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Undergraduate Program Overview 



What is Biomedical Engineering?

Biomedical Engineering involves the combination of the physical, chemical, biological and mathematical sciences with engineering principles to create solutions to a wide range of societal problems associated with medical, environmental, occupational and product development issues. Bioengineers are the people who design and develop innovative materials, processes, devices, biologics and informatics to prevent, diagnose and treat disease, to rehabilitate patients and to generally improve health. Bioengineers also provide environmentally sound solutions to industrial process problems and use their knowledge of biological systems to create biologically inspired processes and products. The Department of Biomedical Engineering offers several pathways for undergraduate students to obtain an understanding of Biomedical Engineering.

Bachelor of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering

The Department of Biomedical Engineering offers the major in biomedical engineering, leading to a Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.) degree. Our undergraduate program has been ABET accredited since 2004. The department also offers a minor in bioengineering (BNG) that is approved for biology (BIO) and biochemistry (BCH) majors. (See the online Undergraduate Bulletin's sections on Majors, Minors, and Programs for the most up-to-date requirements for both the BME major and BNG minor.) In a rigorous, cross-disciplinary training and research environment, the BME major program provides an engineering education along with a strong background in the biological and physical sciences. It is designed to enhance the development of creativity and collaboration through studies within a specialization area (BME Track, more below) within the field of biomedical engineering. Teamwork, communication skills, ethics and hands-on laboratory and research experience are emphasized. The curriculum provides students with the underlying engineering principles required to understand how biological organisms are formed and how they respond to their environment. Additionally, we teach how biological materials are tested for strength, how bioelectric signals are measured, how bioimaging modalities work, and factors involved in tissue engineering biocompatibility.

Core courses provide depth within the broad field of biomedical engineering. These are integrated with, and rely upon, course offerings from both the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the College of Arts and Sciences. In order to achieve the breadth of engineering experience expected of biomedical engineering graduates, additional elective courses from the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences are required of all biomedical engineering students. An overview of the courses required of all BME majors is highlighted.

Graduates are prepared for entry into professions in biomedical engineering, biotechnology, pharmaceutical industry and medical technology, as well as careers in academia, government, medicine and law. Potential employers include colleges and universities, hospitals, government, research institutes and laboratories and private industry. More about the types of jobs available within the Biomedical Engineering field can be found on the website of the BMES – Biomedical Engineering Society. We have an active Student Chapter of the BMES.

Currently, three specialization tracks are offered for the major in biomedical engineering: Biomechanics and Biomaterials, Bioelectricity and Bioimaging, and Molecular and Cellular Bioengineering. We have prepared a sample major course sequence.

Honors Program in Biomedical Engineering

The purpose of the honors program in Biomedical Engineering is to give high achieving students an opportunity to receive validation for a meaningful research experience and for a distinguished academic career.  A student interested in becoming a candidate for the honors program in Biomedical Engineering may apply to the program at the end of the sophomore year.  To be admitted to the honors program, students need a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.50 and a B or better in all major required courses (including math and physics).  Transfer students who enter Stony Brook University in the junior year need a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.50 and a B or better in all required major courses (including math and physics) in their first semester at Stony Brook University.  

Graduation with departmental honors in Biomedical Engineering requires the following:

  1. A cumulative grade point average of 3.50 or higher and a B or better in all major required courses (including math and physics) upon graduation.
  2. Completion of BME 494, a 1 credit seminar on research techniques, with a B or better during the junior year.
  3. Completion of BME 495, a 3-credit honors research project, with a B or better.
  4. Presentation of an honors thesis (written in the format of an engineering technical paper) under the supervision of a BME faculty member.  The thesis must be presented to and approved by a committee of two faculty members including the student’s advisor.

For students who qualify, this honor is indicated on their diploma and on their permanent academic record.

There is no formal application for this Honors Program. If you would like to join the Honors Program, and feel you qualify, contact the Director or Coordinator of the Undergraduate Program, listed below.

Combined BE-MS Program

The Department also offers a five-year accelerated B.E./M.S. degree, which can be completed with one additional year of study beyond the Bachelor's degree. The accelerated B.E./M.S. is intended to prepare high-achieving and highly-motivated undergraduate BME students for either doctoral studies or a variety of advanced professional positions. The program is highly selective with admission based on academic performance as well as previous undergraduate research. Juniors can be admitted into the accelerated degree program if they satisfy the requirements outlined in the Graduate Bulletin. The requirements for the accelerated program are the same as the requirements for the B.E. and M.S. degree, except that two graduate 500-level courses replace two 300- or 400-level technical electives, so that a maximum of six graduate credits are counted toward the undergraduate degree.

Important features of this combined degree program are that students must apply to the program through the BME Graduate Program Director during their junior year. A Google Form will be sent to all BME juniors in February/March. Once accepted, they are considered to be a graduate student in all regards. We have prepared a sample course sequence for the combined BE/MS program. Although graduate technical elective courses can apply towards the BE (the undergraduate degree), students must indicate whether the course is intended to be applied for the BE or the MS; courses cannot apply to both degrees.

BNG Minor Program for BIO and BCH Majors 

Bioengineering Track

The common goal of the Bioengineering Minor and Track Programs at Stony Brook is to expose science majors to the dominant theme in engineering, specifically, problem solving under conditions involving multiple objectives and constraints. Effective problem solving requires both identification of the assumptions underlying the problem definition and experience with a broad range of possible design solutions. We believe the biological world provides an excellent context in which to teach these concepts. Numerous examples exist in nature which can be used to critically evaluate the role of assumptions in creating "optimal" designs. Indeed, nature has provided us with a broad range of design "solutions" to apparently very similar "problems". Furthermore, as we enter the 21st century, the field of biomimetics, or applying engineering design and approaches to existing solutions found in biology, is rapidly emerging as an important new direction in engineering design.

Requirements for the BioengineeriNG minor

The Director of the Undergraduate Program in BME directly oversees the BNG minor students. The program is currently approved for Biology (BIO) and Biochemistry (BCH) majors only. Requirements of this program include BME 100: Introduction to BME, and C-programming (e.g., BME 120). Three specialization tracks are available: Biomaterials/Biomechanics; Bioelectricity; Molecular/Cellular Bioengineering. Each specialization track has four required courses. Lastly, BNG minor students must complete one upper level BIO or BCH lecture and laboratory.

Undergraduate Program Handbook

Please reference the undergraduate program handbook. It should be able to answer many of your questions and prepare you for your academic career in Biomedical Engineering.


Undergraduate Program Coordinator:

Jessica Kuhn (Berthold)
Department of Biomedical Engineering
Bioengineering Building, Rm. 102
Stony Brook, NY 11794-5281
Tel: 631.632.8371
Fax: 631.632.3222

Undergraduate Program Director:

Dr. Molly D. Frame
Department of Biomedical Engineering
Bioengineering Building, Rm. G19
Stony Brook, NY 11794-5281