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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Biomedical Informatics

Majors Overview April 19, 2014

Those who work in the biomedical informatics field analyze and collect data that is important to biomedicine. This field is a combination of medical biology and computer science. Since bachelor’s degree programs in Biomedical Informatics are usually offered at the graduate level, they may be difficult to find; alternatively, bachelor’s degree programs in Bioinformatics offers similar coursework.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Programs in Biomedical Informatics

Students enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs in Biomedical Informatics are provided with computer skills, in addition to biological and medical research capabilities necessary for government work, design projects or programming jobs. The majority of Biomedical Informatics programs at the bachelor’s degree level are referred to as Bioinformatics programs.

Participation in an internship with local organizations or businesses may be required of students. Students enrolled in other programs may have to choose from tracks in areas such as biology, computational science or statistics. Universities and colleges are among the schools that generally offer these 4-year programs.

Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma.

Coursework

Experimental methods determining the way living organisms function are highlighted in the coursework of the bachelor’s degree programs. Coursework combines classroom lectures and laboratory research. Apart from core and specialization courses, general education requirements must be completed. Schools offer major-based courses such as:

•Cell biology
•Calculus
•Molecular genetics
•Medical terminology
•Information technology ethics
•Statistics

Career Choices

A substantial growth in job opportunities is projected within the research and development area for engineers and scientists during the decade from 2008 to 2018 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). The best opportunities are likely to be enjoyed by those with bioinformatics experience (BLS). Graduates of bachelor’s degree programs can choose from various career options such as:

•Pharmaceutical scientist
•Technical assistant
•Biological software engineer
•Database developer
•Biologist
•Biostatistician

Continuing Education Choices

Those who seek continued education can enroll into a master’s degree program in Biomedical Informatics. It usually takes between 18 and 36 months to complete the master’s degree program that is offered online by some schools. Schools also offer doctoral degree programs in Biomedical Informatics; the focus of these programs tends to be on the development and research areas, and their culmination is usually marked by a dissertation. Master’s degree programs are usually prepared for non-academic careers, while those seeking to work as professors would benefit by earning a doctoral degree.

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