Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Development of a New Undergraduate Program in Biomedical Engineering


School of Engineering


Padnos College of Engineering and Computing

Date Range



The development of an undergraduate minor program in Biomedical Engineering (BME) in the School of Engineering at Grand Valley State University (GVSU)is described. While the School of Engineering offers students the option to major in Electrical (EE), Computer (CE), Mechanical (ME), and Product Design and Manufacturing (PDM) Engineering, biomedical related education opportunities in engineering have been missing. To determine student interest in pursuing a minor in BME in addition to their engineering major, surveys were conducted for freshman (n=140) and sophomore (n=70) students. The number of students interested in pursuing the BME minor was equivalent, at least, to the number of sophomores, freshman, and pre-freshman interested in three of the four emphasis areas: PDM, EE, and CE, the BME minor was judged to have sufficient interest to be viable. Next, a survey of 4 peer and aspirant universities was conducted to study the effects of the introduction of BME to the engineering curriculum with respect to enhancing overall engineering enrollment, increasing female enrollment in engineering, and employment or graduate school enrollment following graduation. All four universities stated that BME was a positive addition to their programs and attracted more female students than the general engineering student population. Finally, the minor curriculum was designed and consisted of both engineering and non-engineering courses, which is consistent with the liberal education mission of GVSU. The minor in BME for undergraduate students in the School of Engineering was approved in April 2010. We have recently begun the development of a Master's program in BME.

Conference Name

BMES Annual Conference

Conference Location

Hartford CT

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