Oct 03, 2022  
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biomedical Engineering, Ph.D.

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Priority Admission Application Deadlines:  http://www.grad.usf.edu/majors

Also offered as a Concurrent Degree

Contact Information

College: Engineering
Department: Medical Engineering

Contact Information: http://www.grad.usf.edu/majors

The Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at the University of South Florida prepares individuals to contribute in this highly interdisciplinary field both as individuals and as members of interdisciplinary teams. Graduates are prepared to solve complex problems in areas such as diagnostic instrumentation, artificial organs, prosthetic devices, rehabilitation, and health care system design and operations, biomechanics, biomaterials, imaging, neuroengineering, tissue engineering, sensors, cellular‐level drug delivery. The doctoral major capitalizes on USF’s strong programs in Engineering and in the Health Sciences as well as the contiguously located H. Lee. Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, and the James Haley Veterans Administration Hospital.

Students in the Major may choose to concentrate in one of several nationally recognized areas of Biomedical Engineering strength at USF including:

  • Medical Imaging
  • Rehabilitation Engineering
  • Biomechanics and Biomaterials
  • Molecular, Cellular and Tissue Engineering
  • Drug and Gene Delivery
  • Neuroengineering

The Biomedical Engineering Program at USF provides students with an integrated knowledge of engineering, biomedical science and other appropriate disciplines to allow participation in and advancement of the interdisciplinary field of Biomedical Engineering. The major also facilitates biomedical engineering research at USF through interactions with USF faculty and with industry and other health care institutions and catalyzes the growth of biomedical product companies throughout the region by the development, dissemination, and commercialization of new biomedical technologies. Overall, the major strives to develop and promote technologies and processes that will lead to better health care and improved quality of life.

Major Research Areas: Neuroengineering, biomechanics, biomaterials, medical imaging, sensors, cellular-level drug delivery, and rehabilitation engineering and tissue engineering

Admission Information

Must meet University Admission and English Proficiency requirements as well as requirements for admission to the major, listed below.

Successful applicants to the Ph.D. degree program in biomedical engineering will typically have presented the following preferred qualifications:

  • GRE required with preferred scores: Verbal greater than 50% percentile and Quantitative greater than 75th percentile and Analytical Writing greater than 4.0.
  • An undergraduate GPA of greater than 3.50 (out of a possible 4.00) based on official transcripts.
  • Completion of a Master’s degree in biomedical engineering or a related field.
  • Evidence of sustained interest in biomedical engineering.
  • A statement of purpose and CV.
  • Three (3) Letters of recommendation.

Note: Admissions decisions will be made using multiple measures indicated above. We strongly encourage applicants to contact specific faculty conducting research related to the student’s interests. Such direct contact with individual faculty members can greatly strengthen an application.

Curriculum Requirements

Total Minimum Hours: 90 hours
For students with an approved master’s degree 60 hours minimum post-master’s
For students without a master’s degree 90 hours minimum post-bachelor’s

  • Core Courses – 6 Credit Hours

  • Additional Required Courses - 9 Credit Hours

  • Specialization Courses – 15 Credit Hours

  • Additional Electives or Directed Research for students without a master’s degree – 30 Credit hours

  • Dissertation – 30 Credit hours

Core Requirements (6 Credit Hours)

Additional Required Courses (9 Credit Hours)

Specialization Courses (15 Credit Hours)

A minimum of 15 graduate credit hours selected from one of these areas of specialization. Directed Research courses in these areas can count as a part of these credits:

  • Medical Imaging
  • Rehabilitation Engineering
  • Biomechanics and Biomaterials
  • Cardiovascular Engineering
  • Neuroengineering
  • Tissue Engineering

Additional Electives or Directed Research for Students Without A Master’s Degree (30 Credit Hours)

Students without a mastr’s degree will complete the required coursework for the master’s degree.

Students with an approved master’s degree will complete additional electives or directed research hours.

Qualifying Exam

Ph.D. Qualifying Examination, preferably to be completed by the end of the second year of study. The dissertation committee will evaluate a written dissertation proposal and an oral defense. Poor performance on the qualifying exam based on the judgment of the Committee may result in the student failing the exam. If a student does not pass on the first attempt, he/she may request in writing to repeat the Exam. Students who fail the Qualifying Examination the second time will be dismissed by the Major.

Dissertation (30 Credit Hours)

Thirty (30) credits of dissertation research are required. Six (6) hours of Directed Research may be substituted for six (6) Dissertation hours. As with other engineering Ph.D. degrees, evidence of the significance of the conducted research is provided by publication in appropriate refereed journals; with a minimum of 1 publication in a peer-reviewed journal, with the student as primary author. The expectation is that Ph.D. students will have three (3) or more publications. The required journal publication must be based on your Dissertation research. Presentation at a conference or publication in a proceeding (even if refereed) is not sufficient.

Other Information

Graduate Assistantships and Fellowships

Financially competitive teaching and research graduate assistantships and fellowships will be offered to incoming students. Of special importance are the research opportunities and support available through affiliated institutions including the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, the James Haley VA Hospital. In addition, particularly outstanding applicants will be nominated for university fellowships including Presidential Fellowships which provide competitive stipends plus tuition, fees and Health Insurance renewable for five years.


Doctoral graduates of this major have been prepared for and are successfully engaged in research careers in Government, Corporate, and University Laboratories. In addition, since much of Biomedical Engineering research translates directly into biomedical devices, drugs, and instrumentation, graduates have also been directly involved in technology transfer, including the establishment of new Biomedical Engineering related businesses.

Concurrent Degree

Also available as a Concurrent Degree  

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