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Undergraduate Program

BS Degree Requirements

The BS degree in biomedical engineering (BME) requires a total of 131 credit hours in the following areas:

Core BME Courses: 35 credits
Basic Science and Math Courses
: 38 credits
Basic Science Electives: 12 credits
Technical Electives: 4 credits
Humanities and Social Sciences: 16 credits
Primary Writing Requirement: 4 credits
Communicating your Professional Identity in Engineering: 2 credits
Upper-Level Writing Requirement: 4 credits
BME Concentration Courses: 16 credits
Free Electives: 8 credits

Check out the undergraduate curriculum diagram for a visual outline of the undergraduate program. For an in-depth look at BME requirements, please refer to the undergraduate curriculum guide.

Core BME Courses

BME 101/EAS 101: Introduction to Biomedical Engineering
BME 201: Fundamentals of Biomechanics
BME 201P: MATLAB for Biomechanics (1 credit)
BME 210: Biosystems and Circuits
BME 221: Biomedical Computation and Statistics
BME 230: Biomedical Signals, Systems and Imaging
BME 245: Biomaterials
BME 260: Quantitative Physiology with Lab
BME 295: BME Design Seminar (2 credits)
BME 296: BME Senior Design

Basic Math and Science

Nine courses in natural sciences and mathematics:

Four math courses

  • MTH 161: Calculus IA*
  • MTH 162: Calculus IIA*
  • MTH 165: Linear Algebra with Differential Equations
  • MTH 164: Multidimensional Calculus

*MTH 141, 142, and 143 are equivalent to MTH 161 and 162

Two chemistry courses

  • CHM 131: CHM Concepts, Systems, Practice I
  • CHM 132: CHM Concepts, Systems, Practice II

Two physics courses

  • PHY 121 or PHY 121P: Mechanics or PHY 113, if taking MTH 140 series
  • PHY 122 or PHY 122P: Electricity and Magnetism

One biology course

  • BIO 110: Principles of Biology I

Basic Science Electives

All students must complete at least three additional courses (at least 12 credit hours) in the basic sciences beyond the required basic math and science courses. These courses must meet the following requirements*:

  • A biology, microbiology, neuroscience, chemistry, or physics course with course number greater than 109 (excluding BIO 111, 112, 113)
  • At least one course must have a laboratory component
  • At least two courses must be in the life sciences (i.e., biology, microbiology, neuroscience)
  • Independent study courses cannot be used to satisfy this requirement

Students are encouraged to choose their basic science electives to complement their BME concentration area.
*If a student is a life science minor, they will only need one life science course to meet this requirement.

Some concentrations require specific classes to be taken for the basic science electives, including:

    • Cell and Tissue Engineering Concentration
      • CHM 203: Organic Chemistry I and CHM 207: Organic Chem. Lab I
      • BIO 250: Biochemistry and BIO 151: Introduction to Biochemistry Lab
      • BIO 210: Molecular Cell Biology, BME411 Cellular & Molecular Bio Found or BME257 Essential Molecular Biology
  • Pre-Med
    • CHM 203: Organic Chemistry I and CHM 207: Organic Chemistry Lab I
    • BIO 204: Mammalian Physiology
    • BIO 190: Principles of Genetics and BIO 198L: Genetics Lab

Examples of recommended sequences:

  • Example 1
    • BME 258: Human Anatomy and BME 258 Lab
    • BIO 204: Mammalian Physiology and BIO 204 Lab
    • PHY 123: Modern Physics and PHY 123 Lab
  • Example 2
    • CHM 203: Organic Chemistry I and CHM 207: Organic Chemistry Lab I
    • BIO 250: Biochemistry and BIO 151: Intro to Biochemistry Lab
    • BIO 190: Principles of Genetics (4 credits, fall) with BIO 198L: Genetics Lab (1 credit, fall)
  • Example 3
    • BME 258: Human Anatomy and BME 258: Lab
    • NSC 201: Basic Neurobiology
    • NSC 245: Sensory and Motor Neuroscience

Technical Electives

BME 101: Introduction to Biomedical Engineering
EAS 102: Green Energy
EAS 103: Introduction to Audio Music and Engineering
EAS 104: The Engineering of Bridges
Other BME-approved technical electives.

Humanities and Social Sciences 

All BME majors must complete a total of four courses* in humanities and/or social sciences. Three of these courses must constitute an approved cluster in humanities or social sciences and must be passed with a 2.0 average or better. See the Cluster Search Engine to review courses and descriptions.

The fourth course can be chosen from any humanities or social science field. Business and computer courses cannot be used to satisfy the additional course requirement.

*A second major or minor in a humanities or social science area will also satisfy the cluster and additional course requirement.

Primary Writing Requirement

The Primary Writing Requirement must be satisfied before declaring your major. Review the primary writing requirement section of the advisor handbook for more information.

Profesional Writing Requirement

  • WRT273: Communicating your Professional Identity 
    • All students must complete WRT 273, an interactive course designed to teach "real life communication skills and strategies that help students present their best professional selves." Students will explore and articulate their internship, career and graduate school goals for distinct audiences and purposes as they develop a professional communication portfolio of materials such as resumes, cover letters, statements of purpose, electronic communications, technical project abstracts, online profiles (i.e. LinkedIn), and oral presentations. Most students will complete this course in the spring of the sophomore year, but it may also be taken during the fall of the junior year. 

Upper-Level Writing Requirement

Significant writing experience in one's discipline is an important adjunct to the technical material one learns. The following courses, as well as any upper-level BME course, will satisfy this requirement including:

  • BME 221: Biomedical Computation and Statistics
  • BME 230: BME Signals, Systems and Imaging
  • BME 260: Quantitative Physiology
  • BME 296: Senior Design Project

BME Concentration Courses 

Students choose to concentrate in one of four BME specialty areas. Each concentration includes an upper-level BME course in the specialty area. See the Undergraduate Curriculum Guide for examples of course schedules by concentration area.

Biosignals and Biosystems

ECE 230: Electromagnetic Waves
ECE 221: Electronic Devices and Circuits or BME 228: Physiological Control Systems
ECE 246: Digital Signal Processing
Upper-Level BME (e.g., BME 251: Biomedical Ultrasound, ECE 452: Medical Imaging, BME 218: Introduction to Neuroengineering)


ME 226: Introduction to Solid Mechanics
ME 225: Introduction to Fluid Dynamics
ME 123: Thermodynamics
Upper-Level BME (e.g., BME 283: Biosolid Mechanics or BME 212: Viscoelasticity in Biological Tissues)

Tissues Cell and Tissue Engineering

CHE 243: Fluid Dynamics
CHE 244: Heat and Mass Transfer
CHE 225: Thermodynamics
Upper-Level BME (e.g., BME 262: Cell and Tissue Engineering)

Medical Optics

BME 270: Biomedical Microscopy
OPT 241: Geometrical Optics
OPT 261: Interference and Diffraction
Upper-Level BME (e.g., OPT 276: Biomedical Optics or BME 255: Translational Biomedical Optics)

Free Electives

Any courses taken at Rochester, AP courses or transfer courses can be counted toward this requirement.