Grainger College of Engineering


What is Bioengineering?

Bioengineers use tools from biology, chemistry, physics, and math to solve engineering problems. These problems arise in human biological systems related to

  • biomaterials,
  • biomechanics and prosthetics,
  • tissue engineering,
  • molecular modeling,
  • imaging,
  • bioinformatics,
  • nanomedicine,
  • synthetic biology,
  • and drug delivery.

This major will help you understand how human biological systems function. You'll also learn how to develop technology-based solutions to societal needs in human development and disease diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.

The curriculum integrates principles of biology and engineering in its coursework. This coursework includes biomechanics, human physiology modeling, bioinstrumentation, and cell and tissue engineering. The curriculum is project-based, emphasizing systems-thinking as an approach to large-scale bioengineering problems. It also features hands-on laboratory courses for real-world experience.

You'll take fundamental courses to learn more about Bioengineering your first two years. We'll also introduce you to clinically relevant projects as learning experiences. Your final two years, you'll focus on a particular track for further study. Our year-long senior capstone course will allow you to apply your knowledge to biological problems submitted by faculty, clinicians, and industrial firms.

Career Options

  • Bioinformatics
  • Consulting
  • Genomics
  • Health care
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Medical devices
  • Consumer products
  • Hospitals & clinics
  • Government regulatory agencies
  • Patent law
  • Academia
  • Laboratory & research facilities
  • Product & process development
  • Quality & regulatory services
  • Operations & manufacturing

Post-Graduation Success1

95% employed or continuing education

50% employed after graduation

44% attending graduate school

1% volunteering

$60,237 average starting annual income

Sample employer destinations: Epic Systems, Prenosis, AbbVie View All

Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Northwestern University, Boston University View All

Review Criteria

First-Year Major-Specific Criteria

  • Strong math and science coursework and performance
  • Calculus preferred and physics expected (if available at high school)
  • Strong teamwork and interpersonal communication skills
  • Interest in improving society through engineering
  • Demonstrated understanding of and interest in the engineering major selected

View All Review Criteria

Transfer Criteria

Transfer Guide

Graduation & Retention2

3.8 years to degree

93% first-year retention rate

79% four-year graduation rate

96% six-year graduation rate

Annual Program Costs3

Illinois Resident

  • Tuition: $17,976
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,222
  • Total: $41,126


  • Tuition: $39,736
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses:$18,562
  • Total: $63,226


  • Tuition: $42,868
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,562
  • Total: $66,358