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Biomedical Engineering Master's Programs in California

A variety of universities in California, especially in Southern California, provide master's programs in biomedical engineering that include research opportunities. Learn about different program tracks, course topics and other program details.

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The field of biomedical engineering combines medicine, biology and engineering through the development of medical devices and techniques and can be studied at the master's level at several different schools throughout California. Explore a handful of these programs, common courses and admission requirements.

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California Schools with Master's Programs in Biomedical Engineering

University of Southern California

The University of Southern California in Los Angeles offers a unique Master of Science (MS) in Biomedical Engineering that can be completed online. The school's online delivery system allows students to live stream on-campus courses or watch them on demand when it is convenient. When taken full-time, the program is 2 years in length and offers a thesis and non-thesis option. Students may take courses in biomedical engineering topics such as medical imaging systems, medical product regulation, biomedical instrumentation and systems analysis.

University of California-Irvine

At the master's level, the University of California-Irvine has an MS in Biomedical Engineering that can be completed in 2 years. The program requires 42 units of coursework and a thesis prior to graduation. For their thesis, students must have a faculty advisor and may choose from a range of research areas, such as biophotonics, micro/nano medicine or tissue engineering. Students take coursework in topics like engineering math, molecular engineering and clinical medicine.

California Polytechnic State University

San Luis Obispo's California Polytechnic (Cal Poly) State University provides an MS in Biomedical Engineering with a thesis track, project track or specialization in regenerative medicine. Students in the thesis track work closely with faculty members on an individual research project, while those in the project track work in teams of 2 to 3 on an industry-related project. The specialization in regenerative medicine includes a 9-month internship experience and gives students a background in stem-cell biology. Core courses for the MS include topics in biomaterials, engineering physiology and current topics and issues in the field.

San Jose State University

San Jose State University in San Jose has an MS in Biomedical Engineering that trains students in medical device and technique regulation. Prior to graduation, students must complete a thesis or project, which must be successfully defended. Students who choose the non-thesis option must take an additional 3 credits of approved electives. Both tracks require core coursework in mathematics and physiology for engineering, as well as a course that explores the testing, developing, manufacturing and regulating of medical devices.

California State University-Los Angeles

California State University-Los Angeles offers a unique MS in Electrical Engineering with a specialization in biomedical engineering. Students are required to take 18 to 30 units of electives in their area of specialization, which may include research hours for the thesis option. Students who choose a comprehensive exam instead of a thesis, may have to choose two areas of specialization. This program is offered in part- and full-time formats with some evening classes for flexibility.

Common Entrance Requirements

Most master's degree programs in biomedical engineering in California require applicants to submit the appropriate applications (typically online) along with their official transcripts, GRE scores (some programs may accept MCAT scores) and letters of recommendation. Some of these degree programs may have a minimum GPA requirement and/or minimum GRE or MCAT scores. Some programs may also have prerequisite coursework requirements in topics such as chemistry, biology, calculus and physics. If these GPA, test scores or prerequisite requirements are not met, some programs may offer additional admissions requirements, such as meeting a particular GRE score if the GPA requirement is not met. Some programs may only accept students who have successfully secured a thesis advisor, but may accept students into a project track with an option of applying to a thesis or specialization track at a later date.

Typically offered as a Master of Science, students in California can study biomedical engineering at several different schools. The programs usually offer a thesis and non-thesis track and may have specific admissions standards, like GPA and test score requirements.

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