MS Degree Program
The Department of Biomedical Engineering at The University of Memphis and the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Biomedical Engineering at The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, participate in the Joint Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering. The Joint Program offers graduate programs leading to the degrees of Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Engineering. Students may elect courses of study in the following areas:
- Biomechanics, Movement Science, and Rehabilitation
- Biomaterials, Drug Delivery and Regenerative Technology
- Biosensors and Electrophysiology
All graduate students must comply with the general requirements of the Graduate School (see Admission Regulations, Academic Regulations, and Minimum Graduate Degree Requirements) and the program requirements of the degree being pursued. The Joint Graduate Program uses an application website hosted at: https://www.uthsc.edu/graduate-health-sciences/programs/index.php.
TRANSCRIPTS and LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION
Programs in the academic Joint Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering, a collaboration between the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) and the University of Memphis, require three (3) three letters of recommendation from separate evaluators attesting to qualifications for successfully undertaking graduate studies, a personal statement, unofficial transcript copies, and curriculum vitae. The GRE is not required. All application materials including college transcripts and test score information should be submitted to UTHSC through the common application web portal hosted by UTHSC: https://www.uthsc.edu/graduate-health-sciences/programs/index.php.
The evaluators/faculty members who you choose should be individuals that you believe are best able to comment objectively on your intellectual and professional achievements and potential. We may call or write your recommenders for more information.
Evaluation of Credentials: Applicants whose highest degree is from a foreign university must have their credentials evaluated. Evaluations done by any credentialing agency listed on the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services web site (http://www.naces.org) are acceptable. A course-by course report is required and must be sent directly to Graduate Admissions from the credentialing agency.
English Conditional Admission: International students are required to demonstrate a strong grasp of the English language before admission into graduate programs. Conditional admission may be granted depending on individual academic departmental policy. If English conditional admission is offered, students will need to register for English skills assessment and take instructional sessions (if required as a result of that assessment) through the University’s Intensive English for Internationals (IEI) program (www.memphis.edu/iei). Upon successful completion of the requisite sessions, as determined by IEI, the student’s English skills will be considered up to standard and the TOEFL/IELTS requirement may be waived depending on specific academic department policy. The student can then proceed into their graduate academic program. Please note that in order to have a complete application packet, students seeking English conditional admission will need to simultaneously apply for the IEI program through the link above and to the Graduate School (http://www.memphis.edu/graduateadmissions).
Please note that a student cannot be a graduate assistant (GA) until she/he has been fully admitted to the Biomedical Engineering graduate program. Questions can be directed to the program’s graduate coordinator. Students will pay IEI fees until they meet the language criterion. If courses are taken outside of IEI, the student will be charged additional tuition at the regular rate.
Program objectives are: (1) ability to apply advanced knowledge of engineering principles, physical and biological sciences and mathematics to the solution of practical engineering problems in medicine and biology; (2) meet or exceed the needs and expectations of public and private sector employers for MS graduates; and (3) preparation to pursue additional advanced studies if so desired.
Admission Standards and Procedures
In addition to meeting the minimum admission requirements of the two universities and the Herff College of Engineering, applicants should meet the following criteria:
- An appropriate engineering bachelor’s degree (biomedical, chemical, electrical, mechanical, or others as defined by the Joint Program);
- An undergraduate GPA of at least 3.00 on a 4.00 scale from an accredited college or university;
- Applicants whose native language is other than English and who have earned neither a bachelor’s nor a master’s degree from a college or university in an English-speaking country must have achieved a TOEFL score of 80 or better overall with no sub score below 20, or an IELTS score of 6.5 or better overall with no sub score below 6.0 (earned within 2 years prior to application). Any applicant whose first language is not English but who has earned a baccalaureate or master’s degree from a college or university in an English-speaking country where instruction was in English may be exempted from the requirement for the TOEFL or IELTS examination. For the Joint Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering, use the UTHSC code number for reporting TOEFL scores: 1850.
These are the minimum program admission requirements. Meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee admission into the Joint Program. Applicants are further advised that the department reserves the right to deny some applications for admission because of limited availability of faculty, funding, or physical facilities to accommodate the applicant’s research interests. In unusual circumstances where the above admission requirements cannot be met, an applicant may seek exceptions by contacting the Coordinator of Graduate Studies for the Joint Program.
Students may elect to graduate from the Joint Program with a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering through either a thesis or a project option. Courses are offered using registration numbers for both universities; students may obtain credit in individual courses for either a UM or UT course number, but not for both.
Thesis Option: Students must complete 30 credit hours and are required to take 6 credit hours in the life sciences area (typically BIOM 7004 and BIOM 7005), 3 credit hours in mathematics (BIOM 7110), 3 credit hours in biomedical engineering core (BIOM 7209), 3 credit hours of a required focus area core course, and 9 credit hours of elective focus area courses (core and elective focus area courses approved by research advisory committee) for a total of 24 course credit hours. Candidates without an undergraduate engineering degree are required to complete an Engineering Design course. A minimum of 70% of the total required hours for the master’s degree must be 7000-level or higher course work (or The University of Tennessee equivalent). Six (6) credit hours of thesis (BIOM 7996) is required; University requirements for continued enrollment until completion may produce extra hours of thesis credit, which do not count toward the degree requirements.
The Final Examination for this degree option will be composed of an Oral Defense of the thesis and may incorporate an additional oral and/or written examination component covering a breadth of topics with the format determined by their graduate committee. NOTE: Students electing to write a thesis should familiarize themselves with the Thesis/Dissertation Preparation Guide before starting to write.
Students are required to complete 27 course credit hours plus 3 credit hours of project (BIOM 7991) for a total of 30 credit hours. Of the 27 course credit hours, 6 credit hours must be in the life sciences area (typically BIOM 7004 and BIOM 7005), 3 credit hours in mathematics (BIOM 7110), 3 credit hours in biomedical engineering core (BIOM 7209) and 15 credit hours in focus area courses approved by the student’s advisor as suitable for a career in biomedical engineering. Candidates without an undergraduate engineering degree are required to complete an Engineering Design course. A minimum of 70% of the total required hours for the master’s degree project option must be 7000-level or higher course work (or The University of Tennessee Health Science Center equivalent).
The Final Examination will be composed of an Oral Defense of the project and may incorporate an additional oral and/or written examination component covering a breadth of topics with the format determined by the project advisor.
Professional Development Requirements
- MS degree seeking students are required to attend Joint Program weekly seminars as scheduled each semester while enrolled as full-time students.
- Each semester after the first semester, each MS student is to meet with their faculty committee to present their progress as a written report and/or an oral presentation (as determined by the faculty committee) and their plans toward completing either the thesis or project option for the degree.
- Students who have been admitted to the program on the condition that they complete prerequisite course work must make satisfactory progress toward this goal each semester of enrollment. Failure to make satisfactory progress may result in dismissal from the program.
- All students are required to maintain a grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.00. Failure to maintain the minimum GPA is considered sufficient cause for being dismissed from the program. In addition, a student whose GPA falls below 3.0 is ineligible for a graduate assistantship.
- No more than seven (7) hours of C, C+, or C- grades will be counted toward degree requirements. Grades of D or F are not accepted for credit for graduation purposes, but the grades are computed in the overall cumulative GPA.. Students will be evaluated by the Joint Program faculty at the end of the semester in which a third grade C, C+, or C- or lower is earned for possible dismissal from the program.