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Best Online Master's Degrees in Biomedical Engineering

Oct 20, 2021

What Is an Online Master's in Biomedical Engineering?

A Biomedical Engineering Master's houses two types of degrees: Master's of Engineering and Master's of Science. Each degree teaches students a certain set of skills that will enhance the medical field. With a degree in Biomedical Engineering, whether it be in Engineering or Science, an Biomedical engineer can make artificial organs, manufacture lab instruments, design imaging machines, and much more.

The Best Online Master's Degrees in Biomedical Engineering

Study.com has found two great master's degree options for anyone looking to complete post-graduate education online in biomedical engineering. The schools on our list offer special guidance for online students, one-of-a-kind study abroad opportunities and chances to take part in cutting-edge research. In addition to their course offerings, they rank high in key statistics from the U.S. Department of Education, such as graduation rates and tuition.

1. University of North Dakota

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$12,058 81% 61% 92% Yes Yes AP Credits

Online students at University of North Dakota get in-state tuition, no matter where they live and those who pursue this Online Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering get instruction from the same faculty who teach on-campus. Online students even have access to the campus library's online resources, free online tutoring, and unlimited academic coaching to bolster their education. We were impressed at how UND prepares students to compete in the industry, especially with the Center for Biomedical Research, an AAALAC-accredited lab where online students get to take part in advanced research at a cutting-edge facility.

2. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$18,083 59% 85% 64% Yes Yes AP Credits

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign offers an online Master of Engineering in Bioengineering. Online students here can take advantage of many of the university's world-class resources including study abroad trips focused on engineering, the Cancer Center at Illinois, and the Grainger Engineering Library, which is the largest engineering library in the world. The school employs special staff to help online students connect with these invaluable opportunities.

To get a more in-depth look at our school ranking methodology, please visit Study.com's ranking methodology page.

Tuition information is based on published tuition and required fees, per data by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).

Why Should I Get an Online Biomedical Engineering Master's Degree?

Students interested in pursuing a Biomedical Engineering degree should consider the vast job field. This degree opens up a plethora of opportunities within the medical field, and online degrees are a great alternative. Online degrees can accommodate for the everyday lives of students and are arguably cheaper. Students that decide to attend online school do not have to pay for room and board, just classes. The only additional cost would be school supplies and possibly a commuter parking ticket. Online courses and degree programs are often self paced, or allow students to achieve their degrees at a faster rate than others.

Looking specifically at an Online Master's in Biomedical Engineering, however, those who are interested in a long term career should definitely cover all their bases. An online degree can introduce them to multiple branches of Biomedical Engineering from teaching to research. The medical field is always advancing and expanding, new diseases are surfacing each day. There will always be work needed to be done and a job out there. Having a master's degree puts you ahead of those with a bachelor's degree by at least a grand.

Payscale is reporting that those with a Bachelor's of Science earn $75,014 a year compared to someone with a Master's of Science earning $77,789. Those who have a degree in Engineering are paid a significantly higher salary than the ones just listed. A Bachelor's of Engineering average salary is $77,367 and a Master's of Engineering average salary starts at $80,682.

How Long Does It Take to Earn an Online Master's in Biomedical Engineering?

An online degree allows for flexibility and can also offer shorter length classes. While the typical time to earn a master's degree is two years, depending on the university and the student, it can be earned even earlier than that. Students will need a minimum of 28 credits to complete their master's degree. Some universities break their degree down into groups and have a plan that the student can follow up until graduation.

Curriculum for Online Master's Degree Programs in Biomedical Engineering

When applying for graduate school, it is important for students to see what they have to offer. The curriculum is the best way for students to determine which college is best for them. A curriculum is a summary of all the courses and electives offered in a degree program. Most degree programs require a minimum of 28 credits in order to earn a master's degree. As stated before this particular degree is available in two different formats, Master's of Engineering and Master's of Science.

A MEng of Biomedical Engineering is a degree that prepares students for the technical aspects. A Master's of Science would be beneficial for those interested in research, and can be seen as a stepping stool towards a PhD. Master's of Engineering is geared more towards students who want to have a hands-on career within Biomedical Engineering. Instead of having a thesis to complete at the end of their program, there will be a project or exam. However, a few online college programs may have special assignments tailored for online students.

Foundational Courses, Electives, and Concentration

Multiple colleges offer concentrations that can help narrow down students' Biomedical Engineering degrees. Again, the Biomedical Engineering spectrum is enormous; these concentrations allow students to hone specific skills. A few common concentrations are:

Common Concentrations M.S. or MEng in Biomedical Engineering
Concentration Biomechanics Narrows down study to the function and structure the body's systems.
Concentration Biomaterials Students learn to create substance form treatments, diagnostics, repairing organs, and more.
Concentration Bioinstrumentation The use of instruments to measure and manipulate systems in the body.
Concentration General Bioengineering The study of the umbrella of biology with applied engineering.

All degrees require basis, or foundational, courses before graduate students can tackle more intermediate courses. In most cases students applying for a degree like this have a background that has trained them to further their studies. The degrees can be seen in both forms of Biomedical Engineering degrees:

Foundational Courses MEng in Biomedical Engineering
Course Quantitative Physiology Is a collective approach to physiology using computer science, mathematics, physics and engineering.
Course Tissue Engineering Students will learn how to repair or make artificial tissue for organs.
Course Medical Imaging Systems A course on the use of imaging systems such as MRIs and ultrasounds
Course Seminar A research course that normally requires students to give presentations
Course Image Engineering The use of image and video processing for diagnostics
Course Molecular Biology The study of molecular cells and their biology

A Master's of Science in Biomedical Engineering can also be earned through an online program. The coursework for this program is fairly similar to a Master's in Engineering. The time frame to complete this program is a semester to year longer compared to the MEng in Biomedical Engineering. Some specific concentrations for a Master's of Science: Cell and Tissue Engineering, Neuroengineering, Biomaterials, and Bioinformatics.

The Master's of Science program is a research rich program. The core curriculum consists of heavy biology and computational lab courses. There are fairly common foundational courses within the Science program. This is due to most research in Biomedical Engineering being based on what happens inside the body. Here are a few common courses to look forwards to:

Common Courses M.S. in Biomedical Engineering
Course Quantitative Physiology Is a collective approach to physiology using computer science, mathematics, physics and engineering.
Course Tissue Engineering Students will learn how to repair or make artificial tissue for organs.
Course Computational Neuroscience A branch of neuroscience that uses mathematics and analysis to look at the physiology and structure of the brain
Course Biostatistics A course that trains students to collect data for researching. These numbers, or data could be about the body, a certain, or even birth defect
Course Biomedical Engineering Basic course that introduces applied engineering and designs concept to better understand the body

When it comes to taking electives, it depends on the college the student attends. Their selection is broad but still falls along the line of their program. These courses are a unique way for students to pick up on more skills in spare time. They can also be lab and research courses as well. Another thing students should remember is that both degree programs require a project or thesis at the end. It can be a self conducted research project or thesis. But this depends on the university or college that the student plans to attend.

Biomedical Engineering Certification

The great thing about having such a large degree is that there are multiple options outside of the program. Beside the wide job field that Biomedical engineering is garnering, there are certification and license that can be earned as well. Having a certification or license is highly advantageous for a student. It can help them find a well paying job and stock up on experience for the future. A certification has a minimum 12 credits courses and takes no longer than a semester to semester and a half to finish. It can be earned before, during, and after the student master's program.

The courses offered for a certification program can be taken as electives. It should be known that most certification programs are about five courses long. It is a cheaper alternative for those who are interested in Biomedical Engineering but are not sure if they want to make a career out of it. Some of the courses that most colleges offer for online students include Medical Device Engineering, Biotechnology, and Cell and Tissue Engineering.

Admissions and Requirements

Medical degrees and programs are heavily concerned about their students' GPA. Anything below a 3.0 when applying to a graduate school is risky. There are some colleges that are willing to consider a student's major GPA over their overall GPA. However, that is not a guarantee and students will need to maintain a high GPA to get a foot in the door. Universities will want students to participate in labs as well as research while completing their degrees. Most colleges have their own philosophy and curriculum, but a few courses that will keep recurring in research are Calculus 1,2, and 3; Mathematics (through to ordinary differential equations); Chemistry; and Physiology.

If the student is applying for a Master's of Engineering, it may be expected that the student has a previous degree in Engineering. This is not the case for a Master's of Science; however, it would be wise to consider an undergraduate science program to ensure that all the requirements are met.

What Can I Do With A Master's in Biomedical Engineering?

The need for biomedical engineers is slowly expanding. Biomedical Engineering demand will increase 23 percent by 2024. As stated in this article, there are a wide array of job options for students to look into. From manufacturing engineer to biomaterial developer, the amount of skills that Biomedical engineers have gives them plenty to choose from.

A Few Jobs That You Can Get With A Master's in Biomedical Engineering

The biomedical engineering field pays fairly well for those coming in at entry level. The three states offering the highest for biomedical engineers are Massachussetts, Minnesota, and California. All three state average highest salaries for biomedical engineers are over $100,000, and San Jose, California ranks the highest with $122,100.

  • A Manufacturing Engineer, helps create and design affordable equipment and technology that will make healthcare accessible for those in need. They make anything from prosthetic limbs to imaging equipment. The median salary for a manufacturing engineer is $70,432. Most manufacturing engineers have a background in engineering or have completed a Master's in Engineering. This job requires someone with strong analytical skills, technical skills, communication, and teamwork. There's also a certification program for manufacturing engineers that is offered by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.
  • A Biomedical Scientist works in laboratories looking for any mutation and abnormalities in humans. They check bodily fluid, cells, and tissue to determine what is the best treatment for patients. They often consult with doctors and provide data to confirm treatment and disease. The median salary for a biomedical scientist is $68,474. A good biomedical scientist possesses leadership skills, analytical skills, and discipline. Biomedical scientists spend a majority of their time in laboratories and hospitals.
  • A Rehabilitation Engineer is an engineer that works to help patients go through physical therapy smoothly. These engineers can be credited with the design and building of multiple systems that aid in mobility, hearing, and much more. This is another degree for those who have completed their Master's in Engineering. The median salary for a rehabilitation engineer is $67,778.

Undergraduate Degrees for Biomedical Engineering

There are plenty of undergraduate programs that cater to biomedical engineering. Students can also earn their bachelor degree online. Some colleges mimic graduate programs and have concentrations that students can choose from. Having a background in biomedical engineering would prove useful when going into undergraduate. Graduate programs expect students to have an understanding or foundation in order to continue their learning.

Possible Options After Earning A Master's in Biomedical Engineering

Students that have earned their master's degree can further in the graduate program and get the doctorate's degree. For those that do not want to pursue a doctorate's degree, they can earn a post master's degree certificate in biomedical engineering. Both the doctorate's program and certificates offer concentration that students can further their skills in.

Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Grants

Students should not be discouraged from college due to financial issues. Colleges are willing to help students join their programs. If not through college there are sponsors and other scholarships offered by large companies and organizations. In today's society, there are specific websites that allow students to apply for scholarships in a fun way. Unigo wants students to write about personal and educational topics, students are selected based on their writing. This website alone houses over three million dollars in scholarships, and there are always scholarships available.

Other than scholarships, grants are ideal because it's federal money students don't have to pay back. Grants can be given out based on economic standing. The Pell Grant is a federal grant given to students that need extra help covering tuition costs. Students qualify for the Pell Grant through their FAFSA and their annual family income will determine the amount of money they will receive.

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