MS Program Elective Specializations

The Master of Science program in Biomedical Engineering offers students great flexibility in tailoring their program to their specific interests and goals.

Students may either develop their own sequence of courses (the Standard Track) or declare a specialization listed below. The requirements for these elective specializations are identical to those of the Standard Track (including BMEN 6003, applied math, BMEN 9700, four BMEN courses, three SEAS courses, and 1 SEAS/non-SEAS course), with one exception: students must take at least 12 credits from a list of courses.

To declare or change a specialization, please fill out the "Degree Concentration Change" form

The currently available suggested elective specializations are listed below:

  • Bioinformatics and Machine Learning
  • Neural Engineering
  • Design, Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering
  • Biomechanics
  • Biomedical Imaging
  • Robotics and Control of Biological Systems

MS Elective Specializations

Bioinformatics and Machine Learning

FACULTY ADVISORS: Elham Azizi, Andrew Laine, José McFaline-Figueroa, Paul Sajda

DESCRIPTION: The study of information, data, artificial intelligence, and computation in biomedical engineering and healthcare is essential. The Bioinformatics and Machine Learning concentration will prepare students for careers in this area, and their many applications in society. This program will prepare students for a career in the healthcare industry, at hospital systems, and elsewhere. This program can also be a foundation for a research career in Bioinformatics and Machine Learning and related areas, in both academia and industrial research and development.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Bioinformatics and Machine Learning Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMEN E4420: Biomedical signal processing and signal modeling (3)
  • BMEN E4520: Synthetic Biology, Principle of genetic circuits (3)
  • BMEN E4460: Deep Learning in Biomedical Imaging. (3)
  • BMEN 4470: Deep Learning for Biomedical Signal Processing (3)
  • CBMF W4761: Computational genomics (3)
  • BMEN E4895: Analysis and quantification of medical images (3)
  • ECBM E4040: Neural networks and deep learning (3)
  • COMS W4701: Artificial Intelligence (3)
  • COMS E4762: Machine Learning for Functional Genomics (3)
  • COMS W4771: Machine learning (3)
  • BINF G4006: Translational Bioinformatics (3)
  • BINF G4015: Computational Systems Biology: Proteins, Networks, Function (3)
  • COMS W4252: Introduction to Computational Learning Theory (3)
  • COMS W4772: (E6772) Advanced Machine Learning (3)
  • STAT GU4241: Statistical Machine Learning (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Neural Engineering

FACULTY ADVISORS: Joshua Jacobs, Christoph Juchem, Barclay Morrison, Paul Sajda, and Qi Wang

DESCRIPTION: Neural Engineering includes the topics of computational modeling of neural systems, in vivo clinical and pre-clinical neuroimaging, neurotrauma and repair research, and neuronal tissue engineering. The Neural Engineering concentration will prepare students for careers in Neural Engineering, and their many applications in society. This program will prepare students for a career in industry in neural engineering.  This program can also be a foundation for a research career in neural engineering and related areas, in both academia and industrial research and development.  

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Neural Engineering Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMEB W4020: Computational Neuroscience: Circuits in the Brain (3)
  • BMEE E4030: Neural Control Engineering (3)
  • BMEN E4420: Biomedical Signal Processing and Signal Modeling (3)
  • BMEN E4430: Principles of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (3)
  • BMEN E4894: Biomedical Imaging (3)
  • ELEN E4810: Digital Signal Processing (3)
  • BMEN E4050: Electrophysiology of Human Memory and Navigation (3)
  • BMEN E9070: Massively Parallel Neural Computation (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)
  • BMEN E64010: Principles and Practices of in vivo Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Design, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship

FACULTY ADVISORS: Aaron Kyle, Elizabeth Hillman, Andrew Laine, Paul Sajda, Samuel Sia, Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic 

DESCRIPTION: Medical technology design, innovation, and entrepreneurship are critical elements in biomedical engineering education for students interested in translating medical innovation into clinical reality and impacting human health. Many of the students entering our MS degree program are seeking careers in industry or at smaller start-up companies. Project-based courses in the design and commercialization of medical innovations offered by the Department of Biomedical Engineering, complemented by courses offered by other departments and schools, including the Department of Biotechnology and Columbia Business School, provide students with a rich interdisciplinary educational experience. MS students have the opportunity to take advantage of the Department's Biomedical Technology Accelerator program and the rich entrepreneurial ecosystem at Columbia University, gaining access to experienced alumni and executives in the New York City community, participating in pitch competitions, and even launching their own start-up companies based on technologies first conceived in their courses. Students can also capitalize on the School of Engineering's entrepreneurship efforts as well as University-wide entrepreneurship efforts. Graduates of our MS degree program are able to contribute to and drive medical innovation and support the promotion, development, and realization of the clinical potential of translational research.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Design, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMEN E6005: Biomedical Innovation I (3)
  • BMEN E6006: Biomedical Innovation II (3)
  • BMEN E6007: Lab to Market: commercializing biomedical innovations (3)
  • BMEE E4740: Bioinstrumentation (3)
  • ENGI W4100: Research to Revenue (3)
  • BIOT GU4180: Entrepreneurship in Biotechnology (3)
  • BIOT W4200: Biopharmaceutical Development and Regulation (3)
  • IEME E4200: Intro to Human Centered Design (3)
  • IEME E4310: Manufacturing Enterprise (3)
  • MECE E4604: Product Design for Manufacturability (3)
  • MECE E4606: Digital Manufacturing (3)
  • MECE E4610: Advanced Manufacturing Processes (3)
  • IEOR E4207: Human Factors: Performance (3)
  • IEOR E4507: Healthcare Operations Management (3)
  • IEOR E4510: Project Management (3)
  • IEOR E4550: Entrepreneurial Business Creation for Engineers (3)
  • IEOR E4560: Lean Launchpad (3)
  • IEOR E4561: Launch Your Startup: Tech (3)
  • IEOR E4570: Entrepreneurship Bootcamp (1.5)
  • IEOR E4998: Managing Tech Innovation and Entrepreneurship (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering

FACULTY ADVISORS: Gerard Ateshian, Tal Danino, X. Edward Guo, Clark Hung, Lance Kam, Kam Leong, Helen Lu, Barclay Morrison, Samuel Sia, Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic

DESCRIPTION: Cell and tissue engineering includes the study of cellular mechanics and cell signaling, mechanotransduction, biosystems engineering and computational biology, nanotechnology, microfluidics, bioMEMS and gene chips, functional tissue engineering and biomaterials, tissue structure-function and cell-matrix interactions. This program will prepare students for a career in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine and its many applications in society. This concentration is a suitable preparation for joining established companies, information-age dominant players investing heavily in this field, or the new wave of start-ups aiming to provide disruptive innovations. This program can also be a foundation for a research career in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine and related areas, in both academia and industry.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMCH E4500: Biological Transport and Rate Processes (3)
  • BMEN E4501: Biomaterials (3)
  • BMEN E4510: Tissue Engineering (4)
  • BMEN E4530: Drug and Gene Delivery (3)
  • BMEN E4590: BioMems: Cellular and Molecular Applications (3)
  • BMEN E4210: Thermodynamics of Biological Systems (3)
  • BMEN E4550: Mico and Nanostructures in Cellular Engineering (3)
  • BMEN E4580: Fundamentals of Nanobioscience and Nanobiotechnology (3)
  • BMEN E6500: Tissue and Molecular Engineering Laboratory (4)
  • BMEN E6505: Advanced Scaffolds and Tissue Engineering (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Biomechanics

FACULTY ADVISORS: Gerard Ateshian, Nadeen Chahine, X. Edward Guo, Henry Hess, Karen Kasza, Barclay Morrison, Kristin Myers, Nandan Nerurkar, Elizabeth Olson, Stavros Thomopoulos

DESCRIPTION: Biomechanics represents the field of mechanics as applied to biological cells, soft and hard tissues, and biological fluids. Biomechanics extends the classical fields of mechanics by accounting for the evolution of living systems, such as evolving composition and mechanical properties, accounted by the incorporation of reactions that drive these evolving processes. Since the topic of biomechanics is interdisciplinary, this concentration relies on courses offered by the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, drawing on courses that incorporate a significant component of biomechanics. The Biomechanics concentration will prepare students for careers in the biomedical devices industry as well as careers in engineering and scientific consulting, such as accident and failure investigations, design evaluations, environmental and health consulting, product performance, safety and recall, industrial and occupational safety, and regulatory compliance.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Biomechanics Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • MECE E4100: Mechanics of Fluids (3)
  • BMEN E4301: Structure, Mechanics, and Adaptation of Bone (3)
  • BMEN 4302: Biomechanics of Musculoskeletal Soft Tissues (3)
  • BMEN E4305: Cardiac Mechanics (3) 
  • BMEN E4310: Solid Biomechanics (3)
  • BMEN E4320: Fluid Biomechanics (3) 
  • BMEN E4340: Biomechanics of Cells (3) 
  • BMEN E4750: Science and Engineering of Body Fluids (3)
  • BMME E4702: Advanced Musculoskeletal Biomechanics (3) 
  • MEBM E4703: Molecular Mechanics in Biology (3) 
  • MEBM E4710: Morphogenesis: Shape and Structure in Biological Materials (3) 
  • BMEN E4750: Sound and Hearing (3) 
  • MECE E6100: Advanced Mechanics of Fluids (3) 
  • BMEN E6301: Modeling of Biological Tissues with Finite Elements (3) 
  • MEBM E6310-E6311: Mixture Theories for Biological Tissues, I and II (3) 
  • MECE E6422-E6423: Introduction to the Theory of Elasticity, I and II (3) 
  • MECE E8501: Advanced Continuum Biomechanics (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Biomedical Imaging

FACULTY ADVISORS: Elizabeth Hillman, Christoph Juchem, Elisa Konofagou, Andrew Laine, Paul Sajda, J. Thomas "Tommy" Vaughan

DESCRIPTION: Biomedical Imaging encompasses biophysics of image formation from molecules to tissues, signal detection and formation, image and signal processing using quantitative analysis, modeling the physical and biological processes, and performance evaluation. Specialty areas include MRI, ultrasound, biophotonics, microscopy, EEG, and medical imaging processing.  The Biomedical Imaging concentration will prepare students for careers in the biomedical imaging industry.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Biomedical Imaging Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMEN E4410: Ultrasound in Diagnostic Imaging (3)
  • BMEN E4420: Biomedical Signal Processing and Signal Modeling (3)
  • BMEN E4430: Principles of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (3)
  • BMEN E4840: Functional Imaging of the Brain (3) 
  • BMEN E4894: Biomedical Imaging (3)
  • BMEN E4895: Analysis and Quantification of Medical Images (3)
  • BMEN E4898: Biophotonics (3)
  • BMEE E4740: Bioinstrumentation (3)
  • BMEN E6410: Principles and Practices of in vivo Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (3)
  • BMEN E4810: Digital Signal Processing (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)

Robotics and Control of Biological Systems

FACULTY ADVISORS: Sunil Agrawal, Paul Sajda

DESCRIPTION: Robotics and Control focus on the study of machines capable of performing tasks in the physical world, often with a degree of autonomy. From robotic manipulators to driverless cars and smart homes, these fields are seeing unprecedented growth, in areas as diverse as manufacturing, logistics, transportation, healthcare, space exploration and more. Since the topic of robotics and control of biological systems is interdisciplinary, this concentration relies on courses offered by the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, drawing on courses that incorporate a significant component of robotics.

The Robotics and Control of Biological Systems concentration will prepare students for careers in Robotics and Control, and their many applications in society. This concentration is a suitable preparation for joining established companies, information-age dominant players investing heavily in this field, or the new wave of Robotics start-ups aiming to provide disruptive innovations. The focus of this concentration will be in the application of robotics and control to biology, medicine, and healthcare.  This program can also be a foundation for a research career in Robotics and Control of Biological Systems and related areas, in both academia and industrial research and development.

APPLICATION: To choose this elective specialization, select "Biomedical Engineering Robotics and Control of Biological Systems Master of Science" in the Program field when filling in the online application for the MS program. The name of this program will be listed on graduates' transcripts.

REQUIREMENTS: While satisfying the requirements for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering, take the following:

Required Core Courses - 6 credits as follows:

  • BMEN E6003: Computational Modeling of Physiological Systems (3)
  • 2 Semesters of BMEN E9700: Biomedical Engineering Seminar (0)
  • 1 Graduate Level Applied Mathematics Course (3)

Selectives - at least 12 credits from the following, only 3 credits are permitted to be non-engineering:

  • BMME E4702: Advanced Musculoskeletal Biomechanics (3)
  • BMEE E4030: Neural Control Engineering (3)
  • MEBM E4439: Modeling and Identification of Dynamic Systems (3)
  • BMEN E4420: Biomedical Signal Processing and Signal Modeling (3)
  • BMEE E4740: Bioinstrumentation (3)
  • MECE E4058: Mechatronics and Embedded Microcomputer Control (3)
  • EEME E4601: Digital Control Systems (3)
  • MECE E4602: Introduction to Robotics (3)
  • MECS E4603: Applied Robotics: Algorithms and Software (3)
  • MECE E4606: Digital Manufacturing (3)
  • MECE E4611: Robotics Studio (3)
  • MECE E6400: Advanced Machine Dynamics (3)
  • EEME E6601: Introduction to Control Theory (3)
  • EEME E6602: Modern Control Theory (3)
  • EEME E6610: Optimal Control Theory (3) 
  • MECE E6614: Advanced Topics in Robotics and Mechanism Synthesis (3)
  • MECE E6615: Robotic Manipulation (3)
  • BMEN E9100: MS Research (3)

Electives: 9 credits from an engineering technical discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor

Free Electives: up to 3 credits from any discipline, selected in consultation with an advisor (NOTE: if a non-engineering elective is chosen as a Selective above, this Free elective must be an engineering elective)