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UCLA Graduate Division

2013-2014 Program Requirements for UCLA Graduate Degrees

Applicable only to students admitted during the 2013-2014 academic year.

Bioengineering

Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science

Graduate Degrees

The Department of Bioengineering offers the Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees in Bioengineering

Admission

Program Name

Bioengineering

Address

5121 Engineering V
Box 951600
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1600 

Phone

(310) 794-5945 

Email

bme@ea.ucla.edu  

Leading to the degree of

M.S., Ph.D. 

Admission Limited to

Fall 

Deadline to apply

December 15th 

GRE (General and/or Subject)

GRE: General 

Letters of Recommendation 

3, detailing research accomplishments, academic preparation, industrial experience, communications skills, other technical training, and potential for future professional development 

Other Requirements

In addition to the University's minimum requirements and those listed above, all applicants are expected to submit (1) the online application for graduate admission; 2) the departmental application available on the departmental website; (3) a clear and realistic statement of purpose; and (4) a resume.

Applicants whose native language is not English must score at least 600 on the paper and pencil Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), 250 on the computer-based TOEFL, or 100 on the internet-based TOEFL, or receive an overall band score of 8.0 on the International English Testing System (IELTS) examination to be considered for admission.

All applicants must demonstrate proficiency in the prerequisites listed under each field on the prerequisite sheet available on the departmental website.

M.S.: The statement of purpose should relate reasons for seeking admission. Applicants should have a B.S. degree or its equivalent in engineering, life science, or physical science.

Ph.D.: Applicants should have a B.S. degree or its equivalent, with a grade point average in the final two years of not less than 3.00, in engineering, life science, or physical science.Admission to the Ph.D. program is granted to a small group each year, according to the following criteria: (1) Evidence of capacity for original scholarship and research in the field of Biomedical Engineering; (2) outstanding GRE scores and references; and (3) demonstration of adequate communication skills, particularly in writing, in the work submitted. 

Master's Degree

Advising

Each department or program in the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science has a graduate adviser. A current list of graduate advisers may be obtained from the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs, 6426 Boelter Hall, Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science. This list is also available from the Department of Bioengineering.

Students are assigned a faculty adviser upon admission to the School. Advisers may be changed upon written request from the student. All faculty in the School serve as advisers.

New students should arrange an appointment as early as possible with the faculty adviser to plan the proposed program of study toward the M.S. degree. Continuing students are required to confer with the adviser during the time of enrollment each quarter so that progress can be assessed and the study list approved.

Based on the quarterly transcripts, student records are reviewed at the end of each quarter by the departmental graduate adviser and Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs. Special attention is given if students were admitted provisionally or are on probation. If their progress is unsatisfactory, students are informed of this in writing by the Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs.

Students are strongly urged to consult with the program student office staff and/or the Office of Academic and Student Affairs regarding procedures, requirements, and the implementation of policies. In particular, advice should be sought on advancement to candidacy for the M.S. degree, on the procedures for taking Ph.D. preliminary examination for those who choose the comprehensive examination option, on the procedures for filing the thesis for those who choose the thesis option, and on the use of the Filing Fee. Students are also urged to become familiar with the sections on Termination of Graduate Study and Appeal of Termination at the end of this document.

Areas of Study

Field 1: Biomedical Instrumentation (BMI)

This field of emphasis is designed to train bioengineers interested in the applications and development of instrumentation used in medicine and biotechnology. Examples include the use of lasers in surgery and diagnostics, new micro electrical machines for surgery, sensors for detecting and monitoring of disease, microfluidic systems for cell-based diagnostics, new tool development for basic and applied life science research, and controlled drug delivery devices. The principles underlying each instrument and specific clinical or biological needs will be emphasized. Graduates of this program will be targeted principally for employment in academia, government research laboratories, and the biotechnology, medical devices, and biomedical industries.

Field 2: Molecular Cellular Tissue Therapeutics (MCTT)

This field of emphasis covers novel therapeutic development across all biological length scales from molecules to cells to tissues. At the molecular and cellular levels, this area of research encompasses the engineering of biomaterials, ligands, enzymes, protein-protein interactions, intracellular trafficking, biological signal transduction, genetic regulation, cellular metabolism, drug delivery vehicles, and cell-cell interactions, as well as the development of chemical/biological tools to achieve this. At the tissue level, this field encompasses two sub-fields which include biomaterials and tissue engineering. The properties of bone, muscles and tissues, the replacement of natural materials with artificial compatible and functional materials such as polymers, composites, ceramics and metals, and the complex interactions between implants and the body are studied at the tissue level. The emphasis of research is on the fundamental basis for diagnosis, disease treatment, and re-design of molecular, cellular, and tissue functions. In addition to quantitative experiments required to obtain spatial and temporal information, quantitative and integrative modeling approaches at the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels are also included within this field. Although some of the research will remain exclusively at one length scale, research that bridges any two or all three length scales are also an integral part of this field. Graduates of this program will be targeted principally for employment in academia, government research laboratories, and the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and biomedical industries.

Field 3: Imaging, Informatics and Systems Engineering (IIS)

This field consists of the following four subfields: Biomedical Signal and Image Processing (BSIP), Biosystem Science and Engineering (BSSE), Medical Imaging Informatics (MII), and NeuroEngineering (NE).

Subfield 1: Biosystem Science and Engineering (BSSE)

Graduate study in Biosystem Science and Engineering (BSSE) emphasizes the systems aspects of living processes, as well as their component parts. It is intended for science and engineering students interested in understanding biocontrol, regulation, communication, measurement or visualization of biomedical systems (of aggregate parts – whole systems), for basic or clinical applications. Dynamic systems engineering, mathematical, statistical and multiscale computational modeling and optimization methods – applicable at all biosystem levels – form the theoretical underpinnings of the field. They are the paradigms for exploring the integrative and hierarchical dynamical properties of biomedical systems quantitatively – at molecular, cellular, organ, whole organism or societal levels – and leveraging them in applications. The academic program provides directed interdisciplinary biosystem studies in these areas – as well as quantitative dynamic systems biomodeling methods – integrated with the biology for specialized life science domain studies of interest to the student. Typical research areas include molecular and cellular systems physiology, organ systems physiology, medical, pharmacological and pharmacogenomic system studies; neurosystems, imaging and remote sensing systems, robotics, learning and knowledge-based systems, visualization and virtual clinical environments. The program fosters careers in research and teaching in systems biology/physiology, engineering, medicine, and/or the biomedical sciences, or research and development in the biomedical or pharmaceutical industry.

Subfield 2: Biomedical Signal and Image Processing (BSIP)

The Biomedical Signal and Image Processing (BSIP) graduate program prepares students for a career in the acquisition and analysis of biomedical signals; and enables students to apply quantitative methods applied to extract meaningful information for both clinical and research applications. The BSIP program is premised on the fact that a core set of mathematical and statistical methods are held in common across signal acquisition and imaging modalities and across data analyses regardless of their dimensionality. These include signal transduction, characterization and analysis of noise, transform analysis, feature extraction from time series or images, quantitative image processing and imaging physics. Students in the BSIP program have the opportunity to focus their work over a broad range of modalities including electrophysiology, optical imaging methods, MRI, CT, PET and other tomographic devices and/or on the extraction of image features such as organ morphometry or neurofunctional signals, and detailed anatomic/functional feature extraction. The career opportunities for BSIP trainees include medical instrumentation, engineering positions in medical imaging, and research in the application of advanced engineering skills to the study of anatomy and function.

Subfield 3: Medical Imaging Informatics (MII)

Medical imaging informatics (MII) is the rapidly evolving field that combines biomedical informatics and imaging, developing and adapting core methods in informatics to improve the usage and application of imaging in healthcare. Graduate study in this field encompasses principles from across engineering, computer science, information sciences, and biomedicine. Imaging informatics research concerns itself with the full spectrum of low-level concepts (e.g., image standardization and processing; image feature extraction) to higher-level abstractions (e.g., associating semantic meaning to a region in an image; visualization and fusion of images with other biomedical data) and ultimately, applications and the derivation of new knowledge from imaging. Notably, medical imaging informatics addresses not only the images themselves, but encompasses the associated (clinical) data to understand the context of the imaging study; to document observations; and to correlate and reach new conclusions about a disease and the course of a medical problem. Research foci include distributed medical information architectures and systems; medical image understanding and applications of image processing; medical natural language processing; knowledge engineering and medical decision-support; and medical data visualization. Coursework is geared towards students with science and engineering backgrounds, introducing them to these areas in addition to providing exposure to fundamental biomedical informatics, imaging, and clinical issues. This area encourages interdisciplinary training, with faculty from multiple departments; and emphasizes the practical, translational development and evaluation of tools/applications to support clinical research and care.

Subfield 4: NeuroEngineering (NE)

The NeuroEngineering (NE) subfield is designed to enable students with a background in biological science to develop and execute projects that make use of state-of-the-art technology, including microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), signal processing, and photonics. Students with a background in engineering will develop and execute projects that address problems that have a neuroscientific base, including locomotion and pattern generation, central control of movement, and the processing of sensory information. Trainees will develop the capacity for the multidisciplinary teamwork, in intellectually and socially diverse settings, that will be necessary for new scientific insights and dramatic technological progress in the 21st century. NE students take a curriculum designed to encourage cross-fertilization of neuroscience and engineering. Our goal is for neuroscientists and engineers to speak each others' language and move comfortably among the intellectual domains of the two fields.

Foreign Language Requirement

None.

Course Requirements

A minimum of 13 courses (44 units) are required, at least ten of which must be from the 200 series - that include three Bioengineering 299 and one Bioengineering 495. For the thesis plan, at least seven of the 13 must be formal courses and two must be 598 courses involving work on the thesis. For the comprehensive examination plan, no units of 500-series courses may be applied toward the minimum course requirement except for the field of medical imaging informatics where two units of Bioengineering 597A are required. Lower division courses may not be applied toward a graduate degree. To remain in good academic standing, an M.S. student must maintain an overall grade-point average of 3.0 and a grade-point average of 3.0 in graduate courses.

By the end of the first quarter in residence, students design a course program in consultation with and approved by their faculty adviser.

Field 1: Biomedical Instrumentation (BMI)

Group I: Core Courses on General Concepts. At least three courses from this group are required: Bioengineering C201, C204, C205, C206.

Group II: Field Specific Courses: At least 3 courses from this group are required. Bioengineering CM250A, Electrical Engineering 100, and (Bioengineering CM202 or CM203 or Molecular Cell Development Biology 165A)

Group III: Field Elective Courses. Students may fulfill the remainder of their courses from one of the following three groups:

Microfluidics, MEMS, and Biosensors: Bioengineering CM250L, M260, 282; Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering C216; Chemistry 118, 156; Electrical Engineering 102, 110, 110L; Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering 103, 150A, 150G, M168, 250B, C250G, 250M, 281, M287; Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics 185A; Molecular, Cellular and Development Biology 165A, 168, M175A-B, M272

Surgical/Imaging Instrumentation: Bioengineering 224A, CM240, C270, C271, 272; Biomathematics M230, Electrical Engineering 176, Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering 171A, 263D

Bionanotechnology & Biophotonics: Bioengineering C270, C271, Chemistry and Biochemistry C240; Electrical Engineering 121B, 128, 150DL, 172, M217, 225, 274; Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 258A, C287L, M287

Other Electives (Approved on a case-by-case basis)

Field 2: Molecular Cellular Tissue Therapeutics (MCTT)

Group I: Core Courses on General Concepts. At least three courses from this group are required: Bioengineering C201, C204, C205, C206

Group II: Field Specific Courses. At least three courses from this group are required: Bioengineering 100, 110, 120, 176, C278, C283, C285

Group III. Field Elective Courses. Students may fulfill the remainder of their courses from this group: Bioengineering 180, M215, M225, CM240, CM245, C287; Biomathematics 201, M203, M211, 220 M270, M271; Chemistry 153A, 153B, M230B, CM260A, CM260B, C265, 269A, 269D, 277, C281; Materials Science and Engineering 110, 111, 200, 201; Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 156A, 168; Molecular Cell Development Biology 100, M140, 144, 165A, C222D, 224, M230B, M234; Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics 185A,CM233; Molecular & Medical Pharmacology M110A, M110B, 203, 211A, 211B, 288; Neuroscience 205; Pathology M237, 294

Other Electives (Approved on a case-by-case basis)

Subfield 1: Biosystem Science and Engineering (BSSE)

Group I: Core Courses on General Concepts.

Two courses from the following group:

Physiology/Molecular, cellular and organ system biology

Either Bioengineering CM202 and CM203 or Physiological Science 166 and Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology 140 or 144 or other approved equivalent approved courses.

Two courses from the following group:

Dynamic biosystems modeling, estimation and optimization

Bioengineering CM286 and either Biomathematics 220 or M296B.

Group II: Subfield Specific and Elective Courses. Three courses from this group are required. These should be chosen in consultation with and in approval of the faculty advisor.

Biomathematics 201, 206, 208A or 208B, 213, M230, Bioengineering C204, C205, C206, M217, CM245, M248, M260, C283, M296D, Chemistry and Biochemistry CM260A, CM260B, Computer Science 161, CM224, 267B, Electrical Engineering 102, 103, 113, 131A, 132A, 136, 141, 142, 210B, 232E, 240B, M240C, 241A, 241C, M242A, 243, CM250A, CM250L, M252, 260A, 260B, Mathematics 134, 136, 151A, 151B, 155, 170A, 170B, 171, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 107, 171A, Physiological Science 135, M200.

Group III: Ethics Courses. One course is required from this group: Bioengineering 165EW, Biomathematics M261, Microbiology, Immunology, Molecular Genetics C134, Neuroscience 207.

Subfield 2: Biomedical Signal / Image Processing (BSIP)

Group I: Core Courses on General Concepts. Three courses are required from the following: Bioengineering C201 or CM286, CM202 and CM203, or Physiological Science 166 and Molecular Cell Development Biology 144

Group II: Subfield Specific Courses. At least three courses are required from: Biomedical Physics 205, M219, M248, Electrical Engineering 239AS, 266, Neurobiology M200C, Neuroscience CM272, M287 and one course from the following: Bioengineering 165EW, Biomathematics M261, Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics C134, Neuroscience 207

Group III: Subfield Elective Courses. Students may fulfill the remainder of their courses from this group: Bioengineering 100, 120, 223A-223B-223C, 224A, M261, Biomedical Physics 210, 217, 218, 222, 227, M230, Biostatistics 238, Computer Science 269, Electrical Engineering 102, 113, 151A-151B, 208A, 210A, CM211A, 212A, 224, 236A, 236B, 273, Mathematics 155, 133, 270A, 270B-270C, 270D-270E, 270F

Subfield 3: Medical Imaging Informatics (MII)

Group I: Core Courses on General Concepts: Bioengineering 220, 221 or CM202 and CM203, 223A, 223B, 223C, 224B, M226, M227, M228

Group II: Subfield Specific Courses. MS comp students are required to take three courses and Ph.D. students are required to take 6 courses from the following four concentrations.

Information networks and data access in medical environment concentration: Computer Science 240B, 241A, 244A, 245A, 246

Computer understanding of text and medical information retrieval concentration: Computer Science 263A, 263B, Information Studies 228, 245, 246, 260, Linguistics 218, 232, Statistics M231

Computer understanding of images concentration: Biomedical Physics 210, 214, M219, 230, M266; Computer Science, M266A, M266B, 276B, Electrical Engineering 211A

Probabilistic modeling and visualization of medical data: Biostatistics M209, M232, M234, M235, M236, Computer Science 241B, 262A, 262B, M262C, Information Studies 272, 277

Group III: Ethics Courses. One course is required from this group: Bioengineering 165EW, Biomathematics M261, Microbiology, Immunology, Molecular Genetics C134, Neuroscience 207

Subfield 4: Neuroengineering

Group I: Core Courses on Concepts. Three courses are required from the following: Bioengineering C201 or CM286 either Bioengineering CM202 and CM203, or Physiological Science 166 and Molecular Cell Development Biology 144

Group II: Subfield Specific Courses. All courses are required from: Bioengineering M260, M261, M284, and one course from the following: Bioengineering 165EW, Biomathematics M261, Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics C134, Neuroscience 207.

Group III: Subfield Elective Courses. Two courses from one of the following two concentrations are required:

Electronic engineering concentration: Chemical Engineering CM215, CM225, Electrical Engineering 210A, M214A, 214B, 216B, M250A, M250B, M250L, M252

Neuroscience concentration: Bioengineering C206, M263, Neuroscience M201, M202, 205

Teaching Experience

Not required.

Field Experience

Not required.

Comprehensive Examination Plan

The comprehensive examination plan is available in all fields. The requirements for fulfilling the comprehensive examination requirement varies for each field. Specific details about the comprehensive examination in each field are available from the Graduate Adviser. Students who fail the examination may repeat it once only, subject to the approval of the faculty examination committee. Students who fail the examination twice are not permitted to submit a thesis and are subject to termination. The oral component of the Ph.D. Preliminary Examination is not required for the M.S. degree.

Thesis Plan

Every master's degree thesis plan requires the completion of an approved thesis that demonstrates the student's ability to perform original, independent research.

New students who choose this plan are expected to submit the name of the thesis adviser to the Graduate Adviser by the end of their first quarter in residence. The thesis adviser serves as chair of the thesis committee.

A research thesis (eight units of Bioengineering 598) is to be written on a biomedical engineering topic approved by the thesis adviser. The thesis committee consists of the thesis adviser and two other qualified faculty members who are selected from a current list of designated members for the interdepartmental program.

Time-to-Degree

The typical length of time for completion of the M.S. degree under the comprehensive examination plan is one year. The typical length of time for completion of the M.S. degree under the thesis plan is two years.

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