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How to Select Biomedical Engineering Programs

Majors Overview January 9, 2013

Medical and engineering principles are integrated in biomedical engineering (BME) programs in order to improve healthcare diagnosis and treatment. Most of the BME coursework involves research and development. Graduate and undergraduate programs in BME are characterized by their highly interdisciplinary nature; they are also customizable as required by a student.

Selecting a Biomedical Engineering School

Students should keep their career goals in view while selecting a BME program. Several biomedical engineers receive either a master or a doctoral degree (Ph.D.). Bachelor degree programs are also offered at schools. Those completing master degree programs typically seek employment in government labs, or conduct research in academia, or take up careers in product development. However, a bachelor degree is sufficient for entry level jobs in the field, either in public or private industry. Students should select programs that enjoy accreditation from the ABET, the leading accreditation agency for applied science, technology, and engineering programs. Students should consider internship programs offered in a specific specialty area such as marketing, operations, product development, regulatory affairs, or manufacturing. Useful professional contacts are facilitated by internships, and students should participate in internships that relate to the area in which they want to be employed after they have graduated. Training is imparted in some programs via clinical rotations and practical project work geared to improve students’ ability to perform work. The structure of the program offered is another factor students must consider before they choose a school. A joint M.S./MBA program is offered that combines engineering and business studies, ideally suited for students seeking to understand how to promote a new engineering concept. By enrolling in a M.D./Ph.D. medical program that combines research and training, students can seek to obtain additional research and career options after they graduate.

Overview of BME Programs

Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering Program

Students are taught the application of engineering, science, and math principles in analyzing and interpreting modern problems via engineering tools. Apart from general education, engineering biology, systems analysis, bio-imaging, bio-instrumentation, and biomaterials are examined by students. Students usually participate in a capstone design project.

Master of Science (M.S.) in Biomedical Engineering Program

Interdisciplinary training in engineering, medicine and biology is imparted to students; options for business classes are included in some programs. Both non-thesis and thesis tracks are usually included in programs. Admission criteria include a bachelor degree with sufficient preparation in engineering, the sciences and numerate skills.

Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering Program

Advanced coursework in engineering, physics, medicine and biology is included in the first two years of the Ph.D. program that awards seventy-two credits. Admission criteria include a qualifying exam and either a bachelor or master degree. Coursework is adjusted depending on whether the student has an undergraduate or graduate degree.

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