Ricardo Cisneros, PhD, MPH.

Assistant Professor of Environmental Public Health

Office: SSM Bldg 361A,

Mail: Public Health, School of Social Sciences Humanities and Arts, University of California Merced, 5200 North Lake Road, Merced CA 95343.





rcisneros@ ucmerced.edu


PH 110: Environmental Health

This course is designed to provide you with an overview of the principles of Environmental Health with particular emphasis on the interaction between people and the environment. Environmental Health is associated with recognizing, assessing and controlling the impacts of people in their environment and at the same time gauging the impacts of the environment on the public. This course presents a broad survey of the major environmental health issues, and topics are addressed in an interdisciplinary context.  Upon completion of this course each student will have basic understanding of the environmental processes that affect human health and current and future environmental concerns in our global environment.

PH 115: GIS and Public Health

This course is designed to provide you with an overview of the theory and application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) with particular emphasis on Public Health. The purpose of this course is to provide a broad introduction to the use of GIS in Public Health in analyzing and addressing health problems. GIS are computer-based systems for integrating and analyzing spatial data. This course will help students become conversant with some fundamental concepts in how GIS are used to map and analyze the geographical distributions of diseases, populations at risk, health outcomes, and environmental risk factors.Upon completion of this course students will be able to explore associations between risk factors and health outcomes; and have an understanding on how to use GIS to address health problems. Arc GIS 10 is the GIS software provided by the university and will be heavily used in the class.

PH 001: Introduction to Public Health

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to Public Health. Broadly speaking, the mission of Public Health is to assure that people can be healthy in society. Whereas medicine is concerned with understanding individual causes and treatment of disease and illness, Public Health focuses on the community and the health of the population. This means assessing the health of the population, understanding the causes and determinants of health challenges and problems, and identifying ways to improve the health of the population. In some cases, this might mean working to help individuals gain access to existing medical services, while in other cases it might require introducing population wide interventions. This course is intended to provide an introduction into i) the tools needed to understand the basic science of public health, ii) the biomedical basis of public health, including infectious disease transmission and containment, iii) the societal determinants of health, iv) how the environment impacts health, iv) the role of the medical care system in meeting the needs of the population, v) population level interventions aimed at improving health, vi) the role of health communication and promotion in improving the health of the population, and vii) the challenges faced by public health in the US, including disaster preparedness.

This is a General Education Course and there are no pre-requisites for the course. 


PH 204: Environmental Health

This course is about why the environment is essential to human health and how we analyze and act on Environmental agents, factors, and conditions to improve health of people, at local, regional, and global scales. This class will focus on issues pertinent to the San Joaquin Valley.  I will focus on the major approaches in environmental health and inform you where you can learn more about any particular factor or disease you may encounter in your professional career. You will learn about how environmental factors contribute to disease. I will demonstrate how we use data from toxicology, epidemiology, and exposure assessment to understand effects of the environment on health. I want to hear your perspectives and experiences. In a graduate course, we learn from each other and from our combined knowledge and experience. I want you to immerse in environmental health from the beginning of the class. You will have the opportunity to describe environmental health problems of interest to you and apply knowledge to current environmental health issues in our case studies.