Reveal the harmful effects of chemicals on living organisms by examining the symptoms, mechanisms, treatments and detection of biological poisoning.


  • study the amount of exposure to a substance (for example, from pollution caused by environmental contaminants such as industrial waste products or emergency events such as a gas leak) and the potential effect it may have on public health, plants, animals and/or the ecosystem
  • study the genetic, chemical, physical and structural composition of cells, tissues and organisms
  • devise and carry out experiments to determine how drug concentrations in the body change over time and test newly discovered or manufactured substances for their safety, activity and possible use as drugs
  • analyse biological and environmental samples to identify the chemical composition of narcotics, drugs, contaminants and other substances in order to determine the levels of concentration
  • evaluate evidence from cases where tampering and contamination has occurred
  • write scientific reports on research, investigations and more general information for scientific, managerial, political and general audiences
  • document results, preserve evidence and maintain chain of custody (the document or paper trail showing the process of evidence seizure through to the presentation of the evidence in court) in criminal investigations
  • provide advice to managers, politicians, primary producers, health care workers and the general public

If you want a career as a toxicologist, you will find positions in many industries including the pharmaceutical, food and chemical industries, scientific research, government regulatory agencies and other research organisations and health services.

Source: myFuture


Disclaimer: This page provides study pathway and career options as a guide only. You should contact the Admissions Centre, International Centre or relevant Faculties for full details.

Study pathways

The following study pathway shows the most common and direct route for a UWA student to pursue this career.

  1. Undergraduate

  2. Relevant majors include:

  3. Postgraduate

    Postgraduate study is recommended and options include:

  4. Research