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Become A Biomedical Engineer

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Working As A Biomedical Engineer

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Getting Information
  • Deal with People

  • Make Decisions

  • $85,065

    Average Salary

What Does A Biomedical Engineer Do

Biomedical engineers combine engineering principles with medical and biological sciences to design and create equipment, devices, computer systems, and software used in healthcare.


Biomedical engineers typically do the following:

  • Design equipment and devices, such as artificial internal organs, replacements for body parts, and machines for diagnosing medical problems
  • Install, adjust, maintain, repair, or provide technical support for biomedical equipment
  • Evaluate the safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of biomedical equipment
  • Train clinicians and other personnel on the proper use of equipment
  • Work with life scientists, chemists, and medical scientists to research the engineering aspects of the biological systems of humans and animals
  • Prepare procedures, write technical reports, publish research papers, and make recommendations based on their research findings
  • Present research findings to scientists, nonscientist executives, clinicians, hospital management, engineers, other colleagues, and the public

Biomedical engineers design instruments, devices, and software used in healthcare; bring together knowledge from many technical sources to develop new procedures; or conduct research needed to solve clinical problems.

They often serve a coordinating function, using their background in both engineering and medicine. For example, they may create products for which an indepth understanding of living systems and technology is essential. They frequently work in research and development or in quality assurance.

Biomedical engineers design electrical circuits, software to run medical equipment, or computer simulations to test new drug therapies. In addition, they design and build artificial body parts, such as hip and knee joints. In some cases, they develop the materials needed to make the replacement body parts. They also design rehabilitative exercise equipment.

The work of these engineers spans many professional fields. For example, although their expertise is based in engineering and biology, they often design computer software to run complicated instruments, such as three-dimensional x-ray machines. Alternatively, many of these engineers use their knowledge of chemistry and biology to develop new drug therapies. Others draw heavily on mathematics and statistics to build models to understand the signals transmitted by the brain or heart.

The following are examples of specialty areas within the field of biomedical engineering:

Bioinstrumentation uses electronics, computer science, and measurement principles to develop devices used in the diagnosis and treatment of disease.

Biomaterials is the study of naturally occurring or laboratory-designed materials that are used in medical devices or as implantation materials.

Biomechanics involves the study of mechanics, such as thermodynamics, to solve biological or medical problems.

Clinical engineering applies medical technology to optimize healthcare delivery.

Rehabilitation engineering is the study of engineering and computer science to develop devices that assist individuals with physical and cognitive impairments.

Systems physiology uses engineering tools to understand how systems within living organisms, from bacteria to humans, function and respond to changes in their environment.

Some people with training in biomedical engineering become professors. For more information, see the profile on postsecondary teachers.

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How To Become A Biomedical Engineer

Biomedical engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering or bioengineering from an accredited program in order to enter the occupation. Alternatively, they can get a bachelor’s degree in a different field of engineering and then either choose biological science electives or get a graduate degree in biomedical engineering.


Prospective biomedical engineering or bioengineering students should take high school science courses, such as chemistry, physics, and biology. They should also take math courses, including algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. Courses in drafting or mechanical drawing and in computer programming are also useful.

Bachelor’s degree programs in biomedical engineering and bioengineering focus on engineering and biological sciences. Programs include laboratory-based courses, in addition to classroom-based courses, in subjects such as fluid and solid mechanics, computer programming, circuit design, and biomaterials. Other required courses may include biological sciences, such as physiology.

Accredited programs also include substantial training in engineering design. Many programs include co-ops or internships, often with hospitals and medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturing companies, to provide students with practical applications as part of their study. Biomedical engineering and bioengineering programs are accredited by ABET.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Biomedical engineers must be able to analyze the needs of patients and customers to design appropriate solutions.

Communication skills. Because biomedical engineers sometimes work with patients and frequently work on teams, they must be able to express themselves clearly. They must seek others’ ideas and incorporate those ideas into the problem-solving process.

Creativity. Biomedical engineers must be creative to come up with innovative and integrative advances in healthcare equipment and devices.

Math skills. Biomedical engineers use the principles of calculus and other advanced topics in mathematics, as well as statistics, for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.

Problem-solving skills. Biomedical engineers typically deal with and solve problems in complex biological systems.


Biomedical engineers typically receive greater responsibility through experience and more education. To lead a research team, a biomedical engineer generally needs a graduate degree. Some biomedical engineers attend medical or dental school to specialize in applications at the forefront of patient care, such as using electric impulses in new ways to get muscles moving again. Some earn law degrees and work as patent attorneys. Others pursue a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) and move into managerial positions. For more information, see the profiles on lawyers and architectural and engineering managers.

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Biomedical Engineer jobs

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Biomedical Engineer Career Paths

Biomedical Engineer
Research And Development Engineer Manufacturing Engineer Design Engineer
Design Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Research Fellow Instructor Program Manager
Engineering Director
13 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Field Engineer Project Engineer
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Product Development Engineer Mechanical Engineer Engineering Manager
Engineering Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Research And Development Engineer Project Engineer
Engineering Program Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Process Engineer Facility Engineer
Facilities/Engineering Manager
13 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Engineer Process Engineer Manufacturing Engineer
Manufacturing Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Research Engineer Process Engineer
Process Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Electrical Engineer Engineer Product Engineer
Product Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Systems Engineer Project Engineer
Project Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Process Engineer Product Development Engineer
Project Management Engineer
6 Yearsyrs
Research Fellow Project Manager Construction Manager
Quality Control Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Product Development Engineer Research And Development Engineer Research And Development Manager
Research And Development Director
12 Yearsyrs
Electrical Engineer Research And Development Engineer
Research And Development Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Research Associate Analyst Product Manager
Research And Development Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Research Engineer Project Engineer Engineering Manager
Senior Engineering Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Engineer Manufacturing Engineer
Senior Manufacturing Engineer
10 Yearsyrs
Research Associate Project Coordinator Project Engineer
Senior Mechanical Engineer
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Technical Project Manager Information Technology Manager
Technical Director
7 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager Engineering Director
Vice President Of Engineering
13 Yearsyrs
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Biomedical Engineer Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Asian

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • French

  • Arabic

  • Mandarin

  • Cantonese

  • Chinese

  • Hindi

  • German

  • Korean

  • Turkish

  • Carrier

  • Italian

  • Portuguese

  • Japanese

  • Swahili

  • Swedish

  • Vietnamese

  • Gujarati

  • Shan

  • Hebrew

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Biomedical Engineer

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Biomedical Engineer Education

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Real Biomedical Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Assistant Biomedical Engineer Massachusetts General Physician's Organization Boston, MA Jul 01, 2015 $157,200
Assistant In Biomedical Engineering Massachusetts General Physician's Organization Boston, MA Jul 01, 2015 $157,200
Natural Language Processing Biomedical Engineer Invitae Corporation San Francisco, CA Aug 16, 2016 $155,000
Biomedical Engineer Verotech Solutions, LLC Elkton, MD Feb 16, 2016 $146,090
Manager, Biomedical Engineering Exponent, Inc. Philadelphia, PA May 12, 2016 $125,298 -
Biomedical Engineer Auris Surgical Robotics Inc. San Carlos, CA Jun 06, 2016 $125,000
Biomedical Engineer (National Technical Support) Brainlab Inc. Westchester, IL Jan 16, 2015 $123,718
Biomedical Engineer (National Technical Support) Brainlab Inc. Westchester, IL Feb 19, 2016 $123,718
Biomedical Engineer Vital Connect, Inc. Campbell, CA Apr 13, 2015 $116,000
Senior Biomedical Engineer Earlens Corporation Menlo Park, CA May 02, 2016 $115,000
Senior Biomedical Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jan 10, 2016 $115,000
Senior Biomedical Engineer Earlens Corporation Menlo Park, CA Feb 05, 2016 $115,000
Biomedical Engineer Radiographic Equipment Services, Inc. San Diego, CA Sep 11, 2015 $110,000
Biomedical Engineer Helix Medical, LLC Gloucester, MA Jan 21, 2015 $85,000
Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering Saint Louis University Saint Louis, MO Jan 01, 2016 $85,000
Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering The College of New Jersey Ewing, NJ Jan 07, 2016 $84,529
Biomedical Engineer Sleepiq Labs, Inc. San Jose, CA Nov 16, 2015 $83,574
Biomedical Engineer Echo Labs, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Sep 13, 2016 $83,574 -
Biomedical Engineer Medtronic, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Aug 31, 2016 $83,446
Biomedical Engineer (Imaging Analysis Scientist) Invicro, LLC Boston, MA Sep 02, 2015 $82,000
Biomedical Engineer Auris Surgical Robotics Inc. San Carlos, CA Aug 30, 2016 $82,000
Biomedical Engineer IMC-Heartway LLC Fort Myers, FL Dec 01, 2015 $73,045
Biomedical Engineer Biopico Systems Inc. Irvine, CA Sep 23, 2015 $73,045
Biomedical Engineer Cold Genesys, Inc. Santa Ana, CA Sep 23, 2016 $72,857
Biomedical Engineer Cold Genesys, Inc. Santa Ana, CA Sep 16, 2016 $72,857
Biomedical Engineer Applied Medical Resources Corporation Rancho Santa Margarita, CA Aug 30, 2016 $72,613
Senior Biomedical Engineer Sigenics, Inc. Chicago, IL Jul 06, 2015 $72,500
Biomedical Engineer Everheart Systems Webster, TX Aug 25, 2016 $72,361
Biomedical Engineer Bio-Medical Services, Inc. CA Nov 09, 2016 $72,342

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Top Skills for A Biomedical Engineer


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Top Biomedical Engineer Skills

  1. Complex Medical Equipment
  2. Lab
  3. Electrical Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Identified problems with complex medical equipment, and executes formal decisions of equipment readiness.
  • Project leader responsible for ongoing communication with collaborators and planning logistical processes needed for cross institution experimentation.
  • Perform Electrical Safety Testing and Air Quality Testing; maintain all Documentations and Replacement parts Inventory Control.
  • Determined adequate preventive maintenance guidelines, part kits and schedules to ensure effective device maintenance.
  • Provided training in proper system maintenance and operation to laboratory equipment operators.

Top Biomedical Engineer Employers

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