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Masters Degree for Bio-MEMS: Mechanical or Biomedical?

  1. Jul 13, 2015 #1
    Which graduate program should I enter? I plan to enter a thesis based course. My end goal is to eventually be able to create biosensors and diagnostics for the healthcare industry, such as microfluidics (lab on chip) and glucometer sensors.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 14, 2015 #2
    If you want a job at PhD level, biomedical. If you want to get a basic BSc degree and work asap, ME.

    Since it is clear you want to work in industry and help build the equipment, I would not recommend a path as as a biological or chemical scientist. When it comes to biosensors or special fluids/colloids, a scientist will have to do most of the theoretical/R&D world there.

    Being in charge of production or quality control or solving engineering problems once a basic design exists, there is where the engineer comes in. Though, a PhD in biomedical engineering can be involved from the start. Not clear if you want an R&D job or something else. R&D jobs are generally harder to get.

    I think a mechanical engineer fresh out of school has basically no affinity with the R&D side of biomedical. You can check requirements asked in vacancies in your area. Always possible to get some job at most companies with a BSc in ME. Though with a master in ME and experience in the field, it can be just as good as a MSc in biomedical.

    Remember that for these engineering fields often a lot of knowledge exists only inside said company, so job experience is very important and may in the end trump degrees. But of course you can't just choose to get a BSc in ME and get 15 years of experience.
    When you arrive in a company, the biggest expert there may be just that type of person. Doesn't mean that right now with degree inflation you will have the opportunity to follow the same track.
  4. Jul 14, 2015 #3
    It might help if you provide a link to the degree programs in question. I find a lot of variability in these kinds of programs, so the details may matter.
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