Biomedical engineering is a branch of engineering in which knowledge and skills are developed and applied to define and solve problems in biology and medicine. Biomedical engineering is attractive to some students because they want to help others. Some are drawn to it for the excitement of working with living systems and applying technical solutions to the complex problems. The biomedical engineer is a health care professional, a group which includes physicians, nurses, and technicians. Biomedical engineers may be called upon to design medical devices like pacemakers, coronary stents, or prosthetics hips & knees. The biomedical engineer may also bring together knowledge from many sources to develop new manufacturing or medical procedures. Some biomedical engineers will carry out research to acquire new knowledge. According to the Whitaker Foundation website, (, and based on a forecast by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (, biomedical engineering jobs will climb almost twice as fast as the overall average for a 26.1 percent gain by 2012. Overall job growth is projected to be 14.8 percent. This is an exciting time for biomedical engineering at Rose-Hulman. The biomedical engineering program will produce engineers with the medical and biological knowledge needed to solve many of the health care problems that face our society. The program will prepare graduates for careers in the biotechnology and health-related industries, as well as in government and industrial research laboratories. Those wishing to continue their studies in graduate school or health professions programs will be exceptionally well qualified to do so.

Biomedical Engineering Program Educational Objectives

Objectives are defined as "expected accomplishments of graduates during
the first several years following graduation from the program."

  • Graduates will apply the theories and concepts of biology, mathematics,
    physical science and engineering science essential to being a successful
    biomedical engineer.
  • Graduates will apply practical and technical skills required for biomedical
    engineering practice.
  • Graduates will work and communicate effectively with all of the people around
  • Graduates will exercise their professional responsibilities towards society.
  • Graduates will apply design principles to open-ended problems subject to technical, practical and societal constraints.

Biomedical Engineering Student Outcomes

By the time students graduate with a Biomedical Engineering Degree from Rose-Hulman, they will:

  • have a strong background in and be able to apply knowledge of biology, mathematics, and the physical and engineering sciences.
  • be able to describe challenges associated with the interactions of living tissues with engineered systems and propose safe and effective strategies
    for meeting these challenges.
  • have an advanced and current body of knowledge within biomaterials, biomechanics, or biomedical instrumentation.
  • be able to work safely, independently, and confidently in a laboratory environment.
  • be able to design and conduct experiments, making measurements from both living and non-living systems.
  • be able to analyze and present results of experiments, using graphical techniques and statistical analyses.
  • be able to assimilate knowledge from diverse areas to solve problems of importance to the biomedical and engineering sciences.
  • be able to communicate effectively with colleagues and with non-technical audiences, in oral, graphical and written formats.
  • be able to function in multidisciplinary teams in different roles.
  • be aware of how the rapid developments of biomedical engineering necessitate continual updating of skills.
  • have the skills required for self-learning.
  • be able to evaluate the ethical dimensions of issues relevant to biomedical engineering.
  • be aware of the impacts, both positive and negative, that advancements in biomedical engineering have on local and global society.
  • be able to assess client needs, identify relevant constraints (e.g. regulatory, manufacturing, economic, environmental, societal, etc.), and formulate the design problem.
  • be able to generate multiple, creative solutions for a problem and develop criteria by which to rank the merit of feasible solutions.
  • be able to critically review the performance of a solution in achieving the identified needs and suggest relevant improvements or necessary revisions.

The biomedical engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET,


Freshman Year  
Fall Term   Credit
BIO 110 Cell Structure and Function 4
PH 111 Physics I 4
MA 111 Calculus I 5
CLSK 100 College & Life Skills 1
EM 104 Graphical Communication 2
  Total 16
Winter Term   Credit
BIO 120 Comparative Anatomy &
PH 112 Physics II 4
MA 112 Calculus II 5
EM 121 Statics and
Mechanics of Materials I
  Total 17
Spring Term   Credit
PH 113 Physics III 4
RH 131 Rhetoric & Composition 4
MA 113 Calculus III 5
BE 100

Problem Solving in the
Biological Sciences and

  Total 17
Sophomore Year  
Fall Term   Credit
ES 201 Conservation &
Accounting Principles
CHEM 111 General Chemistry I 4
MA 211 Differential Equations 4
ES 203 Electrical Systems 4
  Total 16
Winter Term   Credit
ES 202 Fluid and Thermal
ES 204 Mechanical Systems 3
MA 212 Matrix Algebra and 
Systems of 
Differential Equations
CHEM 113 General Chemistry II 4
HSS Elective 4
  Total 18
Spring Term   Credit
BE 201 Biomedical Measurements 4
BIO 130 Evolution and Diversity 4
ES 205 Analysis & Design of 
Engineering Systems
MA 223 Engineering Statistics 4
  Total 16
Junior Year  
Fall Term   Credit
HSS Elective 4
BIO 205 Cellular Physiology 4

HSS or RH330
Tech & Profess'l Comm
or HSS Elective
EM 204 Statics and 
Mechanics of Materials II
  Total 16
Winter Term   Credit
BE 310 Physiological Systems I 4
BE 331 Biomechanics 3
BE 351 Biomedical Engineering Lab 2
BE 361 Biomaterials 3
HSS or RH330

HSS Elective or
Tech & Profess'l Comm
  Total 16
Spring Term   Credit
SV 304 Bioethics 4
BE 320 Physiological Systems II 4
BE 390 Principles of Biomedical 
Engineering Design
BE Area 4
  Total 14
Senior Year  
Fall Term   Credit
BE 410 Biomedical Engineering 
Design I
HSS Elective 4
  Free Elective 4
BE Area Elective 4
  Total 16
Winter Term   Credit
BE 420 Biomedical Engineering 
Design II
HSS Elective 4
  Free Elective 4
BE Area Elective 4
  Total 16
Spring Term   Credit
BE 430 Biomedical Engineering 
Design III
HSS Elective 4
  Free Elective 4
BE Area Elective 4
  Total 14
  Total credits required: 192

Biomedical Engineering Areas of Concentration

To receive the B.S. Degree Program in Biomedical Engineering, each student must satisfy the requirements of one of three Biomedical Engineering Areas of Concentration: Biomaterials, Biomechanics or Biomedical Instrumentation. The course options for each of these Areas are given below. A total of 16 credits (including required courses) from one of the lists must be taken.

It is not permissible to "mix and match" courses from different area lists without written permission from the BBE department head.

Biomedical courses that are offered as special topics courses (e.g. BE491 or BE597) may only be used with the written permission of the department head. Students should work out their schedule in advance to ensure that all graduation requirements are met.


Course   Title
BE 417   Advanced Materials
BE 516   Introduction to MEMS
BE 539   Multiscale Biomechanics
BE 560   Tissue-Biomaterial Interactions
BE 570   Introduction to Tissue Engineering
CHE 315*   Materials Science and Engineering
CHE 441   Polymer Engineering
ME 317**   Design for Manufacturing
BE 317**   Design for Biomedical Manufacturing
ME 328*   Materials Engineering

*CHE 315 OR ME 328 may be used, but not both
**ME 317(3 cr) to be taken concurrently with BE317(1 cr)


Course   Title
BE 340   Biomedical Instrumentation and Signal Processing
BE 350   Biocontrols
BE 516   Introduction to MEMS
BE 435/535   Biomedical Optics
BE 555   Electrophysiology
ECE 230   Microcontrollers and Computer Architecture
ECE 480   Introduction to Image Processing
ME 430   Mechatronic Systems
BE 541   Medical Imaging
BE 543   Neuroprosthetics


Course   Title
ME 317**   Design for Manufacturing
BE 317**   Design for Biomedical Manufacturing
BE 525   Biomedical Fluid Mechanics
BE 531   Biomechanics II
BE 534   Soft Tissue Mechanics
BE 539   Multiscale Biomechanics
BE 545   Orthopaedic Biomechanics
BE 550   Research Methods in Biomechanics
EM 403   Advanced Mechanics of Materials
ME 422   Finite Elements for Engineering Applications
ME 520   Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing
ME 522   Advanced Finite Element Analysis

Biomedical Engineering Thesis Option:

The biomedical engineering thesis option is intended for students who complete a substantive research project in this field. In order to complete this thesis option a student must:

  1. Pass a minimum of 8 credit hours of BE 492.
  2. Perform research in BE492 that involves the same research project and is completed under the direction of a departmental faculty mentor. None of these credits may be used to fulfill the biomedical engineering area elective requirement.
  3. Complete the course, BE 499 Thesis Research, in which the thesis is written and submitted to the department, and an oral research presentation is given to a minimum of three departmental faculty members, including the student’s advisor. Successful completion of the biomedical engineering thesis will be noted on the student’s transcript.

Biomedical Engineering Minor

The biomedical engineering minor is intended to provide a biomedical engineering background to undergraduate students who are interested in pursuing careers in the biomedical industry and healthcare related fields.

In order to complete the requirements of the biomedical engineering minor, a student must complete either IO 110-Cell Structure & Function or BIO 120-Comparative Anatomy & Physiology AND complete four courses from the list shown below. Other BE courses may be substituted with approval by the BBE Department Head. At least three of the courses must have a BE prefix.



Genetic Engineering


Analysis of Physiological Systems I


Analysis of Physiological Systems II

BE331 and BE352

Biomechanics and Biomechanics Lab

BE340 *

Biomedical Signal Processing *

BE350 **

Biocontrol Systems **

BE361 and BE353

Biomaterials and Biomaterials Lab


Biomedical Optics


Bioengineering Statistics


Introduction to Brain Machine Interfaces


Biomedical Fluid Mechanics


Biomechanics II


Soft Tissue Mechanics


Multiscale Biomechanics




Orthopaedic Biomechanics


Tissue-Biomaterial Interactions


Introduction to Tissue Engineering

  * BE340 cannot be used for a BE minor by students majoring in electrical or computer engineering.
** BE350 cannot be used for a BE minor by students who have taken ECE320 or ME406.

In addition to courses in the above area concentration, students are required to have completed at least 12 credits of basic engineering courses. These courses may be chosen from the list below:


Biomedical Instrumentation and Measurements


Statics & Mechanics of Materials I


Statics & Mechanics of Materials II


Fluid Mechanics


Introduction to Signal Processing

ECE203 *

DC Circuits



AC Circuits

Conservation & Accounting Principles


Fluid Systems

ES203 *

Electrical Systems


Mechanical Systems


Conservation Principles and Balances


Basic Chemical Process Calculations


Fluid Mechanics 

* Students may use either ECE203 or ES203 for a BE minor, but not both of these courses.

Successful completion of an area minor is indicated on the student’s transcript. A student interested in pursuing an area minor in biomedical engineering should consult with the head of the Department of Biology and Biomedical Engineering.