems.

Profile of a typical graduate

Graduates can further built their careers in the research area focused on the problems linked with environmental contamination (environmental chemistry) and its effects in organisms (biology, toxicology, carcinogenesis, ecotoxicology). Graduates can also find positions in the fields of applied environmental quality control, ecosystem protection, regulatory or industrial laboratories, private consultancy companies. The aim of the doctoral studies in ecotoxicology is to promote deep theoretical knowledge with practical skills in laboratory experimental and field biology, environmental chemistry and analytics, risk assessment and environmental impact assessment including applications of geographical informational systems (GIS). Further, students are educated in the interdisciplinary fields such as molecular toxicology, population ecotoxicology, ecosystem informatics and modeling.

Requirements for applicants

Applicant should have good knowledge of biology and chemistry including ecotoxicology and environmental chemistry. Prior to application, supervisors (advisors) of the dissertation theses should be contacted, and based on the consultations, applicants prepare brief overview of the doctoral project including aims, problems and methods. Applicant will demonstrate skills to discuss selected research field. Good knowledge of English language is necessary for all doctoral students. Detailed requirements should be discussed with the chair of the ecotoxicology doctoral commitee and individual doctoral advisors.

Study requirements and completion of studies

Studies of Ecotoxicology are based on internal standards of Masaryk University . Major duties include systematic experimental and scientific work on the dissertation project in close coordination and consultations with advisor. Further, students promote their theoretical knowledge by taking specific classes and exercises. During the studies, students are required to actively attend seminars, workshops and also international conferences to present their results. Dissertation thesis must be based on student's results documented by publications in impacted peer-reviewed international journals.

Individual study plan

Detailed individual study plan is prepared in cooperation with the PhD advisor and is approved by the doctoral board.

Recommended schedule and duties are following:

- preparation of the written review of the studied problem within the first two semesters

- theoretical studies (classes) during the first four semesters

- active participation in the RECETOX seminars and workshops during all studies

- individual work on the dissertation project with increasing credits during the 4-year studies

- poster and oral presentations of the results at conferences

- help with the education of undergraduate students (laboratories, exercises)

- preparation of manuscripts and publications in peer-reviewed journals.

- research stay abroad (recommended during studies)

List of members of doctoral committee

List of supervisors

Commission for state doctoral exams and defenses

List of current doctoral topics

Department pages


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