BME Program Guidelines

The University of Arizona biomedical engineering graduate program offers MS, accelerated MS and PhD degrees as well as a doctoral minor.
· Admissions
· Funding
· Academics Overview
· Research Focus Areas
· MS Requirements
· Accelerated MS Criteria
· PhD Requirements

 

Unparalleled Interdisciplinary Flexibility

Biomedical engineering graduate programs – with strong first-year support and ongoing mentoring – give students the freedom to tailor their degrees to individual career goals. Research opportunities range from infection diagnostics, drug delivery, disease prevention and detection, implants and tissue engineering to food and water contaminant detection.

Biomedical Engineering Graduate Interdisciplinary Program

The strength of UA biomedical engineering graduate programs is rooted in wide-ranging research and areas of study.

Research Focus Areas

Bioimaging
Biosystems
Cardiology and Surgery
Nanomedicine
Sensors and Implementation

Visit BME’s faculty research specialties.

Research Focus Areas

Admissions

Please apply to biomedical engineering graduate programs online through the UA Graduate College. The following application materials are required:

  • Official transcripts for bachelor’s degree in engineering, mathematics, physical sciences or quantitative life, with a minimum GPA of 3.0, including Calculus I and II, ordinary differential equations, and at least one course in life science

  • One- to two-page personal statement describing your background, research interests and career goals

  • Three letters of recommendation from former professors or individuals knowledgeable about your academic and scientific abilities (Recommenders will be sent an email requesting they upload letters to GradApp.)

  • For international applicants, TOEFL score of at least 600, and a Financial Guarantee statement

Visit the UA Graduate College for more information on recommended GRE test scores, essay requirements, format for letters of recommendation, required coursework and admissions contacts.

Admissions

Funding

Doctoral students are guaranteed five years’ support while in the program. Funding for master's students is handled case by case.

Visit BME’s information on graduate student funding.

Important Dates and Deadlines

Apply for Fall

Domestic

  • Doctor of Philosophy: Jan. 6
  • Master of Science: March 1
  • Accelerated Master’s Program (current UA students only): June 1

International

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Engineering: Dec. 1 deadline
  • Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering: Feb. 1 deadline

 

Apply for Spring

Domestic

  • Master of Science: Sept. 1

International

  • Master of Science: Aug. 1

 

Students begin in fall only. Applications are accepted from October 1 through March 1.

Applications from domestic students are due by March 1 of the entrance year.

International student applications are due by December 1 of the previous year.

Apply Today!

Important Dates and Deadlines

Academic Overview

All students are encouraged to participate in clinical and industrial internships that provide experience in applying biomedical engineering solutions.

 

MS Requirements

  • Total units – 30
  • Core biomedical engineering courses – 15 units
  • BME seminar – four units (maximum)
  • Research Methods in Biomedical Engineering (BME 592: lab rotations) – one unit
  • Graduate engineering, life or physical sciences, or mathematics courses – nine units
  • Thesis (BME 910) – six units
  • 2 letters of recommendation

See the BME Graduate Student Handbook for details.

 

Accelerated MS Criteria

The BME Department offers an Accelerated Master's of Science program for exceptional students enrolled at the University of Arizona for both their bachelor's and master's degrees. Students obtain their  B.S. and a M.S. in Biomedical Engineering. The M.S. is completed in one year beyond the B.S degree. Students in BME or similar Engineering or Life Sciences majors are encouraged to apply. (Please check with your undergrad major to ensure use of units will apply to degree)

General requirements for Accelerated Master's Programs are set by the office of Academic Affairs, and can be found here.

Most importantly, the Accelerated Master’s Program is not designed to accelerate progress towards a Ph.D. degree in biomedical engineering.  The intent of the AMP is to provide students with a terminal M.S. degree that they can then use to accelerate their careers in industry or medical research institutions.  The AMP program is not a stepping-stone for obtaining a B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degree within 7 years, which is an unlikely scenario within our program. Students who are interested in a Ph.D. degree should consider the Ph.D. program rather than the AMP, as only the units taken after Bachelor's degree is awarded can be used toward Ph.D total unit requirement.

Qualified students apply to the program nominally in the second semester of their junior year (i.e. with two full semesters remaining in their undergraduate program). 

Admission to the BME Accelerated MS program is a selective process. Our Admissions Committee does a holistic review of all of the following materials. 

Admissions materials needed:

    1. A 1-2 page essay or statement of purpose describing your background, research interests and career goals. Include in your statement any information pertinent to your research experience, whether in course work, special projects or employment. Please explain why you want to obtain a graduate degree in Biomedical Engineering and what, specifically, led you to apply to our graduate program. This should be uploaded via the Grad App portal.
    2. A minimum of two letters of recommendation from former professors or individuals knowledgeable about your academic and scientific abilities. Students may submit/request additional letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation should be uploaded to the Grad App portal.
    3. A CV/resume to be uploaded.
    4. An Unofficial Transcript that can be uploaded via the Grad Path portal. Applicants are required to currently be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in enginering, mathematics, physical sciences, or quantitative life sciences for admission into the Program, with a minimum GPA of 3.3. Previous coursework including two courses in calculus, ordinary differential equations, and at least one course in life science is required. 

Financial assistance, such as assistantships, traineeships, fellowships and internships, is available according to merit and awarded on a competitive basis after review of the applicants admitted to our program.

Specific AMP expectations:

    1. Completion of a minimum of 75 undergraduate credit hours will be required at the time of application; a minimum of 90 undergraduate credit hours will be required at the time of entry into the AMP. If the student’s GPA falls below 3.3 at the time they have completed 90 units, the student will not be admitted into the program. Courses taken for audit may not be included in the total number of units counted for eligibility or admission.
    2. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3 on a minimum of 12 units of undergraduate UA.
    3. Completion of at least 12 earned undergraduate credits at The University of Arizona’s main campus. Units still graded Incomplete, units graded Pass/Fail or units taken as audit will not count toward the requirement of the 12 undergraduate units.
    4. Completion or near completion of general education requirements.
    5. Submission of a graduate application and payment of a graduate application fee.
    6. Demonstration of the maturity necessary for success in an accelerated, highly competitive program.
    7. Expectation to complete the undergraduate degree within four years. The undergraduate degree requirements must be completed before the student is eligible to have the Master’s degree awarded.

Funding Opportunities

Financial support from the program is not normally provided to students in the Accelerated Masters Program. Students are encouraged to obtain a relevant position at UA or industry that can provide the experience necessary for the master's thesis or report. Such positions may be paid or students can obtain course credit (e.g. industrial/clinical internship BME 693). Due to the accelerated nature of the program, outside employment not related to the masters thesis or report is strongly discouraged.

Students may also be supported by a variety of fellowships and awards, many of which are listed by the Graduate College. The University of Arizona Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid also provides financial aid information.

The BME Graduate Program also encourages individual students to seek supplementary Predoctoral Fellowship funding. This provides the student with an opportunity to develop grant-writing skills and permits the student to supplement the stipend. 

 

Admissions Deadlines

Qualified students apply to the program in the second semester of their junior year (i.e., with two full semesters remaining in their undergraduate program). The application deadline is June 1st for students who expect to graduate in May of the following year. 

Additional information can be found: https://grad.arizona.edu/catalog/programinfo/BMEGMSBMEGMSAMP

PhD Requirements

  • Total units – 63, with regular grades (A, B)
  • Core biomedical engineering courses – 15 units
  • Major – 15 units
  • Minor – nine units (minimum)
  • BME approved ethics course – three units (minimum)
  • Seminar and student forums – six units
  • Only core courses require BME 592: lab rotations) – two units
  • Dissertation (BME 920) – 18 units
  • 3 letters of recommendation

A student with an MS may petition to apply previous coursework toward the PhD. However, at least 30 units of graduate credit must be completed at the University of Arizona.

PhD requirements and examination procedures are detailed in the BME Graduate Student Handbook.

Visit BME’s information on minoring in biomedical information.

contact Andrea Anduaga, BME graduate program coordinator  •  520.626.9134  • email aanduaga@arizona.edu
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