Postgraduate biomedical engineering student

Duration: 1 year full-time
Start date: October 2016
LocationSouth Kensington
ECTS: 90 credits

This course has four separate streams to choose from: Medical Physics, Biomechanics, Neurotechnology and Biomaterials.

About the course

Overview

The Medical Physics stream trains graduates in the physical understanding required for healthcare and medical research, focusing on human physiology and the use of radiation in treatment and in clinical imaging (especially MRI, ultrasound, X-ray and optical techniques), as well as the signal and image processing methods needed for the design and optimal use of such systems in diagnosis and research.

The Biomechanics stream is focused on bioengineering problems related to major diseases associated with an ageing population, such as cardiovascular disease, glaucoma, and bone and joint disease (osteoarthritis, osteoporosis). These are major causes of mortality and morbidity, and this stream prepares engineers for a career in these key growth areas.

The Neurotechnology stream covers the development of new technology for the investigation of brain function, focusing on the application of this to benefit society – for example the development of neuroprosthetic devices, new neuroimaging techniques, and developing drugs and robotic assistive devices for those with central nervous system disorders, as well as in biologically-inspired control engineering.

The Biomaterials stream is offered jointly with the Department of Materials. It addresses the selection and use of biomaterials in medical and surgical devices, including their application, properties, interaction with tissues and drawbacks. Existing and new biomaterials are studied, including bioactive and biodegradable materials, implants and dental materials. Modules also cover the development of materials for new applications, the response of cells and the design of materials as scaffolds for tissue engineering, which involves tailoring materials so that they guide stem cells to produce new tissue.

You will be required to choose your stream preferrably at the time of application. All four streams lead to the award of the MSc in Biomedical Engineering. The Medical Physics and Biomechanics streams are accredited by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM).

StreamCEng academic accreditation
Biomaterials IPEM 2012–2018
IMechE 2013–2019
IOM3 2013–2017
Biomechanics IPEM 2012–2018
IMechE 2013–2019 
Medical Physics IPEM 2012–2018
IMechE 2012–2018
IOM3 2013–2019
Neurotechnology IPEM 2012–2018
IMechE 2012–2018
IOM3 2013–2019
Summary of the table's contents

Structure

Modules shown are for the current academic year, and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Please note that not all combinations of optional modules may be possible due to timetabling constraints.

Formal teaching extends from October to June during the three academic terms. From April until late September students undertake a major research project. The MSc degree is awarded on the basis of written examinations, coursework and the research project dissertation.

Modules

Core modules (all streams)
  • Systems physiology
  • Statistics and data analysis
  • Biomedical imaging
  • Journal club
  • Medical device certification
Medical Physics and Imaging stream modules

Stream-specific core covering advanced physiological monitoring and data analysis. You must also choose at least four modules from the following list:

  • Advanced medical imaging
  • Radiotherapy and radiobiology
  • Nuclear medicine
  • Image processing
  • Biomechanics
  • Biomaterials
  • Computational neuroscience
  • Health economics and decision-making in healthcare industries
  • MEMS and nanotechnology
Biomechanics and Mechanobiology stream modules

Stream-specific core covering biomechanics, plus at least four modules from the following list:

  • Biomaterials
  • Advanced medical imaging
  • Cellular biomechanics
  • Physiological fluid mechanics
  • Human neuromechanical control and learning
  • MEMS and nanotechnology
  • Health economics and decision making in healthcare industries
Neurotechnology stream modules

Stream-specific core covering:

  • Machine learning and neural computation
  • Computational neuroscience
  • Brain machine interfaces

You must also choose at least three modules from the following list:

  • Human neuromechanical control and learning
  • Advanced medical imaging
  • Advanced physiological monitoring and data analysis
  • Image processing
  • MEMS and nanontechnology
Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering stream modules

Stream-specific core covering:

  • Biomaterials
  • Advanced biomaterials
  • Advanced tissue engineering

You must also choose at least two modules from the following list:

  • Biomechanics
  • MEMS and nanotechnology
  • Advanced medical imaging
  • Health economics and decision making in healthcare industries

Please note: the course structure is subject to change.

Research project

The individual research project is an important part of the Bioengineering degree course. Projects give you the opportunity to apply the knowledge learned in the rest of the course to current research problems. They also help you to develop important project management, teamwork and communication skills that are highly valued by employers and international research groups.

Throughout the year you will carry out an extended research project. You will be assessed by a planning report, submitted in early March, a written dissertation and an oral presentation to be held by the middle of September.

You will carry out your project under the direction and guidance of a member of the academic staff and their research group. They are by far the most important pieces of work in the degree programme. They provide the opportunity for you to demonstrate independence and originality, to plan and organise a large project over a long period, and to put into practice some of the techniques you have been taught throughout the course.

Previous projects include:

  • parametric imaging of blood flow using microbubbles
  • exploration of assistive devices for cerebral palsy treatment
  • three-dimensional visualisation of depth electric field in the human brain

See further examples of previous project titles.

Entry requirements

Minimum academic requirement

2.1 Honours degree in a physical science, engineering or mathematical subject.

Although applicants will typically have a background in engineering or physical science, the course is potentially open to those from life sciences or medicine, provided they also have proven mathematics ability.

International qualifications

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a UK qualification. 

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications. For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirements

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

Fees and funding

Home and EU students

2016 entry:

£11,000

Islands and overseas students

2016 entry:

£27,900

Government funding

The level of tuition fees you pay is based on your fee status, which we assess based on UK government legislation.

If you are a Home or EU student who meets certain criteria, you can apply for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan of up to £10,000 from the UK government for programmes beginning in October 2016. The loan is not means-tested, and you can choose whether to put it towards your tuition fees or living costs. 

Funding from Imperial

Scholarships

We offer a range of scholarships for postgraduate students to support you through your studies. Try our scholarships search tool to see what you might be eligible for.

For more information on the Postgraduate Master's Loan scheme and other funding opportunities that are available, please visit our Fees and Funding website.

How to apply

All applicants must apply online.

You can usually apply for up to two courses, although your second choice will only be considered if your first-choice application is unsuccessful.

Most courses don't have a formal closing date, but popular courses close when they are full, so you should apply early to avoid disappointment. There may also be funding deadlines that apply to you.

You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.

Offer holders will need to pay a deposit to secure your place. This will be deducted from the balance of your tuition fees.

For full details on the online application process, or to start your application, please visit the How to Apply section of our website.

ATAS Certificate

An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

Further information

Find out more about the MSc in Biomedical Engineering, including more detailed course content.