Jul 19, 2024  
Rensselaer Catalog 2019-2020 
Rensselaer Catalog 2019-2020 [Archived Catalog]

Biomedical Engineering

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In lieu of the general core engineering program presented earlier, students who identify biomedical engineering as their discipline may follow the program outlined below. This curriculum requires a minimum of 128 credits.

First Year


  •  HASS Core Elective Credit Hours:4
    (See footnote 1 below)


  • HASS Core Elective- Credit Hours: 4
    (See footnote 1 below)

Second Year

Third Year

The Arch Summer Semester*

* For students who have applied for and been granted an exception, The Arch Summer courses would be taken during the fall semester. For listing of the exception process go to: http://info.rpi.edu/arch/students/#ExceptionProcess.

Take 4 out of the 5 options below: 

  • Concentration I or II - Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective - Credit Hours:  4
    (See footnote 1 below)
  • Free Elective  - Credit Hours: 3
    (See footnote 4 below)

Fall OR Spring

  • Concentration I  or II - Credit Hours: 4
  • Free Elective - Credit Hours: 3
    (See footnote 4 below)
  • HASS Core Elective  - Credit Hours: 4
    (See footnote 1 below)

Fourth Year


  • Concentration III - Credit Hours: 3
  • BME Tech Elective I - Credit Hours: 3
  • Free Elective  - Credit Hours: 3
    (See footnote 4 below)


  • BME Tech Elective II - Credit Hours: 3
  • Free Elective  - Credit Hours: 3
    (See footnote 4 below)
  • HASS  Core Elective  - Credit Hours: 4
    (See footnote 1 below)

The minimum number of credit hours for the degree is 128.


  1. Placement of humanities and social science electives can be varied with free electives. The courses counted as free electives must show a minimum of 12 credit hours.

  2. Professional Development II will be fulfilled from a published list at the start of each semester and can be taken either semester. Professional Development III can be taken either semester of the senior year. Professional Development I is part of ENGR 2050.

  3. BMED 4010 may be taken in either Spring Year 3 or Fall Year 4, or part of the Arch Summer.

  4. The minimum total credit hours of free electives is 12, with no restrictions on the included number of 3-and 4-credit hour courses.

  5. Capstone writing-intensive course.

  6. ENGR 1400 may be taken as an alternative to ENGR 1200. This course may be taken either semester.

Humanites, Arts, and Social Science Requirements

  • The total HASS core requirement is 22 credits. Included in these credits are the following:
  • A minimum of two 4-credit courses in Humanities
  • A minimum of two 4-credit courses in the Social Sciences
  • No more than three 1000-level HASS courses may be applied to the HASS core
  • No more than 6 credits may be taken Pass/No Credit
  • At least one 4-credit course must be at the 4000 level
  • Depth requirement: Two 4-credit courses in the same H or SS subject area with at least one above the 1000 level and none on Pass/No Credit
  • Two credits must meet the Professional Development 2 requirement.

Core BMED Courses

All of these courses are required for a BME degree and they need to be taken for a letter grade. No substitutions with other courses offered at Rensselaer are allowed.

Concentration Courses

Each concentration includes three required courses which have to be taken for a letter grade.

Biomaterials Concentration

BMED Required Biomaterials Concentration courses

Biomechanics Concentration

BMED Required Biomechanics concentration courses

Bioimaging/Instrumentation Concentration

BMED Required Bioimaging/Instrumentation Concentration

BME Technical Elective

Two BME Technical Elective courses need to be taken. These courses need to be 3- or 4-credit hour courses and they have to be taken for a letter grade. The BME Technical Elective courses can be chosen from the attached list or they can be any formal 4000-level BMED course, i.e., no “Studies in BME”, “Topics in BME” or research courses. It is not possible to take the same course at the 4000- and 6000-level, nor is it possible to receive credit twice for a course (once as an elective and once as a concentration course). BME Technical Electives can be taken to either add depth to an existing concentration or to add breadth to the degree.

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