Biomedical Engineering

Improve the health of others (without the hefty med school bill).

Design bionic limbs. Create laser-guided surgical devices. Develop wearable tech to help athletes perform better. In Biomedical Engineering, you’ll use engineering know-how to develop better ways to diagnose illnesses, treat health problems, and enhance health.

You’ll study biomechanics, physics, chemistry, and design. With that broad knowledge, you’ll be able to collaborate with all kinds of different experts: biologists, medical practitioners, policy makers, and engineers, to name a few. You’ll also learn to model and design complex biomedical systems—and you’ll get plenty of hands-on experience through 2 years of paid co-op work terms, plus a fourth-year design project.

By the time you graduate, you’ll be ready to create tomorrow’s life-saving and life-enhancing innovations.

Be more than a number

Biomedical Engineering is one of Waterloo’s smaller engineering programs, so you'll quickly get to know your classmates and professors.

Gain a broad education

Learn from engineering professors who specialize in systems design, electrical and computer, chemical and mechanical and mechatronics.


Student holding microchips

With 2 years of real-world co-op work experience and a major design project, you can apply your knowledge and explore career options, which range from creating new solutions for diabetic testing to designing athletic equipment.

About the Biomedical Engineering program

briefcaseGain 2 years of experience in the co-op program

clickApply directly to this program on your application

capEarn a Bachelor of Applied Science degree


#1Engineering school in Canada (US News & World Report 2018)

GearsOffered by the Faculty of Engineering

Money flowerStudents earn $17,800 on average per co-op term


Biomedical Engineering admission requirements

  • Ontario students: 6 Grade 12 U and/or M courses including
    • Advanced Functions (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Calculus and Vectors (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Chemistry (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Physics (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • English (ENG4U) (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
  • Admission averages: Individual selection from the mid-90s
  • An Admission Information Form is required
  • Not studying in Ontario? Search our admission requirements

First-year Biomedical Engineering courses

September to December

BME 101/BME 101L - Introduction to Biomedical Engineering
BME 121 - Digital Computation
BME 161 - Introduction to Biomedical Design
BME 181 - Physics I - Statics
SYDE 111 - Fundamental Engineering Math 1
SYDE 113 - Matrices and Linear Systems

January to April

BME 102 - Seminar
BME 122 - Data Structures and Algorithms
BME 162 - Human Factors in the Design of Biomedical and Health Systems
BME 186 - Chemistry Principles
SYDE 112 - Fundamental Engineering Math 2
SYDE 114 - Numerical and Applied Calculus
1 Complementary Studies Elective


After first year

Sample upper-year Biomedical Engineering courses

BME 261 – Prototype, Simulation and Design
BME 361 – Biomedical Engineering Design

BME 386 – Physics of Medical Imaging
BME 450 – Sports Engineering


Gain relevant work experience through co-op

By alternating school terms and paid co-op work terms throughout your degree, you can explore new career areas and types of employers as your career interests evolve.

Sample co-op job titles

  • Junior biomedical engineer
  • Medical device software developer
  • Signal processing algorithm developer
  • Bioengineering research assistant
  • Medical device design
  • Robotics and embedded sensor research assistant

Sample co-op employers

  • The Hospital for Sick Children
  • Intellijoint Surgical Inc
  • PointClickCare
  • Synaptive Medical
  • Exact Imaging
  • Nest Labs

Sample Biomedical Engineering careers

Biomedical engineers work in fields such as

  • design and manufacturing of medical devices
  • simulation and modelling of diseases and biological systems
  • biomedical data analysis
  • research and development in medical devices and instrumentation
  • biomedical image analysis and pattern recognition
  • developing healthcare regulations
  • design, engineering, and testing of sports equipment

As a graduate, you might work in a hospital, university research centre, industry as well as government and/or regulatory agencies.

Possible professional designation

Learn more about Biomedical Engineering