The three educational objectives of the Biomedical Engineering program are achieved via the implementation of a curriculum with four parallel concentrations which include a common core and concentration-specific courses. The core curriculum is designed to provide a broad foundation in the basic sciences and in engineering. Concentration-specific courses provide the depth required to be proficient engineers.
The four concentrations are Electrical (E), Mechanical (M), Biomaterials and Tissue (B) and Premedical (P). The Premed concentration satisfies the requirements for admission to medical school (see Pre-medical Advising and Requirements) and provides depth in the area of biomaterials and tissue engineering. The curriculum is designed to provide all graduates with the analytical and design skills required to formulate and solve problems at the interface of engineering and life sciences. Outstanding students are prepared for graduate studies or medical school.
Required courses in the humanities and social sciences provide students with an awareness of social, ethical and environmental issues related to their profession. The curriculum has been carefully designed with the prerequisite structure in mind so that students have to draw from previously acquired knowledge to complete the upper level course requirements successfully. The curriculum includes two or three technical electives selected by the student based on their individual professional interests.
The curriculum places a special emphasis on written and oral communication skills. Many of the Biomedical Engineering courses, as well as the capstone design project, include a requirement for a written term paper and oral presentation on a course-related topic related to the class. Click here to see the Undergraduate Course Sequence.
UNDERGRADUATE DESIGN AND LABORATORY EXPERIENCE
The biomedical engineering design experience is integrated in the curriculum throughout the four years of study, starting in the freshman year with the Introduction to Biomedical Engineering course. Each semester includes classroom or laboratory courses which place a heavy emphasis on theoretical and practical biomedical engineering design concepts. The design experience culminates in the senior year with a year-long capstone Senior Design Project. The Senior Design Project is typically completed by teams of two students who build on their knowledge and previous design experience to solve one major design problem which integrates the various components of the curriculum. The senior project starts in the second semester of the junior year with a 1-credit course which covers the basic principles of biomedical engineering design.
The curriculum includes a Technical Entrepreneurship course which can serve as an alternative to the Senior Design Project. The students form entrepreneurial teams of 4 to 6 members to design and develop new products, including a business or commercialization plan. This course was established with a grant from the National Collegiate Innovators and Inventors Alliance (NCIIA) in 1999 and it is currently supported by additional grants from NCIIA.
Biomedical Engineering students have open access to teaching laboratories which are used for the laboratory courses and design projects. The laboratory equipment and instructional modules are geared towards instruction in the areas of tissue mechanics, instrumentation, measurements, biomedical optics, physiological signals, among others.
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH AND INTERNSHIPS
The Department of Biomedical Engineering promotes the participation of undergraduate students in research. Many of our undergraduate students conduct research in laboratories at the Department of Biomedical Engineering and at the School of Medicine, or are hired as research or engineering interns by the local biomedical industry. Click here to see list of current undergraduate student research activities.