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Course 750 - Introduction to Industrial Hygiene

Safety guides and audits to make your job as a safety professional easier

Welcome!

Hi, and welcome to the course. If you are a safety manager, supervisor, committee member, or someone who is entering into the occupational safety and health field, this course will help you understand your important responsibilities.

Here's how it works (Read this... it's important!)

  1. Study each course module. Just click on the course "Modules" tab above to get started. It take about 30 minutes to one hour to complete each module, including the quiz.
  2. Complete each module quiz. Each quiz is 5-10 questions. When you submit the quiz, a new web page will load with instant feedback on your answers. After you complete the quiz, start on the next module. There is no need to wait! No hurry either. You are in control of the pace of learning.
  3. If you have questions as you study, just send us an email.

    Course 750 Certificate
    Frame not included.
  4. Order an Optional Certificate. If you want certification of your training, order a high quality certificate. Our training is free. We only charge a small fee to provide documentation of your training. If you are enrolled in one of our professional safety and health programs, you can save money by purchasing the program package that fits your needs. If you just want to purchase the certificate for this course, a link will be provided on your student dashboard after you pass the final exam. Just click on the "Purchase Certificate" Link.

    For individual courses, the PDF certificate is only $, the original certificate is $ (shipping extra), and the PDF & original certificate is $ (shipping extra).
  5. Complete and submit the final course exam.
    • Final exams consist of 20 questions.
    • To meet OSHA requirements, you must pass the final exam with at least a 70% score.
    • If you do not pass the exam, you may retake the exam.
    • If you pass the exam, you may not retake the exam just to raise your score.
    • Most final exam questions are derived from module quizzes.

OK, Let's go!

Have fun and study hard. To start, just click on "Introduction" above.

Introduction

What is Industrial Hygiene?

industrialhygiene
Industrial hygiene is the science of anticipating, recognizing, evaluating, and controlling workplace conditions that may cause workers' injury or illness.
(Click to enlarge)

There has been an awareness of industrial hygiene since antiquity. The environment and its relation to worker health was recognized as early as the fourth century BC when Hippocrates noted lead toxicity in the mining industry. In the first century AD, Pliny the Elder, a Roman scholar, perceived health risks to those working with zinc and sulfur. He devised a face mask made from an animal bladder to protect workers from exposure to dust and lead fumes. In the second century AD, the Greek physician, Galen, accurately described the pathology of lead poisoning and also recognized the hazardous exposures of copper miners to acid mists.

In the Middle Ages, guilds worked at assisting sick workers and their families. In 1556 the German scholar, Agricola, advanced the science of industrial hygiene even further when, in his book De Re Metallica, he described the diseases of miners and prescribed preventive measures. The book included suggestions for mine ventilation and worker protection, discussed mining accidents, and described diseases associated with mining occupations such as silicosis.

Industrial hygiene gained further respectability in 1750 when Bernardo Ramazzini, known as the "father of industrial medicine," published in Italy the first comprehensive book on industrial medicine, De Morbis Artificum Diatriba (The Diseases of Workmen). The book contained accurate descriptions of the occupational diseases of most of the workers of his time. Ramazzini greatly affected the future of industrial hygiene because he asserted that occupational diseases should be studied in the work environment rather than in hospital wards.

Industrial hygiene received another major boost in 1743 when Ulrich Ellenborg published a pamphlet on occupational diseases and injuries among gold miners. Ellenborg also wrote about the toxicity of carbon monoxide, mercury, lead, and nitric acid.

In England in the 18th century, Percival Pott, as a result of his findings on the insidious effects of soot on chimney sweepers, was a major force in getting the British Parliament to pass the Chimney-Sweepers Act of 1788. The passage of the English Factory Acts beginning in 1833 marked the first effective legislative acts in the field of industrial safety. The Acts, however, were intended to provide compensation for accidents rather than to control their causes. Later, various other European nations developed workers' compensation acts, which stimulated the adoption of increased factory safety precautions and the establishment of medical services within industrial plants.

In the early 20th century in the U. S., Dr. Alice Hamilton, led efforts to improve industrial hygiene. She observed industrial conditions first hand and startled mine owners, factory managers, and state officials with evidence that there was a correlation between worker illness and their exposure to toxins. She also presented definitive proposals for eliminating unhealthful working conditions.

At about the same time, U.S. federal and state agencies began investigating health conditions in industry. In 1908, the public's awareness of occupationally related diseases stimulated the passage of compensation acts for certain civil employees. States passed the first workers' compensation laws in 1911. And in 1913, the New York Department of Labor and the Ohio Department of Health established the first state industrial hygiene programs. All states enacted such legislation by 1948. In most states, there is some compensation coverage for workers contracting occupational diseases.

The U.S. Congress has passed three landmark pieces of legislation relating to safeguarding workers' health: (1) the Metal and Nonmetallic Mines Safety Act of 1966, (2) the Federal Coal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1969, and (3) the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (Act). Today, nearly every employer is required to implement the elements of an industrial hygiene and safety, occupational health, or hazard communication program and to be responsive to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Act and its regulations.

To begin your training, click on the module links below. If you are just starting this course, you should start with module 1.

  1. Industrial Hygiene and OSHA
  2. Indoor/Outdoor Air Quality
  3. Chemical Hazards
  4. Biological Hazards
  5. Physical Hazards
  6. Ergonomic Hazards

Course 750 Final Exam

OSHAcademy course final exams are designed to help ensure students demonstrate a sufficient understanding of the content covered within each course. To help demonstrate this understanding, students must achieve a minimum score of 70% on final exams. It is OSHAcademy's policy to protect the integrity of our exams and, as a result, we do not provide missed questions to students.

After you have studied all of the course material and taken the module quizzes, you can take the final exam. The module quizzes are optional, but we highly recommend you take each quiz, as the questions are similar to those on the final exam.

This is an open book exam. As you are taking the exam, if you find a question you are unsure of, you should use the course study guide or course web pages to research the correct answer. Don't worry if you fail the exam. You can study and retake the exam when you are ready.

If you have already paid for a Certificate Program

If you have already paid for your certificates, your exam score will be displayed in your student dashboard next to the course. You will also be able to view or print the course PDF certificate if you purchased this option. Your PDF transcript will also be automatically updated to include the course.

If you only want free training

You are welcome to take all of our courses for free! We only charge a fee if you want certificates, transcripts and exam scores to document your training. If you have not made a payment for your certificate, we will archive your exam results and you will see "Completed!" next to the course if you passed the exam. If you did not pass the exam with a score of 70% or higher, you will need to retake the exam.

Take the Final Exam

Take the Final Exam

Course 750 Study Guide. You can save this study guide to your computer for offline studying, or print the study guide if you prefer.