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Risk Sciences and Public Policy


Risk professionals are under increased pressure to interpret complex environmental and health situations in creative ways. The certificate program provides multidisciplinary education designed to increase awareness of the scientific underpinnings of risk assessment and provide a bridge between science and policy that allows innovative public health solutions to complex problems. Risk assessment methods are applied to address a wide range of environmental and public health issues including chemical, microbiological, radiological exposures, natural and man-made disasters, and to evaluate new technologies. Risk assessors are employed in academic, governmental and non-governmental organizations across multiple sectors such as agriculture, energy, environmental protection, armed forces, public health, and transportation.

Educational Objectives

Upon conclusion of the Risk Sciences and Public Policy certificate program, the student will:

  1. Be able to describe the importance of risk assessment in examining public health problems
  2. Be able to describe the methods of risk assessment and their applicability to public health problems
  3. Be able to discuss the scientific basis for assessing environmental and other public health risks
  4. Be able to complete and document a basic quantitative risk assessment for a chemical exposure
  5. Be familiar with the policy implications of the scientific relationships for reducing public health risks

Course of Study

Students should carefully review the certificate program page on the JHU e-catalogue site for full information about courses and program requirements.


This certificate program is open to research scientists interested in bridging science and policy; public and private sector professionals who evaluate scientific data in the context of risk assessment and management; decision makers and risk-mangers, such as regulators, corporate executives, elected officials, economists, engineers, and lawyers; and those responsible for communicating risk, such as lobbyists, journalists, and non-governmental organizations.  The certificate is also intended for students enrolled in any JHU graduate degree program, with the exception of the JHSPH MAS program, as well as students enrolled in the Johns Hopkins University undergraduate public health degree program.

Admissions Process

Applying to the certificate program as a JHU graduate student

Students already enrolled in a graduate program at JHU are not required to submit the School's electronic admissions application, but must submit declaration of intent prior to starting coursework. Priority deadline to submit intent is October 1; Final deadline is December 1.

Start terms: It is possible to begin the certificate program only in these terms: 1, 2, & 3.

Applying to the certificate program as a non-degree student

Students who are not currently enrolled in a graduate program at JHU are required to apply to certificate programs using SOPHAS Express. All non-degree applicants should review the general Certificates Admissions page for instructions on how to apply to a certificate program and application deadlines. 

Start terms: It is possible to begin the certificate program only in these terms: 1 & 3.

TOEFL/IELTS: Not required.

Prerequisites or special requirements: None

Requirement for Successful Completion

The student should review the section of the website that addresses completion before completing certificate program requirements.  The student's transcripts will not indicate that the certificate was earned until the Notification of Completion has been submitted, verified by the certificate program, and processed by the Registrar.

Contact Information

Sponsoring Departments
Health Policy and Management
Environmental Health and Engineering

Certificate Program Contact
Name Pamela Davis

Faculty Sponsor
Name Mary Fox

Faculty Co-Sponsor 
Keeve Nachman