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Education of the Toxicologist

Professional, Ethical and Legal Issues

  1. Robert Snyder PhD, FATS1,
  2. Jason R. Richardson MS, PhD2

Published Online: 15 DEC 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470744307.gat130

General, Applied and Systems Toxicology

General, Applied and Systems Toxicology

How to Cite

Snyder, R. and Richardson, J. R. 2009. Education of the Toxicologist. General, Applied and Systems Toxicology. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    Rutgers the State University of New Jersey, Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, The Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, New Jersey, USA

  2. 2

    University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Assistant Professor of Environmental and Occupational Medicine, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Jersey, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 DEC 2009


The aim of this chapter is to describe the training of toxicologists. It stresses the need for students to understand the development of toxicology as a distinct discipline despite its close ties to other disciplines such as pharmacology, pathology, and so on. It emphasizes the need for students to be broadly and firmly grounded in each of the basic medical sciences. The study of past discoveries and the early initiation of their own research efforts should lead students into the appreciation of hypothesis building and the application of scientific methods to challenge their hypotheses. It is essential that students learn to use the extensive toxicological literature, much of which is now available online. Students should be trained to write scientific papers and should be prepared to describe the results of their work in well-organized discussions. Ultimately, the success of the student will be a measure of the scholarly interaction with the student's mentor. Toxicology training should permit the student to enter into a career in basic or applied research. Many students opt for postdoctoral fellowships to help them decide upon how best to build a career. It is recognized that some differences can be identified when comparing training programs, for example, in the USA, Great Britain and Germany. However, experience has shown that each has prepared students to meet the challenges faced by modern toxicologists.


  • toxicology training programs;
  • required courses;
  • qualifying exams;
  • student research;
  • mentors;
  • communication: writing and oral presentations;
  • basic and applied toxicology;
  • training in USA, Great Britain and Germany;
  • postdoctoral training;
  • the literature of toxicology