Full-day in US$ Half-day in US$
Member $355 $185
Student Member $115 $65
Nonmember $385 $225
Nonmember Student $125 $75
Developing Country/ Recent Grad Member $115 $65

Morning Half-day Courses

Sunday 9 November 8:00am–12:00pm

Room: 203
Lead Instructor: Matthias Liess, UFZ Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research

Linking community data and pesticide exposure is one of the challenging tasks of environmental risk assessment. Applications include field identification of field effects of pesticide exposure, the validation of environmental quality criteria and the use of monitoring data for post­registration studies. The major challenges are dealing with confounding factors, differences in community composition of sample sites and rare species.  Participants will be:

  1. Informed on the relevant processes that are to be considered when linking community data and exposure
  2. Apply the knowledge obtained by hands-on experience with using a simple calculator, exercising with real field data. Additional data of participants can be calculated during the course if provided 3 weeks in advance to

Room: 205
Lead Instructor: William Stiteler, ARCADIS

This course provides an overview of the quantitative remote sensing analysis and how it can be applied to environmental and risk assessment applications. Both satellite and aerial remote sensing will be covered. Students will learn which applications are most appropriate for use with remote sensing and how to use remote sensing to save time and money without sacrificing accuracy. The course is intended for students with little background in remote sensing analysis, who wish to learn the types of questions they should ask to aid in how best to to use the technology. The wide range of available imagery sources will also be discussed, along with the pros and cons of different types of imagery.

Room: 206
Lead Instructor: Ralph Nigro, Energy Group, Inc.

For years, the utility industry and regulators have engaged over the role of the CFL (compact fluorescent light) and other lighting technologies in reducing electricity usage. Something as simple as a light bulb has probably never received such heavy scrutiny, and it represents the complex interactions between policy, economics, technology, consumers and environmental impacts. Using the light bulb replacement story, this short course will show that there are difficult tradeoffs to be made, and energy efficiency alone is not sufficient if we are to tackle broader environmental problems such as climate change. This course is part of three coordinated sessions around the theme “Energy, Global Risk and Sustainability,” sponsored by the advisory groups on Sustainability and Ecological Risk Assessment. The other two components are a plenary session and a facilitated panel discussion on “Energy Supply and Societal Demand.” Course attendance is not required to attend the other two components.

Room: 204
Lead Instructor: Thomas Hatfield, 3M

This course is intended to provide the students with basic knowledge of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) including details of the separation process, general GC procedures, temperature programming, instrumentation, quantification and method development. This course focuses on the technique of GC/MS as opposed to operation using a specific instrument or software. One goal of this course is to provide enough information to the students, so they will know how to either solve a problem or where to find the necessary information to solve a problem so that reliable identification/quantitation can be obtained. The second goal of this course is to provide the students who review data with enough information so that they can differentiate between “reliable data” and “unreliable data.”

Afternoon Half-day Courses

Sunday 9 November 1:00–5:00pm

Room: 203
Lead Instructor: Glen Benge, Private Consultant

The combination of high-volume hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling has transformed the U.S. into an energy superpower. In 2013, the U.S. became the world’s largest producer of oil and natural gas. And yet, the oil and gas industry’s rapid growth into shale regions of the country has generated many questions and concerns from adjoining landowners, affected communities, environmental NGOs and government officials. Allegations of harm, which initially focused on concerns about the chemicals added to hydraulic fracturing fluids and the potential for groundwater contamination, have expanded to include surface water quality and quantity impacts, wastewater disposal issues, induced seismicity, air emissions, health effects and local community impacts (road damage, increased traffic, noise, etc.). The nation’s experience with unconventional shale development has shown that responsible development can bring substantial employment, economic and environmental benefits. This half-day short course will explain in detail the industry’s operations, how it manages the risk of those operations, and how it has addressed and continues to be responsive to the concerns expressed by regulators.

This course has been CANCELED.
Lead Instructor: Francesca Grifo, USEPA

The Scientific Integrity Policy of the USEPA prohibits intimidation and coercion of scientists to alter scientific data, findings or professional opinions. Also prohibited are influencing scientific advisory boards or knowingly misrepresenting, exaggerating or downplaying areas of scientific uncertainty associated with policy decisions. These problems are discrete from scientific misconduct but also have consequences for robust science and its use in decision-making. This course will outline the expectations that the USEPA holds for its scientists, their supervisors, its political appointees, contractors, volunteers and grantees. We will also cover what USEPA is doing to promote a culture of scientific integrity and ensure compliance with its Scientific Integrity Policy.

Room: 204
Lead Instructor: Teresa Norberg-King, USEPA

New toxicology and chemistry graduates typically pursue a diverse spectrum of career opportunities in teaching and research, in industrial or contract toxicology laboratories, or in regulatory agencies and affiliated institutes. The hiring procedures for toxicology and chemistry are tailored to the types of employers in this field. With this course, students are provided insight and guidance on the process of career job hunting from scientists in environmental science and toxicology positions. When you’ve invested so much time and effort into your career to this point, you need to network to increase your chances of getting a job! Job hunting is a process which requires your full commitment. To meet your goals, it is essential to organize a job search campaign and to find the right job, the job search includes a variety of strategies. We’ve designed a “practical short course” designed to aid students and post-doctoral candidates with the process of preparing for career job hunting. The course is taught by experienced SETAC academic, government, industry and consultant members. As the application, interview, and selection processes for all jobs is not the same, developing a resume to apply for a professional position is challenging and one of most important in career planning. We’ll present a variety of ways to ‘sell yourself on paper’ and discuss a variety of interview tips. We’ll discuss the various types of positions in different organizations of academic, business sector (consulting and industry), and government positions will be presented. Each instructor will present the viewpoint of a potential employee and the personnel responsible for hiring recommendations. Participants will learn about the hiring processes from application to final selection, and we’ll cover both one-on-one interviews, phone interviews, and panel interviews. We’ll The workshop will include overviews of how to prepare resumes, where to find jobs, the hiring process, preparing applications with supporting materials, typical interview formats, and the selection and decision procedures for each type of organization. Example resumes will be presented and an opportunity to consult on resumes for each sector will be provided. Participants will learn about the hiring processes for academic, business, and government positions from application to final selection with emphasis placed on the interview. The team of instructors from in academia, consulting, industry, and government will present the viewpoint of a potential employee and the personnel responsible for hiring recommendations. Participants will learn about the hiring processes for academic, business, and government positions from application to final selection; something not found in self-help books! This course is being offered to students at a special rate of $30.

Room: 205
Lead Instructor: Robin Reash, American Electric Power

The scientific literature increasingly documents the various environmental and physiological interactions between mercury and selenium. While many publications during the past 50 years have cited the inverse (often described as antagonistic) associations between these two trace elements in plants and animals, recent insights and evidence reveal the pivotal significance of their molecular interactions. The biochemical basis for selenium-dependent reductions in mercury bioaccumulation in freshwater fish and mercury-dependent effects on selenium physiology in the brains of highly exposed organisms are increasingly understood but remain mostly unknown. The purpose of this course is to provide an overview of how mercury and selenium interact across the milieu of biological organization: in vivo, in situ, whole organism and ecosystem. Topics to be discussed include general chemistry and element properties, geological sources, elemental affinities, selenoenzymes and metabolism, the mechanism of mercury toxicity, bioaccumulation dynamics, toxicity to aquatic life, and human health risk assessment and fish consumption guidelines. Consideration will also be given to environmental and physiological effects of excess mercury and selenium’s counterbalancing effects. We will also discuss contemporary policy and regulatory issues that will need to be adjusted once full knowledge of the mercury–selenium interactions become integrated.

Room: 206
Lead Instructors: Susan Cormier, USEPA, Glenn Suter, USEPA

Although the development of ecological risk assessment was an important conceptual advance in the provision of information for environmental decision makers, it addressed only one type of issue. A new fully integrated framework has been developed that provides technical input to the full range of environmental problems from identifying impairments to confirming that remedial actions have succeeded. The four types of assessments are condition assessment (is the environment impaired and if so, how?), causal assessment (what is the cause of any identified impairments?), predictive assessments (what are the expected consequences of alternative actions?), and outcome assessments (were the desired results attained?). All of these assessment types have a common structure: an impetus (a mandate or a prior assessment), planning (setting the scope and goals and planning the analysis), analysis (collecting data and performing analyses), synthesis (characterizing the results of the analysis), and communication (formulating and presenting the results in a useful and understandable way). Each assessment is focused on resolving a management problem or identifying what additional assessments are needed.

Full-day Courses

Sunday 9 November 8:00am–5:00pm

Room: 207
Lead Instructor: Ellen Mihaich, ER2

In response to the concern that certain environmental chemicals could be interfering with the endocrine system of humans and wildlife, regulations have been promulgated in various regulatory bodies around the world to target the evaluation of these types of effects. The purpose of this professional training course is to address key topics related to endocrine system evaluation and regulatory requirements around the world. The course will provide basic information on the vertebrate endocrine system, mechanisms of control and adverse effects. The focus of the endocrine system presentation will be the estrogen, androgen and thyroid systems. The requirements of the USEPA’s Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program, as well as those for REACH and other regulatory initiatives around the world including the development of definitions and criteria in the EU, will be reviewed. Specific screens and tests used in these programs will be discussed, including plans for the evolution of the USEPA program, such as EDSP21 and the development of adverse outcome pathways. Use of weight-of-evidence evaluations in interpreting the data will be covered. Finally, an interactive simulation will be staged where small groups of participants can engage in a transparent and quantitative weight of evidence evaluation of data.

Room: 218
Lead Instructor: Frank Gobas, Simon Fraser University

The objective of this course is to illustrate the application of activity- and fugacity-based risk assessments as a method for addressing these challenges. In contrast to concentration-based risk assessment, which is limited to a specific environmental medium, activity- and fugacity-based risk assessments provide a method for including data and information from multiple media. Activity- and fugacity-based risk provides a methodology to include exposure data from a variety of sources, toxicity data from various sources, as well as bioaccumulation measures into a single comprehensive risk analysis. It provides a method for including a wide variety of data sources, checking for internal consistency and addressing discrepancies, and ultimately increasing weight of evidence in risk assessment. In this course, we invite participants to bring their own data set and explore the application of activity-based risk assessment to their problem of interest.

Room: 219
Lead Instructor: Larry Barnthouse, LWB Environmental Services, Inc.

Population biology focuses on processes influencing population size and structure such as reproduction, survival, migration and regulation of population growth. Population biology has a strong foundation in natural resources management and has been used to establish sustainable harvest levels, recover populations and evaluate project impacts. In these applications, the individual is rarely managed unless important to sustainability of the population, true mainly for endangered species. This principle of focusing on sustainability of the population also applies when assessing ecological risk to contaminants. In the past, the focus of most ecological risk assessments has been on qualitative inferences concerning potential effects of chemicals on populations, based on growth, reproduction and/or mortality data derived from whole-organism toxicity tests. In contrast, population biology provides tools to quantitatively link effects on growth, reproduction and mortality to sustainability of populations. In this course, we introduce population concepts and present case studies of population-scale ERAs.

Room: 215/216
Lead Instructor: Christian Ritz, NEXS, University of Copenhagen

The open source statistical environment R ( has become the lingua franca of data analysis among statisticians and is also in widespread use in many applied sciences. Many advanced or recent statistical and graphical/visualization techniques are only available in R. Therefore, R is an extremely powerful all-in-one alternative software to specialized commercial data analysis software currently used by many ecotoxicologists. Moreover, it encourages collaborative and reproducible research. The focus of the professional training course will be on updating participants on standard methods and relevant recent statistical advances through hands-on training using the statistical environment R. The course material will be a combination of lectures on methodology, key concepts in R and case studies based on toxicological data from recent publications in ET&C and elsewhere.

Room: 217
Lead Instructor: John Green, DuPont

This course covers statistical considerations of experimental design and statistical analysis used to evaluate toxicity of chemicals in the environment. Both hypothesis testing to determine a NOEC and regression modeling to determine an ECx will be developed in detail. The discussion will include advantages and disadvantages of both approaches and their use in risk assessment. The lead instructor works closely with OECD and USEPA, is an active member of the OECD Validation Management Group for Ecotoxicity, and was instrumental in developing several new OECD Test Guidelines and new methodology, which will be discussed. All instructors have worked on several other multi-disciplinary teams developing regulatory statistical guidance. Continuous, quantal and severity score (histopath) data will be explored. The instructors have decades of practical experience designing and analyzing ecotoxicity experiments, performing risk assessments and dealing with related regulatory issues, and they drew on that experience in developing this class. Underlying principles will be discussed, but the focus will be on practical issues. All topics will include illustration by real laboratory ecotoxicity data examples illustrating the relevant points and techniques. Logical flow-charts for NOEC determination and for regression model fitting will be presented, as well as some discussion of software to conduct analyses.