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Guide to BME: Bioinstrumentation

Guides to BME List


If youíre here, you are either considering or already in the BME Bioinstrumentation track. Especially with regards to instrumentation, the soon you pick a track, the better. With that said, definitely do not rush into something you are unsure about. If you are unsure about your decision, the three core courses (BME 310, 315, and 430) should help you decide. If you have decided on bioinstrumentation, here is some advice:

Take CS 302, not CS 310

Most students who are in the bioinstrumentation track end up wishing they took 302 instead of 310. Do not worry about taking 302 if you already took 310 (you can if you wish, but it won't count for anything additional in a BME major). They each have their strengths, but 302 is a much better choice for instrumentation.

Pick design projects that involve circuit design, programming, or a combination

This will show you if you like working on these types of projects. This may be obvious, but donít get pulled into a different project just to work with your friends if you are actually interested in instrumentation.

Take ECE 330 (Signals and Systems) early

This course is difficult, but it is a foundation course for electrical engineering, and if you are doing bioinstrumentation, you will most likely be taking multiple ECE courses. Having taken this course has helped many students get co-ops or internships.

You decide the rest

Once you have taken ECE 230, CS 302 (or 310), BME 310, and ECE 330, you should have a pretty good idea about what you like and what you donít like in bioinstrumentation. Common interests are: circuit design (analog and/or digital), computer programming, working with embedded systems, medical imaging, or something else. Medical Imaging has itís own guide, so if you are interested in that, you should check it out. Once you decide on a focus, I suggest talking to your advisor.

I highly recommend...

Speaking with your BME advisor about your decisions. When I was deciding on courses, I knew that I was interested in circuit design, but I was unsure about what courses I should take, as well as the order in which I should take them. There are plenty of courses out there you could overlook, and there are probably some that fit your interests perfectly. If you already have your mind made up on a specific focus in the instrumentation track, I am sure your advisor will have great advice on what courses to take from there.

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