At the intersection of engineering and healthcare, you’ll find the field that births medical innovations: biomedical engineering.
Expertise in this field is not only crucial towards developing life-saving technologies. Biomedical engineering skills are key to tackling the emerging challenges posed by ageing populations and novel diseases.
In fact, the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics predicts that the demand for biomedical engineers will grow by 4% in a decade (2018 to 2028). This is attributed to the increasing technological applications to medical equipment and devices, which symbolise efficient healthcare systems around the world.
In Finland, for example, DigiHealth is a burgeoning field within biomedical engineering. This is where researchers develop and validate digital technologies for data-driven health applications, thus easing the delivery of healthcare services with new e-health solutions.
By studying the wealth of patient data, medical professionals can better understand the mechanisms of diseases on a molecular level. This allows them to better identify its impact and risk factors, and implement wireless biosensors for further research.
In this way, biomedical engineers answer the call for efficient, safe, and cost-efficient healthcare with innovations that ease diagnosis and therapy.
If this is your calling, it’s time to get one step closer to developing life-changing technologies with a solid postgraduate programme from a leading university.
This two-year interdisciplinary programme equips students with practical skills in biomechanics, medical imaging, and biomedical signal and image processing.
You will be immersed in a multidisciplinary environment with burgeoning potential, including departments such as the Research Unit of Medical Imaging and Center for Machine Vision and Signal Analysis.
Drawing from the robust health technology industry in Finland, the OuluHealth innovation ecosystem at the University of Oulu encourages critical research and development leading to industry breakthroughs.
Armed with this knowledge, graduates go on to become deeply involved in the biomedical engineering industry, whether as a designer, developer, researcher, service provider, or entrepreneur.
The BME is suitable for students from science, technology, and engineering backgrounds, who can modify the course profile to suit their interests. This makes the academic environment thorough and enjoyable, according to MBE student Aviroop Mukherjee from India.
In his words, “I knew that Finland is one of the most advanced nations when it comes to science and technology, and aspects of my course are breeding grounds for era-changing ideas and developments. The innovative teaching methods, and the interesting lab and group exercise sessions are the cherries on the cake.”
Fellow student Brian Irvine from Canada is also grateful for the various entrepreneurial opportunities at the university.
He added, “On top of everything, the city is beautiful. You can get everywhere by bike while enjoying the many parks and natural areas around the university.”
At this Austrian university, students choose one of these five technical subjects as their programme major: biomechanical engineering; biomedical instrumentation and sensors; biomedical imaging and sensing; computational neuroscience; or health care engineering.
At the same time, students stand to gain valuable business, law, management and soft skills that complement their future careers, no matter where they take their skills.
Like many others who choose to build a career in this industry, Master’s student Eva Gleichweit was drawn to the combination of medicine and technology in this programme.
“The job prospects are not bad — at least I can approach a wide range of companies with my broad training background,” she added.
These job prospects range from pharmaceutical and biotechnology research and development to public health and leadership positions in governments and hospitals. Even within the hospital setting, biomedical engineering expertise is vital in managing quality and safety.
Graz University of Technology graduates progress to develop and market medical innovations that improve diagnosis and therapy, thus elevating the future of healthcare.
If you’re looking for a leading biomedical engineering programme within the UK, you may find what you need at Swansea.
This course can be completed in one or two years, depending on whether you are studying full-time or part-time.
At Swansea University, you can build knowledge in various disciplinary themes — including diagnostic sensors and computational modelling of physiological systems — to develop a well-rounded perspective on medical technologies.
Students can expect to deepen their understanding of human physiology while learning to optimise techniques and devices that diagnose, treat, and manage health conditions.
PhD student David Naumann from Germany emphasised the importance of immersing yourself in a space conducive to high-stakes research.
He said, “Spend one to three years studying (with PhD) and you will end up being stressed in between. So you need a relaxed and calm environment — one that fosters your skills and allows you to be creative. That’s what I found at Swansea.”
Engineering education at this university draws on the exciting medical research taking place at the College of Engineering and the Swansea University Medical School. Students investigate engineering applications within medicine at the £22-million Centre for NanoHealth, which was created to champion the university’s biomedical engineering contributions.
Students looking for an immersive two-year programme may be drawn to one of Lithuania’s finest higher learning institutions, VGTU.
The Master of Engineering Sciences prepares students to identify and tackle technological problems within healthcare.
They learn to do this via modern research techniques involving biomedical computing, biomechanical systems, and rehabilitation engineering (such as developing prosthetics and artificial organs).
What is more, students diversify their portfolio with the numerous graduate projects, internships, and career programmes available at VGTU. They also dabble in clubs and societies close to their research interests and passion.
As a result, future graduates develop valuable industry skills that narrow the gap between engineering and medicine, thus preparing them to advance healthcare services in new ways.
They become leaders in interdisciplinary research, developing life-saving technology that ushers a new era of biomedical engineering across the world.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International