Careers in bioengineering
The global population is ageing and the demand for biomedical engineers to create new medical devices which diagnose diseases earlier, aid recovery, and improve quality of life has never been higher. Biomedical engineering has been rated 'the best job in America' and 'the major most worth your tuition, time and effort' for the last few years.
The degrees in biomedical engineering at Imperial College London are designed to be career focused so that graduates can gain employment in this expanding and exciting industry. Your career options are many and our graduates have gone on to careers in areas including:
- Healthcare and medical device industry
Careers in Bioengineering
Career prospects for a biomedical engineer
Biomedical engineering graduates from Imperial College London have excellent career prospects in a wide range of careers. They will be well equipped for employment in the growing industrial sector devoted to healthcare, hospitals and clinics, research institutes and government or for other public organisations concerned with the design and regulation of medical materials and equipment.
Because of the breadth of multi-disciplinary nature of the courses, graduates will be welcomed in the industrial, commercial and consulting areas, where analytical and problem solving skills may be useful for a wide range of applications.
For the same reason. we expect that a substantial number of our graduates will follow research careers, both in industry and in academia.
What areas do biomedical engineers work in?
Biomedical engineers are employed across a number of areas:
- Medical Device Design, Development, Analysis and Marketing - medical device industry, health service and government
- Medical Device Regulation - medical device industry and government (NICE and MHRA)
- Clinical Engineering - hospitals and clinics
- Research - universities, industry, research organizations, and government
- Rehabilitation Engineering - rehabilitation clinics and centers and hospitals
- Consulting - private or general engineering consulting firms
- Finance- investment banking specialising in healthcare/ medtech investment
- Further professional study - medical school (surgical training) or law school (patent attorney)
Choosing to do further study
There are a number of further study options following a undergraduate degree in bioomedical engineering. Whether its masters, PhD, medical or law programme you are interested in you have lots of options.
|Further study within the Department||Details|
|PhD in Biomedical Engineering||If you are interested in pursuing an academic research career within a university you will have to do a PhD. A PhD is a unique opportunity to understand everything about one particular aspect of a subject, and become an expert in it. You will have the opportunity to publish results and present them at conferences contributing to the knowledge base in your chosen field. PhDs in the UK usually take 3-4 years to complete, and are examined by an oral exam called a viva and a thesis. Following completion of a PhD you may decide to continue your academic career, if you do you will apply for post-doctoral positions and fellowships until you have built up enough teaching, grant writing and research experience to secure a permanent academic position. If you choose not to pursue an academic career your PhD will have equipped you with some useful transferable skills and employers will appreciate the self-motivation and hard work it takes to complete a PhD. If tou are considering doing a PhD consider the choice of topic and supervisor very carefully.|
|MSc Biomedical Engineering||For students who have not done their undergraduate degrees at Imperial may be interested in one of our MSc streamed programs it is an intensive 12-month taught programme specialised in either biomechanics & mechanobiology; biomaterial & tissue engineering; medical physics & imaging or neurotechnology. The MSc course is particularly popular with students who are interested in working in industry, if you are more interested in research the MRes programme may be more appropriate.|
|MRes Bioengineering||For students who are interested in research, but are not sure whether they want to embark on a PhD the MRes programme is a great option. A 12-month programme it is mostly research project based with a small taught component. If you are interested in the MRes programme you must approach the academic specialist in the field you are interested in to explore potential research projects, before applying. You can find more about our research areas in the research section of the website.|
|MRes Medical Device Design and Entrepreneurship||The MRes in Medical Device Design and Entrepreneurship is a unique programme which combines development of entrpreneurial skills alongside biomedical engineering knowledge. Students on this programme work closely with an academic to develop a research project into a translational product and develop the business plans, proof of concept and pitches required of medical device development at this stage. Graduates from this programme have gone on to receive £1million investment in their spin-outs from this programme.|
A career in medicine
Medical practice is becoming increasingly technological and a number of our students decide on graduate entry medicine and eventually qualify with engineering and MBBS degrees. Because part of the biomedical engineering course is taught conjointly with staff from the medical school, our students are in a good position to take the accelerated route through the graduate medical curriculum. Information on graduate entry medicine at Imperial can be found in the undergraduate prospectus.
Other graduates work in the NHS as Clinical Engineers working in roles such as medical engineering, rehabilitation engineering, radiation protection and medical physics.
A career in healthcare and medical device industry
If you like design and development this could be for you; the demand for cost effective, efficient health care technologies is unlikely to decrease: from intelligent orthopaedic implants to tissue engineering, to prosthetic devices for hearing and vision - all of these are areas of technology with huge potential for the development of new designs and the refinement of existing systems.
Graduates from the department have gone on to work for exciting companies such as Biomet, Philips Healthcare, Sg2, a global health care consultancy firm and the Acrobot Company Limited. Originally a spin-out from Imperial College London specialising in surgical robotics, Acrobot was aquired by Stanmore Implants Worldwide in 2010.
If you decide at the end of your degree that biomedical engineering is not the career for you. There are still a number of career options for you. Due to the nature of our degree, which encompasses elements of biology, computing, electronics and mechanics, some of our graduates have gone into careers which traditionally favour numeracy, such as finance and IT, finding employment with prestigious, global companies such as Goldman Sachs and IBM.
Others have gone onto careers that build on a solid understanding of biology, such as medicine or into other engineering disciplines, gaining employment in companies such as Schlumberger, a leading oilfield service provider, Apple and Jaguar Landrover.