bioengineering research being conducted by lab worker

Graduate Studies

Our biomedical engineering graduate program is a part of the Penn State Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Bioengineering. Courses are taught by faculty in the Eberly College of Science and the Colleges of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The highly flexible, mentored curriculum includes fundamental coursework in bioengineering and a number of ancillary areas including physics, chemistry, biology, materials research, esthesiology, orthopedics and rehabilitation, and more. Our students enjoy state-of-the-art research facilities and an exclusive partnership with the Penn State Hershey Medical Center. The unique landscape of the bioengineering graduate program fosters learning and collaboration among students, engineers, clinicians, and professionals in the biomedical industry.

Graduate Degree Programs

One-year, Non-thesis Master of Science (M.S.) in Biomedical Engineering

The non-thesis master of science degree in biomedical engineering requires the completion of 32 credit hours and is designed to be completed in one year. The program is ideal for engineers who wish to gain a deeper understanding of biomedical engineering fundamentals and to explore a number of research opportunities.

The program introduces students to a variety of research interests and provides training in medical device design, biomechanics, biomedical health systems, and more. Successful graduates are positioned to become leaders in industry or may choose to use the experience as a segue for applying to biomedical engineering doctoral programs.

Master of Science (M.S.) in Bioengineering*

The master of science degree in bioengineering is ideal for individuals looking to expand their skill set in the bioengineering industry, research, and medicine. Each student is presented with a tailored course of study built upon his or her undergraduate strengths. Courses are selected from the life sciences, engineering, and bioengineering. Students are required to take six credits of 500 level courses in bioengineering, six credits in the life sciences, and six credits in technically oriented courses outside of bioengineering. For students entering the program without a background in engineering or the physical sciences, up to 24 credits of additional undergraduate engineering courses may be required. A thesis is required for the M.S. degree as well as six or more related credits of directed thesis research. Ideal candidates will hold a bachelor of science degree in biomedical engineering or a related engineering or physical sciences program. Requirements for the M.S. program are typically completed within two years. For detailed requirements and a full course map, please view the Graduate School Bulletin.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Bioengineering*

The doctor of philosophy degree in bioengineering is an individualized plan of study that aims to provide each student with a strong foundation in traditional engineering and the life sciences, as well as an adept specialization in on or more cutting-edge research applications. Degrees are awarded upon successful completion of a doctoral dissertation in combination with a sequence of candidacy and a comprehensive final oral examination. Full requirement details and a course map can be viewed on the Graduate Student Bulletin. Requirements for the Ph.D. program are typically completed within four to five years but vary greatly depending on the scope of the research and individual education paths.

Doctor of Philosophy in Bioengineering and Doctor of Medicine Ph.D./M.D.*

The bioengineering program, in collaboration with the College of Medicine at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, offers the opportunity for medical students to purse a program of study leading to the Ph.D. in bioengineering. The program provides the opportunity for students interested in careers in academic medicine and research to obtain the necessary training in clinical and basic sciences in a seven to eight year period. The joint-degree provides students with a knowledge of the breadth of clinical science, plus the ability to design experiments and conduct biomedical research with modern technology.

Application to the Ph.D./M.D. program is made by expressing interest in the dual degree program when applying for admission to the College of Medicine. Further information can be found on the College of Medicine website.

*Part of the Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Bioengineering

Apply to graduate programs now one-year M.S. program research areas facilities and labs bioengineering research centers


The Department of Biomedical Engineering administers the undergraduate major in biomedical engineering, and is a part of the university-wide Intercollege Graduate Degree Program, offering both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Bioengineering. Our work combines traditional engineering principles with medicine and technology for the betterment of human health and society. 

Department of Biomedical Engineering

205 Hallowell Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-863-6614