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Graduate Program Requirements






Graduate Program

Coursework Credits

Research Credits

Total Credits

Post-MS PhD 24 12 36
Post-BS PhD 30 30 60
MS-A 24 6 30
MS-B 27 3 30

Credit Requirements


Graduate degrees in Biological Engineering (BE) require 15 credits of core mandatory graduate BE coursework (see chart below). The balance of graduate courses (electives) are determined by the student, the major professor, and the student’s graduate committee. Elective courses must follow the guidelines of the School of Graduate Studies for inclusion on a student’s Program of Study and must be approved by the student’s committee.

Elective graduate courses can be chosen outside the BE department.

Biological Engineering Required Graduate Core Courses

(15 credits)
BENG 6810 Biochemical Engineering 3
BENG 6600 Downstream Processing 3
BENG 6630 Synthetic Biological Engineering 3
BENG 6860/7860 Research Orientation & Planning 2
BENG 6510/7510 Graduate Seminar 1
STAT 5200 or
CEE 6660
Design of Experiments or
Environmental and Hydrologic Data Analysis and Experimentation
3
3

Possible Graduate Elective BE Courses could be:

BENG 6910 Biosensors 3
BENG 6890 Tissue Engineering 3
BENG 6620 Metabolic Engineering 3
BENG 6850 Advanced Biomaterials 3
BENG 6930 Biological Engineering Special Topics 3

Other Related Coursework Credit

Graduate student’s committee may choose other related graduate coursework as needed to complete the student’s program of study and support their research project. See pages 12 & 13 for list of approved courses.

* Up to 3 credits of BENG 6930 may be counted towards the degree program.

Dissertation/Thesis Research Credits per degree program


Students who do not have a B.S. degree in an accredited engineering discipline but who want a BE graduate engineering degree, either M.S. or Ph.D., must take the make-up courses, or their equivalents, in addition to the coursework for the specific graduate engineering degree. The make-up courses are intended to build an adequate foundation in basic fundamental and relevant engineering skills. The make-up courses will help the students prepare to take the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination if desired but not required. A candidate for the M.S. or Ph.D. degree in Biological Engineering must take the make-up courses (decided by the graduate committee) or their full equivalent. The make-up courses will be documented on the student's Program of Study, in addition to all of the graduate coursework required for the M.S. or Ph.D degrees. Equivalent courses taken at other universities or through approved distance education or on-line formats can be substituted, upon the approval of the student graduate committee and the Department Head of Biological Engineering. Funding for tuition or stipend associated in fulfilling the make-up courses will be mutually agreed between the major advisor and the student. The Biological Engineering Department will not provide tuition awards for the fulfillment of make-up courses.

A student who does not have a B.S. degree in an accredited engineering discipline can elect to take the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination, General Exam, at their own expense, and successfully pass the exam in lieu of taking the make-up courses.

Undergraduate courses, taken for make-up purposes, cannot be taken using the Pass-Fail option (PF). An average grade of “B” or better is required over all make-up courses taken.

A potential graduate student in the Biological Engineering Program is required to have the knowledge in all areas described by the following courses. Based on the knowledge acquired from the BS and other related degrees already awarded, the student’s graduate committee will decide the remaining make-up courses to be taken from this list.

Course
Number
Semester
Credits
Course
Title
MATH 2250 4 Linear Algebra and Differential Equations
CHEM 1210 4 Principles of Chemistry I
CHEM 1215 1 Principles of Chemistry I Lab
CHEM 2300 3 Principles of Organic Chemistry
CHEM 2315 1 Principles of Organic Chemistry Lab
ENGR 2010 3 Engineering Mechanics: Statics
ENGR 2140 3 Strength of Materials
ENGR 2210 3 Fundamentals Electronics for Engineers
CEE 3500 3 Engineering Fluid Mechanics
STAT 3000 3 Statistics for Scientists
BENG 3000 3 Bioinstrumentation
BENG 2400 3 Thermodynamics
CEE 2870 3 Introduction to Programming
BENG 2330 3 Properties of Biological Materials
BENG 3670 3 Transport Phenomena
CHEM 3700 3 Introductory Biochemistry
CHEM 3710 1 Introductory Biochemistry Lab

These make-up courses can be taken any time prior to graduation, but would preferably be taken early in the program of study.  Consult with your advisor to determine which courses might be prerequisite to a particular graduate course to help determine the order in which the make-up courses are taken.  Descriptions of all of these courses can be found in the USU on-line catalog.


The complete mathematics requirement is the equivalent of two years of university calculus. MATH 1210 (Calculus I) and MATH 1220 (Calculus II) are prerequisites for MATH 2250

Core courses may be waived only if a class has been taken previously.

If you have taken a course or courses similar to one of our core courses previously at a different institution and wish to waive one of the courses to take another course, the process is:

  1. Approval from Major Advisor to waive course.
  2. Approval by Instructor of course to waive course.
  3. Approval by Graduate Committee to allow wavier of course.

The Requirements for the consideration of the waiver are:

  • Syllabus of class taken provided. This will be reviewed against the syllabus of the core course.  The two classes must be similar enough, to the satisfaction of the course instructor.
  • Provide final grade from course. Student must have obtained a minimum grade of B for the class to qualify.
  • Provide supplemental materials.

Courses waived must be made up with a formal class.
Courses such as special topics and independent study will not be accepted.
Two course waivers maximum allowed, per student.

PhD Requirement Only

Early in the third semester for PhD students a Comprehensive Exam & Preliminary Research Defense Proposal will be administered.

The Comprehensive Exam portion may be waived if the following criteria are met:

  • Satisfactory grades in all core courses – Min grade B+

The Preliminary Research Defense Proposal portion:

The student must write a proposal and present it to their committee and all in attendance. This presentation will be open to all.  After the presentation, the student's Ph.D. supervisory committee will ask questions and make recommendations.

Proposal requirements:

  • literature review,
  • objectives,
  • research plan,
  • approach,
  • preliminary data (if any).
  • Length: 7-10 pages,
    • single space,
    • font 12,
    • Arial or Times New Roman, etc.