Minor Program in Toxicology and Environmental Health

The Toxicology and Environmental Health minor program addresses the growing demand for undergraduate majors in science and engineering to develop an appreciation for the impact of new products and processes on human health. Each core subject applies principles of chemistry, biology, and engineering to issues of human health, and provides the student with an in-depth experience in one facet of a paradigm that relates human disease to exposure to chemicals and microorganisms.

Below are some frequently asked questions about the minor program:


How do I declare a minor?


  1. Pick up a minor application from the BE Academic Office (16-267), the Student Services Center (11-120), or visit the registrar website.
  2. Meet with Professor Jacquin Niles (jcniles@mit.edu) in order to plan your program of study. Bring the application, as well as a copy of your most recent grade report with you to this meeting.  Prof. Niles must sign the form.
  3. Bring the completed application to the BE Academic Office (16-267). You will be emailed a copy of your application and it will appear on your student record.

When should I apply?

You should apply by the end of your Sophomore year but no later than the “Add Date” of the term before the term you plan to graduate with an SB degree.

What if I want to change classes that would impact my TOX minor?

To change any part of your approved program you must consult with Prof. Niles.

How do I complete the minor?

  1. Pick up a minor completion form from the BE Academic Office (16-267), the Student Services Center (11-120), or visit the registrar website.
  2. When you have completed all of the course requirements for the minor, take a copy of your most recent grade report and a minor completion form to your minor advisor. Your advisor will then sign the completion form to verify that you have satisfied all of the course requirements.
  3. Bring the completion form to the BE Academic Office (16-267). You will be emailed a copy.

When do I complete my minor?

You must complete the minor by the minor completion date, typically the third week of the term you expect to receive the SB degree. Any completion forms filed after this date will be subject to a late fee, billed to your account.

What are the requirements?

To satisfy the TOX minor requirements you must complete 3 core subjects, 1 laboratory core subject, and 1 elective.

Core Subjects

  • 20.102 Macroepidemiology and Population Genetics
  • 20.104J Environmental Risks for Common Disease
  • 20.106 Systems Microbiology

Laboratory Core Subjects (choose one)

  • 20.109 Laboratory Fundamentals in Biological Engineering
  • 7.02 Intro to Experimental Biology and Communication
  • 5.310 Laboratory Chemistry

TOX minor electives (Choose one)*

J = indicates a joint subject and can be found in the Course Catalogue under alternate course numbers.

  • 1.725J (TPP.51.J) Chemicals in the Environment: Fate and Transport
  • 1.89 Environmental Microbiology
  • 1.080 Environmental Chemistry & Biology
  • 7.05 General Biochemistry
  • 7.06 Cell Biology
  • 7.28 Molecular Biology
  • 12.807J Atmospheric Chemistry
  • 20.507J Biological Chemistry I
  • 20.901 Special Topics in Toxicology and Environmental Health
  • 20.URG Special Projects in Undergraduate Research

* = Consult your advisor if you wish to substitute the graduate version of any subject listed.

Who should I contact if I have more questions?

Questions about course requirements, approving electives, etc:

Professor Jacquin Niles
Director, TOX Minor Program
Room 56-341B

Questions about program deadlines, forms, and other administrative requests:

Cathy Greene
UG Program Coordinator, Course 20
Room 16-267