Courses and Training


Trainees develop a plan of study that satisfies their home department requirements and also achieves the competencies required in cardiovascular biomedical engineering. All trainees achieve a major or minor in biomedical engineering. The required coursework includes:

  • BME 510 Biology for Biomedical Engineers (3 units). Modern biology techniques and knowledge are imparted in this introductory, yet full and fast-paced, course designed for engineers with limited biology background.
  • BME 511 Physiology for Biomedical Engineers (3 units). Major systems of the body are covered as well as overarching physiology themes.
  • At least one of the following: BME 517 Biomedical Instrumentation, BME 516 Biomedical Imaging, BME 561 Biomaterials, or BME 566 Biomechanical Engineering (3 units each). These courses cover details of biomedical engineering specialties to augment the student’s knowledge needed for their research project.
  • BME 597 Research Methods/Laboratory Rotations (2 units, two separate laboratories). Students identify a laboratory under the direction of a CBE training program mentor and define a small project. Goals and schedule are agreed upon in writing and students typically spend half a semester each rotation learning techniques, conducting a simple experiment, and discovering the environment and culture of the laboratory.
  • BME 696A/C Seminar (1 unit, each semester appointed). BME seminar includes local and (inter)national experts in all areas of biomedical engineering. A special cardiovascular speaker is sponsored each semester.
  • ENGR 581A Innovation, Translation and Biomedical Entrepreneurship (3 units) This course provides trainees with understanding of innovation and invention, identifying and tackling unmet needs, understanding the market, the approach to proof-of-principle experimentation, translational research, prototyping, regulatory affairs and reimbursement, business and operating plan development, team building, information communication, ethics, and project/corporate exit strategies.
  • BME 577 Biomedical Informatics or BME 578 Artificial Intelligence for Health and Medicine. Each of these courses incorporates a student’s own research project into the classroom, instilling trainee-relevant data science and communication competency.
  • SLHS 649 Survival Skills and Ethics (3 units). Going far beyond the required topics in responsible conduct of research, this course assists with writing and research skills, as well as addressing common pitfalls and ethical dilemmas in biomedical research and graduate school life.
  • BME 693A Clinical/Industry Internship (2 units required, 1 clinical, 1 industrial). This course formalizes the required clinical and industry experience. A plan for activities to be performed is agreed upon at the beginning, and a report is submitted at the conclusion of the internship.


Trainees have required and optional activities to help build skills and competencies. They include:

  1. Presentation at national conferences: presentation of an oral or poster paper is required at least one a year; travel funding is provided by the training grant.
  2. Clinical experience: all trainees spend time with clinical mentors examining the challenges and opportunities of the clinical environment
  3. Industry experience: all trainees gain understanding of the industry environment, in a flexible program that can include internships, entrepreneurship activities, or research-oriented exposure to industry.
  4. Journal club: the trainees take turns identifying and presenting a manuscript to each other, increasing general understanding of the field.
  5. Visiting Scientist program: trainees have the opportunity at least twice a year to meet with an esteemed visiting scientist and receive input on their research program.
  6. Research Expo: trainees present a poster on their research to the University of Arizona community, at the annual BME Research Expo.
  7. Ample optional opportunities also exist for written and oral communication training, data science literacy, teaching training, industry networking, entrepreneurship, and outreach.