Rio Tinto Challenge

Enhance your study of Biomedical Engineering by putting your knowledge into practice during a year in industry.

Key information

Award

MEng

Duration

5 years

full-time

Typical offer

Three A-level offer: A*AA–A*A*A

Four A-level offer: A*A*AA

See full entry requirements

Applications : admissions ratio

3.8 : 1

Based on 2015 application data

Professionally accredited

Read about this course's accreditation

  • UCAS course code: n/a*
  • ECTS: 270
  • Start date: October 2018

* Apply initially for MEng Biomedical Engineering (BH9C)

Apply on the UCAS website

Overview

Bioengineering is a rapidly evolving interdisciplinary field that applies engineering principles and technology to medical and biological problems. With an ageing population and advances in technology, biomedical engineering plays an integral role in global issues such as healthcare, energy and the environment.

This course aims to provide you with a broad foundation in physics, mathematics, engineering and medical science, through a range of modules designed to help you develop a deep understanding of fundamental engineering principles and an extensive knowledge of how the human body works.

As you move through the course you progress to more advanced engineering studies that apply the quantitative aspects of engineering analysis and design to a broad range of biomedical problems.

Study programme

All Biomedical Engineering students follow the same programme of core modules for the first two years, covering a broad base of fundamental engineering topics.

Throughout your second year you take part in an engineering design project as part of the Sports Innovation Challenge. This aims to unleash your creativity to improve the sporting and training equipment used by disabled people. A number of the projects developed by our students were used at the Rio Paralympic Games in 2016.

Bioengineering studentIn the third year, you can choose to specialise in one of three distinctive pathways:

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering

Whichever pathway you choose, you study a mixture of core and optional modules. You can also take modules from Imperial Horizons, and the Business for Professional Engineers programme, delivered by Imperial College Business School.

After the third year you will have the opportunity to complete a Year in Industry (see below).

Your study reaches Master’s level when you return to the College for your final year, including advanced modules from our MSc course in Biomedical Engineering, which we have been teaching since 1991. Studying to this level means that graduates require fewer years of work experience to become a Chartered Engineer (see Professional accreditation).

A major individual project in your final year gives you the chance to showcase your research and project management skills. This begins early in the academic year and runs through until approximately mid-June.

Year in Industry

Between the third and fourth years of your degree you will complete a 12-month paid placement in an industrial setting. Here you will work on a project set by your host company. You will be expected to help the Department organise your placement, including identifying suitable employers to apply to, however help is available from the Careers Service and the Department’s dedicated Industrial Liaison Officer. Securing a placement is competitive, so you may need to apply to multiple employers and take part in recruitment activities such as interviews.

Students from the Department have previously completed placements with:

  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Renishaw

The employer can often be in a location of your choice – including outside the UK – as long as you are successful in obtaining a position there and the placement is approved by the Department.

Transfer between courses

Students interested in this course should apply for the MEng in Biomedical Engineering (BH9C) in the first instance. You then have the option to transfer in your third year.

Alternatively, you may choose to undertake a study year abroad by transferring to our MEng in Biomedical Engineering with a Year Abroad. You will need to be on track for at least a 2:1 to be eligible for selection for a year abroad placement.

The Department also offers a new MEng in Molecular Bioengineering. The main difference between this course and the new course is that Biomedical Engineering takes a top-down approach, looking first at the whole organism, injury or problem and then working down to a cellular level. By contrast, Molecular Bioengineering takes a bottom-up approach, first looking at cells and molecules, then building up through tissues and organs to the whole organism or human.

It may be possible to transfer between the MEng Biomedical Engineering (BH9C) and the MEng Molecular Bioengineering (H160) programmes within the first few weeks of term. This would be at the Department's discretion, and you would need to have met the entry requirements for both programmes.

If you are an international student, transferring to a different course could have an impact on your Tier 4 visa. Please visit our International Student Support webpage for further information.

Structure

Please note that the curriculum of this course is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for 2018 entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.

Find out more about the limited circumstances in which we may need to make changes to or in relation to our courses, the type of changes we may make and how we will tell you about changes we have made.

Year 1

You take all of the core modules listed below.

  • Bioengineering in Action
  • Biomolecular Engineering 1
  • Digital Logic and Programming
  • Electrical Engineering 1
  • Electromagnetics, Vibration and Waves
  • Mathematics 1
  • Mechanics 1
  • Medical Science 1
  • Molecules, Cells and Processes 1
  • Thermodynamics and Kinetics

Year 2

Core modules

You take all of the core modules listed below.

  • Electrical Engineering 2
  • Electromagnetics 2
  • Engineering Design Project
  • Heat and Mass Transport 2
  • Manufacturing Technology for Bioengineers
  • Mathematics 2
  • Mechanics 2 Fluids
  • Mechanics 2 Solids
  • Medical Science 2
  • Programming 2
  • Signals and Control
  • Wet-Laboratory Skills 2

Year 3

Bioengineering pathway

Core modules

You take all of the core modules listed below.

  • Bioengineering Solutions for Cancer
  • Biomedical Advanced and Computational Stress Analysis
  • Biomedical Instrumentation
  • Group Project
  • Modelling in Biology
  • Probability and Statistics for Bioengineering
Optional modules
Group 1

You choose two optional modules from the list below.

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomechanics
  • Biomimetics
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Centred Assistive and Rehabilitation Devices
  • Image Processing
  • Physiological Fluid Mechanics
  • Synthetic Biology
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Imperial Horizons

Mechanical Engineering pathway

Core modules

You take all of the core modules listed below.

  • Biomechanics
  • Biomedical Advanced and Computational Stress Analysis
  • Group Project
  • Modelling in Biology
  • Physiological Fluid Mechanics
  • Probability and Statistics for Bioengineering
Optional modules
Group 1

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Bioengineering Solutions for Cancer
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Instrumentation
  • Biomimetics
  • Fundamentals of Fracture Mechanics
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Centred Assistive and Rehabilitation Devices
  • Machine System Dynamics
  • Manufacturing Technology and Management
  • Synthetic Biology
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Imperial Horizons

Electrical Engineering pathway

Core modules

You take all of the core modules listed below.

  • Biomedical Instrumentation
  • Digital Biosignal Processing
  • Group Project
  • Image Processing
  • Modelling in Biology
  • Probability and Statistics for Bioengineering
Optional modules
Group 1

You choose two optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Electronic Devices
  • Advanced Signal Processing
  • Bioengineering Solutions for Cancer
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Advanced and Computational Stress Analysis
  • Biomimetics
  • Control Engineering
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Centred Assistive and Rehabilitation Devices
  • Optoelectronics
  • Synthetic Biology
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Design-led innovation and enterprise
  • Imperial Horizons

Year 4

You will spend this year working in industry, applying your knowledge in a practical setting.

Students have previously enjoyed placement opportunities at companies such as:

  • GSK - Drugs Delivery Devices Team
  • Renishaw - Neurotechnology Department

Year 5

Bioengineering pathway

Core module
  • Individual Project
Optional modules

You choose five optional modules in total from Group 1 and 2 below, as well as one module from Group 3.

Group 1

You choose at least three optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Medical Imaging
  • Advanced Physiological Monitoring and Data Analysis
  • Biomechanics
  • Biomedical Imaging
  • Biomimetics
  • Brain Machine Interfaces
  • Cellular Biomechanics
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Neuromechanical Control and Learning
  • Machine Learning and Neural Computation
  • Orthopaedic Biomechanics
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose up to two optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Biomaterials
  • Advanced Tissue Engineering
  • Biomaterials
  • MEMS and Nanotechnology
  • Nanomaterials
Group 3

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Medical Device Entrepreneurship
  • Individual Project

Mechanical Engineering pathway

Core module
Optional modules

You choose five optional modules in total from Group 1 and 2 below, as well as one module from Group 3.

Group 1

You choose at least three optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Medical Imaging
  • Advanced Physiological Monitoring and Data Analysis
  • Biomedical Imaging
  • Biomimetics
  • Cellular Biomechanics
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Neuromechanical Control and Learning
  • Machine Learning and Neural Computation
  • Orthopaedic Biomechanics
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose up to two optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Biomaterials
  • Advanced Stress Analysis
  • Advanced Tissue Engineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Computational Continuum Mechanics
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Finite Element Analysis and Applications
  • Fundamentals of Fracture Mechanics
  • Machine System Dynamics
  • Manufacturing Technology and Management
  • MEMS and Nanotechnology
  • Modelling of Multi-Body Mechanical Systems
  • Nanomaterials
  • Tribology
Group 3

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Medical Device Entrepreneurship
  • Individual Project

Electrical Engineering pathway

Core module
Optional modules

You choose five optional modules in total from Group 1 and 2 below, as well as one module from Group 3.

Group 1

You choose at least three optional modules from the list below.

  • Advanced Medical Imaging
  • Advanced Physiological Monitoring and Data Analysis
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Imaging
  • Biomimetics
  • Brain Machine Interfaces
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Machine Learning and Neural Computation
  • Medical Device Certification
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Group 2

You choose up to two optional modules from the list below.

  • Current-mode Analogue Signal Processing
  • Data Analysis and Probabilistic Inference
  • Full-Custom Integrated Circuit Design
  • Graphics
  • High-performance Analogue Electronics
  • Information Theory
  • Machine Learning
  • MEMS and Nanotechnology
  • Modelling of Multi-Body Mechanical Systems
  • Optimisation
  • Radio-frequency Electronics
  • Spectral Estimation and Adaptive Signal Processing
Group 3

You choose one optional module from the list below.

  • Business for Professional Engineers and Scientists
  • Medical Device Entrepreneurship

Professional accreditation

This degree leads to a Master’s level qualification. It is professionally accredited by the following organisations on behalf of the Engineering Council:

This quadruple accreditation will not only prepare you for a career in the rapidly growing field of bioengineering, it also provides a technical foundation for careers in mechanical engineering, electrical and electronic engineering, materials engineering and medical physics Biomedical engineering by demonstrating to employers that you have achieved an industry-recognised standard of competency.

Achieving a professionally accredited integrated Master's degree (MEng) means that you have satisfied the first step to becoming a Chartered Engineer (CEng) in your chosen field by satisfying the educational requirements of professional registration. To gain Chartered status, you will need to demonstrate your ability to meet additional graduate level competences described in the Engineering Council's UK-SPEC

A CEng is a highly respected qualification earned by professionals working in engineering, which can lead to higher earning potential and better career prospects.

Professional registration also brings international recognition of your qualification, which is particularly useful for students preparing for a career abroad.

Our accreditation agreements with IOM3, IPEM, IMechE and IET are renewed every five years. The next accreditation visit is expected to be in the 2018/19 academic year. The Department expects to be accredited into the future.


Associateship

As well as your main Imperial degree, you will also receive the award of the Associateship of the City and Guilds of London Institute (ACGI) on completion of this course.

The City and Guilds of London Institute is one of three historic Colleges that came together to form Imperial College London in 1907.

Find out more about our Associateships.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching

You will experience a variety of teaching styles, which combine theory and practice:

  • Laboratory sessions
  • Lectures
  • Make, build and test activities
  • Tutorials
  • Study groups

The laboratory sessions will include wet, computing and mathematics laboratories which provide a practical element to teaching and assessment.

Teaching, independent study and placement hours

 Year 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5
Lectures, seminars and similar 439 (29%) 446 (30%) 278 (19%) 185 (12%)
Independent study 1,061 (71%) 1,054 (70%) 1,222 (81%) 1,315 (88%)
Placement 1,500 (100%)
Based on the typical pathway through the course; percentages have been rounded to the nearest whole number
 

Assessment

Assessment varies between modules, but for the majority it involves some combination of written exams, practical and continuous assessment of coursework. Other assessment methods include:

  • Assessed coursework (problem sheets, technical files, reports, projects, tests, reviews, lab book completion, and others)
  • Examinations (in-class, online, and written)
  • Oral and poster presentations

Assessment types

 Year 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5
Coursework 40% 20% 42% 100% 42%
Practical 1% 6% 5% 8%
Written 59% 74% 53% 50%
Based on the typical pathway through the course; percentages have been rounded to the nearest whole number
 

Staff expertise

At Imperial, you will be taught by a range of teachers of all levels from Professors to PhD students, including some who undertake groundbreaking research and are regarded as experts in their field.

You may also experience peer teaching and be taught by specialists external to the College.

Year in Industry

You will gain 30 additional ECTS credits (270 instead of 240 ECTS credits overall) upon successful completion of your industrial placement. The industry assessment is not counted toward the final degree mark.

Compare this course

See how this course compares with similar courses at different institutions using the Unistats information below.

The Unistats website uses official data which we provide about all of our undergraduate courses that have a UCAS code. This information is published by the Higher Education Funding Council on the Unistats website to help you compare similar courses at different institutions.

Because acceptance onto this course is via in-course transfer, it does not have its own Unistats page. However, there is a high degree of overlap with the main degree in this Department so we encourage you to use the Unistats data for that degree.

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis – see selection process below.

For advice on the requirements for the qualifications listed here please contact the Department (see Contact us).

We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. If the requirements for your qualifications are not listed here, please see our academic requirements by country page for guidance on which qualifications we accept.

A-levels

Typical offer range

As a guide, here are the typical offers made in 2016 to at least 85% of applicants studying A-levels:

Three A-level offer: A*AA–A*A*A

Four A-level offer: A*A*AA

Subject and grade requirements (2018 entry)

We expect applicants for 2018 entry to meet the following grade requirements in these subjects:

  • A* in Mathematics
  • A in Physics
  • A in Biology, Chemistry or Further Mathematics

General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted.

Practical endorsement (practical science assessment)

If you are made an offer you will be required to achieve a pass in the practical endorsement in all science subjects that form part of the offer.

International Baccalaureate

Typical offer range

As a guide, the typical offer made in 2016 to at least 85% of applicants studying IB was 38–40 points overall.

Subject and grade requirements (2018 entry)

We expect applicants for 2018 entry to meet the following grade requirements in these subjects:

  • 6 in Mathematics at higher level
  • 6 in Physics at higher level
  • 6 in a third subject at higher level

Advanced Placements

Our minimum requirement for this course is grades 5, 5, 5 to include:

  • 5 in Calculus AB or BC
  • 5 in Physics
  • 5 in another subject

Other qualifications

Places will also be available to those with other equivalent qualifications, e.g. Advanced Placement Tests, European Baccalaureate, some of the national Baccalaureates in the European Union, Scottish Qualifications, Irish Leaving Certificate, and to applicants with appropriate educational experience or other competencies. See admission of students with other competencies.

Selection process

Assessing your application

Admissions Tutors consider all the evidence available during our rigorous selection process and the College flags key information providing assessors with a more complete picture of the educational and social circumstances relevant to the applicant.

Some applicants may be set lower offers and some more challenging ones. It is the College’s policy to not make offers below three A’s at A-level in relevant subjects, 38 IB points with at least a grade 6 at higher level in relevant subjects, or their equivalent.

A typical range of offers made by this Department in 2016 (encompassing at least 85% of applicants who studied A-level or IB) is shown above.

Post-application open day and interview

When assessing applications, we will consider your examination results (already gained and predicted), your motivation and understanding of biomedical engineering as a career, your potential for leadership and teamwork, your interests and the referee’s report.

If your UCAS application indicates that you are likely to satisfy our entry requirements and you live within easy travelling distance of the College, you will normally be invited to an applicant day to visit the College and our Department.

The applicant day will include an introductory presentation giving information about the course and how it is taught. There is also a presentation on the Department's research and the kinds of careers you could pursue as a graduate. You will have an interview with a member of staff.

You also participate in a group session where you are divided into small groups along with the other applicants to look at medical artefacts. The task is to identify the object, describe how it is used and suggest potential improvements. The day will include a tour of the campus and Department.

English language qualifications (all applicants)

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 undergraduate applicants.

Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

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

For more information about the Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS), please see the International Student Support website.

Tuition fees and funding

We charge tuition fees for every year that your course lasts. The fee you will be charged is based on your fee status, which is determined by government regulations.

Tuition fees (Home and EU students)

2018 entryYear in Industry
£9,250 per year 10% of the relevant fee for that year

Read more about funding for year in industry placements.

The above fee applies to the academic year 2018–19 only.

The fee for Home/EU students is controlled by the UK government.

Please note that the fee you pay may increase annually by an amount linked to inflation and approved by Parliament under the Student Fees (Inflation Index) Regulations 2006 – currently the measure of inflation used is the RPIX.

Government funding

If you're a Home student, you can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the UK government to cover the entire cost of tuition for every year of your course.

You can also apply for a means-tested Maintenance Loan to help towards your living costs.

EU students

The UK government has confirmed that funding arrangements for EU students starting a course in 2018 means they will continue to pay the Home rate of tuition and have access to the Tuition Fee Loan for the duration of their course.

This will remain the case even if their course finishes after the UK's exit from the European Union.

Tuition fees (Overseas and Islands students)

2018 entryYear in Industry
£29,000 per year 10% of the relevant fee for that year

Read more about funding for year in industry placements.

The tuition fees for Overseas and Islands students are set by Imperial College London.

You should expect and budget for your tuition fee increasing each year by an inflationary amount. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2019 will apply to fees for the academic year 2019–2020.

Additional course costs

This section outlines any additional costs relevant to this course, which are not included in your tuition fees. It is possible that all, or only some, of these will be relevant to you.

Please note that the figures provided are usually based on the cost in the most recent academic year. These are likely to change from year to year. However, it is useful for you to be aware of the types of things you may have to pay for and their approximate cost to help you budget for student life at Imperial.

This section indicates whether any additional costs that apply are mandatory or optional. Mandatory costs are those that you will need to pay to fully participate in and complete your studies. Optional costs are not essential to your studies so you will be free to opt out of these.


Summary
DescriptionMandatory/optionalGuide to cost
Equipment (boiler suit) Mandatory £26
Equipment (electronics kit) Mandatory £12
Equipment (laptop computer) Mandatory £100 (refundable)
Please review the information below for more information on the costs listed in the table.

Equipment

The nature of the academic work you will be completing means you will need to wear protective clothing during practical sessions. The below items are mandatory for all students, which you will need from the start of the course:

  • Boiler suit (approximately £26.00)
  • Electronics kit (approximately £12.00)

You can buy both items from the Department during the first week of term. Payment is in cash.

Laptop computer

You will need a laptop for some classes and coursework. The laptop must meet a minimum specification. For the 2017–18 academic year this was:

  • Windows 10 capable
  • Intel i5/i7 6th/7th generation processor
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256 GB SSD HDD

The Department has a number of laptops available for loan for the duration of your course. A deposit of £100 is required, refundable when you return the laptop at the end of your course.

You will have the chance to indicate whether you wish to take part in the laptop loan scheme when contacted by the Department in the September before you start your course.

If you choose to borrow a laptop, you will be sent an invoice for the deposit amount which is payable online before the start of term. A variety of payment methods are available.

Accommodation and living costs

Living costs, including accommodation, are not included in your tuition fees.

Over 90 per cent of Imperial undergraduates choose to live in our halls of residence in their first year. You can compare costs across our different accommodation options on our Accommodation website.

A rough guide to what you might expect to spend to live in reasonable comfort in London is available on our Fees and Funding website.

Careers

Forbes ranks biomedical engineering as the best job in Engineering and IT (ten-year forecast estimated from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics). Our degrees will not only prepare you for a career in the rapidly growing field of bioengineering, but also provide a technical foundation for careers in mechanical engineering, electrical and electronic engineering, materials engineering and medical physics. Some graduates also launch their own startup companies, whilst others apply to enter graduate medical programmes.

Recent graduates of the Department have become:

  • Device Development Engineer, Roche
  • Graduate Engineer, Jaguar Land Rover
  • PhD student, ETH Zurich
  • Research Programmer, MIT
  • Trainee Clinical Scientist, King's College Hospital

How to apply

UCAS key information

  • UCAS course code: n/a*
  • UCAS institution code: I50
Apply on the UCAS website

UCAS Apply system

To apply to study at Imperial you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

* Apply initially for MEng Biomedical Engineering (BH9C)

Application deadlines

All applications, other than those which include choices for medicine at Imperial, must be submitted to UCAS by 18.00 (UK time) on 15 January 2018 for entry in October 2018.

The deadline for medicine courses at Imperial starting in 2018 is 18.00 (UK time) on 15 October 2017.

Tracking your application

Once you’ve completed and submitted your application through UCAS’s online Apply service, you can use UCAS’ Track system to follow its progress and manage your choices.

See our How to apply section for further guidance.

You may also be interested in the following related departments and the courses they offer:

Contact us

Bioengineering student

Got a question?

Dr Jenna Stevens-Smith
T: +44 (0)20 7594 5146
E: be.ugadmissions@imperial.ac.uk

Read more on the Department of Bioengineering website.

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