Skip to main content

Biomedical Engineering


The interdisciplinary field of biomedical engineering (BME) combines elements of engineering (electronics, systems analysis, mechanics) with the life sciences (biology, physiology, biochemistry) to define and solve problems in biology and medicine.

Students choose this branch of engineering for the excitement of working with people and living systems, and for the opportunity to apply advanced technology to the complex problems of medical care.

Hear From our Faculty

Check out our faculty roundtable discussion  that was held with four of our Alfred E. Mann Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME) Faculty members – Dr. Eun Ji Chung, Dr. Jesse Yen, Dr. Maral Mousavi and Dr. Keyue Shen. This roundtable will discuss what the major is, the courses each faculty teach, research they conduct and the discipline of Biomedical Engineering at USC Viterbi.

BME On The Podcast

BME Student Blog

Learn more about Alfred E. Mann Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME) at USC through our student blog. These posts were written by USC Viterbi BME students during their time at USC to help you better understand the discipline and their life.


4 years later, why USC is still the right choice

Looking back at these past four years and reminiscing about my time in college, it’s hard to imagine having a…
Aisha YamamotoAisha Yamamoto

Insider Aisha-look into Biomedical Engineering

Hopefully this gives you an inside look into what biomedical engineering students actually learn in school and, four years later,…
Aisha YamamotoAisha Yamamoto

Club Spotlight at USC: ASBME!

If you’re looking for some awesome club to join in Viterbi, you should look into joining ASBME (also known as…
Celine VazquezCeline Vazquez

New Podcast: Biomedical Engineers and Boba

In this episode, Celine speaks with Grace, Asna, Lauren, Kristian, and Anthony about life as biomedical engineering students at USC…
Viterbi VoicesViterbi Voices

Engineering to Us

Engineering students are often thought of as incredibly studious, very meticulous, and at least somewhat lacking in social life. And…
Aisha YamamotoAisha Yamamoto

How I Describe: Biomedical Engineering

Hi everyone! Today we are highlighting biomedical engineering majors at Viterbi. Read on to find more info about what it’s…
Viterbi VoicesViterbi Voices

My Summer Internship at Edwards Lifesciences!

This summer, I interned at Edwards Lifesciences, a medical device company headquartered in Irvine, California. This was my first internship…
Viterbi VoicesViterbi Voices

Curriculum and Emphases

While many students choose a primary degree in Biomedical Engineering with no added specialization, we do offer the opportunity to deepen your education in three separate emphasis programs: Molecular & Cellular, Electrical, and Mechanical.

Biomedical Engineering

Students who choose a primary degree in biomedical engineering get to take a little bit of everything over their four years. They get a foundation in biomedical engineering principles to pursue many careers related to the field.

Course Plan

Biomedical Engineering (Molecular & Cellular)

This emphasis combines biomedical engineering with the life sciences.  You will take classes in areas like Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering.  Systems Biology, Introduction to Bioengineering in Medicine, and Nanomedicine.

Course Plan

Biomedical Engineering (Electrical)

The electrical emphasis in biomedical engineering is for students who are interested in the building of electronic biomedical devices and the effects of electrical stimulation.  You’ll take courses in areas like Linear Circuits, Digital Logic, Electromagnetics and Digital Electronic Circuit Design.

Course Plan

Biomedical Engineering (Mechanical)

The biomedical (mechanical) option is for students who are interested in the mechanics and dynamics of medical devices and biological systems.  Your coursework will include areas like Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Biomechanics, Materials Behavior and Processing, and Fluid Mechanics.

Course Plan
Have a question about Curriculum?

Medical School Preparation

The BME programs are easily adapted to include the prerequisites for most medical schools, while also providing applied technical training beyond the basic life sciences.  USC Pre-Med students are supported throughout the medical school application process by the Pre-Health Advisement office.  Many graduates go on to attend top medical, dental, and pharmacy schools around the country, including the USC Keck School of Medicine.


We have a balance of programs – theoretical, computational, and experimental – which exemplify the Viterbi School’s approach to intensive and collaborative research.

Students can participate in a variety of directed study courses or classroom projects at facilities such as the County-USC Medical Center, the Biomedical Simulations Resource Center, the Medical Ultrasonic Transducer Resource Center, Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, and Children’s Hospital-Los Angeles (CHLA).

The Alfred E. Mann Department of Biomedical Engineering features stellar researchers and faculty with high quality facilities. A few research areas within the department include retinal prostheses, medical imaging, neural prostheses, biomedical photonics, cortical prostheses, sensory neurophsiology, ultrasonic imaging and much more! Students have the opportunity to be involved in research as early as freshman year.


Faculty will be teaching all of your classes and leading research projects as well. Your opportunities to build relationships with your faculty will begin immediately in your first year, both in the classroom and the lab. Check out a few highlighted professors with whom you may work in the future:

Dr. Stacey Finley

Computational Systems Biology Laboratory

Dr. Finley's research group constructs detailed molecular-level mathematical models of biological systems that are related to human diseases, focusing on cancer. She also directs the Computational Systems Biology Laboratory.

Dr. K. Kirk Shung

Medical Ultrasonic Transducer Technology

Professor Shung currently conducts research primarily focusing on developing high frequency ultrasonic transducers and arrays which are used for dermatological, ophthalmological and intravascular imaging and small animal imaging.

Dr. Megan L. McCain

Laboratory for Living Systems Engineering

Her research group develops 'Organ on Chips,' which are micro-scale, engineered mimics of human tissues that have applications in drug screening and personalized medicine. She was recently named one of MIT Technology Review's Top Innovators Under 35.

Dr. Brent Liu

Biomedical Imaging Informatics

He has expanded his research in designing a methodology for developing imaging-based electronic patient records (ePR) with built-in decision support in specific clinical applications to form a powerful and robust tool for longitudinal clinical research in specific disease types.

Don't stop here.

BME Dept. Website


Your engineering undergraduate degree will prepare you for many career and academic opportunities.

Your future with a degree in Biomedical Engineering can see you pursue a number of future career paths at companies serving a variety of industries.

Whether you have always known “what you want to do when you grow up” or are hoping to find out, we are here to help you plan for your future beyond USC. We provide dedicated career services starting in your first year to help you find internships, co-ops, and full-time positions post graduation.

Build Advanced therapeutic and surgical devices

Design prosthetics

Create safe implantable artificial materials

Develop artificial organs

Become physicians or pharmacists

Conduct biomedical research

Improve medical imaging devices

Don't take our word for it. Ask some Viterbi alumni:

Success After Graduation

Student Life

We want students who like to work hard – both in and out of the classroom. Our students know that going to college is more than attending class and completing assignments. College is about making connections and joining a community of dedicated students, faculty, staff, and alumni. Our students want to work and play with people as interesting as they are, and we have a number of ways for you to do the same.

Your life can be designed how you like it. Get your hands dirty with 3D4E. Continue your passion for volunteering with Engineers Without Borders. Keep making art with Corpus Callosum. On this page, we have a few student organizations we think you might be interested in, but there are so many more you can get involved in!

Engineers Without Borders

Service Organization

Students and professional mentors work together to deliver critical infrastructure projects to rural communities in developing countries. For each project, EWB collaborates with the local community members to design and implement sustainable engineering projects. They go as close as San Diego and as far as Guatemala!

Associated Students of Biomedical Engineering

Professional Organization

Through academic, social, and corporate events, students gain clarity of their chosen field of study and the opportunities that being a BME major brings. Students are also able to get a foot in the corporate door at the annual ASBME corporate dinner, attended by USC alumni as well as other corporate representatives.


3D Printing Club

Students design, 3D print, and assemble products like a 3D printed USC campus map, Settlers of Catan board, hydroponics system, and drones. They're most commonly known for Project Freehand, where they 3D print customizable 3D- printed prosthetic hands free of charge for children in need in the LA area.

Imagine yourself on campus.

Learn more about life at USC as an engineering student at Viterbi Voices:

Viterbi Voices


As students, these alumni worked hard in class and didn’t stop there. From start-ups to research, they took advantage of all corners of campus in order to bring their dreams to life and succeed post-graduation.  See what some of our alumni are doing now and how they reflect on their time at USC Viterbi.

More Engineering Disciplines

This area of the Viterbi School is just one of the many areas of Engineering & Computer Science.  Beyond this area of study, we have ten academic disciplines spread across eight departments to make up more than thirty majors and areas of emphasis. Take some time to explore all of your interests before you apply by clicking on any area below.

Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering

Design for Movement.

Astronautical Engineering

Build for Beyond.

Biomedical Engineering

Help Others Live Better.

Chemical Engineering

Make the Stuff of Tomorrow.

Civil & Environmental Engineering

Design. Build. Improve.

Computer Science

It’s Way More Than Coding.

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Power Up.

Industrial & Systems Engineering

Engineering Better Businesses.

Want More Info on BME?

Fill out the form below and we’ll get right back to you