Short Courses

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Half Day Courses Sunday 11 November 8:00am - 12:00pm

  • SC01 – Coal Combustion Byproducts: Chemistry, Toxicity, and Environmental Risk
  • SC02 - Science Communication: Talking to the Public and the Media
  • SC03 - Practical GC/MS Analytical Techniques
  • SC04 – Test of Significant Toxicity Analysis Applications for Effluent and Site Toxicity Testing

Half day Courses Sunday 11 November 1:00pm - 5:00pm

  • SC05 - Resumes, Interviewing, Networking: How to Become Employed in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Jobs
  • SC06 - Dioxins & PCBs: Data Interpretation, Review & Validation* Canceled
  • SC07 - How to Model Biphasic Dose-response Relationships* Canceled
  • SC08 - Implications of Nanomaterials: Synthesis, Characterization, and Ecotoxicology

Full Day Courses Sunday 11 November 8:00am - 5:00pm

  • SC09 - Using Multiple Lines of Evidence for Sediment Quality Assessment in Regulatory Programs
  • SC10 - Statistical Issues in the Design and Analysis of Ecotox Experiments (Video)
  • SC11 - Applications of Population Biology to Ecological Risk Assessments

Course: SC01

Room: Hyatt - Shoreline B

Title: Coal Combustion Byproducts: Chemistry, Toxicity, and Environmental Risk

Instructors: Rob Reash

Coal combustion byproducts (CCBs) are all of the solid waste materials produced during the combustion of coal. The principal CCBs (in order of decreasing production based on 2010 data) are fly ash, gypsum (a flue gas desulfurization byproduct), and bottom ash. The chemical and physical properties of CCBs vary considerably, with these variations based on CCB type, post-combustion flue gas control technologies, and the source of parent coal (stratigraph and geographic factors). The environental concern of CCBs is the leaching of potentially toxic trace elements when these wastes are disposed (typically, either in a landfill or impoundment). Contaminants of concern are selenium, mercury, boron, dissolved salts, and various cationic trace metals. Case studies of environmental damage caused by CCBs will be reviewed (e.g., Belews Lake, Hyco Reservoir). This course will provide an overview of the types of CCBs and their chemical profiles, settings where toxic effects have been observed or would be expected, and the history of CCB regulation.
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Course: SC02

Room: Hyatt - Shoreline A

Title: Science Communication: Talking to the Public and the Media

Instructors: Naomi Lubick, Marla Cone, Janet Raloff

Ever wonder what to say when a journalist calls? Or why they are calling at all? Prepare yourself for an interview with a member of the media, and get an idea of what a journalist really wants when they contact you for information. In this half-day course, two journalists will tell you how they do their jobs as science reporters. They will tell you how they decide what makes something newsworthy, and why they are asking you for an interview. They will then put you through your paces, in mock interviews for a print, radio, or television setting, and help you figure out how to talk about your work for a lay audience.
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Course: SC03

Room: Hyatt - Pacific

Title: Practical GC/MS Analytical Techniques

Instructors: Thomas Hatfield

This course is intended to provide the student 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 concentrates on the technique of GC/MS as opposed to operation using a specific instrument or software. One goal of this course to provide enough information to the student that they will either know how to solve a problem or will know 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 student who reviews data with enough information so that they can differentiate between “reliable data” and “unreliable data”. This course is ideal for users who wish to learn more about gas chromatography in general or would like a refresher on GC/MS operation. It will be an excellent course for reviewers of data wishing for a greater understanding of the technique.
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Course: SC04

Room: Hyatt - Seaview Ballroom C

Title: Test of Significant Toxicity Analysis Applications for Effluent and Site Toxicity Testing

Instructors: Debra Denton, Jerry Diamond, Brian Anderson, Bryn Phillips

The whole effluent toxicity (WET) program in the US, Canada and other countries key regulatory question of concern is whether an effluent or a water body is toxic or not toxic. Resource agencies typically use at least an informal hypothesis testing approach when assessing water body compliance with water and sediment water quality standards. This course will cover the theory and application of EPA's Test of Significant Toxicity (TST), which is a statistical approach designed to answer this question for acute and chronic, freshwater and marine toxicity tests. This statistical approach utilizes a hypothesis testing approach of examining whether the water body (site water) or effluent biological response is equivalent or better than the control response with specified alpha and beta error rates. The course will cover how the TST analysis works, hands-on analysis of example data sets for both acute and chronic freshwater and marine toxicity test methods. The course will cover potential benefits resulting from this approach which is not limited to whole effluent toxicity (WET) testing programs, such as water body assessment using water and sediment methods.
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Course: SC05

Room: Hyatt - Seaview Ballroom C

Title: Resumes, Interviewing, Networking: How to Become Employed in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Jobs

Instructors: Teresa Norberg-King, Barry Gillespie, Jennifer Bouldin, Scott Belanger

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. You’ve invested so much time and effort into your career to this point, yet you need to learn how 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 and is be taught by experienced SETAC academic, government, 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. A team of instructors from 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 you can’t find by reading self-help books! This workshop is designed for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. We suggest that attendees bring résumés or email them ahead of time to Teresa Norberg-King ( This course is being offered at a special rate of $20.
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Course: SC06

Room: Hyatt - Shoreline B

Title: Dioxins & PCBs: Data Interpretation, Review & Validation

Instructors: Yves Tondeur, Jerry Hart

Course objectives are to provide regulators, inspectors, permit writers, enforcement staff, risk-assessors, toxicologists, process engineers, researchers, and project managers with the necessary tools to evaluate the quality and reliability of the data received from laboratories. Through the detailed perusal of a typical data package, the attendee will learn basic concepts, critical and key aspects of the ID-MS analytical methods, the sample analysis process, data review and interpretation, and quality assurance/quality control validation. In essence, the course will elevate your future level of confidence when navigating through a CLP-type and comprehensive data package. For instance, you will learn how detection limits and analyte concentrations are determined, how measurement of uncertainty is conducted and how to realistically assess laboratory's performance so that the data produced is fit for purpose; i.e., you will be in a superior position to prepare, review and accept future QA Project Plans.

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Course: SC07

Room: TBA

Title: How to Model Biphasic Dose-response Relationships

Instructors: William Beckon

Many substances that are toxic at high doses are actually beneficial, or even essential at chronically low doses. Examples include selenium and several metals. Such substances exhibit biphasic dose-response relationships. This course offers a primer on understanding and modeling such relationships.

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Course: SC08

Room: Hyatt - Shoreline A

Title: Implications of Nanomaterials: Synthesis, Characterization, and Ecotoxicology

Instructors: James Ranville, Stephen Klaine, Antonio Nogueira

The aim of this half day course is to provide knowledge on the Environmental Risk Assessment of Nanoparticles, their Chemistry and Geochemistry, including aspects related with reactivity, synthesis, bioassays, and environmental detection. Moreover, emphasis will be put on the implications of environmental conditions on the fate and bioavailability of nanoparticles. The course is addressed to young scientists and PhD and MSc students with a background in Biology, Natural and Environmental Sciences, Chemistry, Environmental Engineering or related fields, members of consulting companies and of private and public institutions responsible for environmental management. The course is organized in a way that will provide a comprehensive understanding of the novel properties associated with nanomaterials as well as their effects to biological organisms and how they can be assessed. Please be aware that this course may be recorded for use in future SETAC training materials.
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Course: SC09

Room: Hyatt - Seaview Ballroom A

Title: Using Multiple Lines of Evidence for Sediment Quality Assessment in Regulatory Programs

Instructors: Chris Beegan, Steve Bay, Darrin Greenstein

Description California recently adopted an innovative framework for assessing sediment quality impacts to the benthic community based upon multiple lines of evidence. This full-day short course will describe the conceptual approach and development of the framework, provide hands-on experience with data analysis and application of the framework, and discuss implementation within various regulatory programs. In addition, participants will learn about work in progress to develop an assessment framework for human health effects. During the data analysis portion of the course, participants will have the opportunity to work with software tools developed for the assessment program for interpreting chemistry, toxicity, and benthic community data. Participants should provide their own laptop computer capable of running Microsoft Excel in order to fully participate in the data analysis part of the course. Course presenters are highly experienced and played key roles in developing both the framework and regulatory policy. This course has been presented previously at SETAC regional chapter meetings and proven to be highly popular.
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Course: SC10

Room: Hyatt - Harbor

Title: Statistical Issues in the Design and Analysis of Ecotox Experiments

Instructors: John Green, Timothy Springer

This course covers statistical issues of experimental design and statistical analysis used to evaluate toxicity of chemicals in the environment. Hypothesis testing to determine a NOEC and regression modeling to determine an ECx will be developed in detail. Advantages and disadvantages of both approaches will be discussed in the context of recent test guidelines, including FSDT, ELS, and AMA, and their use in risk assessment. The instructors work closely with OECD and USEPA, are active members of the OECD Validation Management Group for Ecotoxicity and were instrumental in developing several new OECD Test Guidelines and new methodology. Both instructors have worked on several other multi-displanary teams developing regulatory statistical guidance for ecotoxicity studies. 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.Underlying principles will be discussed, but the focus will be on practical issues. All topics will be illustrated by real laboratory ecotoxicity 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.
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Course: SC11

Room: Hyatt - Seaview Ballroom B

Title: Applications of Population Biology to Ecological Risk Assessments

Instructors: Carolyn Meyer, Larry Barnthouse

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.

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