Minor Program in Biomedical Engineering

The goal of the BME Minor program is to educate students in how to apply fundamental engineering principles to solve challenging problems in biology and medicine. BME Minor program aims to guide students to gain an appreciation of diverse biomedical engineering sub-disciplines via coursework, which relates math, physiology, and engineering electives drawn from many different disciplines, reflecting interdepartmental nature of modern biomedical engineering.

Below are frequently asked questions about the BME Minor:

How do I declare a minor?

  1. Fill out the top portion of the BME minor application (use this form only for the BME minor).  Application forms are also available in the BE Academic Office, Rm. 16-267.
  2. Meet with your department’s BME advisor (list provided below) in order to plan your program of study. Make sure that your program of study satisfies all the rules, both for major and BME minor degree, especially the rules related to allowed overlap between major and minor.
  3. Submit the completed application form, signed by your department’s BME advisor, to either Prof. Han or Prof. Van Vliet, for final approval.
  4. Bring the completed application to the BE Academic Office, Rm. 16-267. You will be emailed a copy of your application and it will appear on your student record.

When should I apply?

You should apply by the end of your sophomore year, but no later than the "Add Date" of the term at least 1 year before your planned graduation with an SB degree. (This is typically spring term of the junior year).

What if I want to change classes that would impact my minor?

To change any part of your approved program, you must revise your plan and submit a revised application to Profs. Han or van Vliet.

How do I complete the minor?

  1. Pick up a minor completion form from the BE Academic Office (16-267), the Student Services Center (11-120), or visit the Registrar website.
  2. When you have completed all of the course requirements for the minor, take a copy of your most recent grade report and a minor completion form to a BME minor co-director. He/she will then sign the completion form to verify that you have satisfied all of the course requirements.
  3. Bring the completion form to the BE Academic Office, Rm. 16-267. You will be emailed a copy.

When do I complete my minor?

You must complete the minor by the minor completion date, typically the third week of the term you expect to receive the SB degree. Any completion forms filed after this date will be subject to a late fee, billed to your account.

What are the requirements?

The BME minor is an interdepartmental minor program, with its core requirements drawn from many different departmental subjects. In order to ensure students’ exposure to materials outside of their major program, the BME minor requires students to take at least 3 subjects (30-36 units) that are not used for fulfilling their major curriculum requirements, to fulfill the BME minor requirement.

Example: A student from Course 6 takes 6.0001/6.0002, 18.03, 6.041, and 6.021 as part of their BME minor requirements. At the same time, the student can use these 4 subjects to fulfill EECS undergraduate major requirements. However, he/she cannot take any more Course 6 subjects and ‘double-count’ those subjects for both the BME minor and EECS major. Either he/she should take 3 additional subjects required for the BME minor outside of Course 6, or take Course 6 subjects without using them to fulfill their EECS major requirement.

CORE SUBJECTS: 3.5~4 subjects (42~48 units)

  • Programming & Computational Modeling – 12 units
    • 6.0001 & 6.0002 or equivalent

PLUS

  • Mathematics – 18-24 units
    • A minimum of 6 units each of any two of the following three subject areas:
    • Differential Equations (18.03 or 3.016 or other 6-12 unit subjects)
    • Or
    • Linear Algebra (18.06 or other 6-12 unit subject)
    • Or
    • Applied Probability and Statistics (18.600, 1.010, 6.041, 9.07 or other 6 or 12 unit subjects)

PLUS

  •   Human Physiology - 12 units
    • 7.20 or 6.022 or 9.01 or permission for alternate human physiology class.

Biomedical Engineering Subjects: 3 subjects (30-39 units)

At least 2 subjects from this list below. At least one of the subjects MUST be from outside the student’s major.  Subjects not on this list can be counted if they are not in the student’s major and are a required pre-requisite for a subject on this list.

Example 1: 7.06, even though it is not on this list of BME subjects, may be counted as a pre-requisite for 7.37/20.361, which is on the list. But, this option is not available for students majoring in Course 7. 

Example 2: 2.750 is a popular design course in Course 2. A course 6 student can take this subject to fulfill the BME minor requirement, and also count 2.72 as another course for the BME minor, because it is the prerequisite to 2.750. However, 6.071 cannot be counted (even though it is a prerequisite to 2.750) since it is a Course 6 offering.   

Example 3: 6.021J is on the list of eligible subjects, but has the prerequisites to fulfill. A course 2 major can take 6.002 as the prerequisite for 6.021J, in which case both 6.002 and 6.021J can be counted toward the BME minor. For course 6 students, they can count 6.021J toward the BME minor (within the allowed 3 subjects limit), but not its prerequisites such as 6.002. However, if they choose to take 2.005 (as the prerequisite for 6.021J), then it can be counted toward the BME minor.

Students should consult with their departmental BME minor advisor, preferably in sophomore year and no later than the end of the fall term of junior year, to choose a course of study, which must be approved in advance. A BME minor advisor from outside of the student’s major will be assigned, to oversee and approve the course of study. A list of the BME minor advisors is provided below.

Approved biomedical engineering UROPs carried out by students with junior or senior standing may also fulfill the requirement for one subject. In order to use junior/senior UROPs to satisfy BME requirements, they must be approved in advance in the term before the UROP is to be conducted, with the requirement of sufficient medical focus demonstrated.

Course 1
1.083 A&B      Environmental Health Engineering and Biology I&II (each 6 units)

Course 2
2.184 / 9.34                                             Biomechanics and Neural Control of Movement,
2.715 / 20.487 (G)                                   Optical Microscopy and Spectroscopy for Biology and Medicine
2.750 / 6.025                                           Medical Device Design
2.785 / 3.97 / 20.411 / HST.523 (G)        Cell-Matrix Mechanics
2.782 / 3.961 / 20.451 / HST.524 (G)      Design of Medical Devices and Implants

Course 3
2.79 / 3.96 / 20.441 / HST.522 (G)      Biomaterials: Tissue Interactions
3.055 / 20.363                                     Biomaterials Science and Engineering
3.052                                                   Nanomechanics of Materials and Biomaterials
3.054                                                   Cellular solids: Structure, Properties, and Applications

Course 6
6.872 / HST.950 (G)                    Biomedical Computing
6.555 / 16.456 / HST.582 (G)      Biomedical signal and image processing;
6.021 / 2.791 / 20.370                 Cellular Neurophysiology
6.811 / HST.420                           Principles and Practice of Assistive Technology

Course 7
7.36 / 6.802 / 20.390        Foundations of Computational and Systems Biology
7.37 / 20.361 / 10.441      Molecular and Engineering Aspects of Biotechnology

Course 9
9.422      Principles of Neuroengineering
9.123      Neurotechnology in Action
9.40        Introduction to Neural Computation
9.17        Systems Neuroscience Laboratory
9.26        Principles and Applications of Genetic Engineering for Biotechnology and Neuroscience
9.35        Perceptual Systems
9.24        Disorders and Diseases of the Nervous System

Course 10
10.443      Future Medicine: Drug Delivery, Therapeutics, and Diagnostics
10.424      Pharmaceutical Engineering
10.495      Molecular Design and Bioprocess Development of Immunotherapies

Course 20
20.310 / 2.797 / 3.053 / 6.024      Molecular, Cellular, and Tissue Biomechanics
20.345 / 6.123                              Bioinstrumentation Project Lab
20.BME (tentative)                       Pre-approved UROP in junior or senior year (12 units)

Graduate courses (marked with “G”) in the list are currently enjoying significant (20% or more) undergraduate enrollments. Separate UG-specific course numbers will be established in the near future.

Biomedical Engineering Minor Degree Advisors

Please consult with an advisor as early as possible, especially if you will be seeking approval for a UROP or course substitution.

Course 1: Prof. Martin Polz
Course 2: Prof. Peter So
Course 3: Prof. Krystyn Van Vliet
Course 6: Prof. Jongyoon (Jay) Han (EE), Prof. John Guttag (CS)
Course 7: Prof. Dennis Kim
Course 9: Prof. Michael S. Fee
Course 10: Prof. Patrick Doyle
Course 20: Prof. Linda Griffith 

I have more questions, whom do I ask?

Questions about course requirements, approving electives, etc:

Professor Jongyoon Han
Co-Director, BME Minor Program
Room 36-841
jyhan@mit.edu

Professor Krystyn J. Van Vliet
Co-Director, BME Minor Program
Room 8-237
krystyn@mit.edu

Questions about program deadlines, forms, and other administrative requests:

Cathy Greene
UG Program Coordinator, Course 20
Room 16-267
clgreene@mit.edu