June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
24.1082.1 - 24.1082.14
Similarities and Differences in Undergraduate Biomedical Engineering Curricula in the United StatesEmployers, textbook publishers, and existing and emerging educational programs in biomedicalengineering and bioengineering continue to be interested in the degree to which theundergraduate curricula of degree granting programs are similar for undergraduates in thesefields, and what the similarities are.Several years ago, the VaNTH Engineering Research Center in Bioengineering EducationalTechnologies compiled information about required courses at 40 of the 42 ABET-accreditedprograms, as well as 31 programs that were not accredited at that time. While these data from2007 have been presented in several forums, there is as yet no complete publication on this topic.In the interest of providing data that can be used by different constituencies, as well as a snapshotof the curriculum at a particular point to which changes can be compared, the data from thatproject are presented here in full. The results from the 2007 sample concerned courses beyondfreshman math, physics and chemistry, which tend to be common across engineering majors, tofocus on the courses required specifically for the biomedical engineering degree. We found thatmechanics, physiology and design were the subjects required most frequently, at 90% or more ofthe accredited programs. Other subjects required by 75% or more of the accredited programswere other areas of biology, circuit analysis, computing, statistics, materials, andinstrumentation. Several more topics were required by more than half of the programs. Therewas more variation in the amount of curricular time devoted to different subjects than in thetopics that were required. In comparing accredited and non-accredited programs, mechanics,thermodynamics, and materials were required more frequently at accredited programs, whilecomputing and organic chemistry were required by a larger percentage of the non-accreditedprograms. Normalizing all programs to a credit-hour basis showed that beyond required courses,the median number of credit hours left for specialization or elective courses was 12, and this didnot differ between accredited and non-accredited programs. Overall these results showed a highdegree of similarity in the required courses across all biomedical engineering programs. Whileresources are not available to obtain a complete 2013 data set for comparison to the 2007 data,changes in curriculum will be presented for a selected sample of institutions in order to assesstrends.
Gatchell, D. W., & Linsenmeier, R. A. (2014, June), Similarities and Differences in Undergraduate Biomedical Engineering Curricula in the United States Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--23015
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