Biomedical engineering technology focuses on the use and maintenance of medical equipment. Associate's degree programs in this field prepare graduates for careers as biomedical equipment technicians (BETs). Because these programs require extensive on-campus lab work and internships, students cannot complete the full degree online; however, a number of required courses, as well as general education classes, may be available online at some institutions.
Associate's programs in this field are typically offered through community colleges, although some four-year institutions also have biomedical engineering technology options at this level. It typically takes around two years of full-time enrollment to earn an associate's degree.
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Associate's in Biomedical Engineering Technology
Associate's degree programs in biomedical engineering technology typically include training in equipment operation and applications, physiological measurement, safety testing, preventative maintenance and repair.
Online courses from a blended associate's degree program in biomedical engineering technology may include:
- Medical electronics
- Human biology
- Regulations, codes and patient safety
- Radiography systems
- Technology for special patient populations
Schools often require students in these programs to complete a series of intensive labs that provide hands-on experience in using and maintaining medical equipment. Practical internships in an approved healthcare facility are also a common requirement in these associate's programs. Distance learners can complete online coursework through their schools' virtual classrooms, which contain assignments, lectures, learning aids and communication tools.
Students who earn an associate's degree in biomedical engineering technology usually go on to become BETs. These technicians specialize in the use and maintenance of high-tech medical equipment used to diagnose, monitor and treat patients. They also work with a wide range of devices, such as defibrillators, heart monitors and electric wheelchairs. BETs may work in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals and medical clinics.
Through a hybrid undergraduate program in biomedical engineering technology, students get the essential scientific education and develop the technical skills needed to use and maintain medical devices.