For our 2017 Online Master’s of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering ranking we have collected a list of all regionally accredited colleges and universities offering online Masters degrees in Biomedical and Bioengineering and have ranked them using to our weighted methodology which uses publicly available data including U.S. News scores, tuition rates, return on investment according to Payscale.com, graduation rates, and cohort default rates to produce an overall score of 1-100. The top 10 programs are those included in this ranking.
Biomedical engineering lies at the intersection of biomedical challenges and engineering solutions and is an evolving discipline in engineering that draws on collaboration among engineers, physicians, and scientists to provide interdisciplinary insight into medical and biological problems.
Due to the rapidly changing nature of the health care industry and its moving toward more technological approaches to diagnosis (such as body scanners and biosensors), treatment (including targeted therapy, minimally invasive surgery, and implantable devices), personalized and regenerative medicine, and the extensive use of information technology, biomedical engineering is steadily becoming the world’s largest industrial sector, and as a result, there is an increasing demand both for doctors who are technically competent and for engineers who are properly trained in basic medical science.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts a 23-percent growth in biomedical engineering jobs from 2014 to 2024. Additionally, professional engineers with a master’s degree can earn an average of $400,000 more over their careers than those who hold a bachelor’s. As such, an online degree program is an excellent way for working engineers to position themselves with theses professional advantages without disrupting their current employment or needing to relocate.
It should be noted that in building our ranking we take both in and out-of-state tuition into consideration. However, attending college in your state of residency will always be more affordable and ultimately provide a better return on investment than attending an out-of-state school. Where applicable, any program on this list offered through a public college or university that is in your state of residency should be considered among those at the top of the list.
Note: Tuition rates listed are estimates and total tuition costs will vary from student to student and program to program based on a number of factors.
#1. University of Maryland College Park
Located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, the University of Maryland in College Park is a public research university and is the flagship campus of the University System of Maryland. UMD is a highly ranked university by multiple national and international publications and is currently ranked #56 in “National Universities,” #19 in “Top Public Schools,” and #35 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs” according to U.S. News and World Report.
The A. James Clark School of Engineering at UMD features the only Neutral Buoyancy Research Facility housed on a college campus as well as many other research labs, centers and institutes that provide valuable resources to graduate and undergraduate engineering students alike. The Master of Science in Bioengineering program is offered online and is designed to develop graduates knowledge and competence in addressing health related problems and issues with a technological approach to change lives and improve human health throughout the world. The Master’s degree consists of 30 credits and includes flexibility of design with an elective heavy course load. The university’s excellent reputation and its low tuition rates have earned it its place at #1 in this ranking.
Accreditation: The University of Maryland College Park is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
#2. University of Washington
The University of Washington, located in Seattle, is one of the oldest universities on the West Coast and is dedicated to the education of a diverse student body and the development of responsible global citizens and future leaders. UW is known as one of the most successful public research universities in the nation and has a high reputation for offering a rigorous and academically challenging education. It is ranked #52 in “National Universities,” #16 in “Top Public Schools,” and #9 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs,” by U.S. News and World Report.
UW’s College of Engineering is committed to giving students the crucial skills and practical experience they need to succeed in an ever changing world. The college is widely recognized for its broad range of research opportunities as well as its interdisciplinary approach that fosters an understanding of the political, economic, and social aspects of the world in which engineers work. The Master of Pharmaceutical Bioengineering program is an online degree program designed to enable working engineers, scientists, researchers and professionals in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical and related industries to explore advanced education in the areas of molecular and cellular biology, drug discovery and design, pharmaceutics and translational pharmaceutics. The program provides a path to acquire new skills and experience and gain an edge in your current job, or receive training to transition to a new career in the biotechnology or pharmaceutical industry. A minimum of 38 credits are required for completion of the degree. UW’s outstanding reputation and its good tuition rates have earned it its place in our ranking.
Accreditation: The University of Washington is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
#3. University of Illinois Urbana Champaign
The University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign is the flagship campus of the U of I system and is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities and is classified as a university with very high research activity by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. . UIUC is a highly ranked and reputable institution currently with a #26 in “National Universities,” #3 in “Top Public Schools,” #22 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs,” and #33 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs according to U.S. News and World Report’s rankings.
The College of Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign has a strong research mission and foundation to its graduate programs in engineering and is the home to more than 50 research centers, institutes, and facilities. The Bioengineering Department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign now offers an online, non-thesis Master of Engineering in Bioinstrumentation degree, with special focus on medical imaging platforms. Through the program, students will augment the depth of their engineering background, while also developing fundamental skills in business, product development, intellectual property, and regulatory requirements. The program allows students to develop skills that prepare them to take on first level supervisory roles in the medical device and imaging industry. A minimum of 40 credits are required for completion of the degree. UIUC has an outstanding reputation very good scores in all other value categories which earns it its place at #2. in our ranking.
Accreditation: The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
#4. Rutgers University
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey in New Brunswick, is a public university and the flagship campus of the Rutgers System. Rutgers provides a vibrant and challenging academic environment, cutting edge research programs, and a tradition of service to New Jersey and the nation. The University belongs to the Association of American Universities, which includes just 62 to research universities in North America. U.S. News & World Report ranks Rutgers New Brunswick # 72 in “National Universities,” #28 in “Top Public Schools,” #45 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs,” and #29 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs.”
The School of Engineering at Rutgers University New Brunswick is dedicated to the education of future engineers for a complex, diverse, and global workplace and strives to conduct state-of-the-art and relevant research that embraces technology to address societal challenges of a multi-faceted nation and a globally connected world. Students in the Master’s of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering online program choose from among six critical areas of BME: Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering; Biomechanics and Rehabilitation Engineering; Computational Bioengineering and Biomedical Imaging; Molecular, Cellular, and Nanosystems Bioengineering; Neuroengineering; and Physiological Systems and Bioinstrumentation. The program provides the flexibility of a distance education with the benefit of being able to work closely with Rutgers’ world class engineering faculty. A minimum of 33 credits are required for completion of the non-thesis degree. Rutgers’ above average scores in every value ranking category earn it its place in our ranking.
Accreditation: Rutgers New Brunswick is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
#5. Columbia University
Columbia University is a private, Ivy League university located in New York City. The university comprises over a dozen graduate and professional schools and colleges and three undergraduate schools. Columbia features a unique and renowned core curriculum for undergraduate students and is highly ranked—including individual schools and programs— by multiple national publications. U.S News & World Report ranks Columbia #5 in “National Universities,” #14 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs,” and #3 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs.”
The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences is one of the oldest engineering schools in the United States and features a unique educational approach and many opportunities for undergraduates and graduate students alike to engage in cutting edge research. The Online Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering at Columbia prepares students to apply engineering and applied science to problems in biology, medicine, and the understanding of living systems and their behavior, and to develop biomedical systems and devices. Modern engineering encompasses sophisticated approaches to measurement, data acquisition and analysis, simulation, and systems identification. These approaches are useful in the study of individual cells, organs, entire organisms, and populations of organisms. The increasing value of mathematical models in the analysis of living systems is an important sign of the success of contemporary activity. A minimum of 30 credits are required for completion of the degree. Columbia University’s excellent reputation and its high return on investment have earned it its place in this ranking.
Accreditation: Columbia University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
#6. Purdue University West Lafayette
The flagship campus of the Purdue University system, the campus in West Lafayette, Indiana comprises 12 schools and colleges that serve both undergraduate and graduate students. Purdue is particularly known for its esteemed School of Aeronautics and Astronautics within the highly ranked College of Engineering. U.S. News & World Report is ranked #61 in “National Universities,” #21 in “Top Public Schools,” #21 in “Most Innovative Schools,” and the College of Engineering is ranked #22 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs.” and #5 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs.”
The College of Engineering offers especially highly ranked in agricultural and biological engineering, civil engineering, and aerospace engineering, but in general is considered among the top ten engineering schools in the United States. Purdue Engineering focuses on multidisciplinary research initiatives in areas such as Tissue and Cellular Engineering and Global Sustainable Industrial Systems. The interdisciplinary Online Master of Science and Master of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering is designed for professionals who wish to build a competitive edge in biomedical and healthcare industries. The program offers a wide range of flexibility in course options. After students begin their studies at Purdue, create a Plan of Study in cooperation with an academic advisor to best fit their educational needs and career goals. Thesis and non-thesis options are available for completion of the 30 credit degree program. Purdue’s program is ranked among the best in terms of reputation and offers good tuition rates which earn it its place in our ranking.
Accreditation: Purdue University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
#7. Colorado State University
Located in Fort Collins, Colorado, Colorado State University is a public land-grant research university known for its college of veterinary medicine. CSU is also well known for its green initiatives for campus sustainability and has been nationally recognized for these in recent years. The university emphasizes active learning and provides students ample opportunities to engage in field-experiences, research, internships, and study abroad. U.S. News & World Report ranks CSU #129 in “National Universities,” #70 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs,” and #59 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs.”
CSU’s College of Engineering is devoted to the benefit of the region, nation, and the world through engaging global water, health, energy, and environmental challenges of today through leadership in the practices of engineering research, education, innovation, and engagement. The Online Master of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering provides a transdisciplinary focus on improving health, fighting disease, and aiding persons with disabilities. The master’s in biomedical engineering is uniquely positioned to offer educational strengths in engineering, the sciences, and animal and human medicine. Students will explore concepts in structure and function of biomaterials; material issues in mechanical design; and design and data analysis. The program is non-thesis and requires a minimum of 30 credits for completion. CSU’s very good tuition rates and reputation have earned it its place in this ranking.
Accreditation: Colorado State University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
#8. Case Western Reserve University
Located in Cleveland, Ohio, Case Western Reserve University is a private research university with many top-rated programs. Case Western in its current form was the result of a merger between the Case Institute of Technology, a school of science and engineering, and Western Reserve University, a university with strong liberal arts and professional programs. U.S. News & World Report ranks Case Western Reserve 337 in “National Universities,” #43 in “Best Value Schools,” and #17 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs.”
The Case School of Engineering is a top engineering school with a 125-year history of excellence and innovation. Case is among the best small private universities for engineers plus those whose interests and abilities allow them to excel beyond engineering. Dual majors in the humanities, joint degrees in management and medicine, and laboratories shared with world class institutions like the Cleveland Institute of Art and NASA Glenn Research Center provide vast resources for Case engineers. The Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering online degree program is designed to provide students with depth and breath in the field with core courses in the instrumentation and analysis fundamentals as well as physiology and specialty courses in imaging, neural engineering and biomaterials. The degree will also provide significant depth in translational skills with courses in biodesign, engineering management and team projects. A minimum of 27 credits are required for completion of the degree. Case Western’s good reputation and return on investment earn it its place in this ranking.
Accreditation: Case Western Reserve University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
#9. University of Southern California
The University of Southern California is a private research university located in downtown Los Angeles, California. USC provides strong opportunities for travel, independent research, and addressing the complex questions and social challenges affecting our country and the world through multiple fellowships and scholars programs. USC is ranked #23 in “National Universities,” #13 in “Most Innovative Schools,” and #32 in “Best Biomedical Engineering Programs” by U.S. News & World Report.
The Viterbi School of Engineering at USC is internationally recognized for its innovation in education and research rooted in real world needs. The school is home to several elite research centers, including the Information Science Institute, where many now common internet technologies were developed. The Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering available online is designed to provide graduates with knowledge and skills to advance biomedicine through the development and application of novel engineering ideas. Students will have the opportunity to engage in cutting-edge research in a wide variety of areas including neuroengineering, biosystems and biosignal analysis, medical devices (bioMEMS and bionanotechnology), biomechanics, bioimaging and imaging informatics. A minimum of 28 credits are required for completion of the degree which can be completed through a thesis or non-thesis track. The University of Southern California’s very good reputation earns it its place in this ranking.
Accreditation: The University of Southern California is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
#10. Villanova University
Villanova University is a private university located in Radnor, Pennsylvania. The school was named after the Augustinian Saint, Thomas of Villanova and to this day remains affiliated with the Augustinian Order. The university offers a wide variety of degree programs through its four colleges. Villanova University is ranked #50 in “National Universities,” and #27 in “Best Online Graduate Engineering Programs” by U.S. News & World Report.
Villanova University’s College of Engineering is committed to an educational program that emphasizes technical excellence and a liberal education within the framework of the University’s Augustinian and Catholic traditions. The Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering at Villanova University can be completed entirely online and provides real-world knowledge for practical application covering hot-button topics including Biopharmaceutical Design and Biomaterials and Drug Delivery. This degree exposes students to upstream and downstream bioprocess fundamentals and provides the tools to design and optimize pharmaceutical facilities, processes and products, using state-of-the-art analysis and technology. The program includes thesis and non-thesis options for completion and requires a minimum of 30 credits.
Accreditation: Villanova University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.