Requirements for Becoming Sr. Biomedical Engineer

Senior biomedical engineers apply engineering concepts to the medical field by working to develop new instruments, devices and medical procedures. Keep reading to explore the duties, educational requirements, salary and employment outlook to see if this is the right profession for you. Also, explore some careers that have related elements.

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Career Definition of a Sr. Biomedical Engineer

Senior biomedical engineers often have more than a decade's worth of experience in the biomedical field and may manage other biomedical engineers. These engineers typically perform medical research, organize experiments and tests, manage information and help with equipment standardization.

Education Master's degree in biomedicine or Ph.D. in related field
Job Duties Oversee research projects, calibrate lab equipment, design biomedical devices, act as expert for product development
Median Annual Salary (2015) $86,220 for biomedical engineers
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 23% job growth for biomedical engineers

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Required

Senior biomedical engineers must have a Bachelor of Science in Engineering or a related field and a Master of Science in Biomedicine. There are some undergraduate biomedicine programs in the U.S., but they are not common. Some senior biomedical engineers may also pursue a Ph.D. A bachelor's degree typically takes four to five years while a master's degree can take an additional two to three years. Courses included in a biomedicine or engineering degree program include organic chemistry, biomechanics, bioelectricity and fluid mechanics.

Required Duties

Senior biomedical engineers bring several years of experience to their jobs. They may need to help calibrate lab equipment, design and develop new biomedicine products, serve as a bio-medicine expert for product development and be responsible for research projects.

Career and Economic Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects biomedical engineers to enjoy 23% job growth for the years 2014-2024. As the population ages, more research and sophisticated equipment to help treat diseases will be needed. The BLS reported that biomedical engineers made median annual earnings of $86,220 in 2015.

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Alternate Career Options

If you are interested in becoming a biomedical engineer because of the chemical and physical background, you might want to look at becoming a biochemist or biophysicist. If you enjoy people and you think you would be interested in sales of engineering products, check into becoming a sales engineer.

Biochemist and Biophysicist

These professionals may secure entry-level jobs with a bachelor's or master's degree, but those wishing to work in research and development will need to pursue a doctoral degree. Biochemists and biophysicists analyze organisms and other living objects for research purposes. They might be involved in cancer research or disease detection and prevention, or they could study the impact of various substances on organisms. The BLS predicted average growth for this field during the 2014-2024 decade, with an 8% increase expected. That same source noted an annual median salary of $82,150 in 2015 for these scientists.

Sales Engineer

Sales engineers sell products to clients who want to purchase highly advanced technological or scientific equipment or materials. A bachelor's degree in an engineering or scientific field is generally required to work as a sales engineer because these professionals need to understand and be able to explain how the product works. People skills are a plus since this job requires plenty of interaction with clients. From 2014-2024, the BLS expected average employment growth of 7% for this occupation. Sales engineers earned an annual median wage of $97,650 in 2015.

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