Bioengineering Major

UIC bioengineering majors working together

A bioengineering major prepares you to work in the unique intersection where living systems and nonliving systems come together.

The natural world is an amazing, highly complex place that the bioengineering major will help you to understand. Perhaps equally amazing is the universe of approaches that human beings have identified—and are continuing to develop—to make our quality of life even better.

Studying bioengineering as an undergraduate at UIC will help you apply quantitative analysis and design to living systems and hybrid systems (which contain some living components). Many paths become open to you as a bioengineering major. Perhaps you want to become a bioengineer, designing smart replacements for tissue or bone, developing new tools for non-invasive medical imaging or diagnostics, or shaping molecules into revolutionary new drug therapies. Maybe you want to move on to medical school, dental school, graduate work in pharmacy, or law school with a focus on patent law.

No matter what part of bioengineering excites you the most, and whether you envision graduate school or industry work after graduation, the UIC bioengineering major will offer you solid preparation.

The bioengineering major is outlined in detail in the course catalog; the information below provides an overview.

Bioengineering Major Requirements

Bioengineering majors complete coursework in four categories:

Major Flowcharts

Bioengineering Concentrations

As explained above, concentrations allow you to define an area of focus for your bioengineering major. The department offers four concentrations, each of which requires that you complete a specific collection of courses. The concentration options are:

BioE Majors in Their Own Words

Oluwakemi

Oluwakemi Oyedokun
Bioengineering ’21 | Chicago, IL

UIC advantage: I cannot stress enough how important it is to me that UIC is diverse. To be able to look into every field and find at least three people that look like you is a comforting feeling. UIC is not only diverse in ethnicity and race, but also in ideas and ways of thinking. There are also people who have a cause that they care so passionately about, and they are not afraid to show it and do something about it. These are what UIC does better than anywhere else.

Post-graduation plans: Because I am in the Guaranteed Professional Program Admissions honors program, after graduation I am hoping to embark on earning my graduate degree in bioengineering at UIC.

Favorite place in Chicago: Chinatown. I love to visit the different restaurants and enjoy the night walks as well.

Tommy

Tommy Puttrich
Bioengineering, BS ’21 | Woodridge, IL

Name one thing you think UIC does better than anywhere else: It allows such a vast diversity of cultures and ideas to mix and collaborate.

Favorite thing about the department you’re majoring in: Definitely the professors who are able to make any material they talk about interesting, especially Salman Khetani and Les Bogdanowicz.

Engineering project/assignment you did that you’re most proud of: My current research in the MTM lab. I’m currently investigating the effects of a chemotherapy drug on a specific cancer cell type.

Favorite restaurant in Chicago: Jim’s Original. It has cheap and classic food.

Learn more about the bioengineering major

To explore the bioengineering major in greater detail, here are some key resources:

Program educational objectives: BioE major

As part of our accreditation process, ABET asks our department to capture the overall goals of the bioengineering program. These are called our educational program objectives. They are:

  • Graduates will compete effectively and favorably with peers for positions in industry, professional school, or graduate programs, as dictated by the students’ broader goals while at UIC.
  • Graduates will remain active contributors to the field of bioengineering through professional societies, service to scholarly or technical journals, alumni activities, mentoring, contributions to education or human resources, or other activities beyond the basic requirements of their occupation.
  • Graduates will demonstrate leadership in their professions, as evidenced by scholarly and technical publication or other measure of professional productivity, including awards and honors, and advancement within the organizations in which they are employed, as appropriate to the individual career path.

Student outcomes: BioE major

Another part of the ABET accreditation process requires the department to identify the specific knowledge and skills that students are intended to have when they complete their undergraduate education. These are called student outcomes.

Students graduating from the bioengineering program at UIC will have:

  1. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  2. an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors
  3. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  4. an ability to recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts
  5. an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives
  6. an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  7. an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies
  8. an ability to apply principles of engineering, biology, human physiology, chemistry, calculus-based physics, mathematics (through differential equations) and statistics
  9. an ability to solve bioengineering problems, including those associated with the interaction between living and non-living systems
  10. an ability to analyze, model, design and realize bioengineering devices, systems, components, or processes
  11. an ability to make measurements on and interpreting data from living systems

In the 2020-2021 academic year, 352 students are enrolled at UIC Engineering as bioengineering majors across all class years. The department graduated 63 bioengineering majors in the academic year ending August 2020.

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