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Degree Programs Overview

A Word from the Department Chair 

Dr. Lily Laiho

Welcome to the Biomedical Engineering Department, 

The education at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo aims to graduate students who have a balance of depth and mastery of the fundamentals of their particular discipline while providing hands-on, “Learn-by-doing” projects and experiences to internalize that knowledge. You’ll find this philosophy permeates the Biomedical Engineering Programs. More specifically, through our programs, you’ll find that we have carefully thought-out, together with Industry Partners, how to best equip our graduates with Biomedical Engineering fundamentals with application of that knowledge through well thought-out laboratories, MEDITEC projects, senior projects, MS Theses & Projects and project opportunities, i.e., “Learn-by-doing.” So, I’d like to invite you to explore our programs below and our faculty to see if Cal Poly is the right place for you. 

Lily Laiho, Ph.D. 
Department Chair


B.S. Biomedical Engineering

The BS degree program in Biomedical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Biomedical engineering is an interdisciplinary field in which the principles and tools of traditional engineering fields, such as mechanical, materials, electrical, and chemical engineering, are applied to biomedical problems. Engineering plays an increasingly important role in medicine, which in includes projects that range from advances in medical devices, such as stents, improvement of health care delivery, early detection and diagnosis and basic research in physiology. By its very nature, biomedical engineering requires a foundation in the engineering sciences, physiology and other biological sciences to enable real contributions in the field and to society.

Our graduates have successfully transitioned into the Medical Device industry, through established Medical Device companies and start-up companies, various M.S./Ph.D. programs, M.D. programs, J.D. programs, Physical Therapy Programs and Engineering Consulting Firms. Additionally, our graduates have successfully founded or co-founded start-up companies.

For Cal Poly students who would like to continue on to our MS program, we provide a transition to the MS program through what is known as the Blended BS & MS program.

Learn more about the B.S. Biomedical Engineering degree.

M.S. Biomedical Engineering

For those students who want to develop a mastery of a particular area of Biomedical Engineering or would like to transition into Biomedical Engineering from another Engineering or Engineering related discipline, we offer, we offer three options to obtain a Masters in Biomedical Engineering:

MS BMED, Thesis Track,

MS BMED, Project Track, and

MS BMED with Specialization in Regenerative Medicine.

These programs share a common core curriculum, see BMED_Catalog that has been designed to provide graduates a Masters level depth in Biomedical Engineering fundamentals with practical application of the academic depth through a culminating Masters experience, MS Thesis or Project.

Like graduates from the undergraduate program, graduate from our Graduate Program have successfully transitioned into Medical Device companies and start-up companies, establishment of start-ups, various Ph.D. programs, M.D. programs, J.D. programs, Physical Therapy Programs and Engineering Consulting Firms.

Learn more about the M.S. Biomedical Engineering degree.


Prospective Students/Parents: Cal Poly is now planning for the upcoming application period. For more information please visit the Admissions page.

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