Graduation Requirements

PhD Program Requirements

The following list is an overview of the requirements for a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering. For more specific details, please refer to the Graduate Program Guidelines.

  • University requires 3 years of full time study (24 tuition units).
  • Complete six structured (not seminar, not independent study) upper level courses (1000, 2000 level), 2 in engineering, 2 in biology and at least 2 at the 2000 level.
  • Must receive a grade of B or better, courses must be taken for a grade rather than credit/no credit.
  • A maximum of 8 tuition units (i.e., 8 standard courses) can be transferred from post-baccalaureate work.
  • Choose a thesis advisor no later than end of first semester.
  • Must attend Ethics Training Course in first year (and fifth year if still at Brown).
  • Must attend statistics short-course or equivalent.
  • Academic and research progress of first year reviewed by Graduate Program Committee.
  • Attend departmental seminars and give at least one seminar per year in the mandatory, BIOL 2230/40 student seminar course.
  • Prior to start of semester 5, pass Qualifying Examination. (Submit written part at least 2 weeks prior to Exam).
  • Annual meeting and progress report to Thesis Advisory Committee.
  • Submit to Thesis Committee the final version of the thesis (approved by advisor) at least 2 weeks prior to defense.
  • Present thesis as a seminar and pass final oral examination.


Jointly-Selected Committees

The following Committees are jointly selected by the student and the advisor:

Qualifying Examination Committee

  • Thesis advisor
  • Three other Brown faculty (1 from Engineering and 1 from Biology/Medicine)
  • One must be a member of the Graduate Program Committee (serves as Chair if not thesis advisor)
  • Outside expert (optional, but strongly recommended)

Thesis Advisory Committee

  • Thesis advisor
  • Three other Brown faculty (1 from Engineering and 1 from Biology/Medicine; ranking BME, non-advisor member serves as chair)
  • Outside expert