Biomedicine Degree and Training Program Information

Oct 26, 2019

Students can explore options in biomedicine at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree levels. See details and requirements of each program, as well as common coursework and employment outlook.

Essential Information

Individuals interested in studying biomedicine at the bachelor's level can find several universities and colleges offering relevant programs. However, degree names may fall under a broader field, such as science and technology or microbiology, with a concentration in biomedicine. While enrolled, students take several science and math classes and evaluate the interactions between medicine, diseases and human or animal bodies.

Most master's programs call for two years of study. In the first half of the program, students complete coursework that may include biostatistics, biological chemistry or nucleic acids. Year two is focused on research projects, and students must complete a thesis. Programs can culminate in a Master of Biomedical Science, Master of Science or Master of Arts. A relevant science-based bachelor's degree may be required for admission into a biomedicine master's program.

Advanced research, lab training, and coursework make up the doctoral program in biomedicine. Many are joint Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)/Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) programs, which combine clinical medical training with the research aspect of the program. Students must complete a dissertation through their research and clinical rotations and clerkships for the medical school portion of the program. These programs can take up to seven years to complete. Applicants to a Ph.D. program typically need at least a bachelor's degree in a relevant field, such as biomedicine, chemistry, and biology. For Ph.D./M.D. programs, students must meet medical school admission requirements, which typically include taking the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) instead of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Sufficient coursework in math and sciences is also a standard requirement.

Biomedicine Bachelor's Degree

All bachelor's degree students must complete core curriculum courses in subjects such as English composition, math, and the social sciences. An internship may be required as well. Applicants to a biomedicine bachelor's degree program need a high school diploma or GED. High school students can prepare for undergraduate biomedicine programs by regularly completing math and science classes, including pre-calculus or calculus.

Biomedicine programs usually require that students begin with courses in general chemistry, biology, and mathematics. Students are also introduced to research methodologies, which they may use to complete research projects. Major requirements often include classes like:

  • Bacterial physiology
  • Cell biology
  • Histology
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular genetics
  • Neurobiology

Master's Degree in Biomedicine

Master's programs in biomedicine usually integrate theoretical studies in biomedical science with practical healthcare applications. Concentrations, such as molecular biology or neurology, may be offered. Applicants without a relevant undergraduate degree may still be considered if certain coursework has been completed, such as biology, general and organic chemistry, biochemistry, physics, anatomy, immunology, and microbiology.

The first year is generally dedicated to coursework, while the second year focuses more on research. Coursework may vary by concentration, but there are usually core classes that all students must take. Possible topics include:

  • Biostatistics
  • Biological chemistry
  • Biomedical ethics
  • Microscopic anatomy
  • Nucleic acids

Doctorate in Biomedicine

Ph.D. programs are also available in biomedicine, and they train students to become biomedical researchers, scientists or teachers. Curricula are comprised of research, laboratory training, and advanced coursework. In addition to research, students in these programs acquire clinical training.

Coursework may focus on certain areas within biomedicine, depending on the school's research projects or available concentrations. In the dual degree option, students complete medical school courses and those focused on biomedicine research. Topics may include:

  • Biomedical research ethics
  • Biomedical statistics
  • Pharmacology
  • Neurobiology
  • Cancer immunology
  • Cell biology

Popular Career Options

Biomedicine majors are qualified for careers related to the application and research of biology, biotechnology, chemistry, and the health sciences. Possible titles include:

  • Assay analyst
  • Biomedical technician
  • Microbiologist
  • Research assistant

Career Outlook and Salary Info

Graduates of a biomedicine doctorate program may qualify to become medical scientists. Employment for these professionals is expected to increase by 8% between 2018 and 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). As of May 2018, medical scientists earned an annual median income of $84,810, reported the BLS.

Licensure Info

Medical scientists who provide patient care or therapy must be licensed physicians. To obtain licensure, candidates must graduate from an accredited medical school, pass a licensing examination and complete 1-7 years of graduate medical education, according to the BLS.

Students can study biomedicine in bachelor's, master's and doctorate degree programs to learn about microbiology, biological chemistry, cell biology and more. Programs train graduates as medical scientists, though some choose to become licensed physicians or work as biomedical technicians and researchers.

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