Biomedical Engineer Career Profile

Do you want to work as a Biomedical Engineer?

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8 July 2024

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What is a Biomedical Engineer?

A Biomedical Engineer specialising in animal health focuses on applying engineering principles and technologies to improve the health and well-being of animals. This multidisciplinary field combines knowledge from engineering, biology, and veterinary science to develop innovative solutions for diagnosing, treating, and preventing health issues in animals.

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Alternative Names

Biomedical engineers can be known by various alternative titles depending on their specific role or specialisation within the field. Here are some of the common alternative names for a biomedical engineer:

  • Bioengineer
  • Clinical Engineer
  • Medical Engineer
  • Biomaterials Engineer
  • Biomechanical Engineer
  • Rehabilitation Engineer
  • Medical Device Engineer
  • Biomedical Equipment Technician (BMET)
  • Systems Biomedical Engineer
  • Biotechnology Engineer
  • Biological Engineer
  • Bioinformatics Engineer

These titles reflect the diverse nature of biomedical engineering, which integrates principles from engineering and biological sciences to develop technologies and devices that improve healthcare.

Career Categories

The Biomedical Engineer career can be found within the following OZT career categories:

  • Health
  • Business

What does a Biomedical Engineer do?

Groups of animals a Biomedical Engineer works with

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Farm Animals
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A biomedical engineer specialising in animal health typically works with a variety of animal groups, including:

Companion Animals:

This group includes pets such as dogs, cats, and other animals that live in close association with humans. Biomedical engineers may develop medical devices, prosthetics, and treatments specifically for these animals.


This category encompasses farm animals like cows, pigs, sheep, goats, and poultry. Engineers in this field may work on improving animal health and productivity through better diagnostic tools, monitoring systems, and treatment methods.


Biomedical engineers may collaborate with wildlife conservationists and veterinarians to design devices and systems that help monitor and treat wild animals, including those in zoos and rehabilitation centres.

Laboratory Animals:

These are animals used in research, such as mice, rats, rabbits, and primates. Biomedical engineers might work on developing humane treatment methods, improving living conditions, and creating devices for precise medical research applications.

Aquatic Animals:

This group includes fish, marine mammals, and other aquatic organisms. Engineers may develop technologies for monitoring health, treating diseases, and ensuring the welfare of these animals in both wild and captive environments.


Horses and other members of the equine family fall into this category. Biomedical engineers might focus on designing prosthetics, orthopaedic devices, and other health solutions specific to equine needs.

By working with these various groups, biomedical engineers contribute to advancing veterinary medicine, improving animal health, and enhancing the quality of life for animals across different settings.

What is the level of Interaction with the Animals?

With whom does a Biomedical Engineer work?

A biomedical engineer works with a diverse range of professionals and organisations, including:


Collaborating to develop and implement medical devices, treatments, and technologies for animal health.

Researchers and Scientists:

Working together on studies related to biomedical technology, animal health, and medical advancements.

Medical Device Manufacturers:

Partnering with companies to design, test, and produce biomedical devices and equipment for animal use.

Healthcare Providers:

Interacting with clinics, hospitals, and veterinary practices to understand their needs and provide tailored solutions.

Regulatory Agencies:

Ensuring that biomedical devices and treatments comply with health and safety regulations.

Animal Care Technicians:

Assisting with the implementation and maintenance of biomedical devices in animal care settings.

Academic Institutions:

Engaging in teaching, research, and development projects within universities and colleges.

Pharmaceutical Companies:

collaborate on the development and testing of drugs and therapies for animals.


Working on the application of biological processes and organisms to develop new technologies and products for animal health.

Non-Profit Organisations and Animal Welfare Groups:

Supporting initiatives aimed at improving animal health and welfare.

These collaborations help biomedical engineers advance veterinary medicine and enhance the quality of life for animals.

What does a Biomedical Engineer focus on?

Biomedical Engineers aim to advance animal health care and enhance the quality of life for animals through innovative technologies and treatments.

What are the daily tasks of a Biomedical Engineer?

The daily tasks of a biomedical engineer can vary depending on their specific role and specialisation, but generally include:

Research and Development:

  • Conducting experiments and research to develop new medical devices or improve existing ones.
  • Analysing biological systems and processes to inform design and development.

Design and Prototyping:

  • Creating detailed design plans and blueprints for medical devices and equipment.
  • Developing prototypes and conducting tests to ensure functionality and safety.

Testing and Evaluation:

  • Performing rigorous testing of devices to meet regulatory standards and ensure safety and efficacy.
  • Analysing test data and making necessary adjustments to designs.


  • Working with cross-functional teams, including doctors, veterinarians, researchers, and other engineers, to develop and refine products.
  • Consulting with healthcare professionals to understand their needs and incorporate feedback into designs.

Regulatory Compliance:

  • Ensuring that all devices and processes comply with relevant health and safety regulations.
  • Preparing documentation for regulatory approvals and quality assurance.

Clinical Trials and Studies:

  • Planning and conducting clinical trials to test new devices or treatments.
  • Collecting and analysing data from clinical studies to assess effectiveness and safety.

Technical Support and Maintenance:

  • Providing technical support for medical devices, including troubleshooting and repairs.
  • Training healthcare staff on the proper use and maintenance of biomedical equipment.

Documentation and Reporting:

  • Writing detailed reports on research findings, design specifications, test results, and regulatory submissions.
  • Maintaining accurate records of all activities and progress.

Project Management:

  • Managing project timelines, budgets, and resources to ensure the successful completion of projects.
  • Coordinating with suppliers, manufacturers, and other stakeholders.

Innovation and Continuous Improvement:

  • Staying updated with the latest technological advancements and industry trends.
  • Identifying opportunities for innovation and improvement in biomedical technologies.

Patient and Animal Care:

  • In roles focused on animal health, working directly with veterinarians and animal care specialists to develop and apply biomedical solutions.
  • Monitoring the health outcomes of patients or animals using biomedical devices.

These tasks illustrate the multifaceted role of a biomedical engineer, encompassing design, research, collaboration, and compliance to improve healthcare outcomes.

With what kind of tools and technology (if any) does a Biomedical Engineer work?

A biomedical engineer works with a variety of tools and technologies to design, develop, test, and implement biomedical devices and solutions. These tools and technologies include:

Computer-Aided Design (CAD) Software:

Tools like SolidWorks, AutoCAD, and CATIA for creating detailed 3D models and designs of medical devices.

Simulation and Modeling Software:

Software such as ANSYS and COMSOL Multiphysics for simulating the behaviour of biomedical devices and biological systems under various conditions.

Prototyping Tools:

3D printers for creating physical prototypes of devices. CNC machines and other rapid prototyping equipment.

Medical Imaging Technology:

MRI, CT, and ultrasound machines for developing and testing imaging solutions. Software for processing and analysing medical images.

Lab Equipment:

Microscopes, spectrophotometers, and other laboratory instruments for biological and chemical analysis. Cell culture equipment and bioreactors for tissue engineering.

Testing and Measurement Tools:

Oscilloscopes, multimeters, and signal analyzers for electronic testing. Mechanical testing machines for evaluating the strength and durability of materials and devices.

Biosensors and Bioinstrumentation:

Devices and sensors for monitoring physiological parameters such as heart rate, blood pressure, and glucose levels. Wearable technology for continuous health monitoring.

Software for Data Analysis and Bioinformatics:

Tools like MATLAB, R, and Python are used for statistical analysis and data visualisation. Bioinformatics software is used for analyzing genetic and molecular data.

Regulatory Compliance Tools:

Software for managing documentation and ensuring compliance with regulatory standards such as ISO 13485 and FDA guidelines.

Project Management Software:

Tools like Microsoft Project, Asana, and Trello are used for managing project timelines, resources, and collaboration.

Clinical Trial and Study Management Tools:

Software for designing, conducting, and managing clinical trials and studies, including data collection and analysis.

Fabrication Tools:

Equipment for manufacturing biomedical devices, such as injection moulding machines and laser cutters.

Electronic Health Records (EHR) Systems:

Software for managing patient data and integrating biomedical devices with healthcare information systems.

By using these tools and technologies, biomedical engineers can effectively develop innovative solutions that improve healthcare outcomes and enhance the quality of life for both humans and animals.

What are the different specialisations or career directions that a Biomedical Engineer can venture into?

Specialisation within a specific animal-related career refers to the area of expertise that professionals can develop within that specific field. For example, an animal groomer that specialises in horses, or a veterinarian that specialises in working with marine mammals.

A biomedical engineer can venture into various specialisations or career directions, including:

Medical Device Development:

Focuses on designing and developing devices such as implants, prosthetics, diagnostic equipment, and monitoring systems for human and animal health.


specialises in developing and testing materials that interact with biological systems, such as biocompatible implants and drug delivery systems.


Involves studying the mechanical aspects of biological systems, developing solutions for musculoskeletal issues, and improving mobility through prosthetics and orthotics.

Rehabilitation Engineering:

Designs devices and systems to aid in the rehabilitation of injured or disabled individuals and animals, including assistive technologies and therapeutic equipment.

Clinical Engineering:

Works in healthcare settings to maintain and improve medical equipment, ensuring its safe and effective use in clinical practice.

Imaging and Diagnostics:

Focuses on developing and improving imaging technologies (e.g., MRI, CT, ultrasound) and diagnostic tools to enhance disease detection and understanding.

Telemedicine and Remote Monitoring:

Develops technologies for remote diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment, especially useful in underserved or remote areas.


Specialises in creating sensors that monitor physiological parameters, detect diseases, and gather important health data.

Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine:

Involves creating methods to repair or replace damaged tissues and organs, often using stem cells and biomaterials.


utilises computational tools to analyze biological data, helping to improve understanding of diseases, genetics, and treatment outcomes.

Pharmaceutical Engineering:

Works with pharmaceutical companies to develop and test new drugs and therapies, ensuring their safety and efficacy.

Systems Biology:

Integrates complex biological data to understand how biological systems function and respond to various treatments.

Regulatory Affairs:

Ensures that medical devices and technologies comply with regulatory standards and guidelines, facilitating their approval and market entry.

Research and Development:

Engages in scientific research to develop new technologies, treatments, and methodologies to advance biomedical engineering.

Academic and Teaching:

Teaches and conducts research in universities and academic institutions, contributing to the education of future biomedical engineers.

Veterinary Medicine:

Applies biomedical engineering principles to improve veterinary practices, developing devices and treatments specifically for animal health.

These specialisations allow biomedical engineers to apply their skills in diverse fields, contributing to advancements in healthcare and improving the quality of life for both humans and animals.

In which environment does a Biomedical Engineer work in?

What are the environment and places of employment like?

A Biomedical Engineer can work in a variety of indoor and outdoor environments, each offering distinct working conditions and places of employment. Here’s a breakdown of the typical indoor and outdoor working environments:

Indoor Environments


  • Description: Controlled settings equipped with specialised equipment for conducting experiments, research, and testing.
  • Typical Activities: include conducting biological and chemical analyses, prototyping devices, and running simulations.
  • Places of Employment: Universities, research institutions, and private labs.

Hospitals and Clinics:

  • Description: Healthcare facilities where biomedical engineers collaborate with medical professionals to design, implement, and maintain medical devices.
  • Typical Activities: Installing and maintaining medical equipment, training healthcare staff, and providing technical support.
  • Places of Employment: Public and private hospitals, specialised clinics, and veterinary hospitals.

Office Settings:

  • Description: Traditional office spaces where engineers perform administrative tasks, design work, and project management.
  • Typical Activities: Using CAD software, conducting data analysis, writing reports, and collaborating with colleagues.
  • Places of Employment: Medical device companies, regulatory agencies, and consulting firms.

Manufacturing Facilities:

  • Description: Industrial settings where biomedical devices are produced and assembled.
  • Typical Activities: Overseeing production processes, ensuring quality control, and troubleshooting manufacturing issues.
  • Places of Employment: Medical device manufacturers, biotech companies, and pharmaceutical companies.

Academic Institutions:

  • Description: Universities and colleges where teaching and research activities take place.
  • Typical Activities: Teaching courses, supervising student projects, and conducting academic research.
  • Places of Employment: Universities, colleges, and technical schools.

Outdoor Environments

Field Research Sites:

  • Description: Locations where biomedical engineers conduct research and collect data in natural or real-world settings.
  • Typical Activities: Field testing biomedical devices, collecting samples, and monitoring animal health in their natural habitat.
  • Places of Employment: Wildlife conservation organisations, veterinary research programmes, and environmental agencies.

Agricultural Settings:

  • Description: Farms and agricultural facilities where biomedical engineers may work on improving livestock health and productivity.
  • Typical Activities: Implementing health monitoring systems, developing treatments, and collaborating with veterinarians and farmers.
  • Places of Employment: Agricultural research institutions, livestock farms, and veterinary services.

Remote Monitoring Locations:

  • Description: Remote areas where biomedical devices are used to monitor the health of animals or humans.
  • Typical Activities: Installing and maintaining remote monitoring systems, collecting and analysing data, and providing technical support.
  • Places of Employment: Wildlife reserves, rural healthcare facilities, and telemedicine providers.

General Places of Employment

Medical Device Companies:

Engaged in the design, development, and production of biomedical devices.

Biotech Firms:

Working on innovative biological solutions and technologies.

Pharmaceutical Companies:

Developing and testing new drugs and therapies.

Research Institutions:

Conducting cutting-edge research in various aspects of biomedical engineering.

Universities and Colleges:

Teaching and conducting academic research.

Hospitals and Clinics:

Implementing and maintaining medical technologies.

Government and Regulatory Agencies:

Ensuring compliance with health and safety regulations.

Non-Profit Organizations:

Working on projects to improve animal and human health in underserved areas.

Biomedical engineers thus work in diverse environments, both indoors and outdoors, depending on their specialisation and the nature of their projects.

What is the Average Annual Salary for a Biomedical Engineer?

The average yearly salary of a Biomedical Engineer can vary significantly depending on the country or region. Here are some estimates based on recent data:

Country-Specific Salaries


Average Salary: $70,000 – $90,000


Average Salary: CAD 60,000 – CAD 90,000 (approximately $45,000 – $68,000 USD)


Average Salary: £30,000 – £45,000 (approximately $38,000 – $57,000 USD)


Average Salary: INR 300,000 – INR 800,000 (approximately $4,000 – $10,000 USD)


Average Salary: AUD 60,000 – AUD 90,000 (approximately $41,000 – $62,000 USD)

New Zealand:

Average Salary: NZD 60,000 – NZD 85,000 (approximately $38,000 – $54,000 USD)


Average Salary: NGN 1,500,000 – NGN 3,500,000 (approximately $1,800 – $4,200 USD)


Average Salary: KES 600,000 – KES 1,200,000 (approximately $5,500 – $11,000 USD)

South Africa:

Average Salary: ZAR 300,000 – ZAR 500,000 (approximately $16,000 – $27,000 USD)

Regional Salaries

South America:

Average Salary: $10,000 – $30,000 USD


Average Salary: €30,000 – €60,000 (approximately $34,000 – $68,000 USD)

Southeast Asia:

Average Salary: $8,000 – $20,000 USD

These estimates provide a general idea of the average yearly salaries for Biomedical Engineers across different countries and regions. However, actual salaries can vary based on factors such as level of experience, education, specific job role, and location within the country or region.

Can a Biomedical Engineer be promoted?

Promotion levels for Biomedical Engineers can vary depending on the organization and career path. Here are three prominent promotion levels typically seen in the field, along with their associated headings:

Entry-Level Engineer


Minimum Requirement: Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering or related field.
Additional Education: Master’s or doctoral degree for specialized roles or advancement.


Assisting in research, development, and testing of biomedical devices.
Supporting senior engineers in design and implementation projects.
Learning and applying engineering principles to solve practical problems.


Optional certifications such as Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician (CBET) can demonstrate competency in equipment maintenance and repair.

Senior Engineer / Project Engineer


Minimum Requirement: Bachelor’s degree with significant experience or a Master’s degree.
Additional Education: Continued professional development and advanced certifications.


Leading design projects from conception to implementation.
Managing teams and coordinating with other departments (e.g., R&D, manufacturing).
Providing technical expertise and mentoring junior engineers.


Advanced certifications such as Professional Engineer (PE) status or specialty certifications in project management (PMP) may be pursued.

Manager / Director of Biomedical Engineering


Minimum Requirement: Master’s degree or higher in Biomedical Engineering, Business Administration, or a related field.
Additional Education: Executive education or leadership training programmes.


Overseeing departmental operations and strategic planning.
Budget management, resource allocation, and regulatory compliance.
Setting departmental goals and ensuring alignment with organisational objectives.


Leadership and management certifications (e.g., Certified Manager) or industry-specific certifications in healthcare management.

Chief Technology Officer (CTO) or Executive Leadership


Minimum Requirement: Master’s degree or higher, often combined with extensive industry experience.
Additional Education: Executive MBA or leadership courses tailored to strategic management.


Setting the technological vision and strategy for the organization.
Leading innovation and research initiatives.
Engaging with stakeholders, investors, and regulatory bodies.


Executive leadership certifications and memberships in industry organisations may be pursued for networking and credibility.

What difficulties does a Biomedical Engineer face?

Biomedical engineers specialising in animal health may encounter various challenges in their profession. Here are some key challenges they may face:

Physical Demands:

  • Heavy Lifting: Some equipment or materials may require physical strength to handle.
  • Long Hours: Projects or emergencies may demand extended periods of focused work.

Safety Concerns (especially from the animals):

  • Animal Handling: Working with animals poses risks such as bites, scratches, or zoonotic diseases.
  • Safety Protocols: Strict adherence to safety protocols is necessary to protect both engineers and animals.

Variability in Working Conditions:

  • Field Work: Outdoor environments or remote locations may present unpredictable conditions.
  • Lab Environments: Controlled settings require attention to sterile procedures and equipment maintenance.

Emotional Challenges:

  • Animal Welfare: Dealing with situations involving animal suffering or ethical dilemmas.
  • End-of-Life Decisions: In cases of serious illness or injury, decisions may impact animal welfare and research outcomes.

Business Management:

  • Project Management: Balancing technical tasks with project timelines, budgets, and stakeholder expectations.
  • Resource Allocation: Managing resources effectively to optimise outcomes while controlling costs.

Regulatory Compliance:

  • Legal Requirements: Ensuring compliance with animal welfare regulations and ethical guidelines.
  • Device Regulation: Meeting standards for medical devices and equipment used in animal health.

Continuing Education:

  • Advancing Technology: Keeping up with rapidly evolving biomedical technology and research.
  • Certification and Training: Pursuing ongoing education and certifications to stay competitive and maintain licensure.

Unpredictable Work Hours:

  • Emergency Situations: Responding to urgent calls or unforeseen issues in animal care settings.
  • Research Timelines: Meeting deadlines for research projects or clinical trials.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration:

  • Communication Challenges: Collaborating with veterinarians, researchers, and other professionals with different backgrounds and priorities.
  • Team Dynamics: Navigating diverse perspectives and ensuring effective teamwork.

Ethical and Legal Considerations:

  • Animal Research: Addressing ethical concerns related to animal experimentation and ensuring humane treatment.
  • Data Integrity: Maintaining the confidentiality and integrity of research data and patient information.

Public Perception and Advocacy:

  • Public Awareness: Educating the public about the benefits and ethical considerations of biomedical research involving animals.
  • Advocacy: Engaging in discussions about animal rights, welfare, and the role of biomedical engineering in veterinary medicine.

Navigating these challenges requires strong technical skills, ethical awareness, adaptability, and a commitment to ongoing professional development. Biomedical engineers in animal health play a crucial role in advancing veterinary medicine while addressing the complex challenges inherent in working with animals.

​Future growth and Possibilities

The job market for Biomedical Engineers is projected to grow steadily in the coming years, driven by various factors and influenced by current trends in technology and healthcare. Here are some insights into the projected growth and influencing factors:

Projected Annual Growth

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and other sources, the job outlook for Biomedical Engineers varies by region and specialisation but generally shows positive growth trends:

  • United States: The BLS projects a 6% growth in employment from 2020 to 2030, which is about as fast as the average for all occupations.
  • Canada: Employment prospects are expected to be good, with growth driven by advancements in medical technology and an aging population.
  • Europe: Growth rates vary by country, with demand increasing for biomedical engineering expertise in healthcare and research.
  • Asia-Pacific: Countries like India and China are seeing rapid expansion in healthcare infrastructure, driving demand for biomedical engineers.

Current Trends and Possibilities Influencing the Industry

Technological Advancements:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning: Used for medical imaging analysis, predictive analytics, and personalised medicine.
  • Robotics: Advancements in surgical robots and prosthetics are enhancing precision and patient outcomes.
  • Telemedicine: Growing adoption of remote monitoring and telehealth solutions, particularly post-pandemic.

Aging Population:

  • Increasing demand for medical devices and technologies to manage chronic diseases and age-related conditions.
  • Focus on improving quality of life and healthcare delivery for elderly populations.

Regulatory Changes:

  • Evolving regulations for medical devices and healthcare technologies, influence design standards and market approvals.
  • Emphasis on patient safety, data privacy, and ethical considerations in research and development.

Personalised Medicine:

  • Tailoring medical treatments and devices based on individual genetic profiles and health data.
  • Integration of genomics and biotechnology in healthcare solutions.

Global Health Challenges:

  • Addressing infectious diseases, pandemics, and global health disparities through innovative biomedical solutions.
  • Emphasis on public health preparedness and response capabilities.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration:

  • Increasing collaboration between biomedical engineers, clinicians, data scientists, and biotechnologists will drive innovation.
  • Cross-disciplinary research initiatives in areas like regenerative medicine and bioinformatics.

Environmental Sustainability:

  • Development of eco-friendly biomedical devices and technologies, reducing environmental impact.
  • Integration of sustainable practices in manufacturing and healthcare delivery.

These trends indicate a dynamic future for biomedical engineers, characterised by continuous innovation, interdisciplinary collaboration, and an increasing focus on personalised and accessible healthcare solutions. Professionals in this field will play a crucial role in shaping the future of healthcare through technological advancements and ethical considerations.

Availability of Jobs


Which Skills do Biomedical Engineers need?

The skills required for a career as a Biomedical Engineer can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills and personality traits, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.

Life Skills and Personality Traits

People employed as biomedical engineers often exhibit specific personality traits that complement their roles and responsibilities in the field. These traits typically include:

Analytical Thinking:

Biomedical engineers need to analyse complex problems, evaluate data, and develop innovative solutions to improve healthcare technologies and processes.

Attention to Detail:

Precision is crucial in designing and testing medical devices and equipment to ensure safety, reliability, and effectiveness.

Curiosity and Innovation:

A strong desire to explore new ideas, technologies, and methodologies to advance biomedical engineering and healthcare outcomes.

Problem-Solving Skills:

Ability to identify issues, troubleshoot problems, and implement effective solutions in collaboration with multidisciplinary teams.

Technical Aptitude:

Proficiency in understanding and applying engineering principles, mathematics, and science to biomedical applications.

Ethical Awareness:

Commitment to ethical practices and considerations, particularly in research involving human and animal subjects.

Communication Skills:

Effectively conveying complex technical information to diverse audiences, including colleagues, healthcare professionals, and regulatory bodies.

Team Collaboration:

Working collaboratively with engineers, scientists, healthcare providers, and other stakeholders to achieve common goals and project objectives.

Adaptability and Resilience:

Ability to thrive in a dynamic environment, adapt to technological advancements, and overcome challenges in healthcare innovation.

Organisational Skills:

Managing multiple projects, adhering to deadlines, and prioritising tasks effectively in a fast-paced industry.

Empathy and Compassion:

Understanding the impact of biomedical engineering on patients’ lives and demonstrating empathy in designing solutions that enhance quality of life.

Commitment to Lifelong Learning:

Engaging in continuous professional development, staying updated with industry trends, and pursuing further education and certifications as necessary.

These personality traits enable biomedical engineers to excel in their roles, contribute to advancements in healthcare technology, and positively impact the quality of care for patients and animals alike.

Life Skills

Career Skills

  • Animal handling
  • Animal care
  • Customer service
  • Handle instruments
  • Good overall health
  • Computer literate
Career Skills

Which Subjects must I have at School to help me prepare for this career?

The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.

OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Some of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!

What will I need to Study to become a Biomedical Engineer?

To become a Biomedical Engineer, you will typically need to pursue a structured educational path that includes specific academic requirements and optional additional studies. Here’s a breakdown based on the headings provided:

Minimum Requirements

Bachelor’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering:

A minimum requirement is usually a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) degree in biomedical engineering or a closely related field such as bioengineering.

This undergraduate programme typically takes about 4 years to complete.

Coursework includes core engineering subjects (e.g., mathematics, physics, chemistry), biomedical sciences (e.g., biology, anatomy, physiology), and engineering principles applied to healthcare (e.g., biomechanics, medical imaging, biomaterials).

Study Focus

Subjects if Further Study is Required

  • Master’s in Biomedical Engineering: Provides advanced knowledge and specialisation in areas such as medical device design, tissue engineering, and healthcare systems.
  • Master’s in a Related Field (e.g., Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering): Specialising in a specific area relevant to biomedical applications.
  • Required Subjects: Advanced courses in biomedical instrumentation, bioinformatics, advanced mathematics, and research methodology.

Advanced Studies (if Necessary)

  • Doctoral (Ph.D.) Studies: Pursuing a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering or a related field is optional but beneficial for those interested in research, academia, or specialised industry roles.
  • Research Focus: In-depth research in a specific area of biomedical engineering, contributing to advancements in healthcare technology or biomedical sciences.
  • Required Subjects: Advanced coursework in biomedical research methods, ethics, statistics, and dissertation writing.

Continuing Education and Short Courses:

  • Certification Courses: For specific skills like medical device regulation (e.g., ISO 13485), project management (e.g., PMP certification), or quality management systems.
  • Professional Development: Short courses in emerging technologies (e.g., AI in healthcare, 3D printing in medicine), regulatory compliance, and leadership skills.
  • Workshops and Seminars: Attending conferences, workshops, and seminars to stay updated on industry trends and networking opportunities.

Study Duration

The duration of a college diploma is between 2 and 3 years. Time spent on a bachelor’s degree can be up to 4 years, and another 2 to 4 years for a doctorate. Short courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.

FREE Career Path Plan

If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.

Why is planning important?

​To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A preparation path is like a road map to where you want to be.

Possible Paths:

Preparing for a career as a biomedical engineer specialising in animal health involves a strategic approach starting from high school through professional development. Here’s a step-by-step career preparation path based on the points you mentioned:

1. Attend Career Guidance Sessions:

Participate in career guidance sessions to understand the requirements and opportunities in biomedical engineering.

2. Research All Possible Careers:

Explore various careers within biomedical engineering, focusing on animal health applications.

3. Explore Educational Paths:

Research universities or colleges offering programmes in biomedical engineering or related fields with animal health concentrations.

4. Align High School Subjects:

Take core subjects such as Mathematics, Physics, Biology, and Chemistry to build a strong foundation in science and engineering.

5. Obtain a High School Diploma or Equivalent:

Successfully complete high school with a focus on achieving a strong academic record.

6. Learn About Animals You Will Work With:

Study biology and research animals relevant to biomedical applications, understanding their physiology and behaviour.

7. Align Post-School Path:

Decide whether to enter the workforce directly, pursue further education (e.g., university), or start a business in biomedical engineering.

8. Gain Experience Through Volunteering, Internships, Mentorship:

Seek opportunities to volunteer at animal shelters, veterinary clinics, or biomedical labs to gain practical experience. Apply for internships or seek mentorship with professionals in biomedical engineering.

9. Pursue Extracurricular Activities:

Participate in science clubs, engineering competitions, or animal-related clubs to enhance practical skills and teamwork.

10. Join Professional Associations:

Join relevant professional associations, such as the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) or local veterinary associations, for networking and career development.

11. Gain Specialised Skills:

Develop skills in biomedical instrumentation, medical imaging, or animal physiology through coursework or hands-on projects.

12. Network with Professionals:

Attend conferences, seminars, and networking events to connect with professionals in the field and learn about industry trends.

13. Enter the Job Market, Finish Tertiary Studies, or Launch a Business:

Apply for entry-level positions in biomedical engineering firms, animal research facilities, or pursue higher education, depending on your career goals. Consider starting a business focusing on biomedical devices or animal health technologies if entrepreneurial interests align.

14. Stay Updated and Pursue Continuing Education:

Maintain knowledge of advancements in biomedical engineering and animal health through continuing education, workshops, and certifications.

By following this career preparation path, high school students can lay a solid foundation for a successful career as a Biomedical Engineer specializing in animal health, equipped with the necessary skills, knowledge, and professional network to excel in the field.

Possible Combined Career Paths

It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.

Possible Alternatives (there are a lot more):

Training and Apprenticeship

Entering a career as a Biomedical Engineer typically involves gaining on-the-job training and practical experience through internships, apprenticeships, or entry-level positions. Here’s an overview of the on-the-job training and apprenticeship requirements for someone starting in this field:

On-the-Job Training and Apprenticeship Requirements

Internships or Co-op Programmes:

  • Duration: Typically lasts from a few months to a year, depending on the programme and academic schedule.
  • Purpose: Provides hands-on experience in biomedical engineering tasks under the guidance of experienced professionals.
  • Activities: Assisting with research projects, conducting tests on medical devices, learning to use software and equipment, and shadowing engineers.

Entry-Level Positions:

  • Roles: Junior biomedical engineer, engineering assistant, or research technician.
  • Training: On-the-job training under supervision to apply theoretical knowledge to practical tasks.
  • Responsibilities: Assisting in device testing, maintenance, troubleshooting, and data analysis.


  • Structure: Structured programmes combining classroom learning with hands-on work experience.
  • Duration: Typically 1-2 years, depending on the programme and region.
  • Requirements: May require a high school diploma or equivalent and completion of basic coursework in mathematics, science, and engineering.
  • Benefits: Gain practical skills in biomedical device maintenance, calibration, and repair, as well as exposure to regulatory compliance and quality assurance processes.

Mentorship and Guidance:

  • Supervision: Guidance from senior engineers or mentors to learn industry best practices, ethical considerations, and professional conduct.
  • Career Development: Opportunities to participate in continuing education, professional development courses, and certifications relevant to biomedical engineering.

Key Skills and Competencies Developed

  • Technical Skills: Hands-on experience with medical equipment, CAD software, and laboratory instruments.
  • Problem-Solving Abilities: Applying engineering principles to troubleshoot and resolve issues with biomedical devices.
  • Communication Skills: Interacting with healthcare professionals, researchers, and manufacturers to convey technical information effectively.
  • Regulatory Knowledge: Understanding compliance requirements such as FDA regulations, ISO standards, and ethical guidelines in biomedical research and device development.

Average level of education of all the people who enter the career:

High School Certificate 0%
Diploma or Short Courses 0%
Degree or Higher Studies 0%

Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations

Becoming a licenced Biomedical Engineer involves adhering to specific requirements for certifications, licences, and legal registrations, which can vary by country or region. Here are the typical considerations:

Licencing and Certification Requirements

Professional Engineer (PE) License:

  • Requirement: In some jurisdictions, Biomedical Engineers may need to obtain a Professional Engineer (PE) licence to practice independently or offer engineering services directly to the public.
  • Criteria: Typically requires completion of an accredited engineering degree, passing the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam, gaining relevant work experience under a licensed engineer, and passing the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) exam.


  • Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician (CBET): Demonstrates competency in maintaining and repairing medical equipment.
  • Certified Clinical Engineer (CCE): Focuses on healthcare technology management and clinical engineering practices.
  • Other Specialised Certifications: Depending on career focus, certifications in areas like medical imaging, quality management systems (e.g., ISO 13485), or project management (e.g., PMP) may be beneficial.

Legal Registration and Compliance

Regulatory Compliance:

  • FDA Regulations: In the United States, compliance with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations is crucial for developing and marketing medical devices.
  • ISO Standards: Adherence to international standards such as ISO 9001 (quality management) and ISO 13485 (medical devices) may be required for manufacturing and distributing medical equipment.
  • Ethical Guidelines: Compliance with ethical guidelines and regulations governing research involving human or animal subjects.

Professional Affiliation:

  • Membership in Professional Organisations: Joining professional societies like the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) or local engineering associations may provide networking opportunities, access to resources, and professional development.

Educational Requirements

  • Accredited Degree: Completion of a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from an accredited institution.
  • Continuing Education: Engaging in continuing education and professional development to stay updated with technological advancements, regulations, and industry trends.

State-Specific Requirements

  • Variances: Requirements for licencing, certifications, and legal registration may vary by state or country. It’s essential to research specific requirements from local regulatory bodies or engineering boards.

Professional Associations

Regional Associations:

Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) – USA

European Alliance for Medical and Biological Engineering & Science (EAMBES) – Europe

  • Website: EAMBES
  • Description: Represents the biomedical engineering community in Europe, advocating for research and education.

Biomedical Engineering Society of India (BMESI) – India

  • Website: BMESI
  • Description: Promotes the advancement of biomedical engineering in India through education and research.

Biomedical Engineering Society of Australia (BES Aus) – Australia

  • Website: BES Aus
  • Description: Supports biomedical engineers in Australia through networking, events, and professional development.

South African Medical Device Industry Association (SAMED) – South Africa

  • Website: SAMED
  • Description: Represents the medical device industry in South Africa, including biomedical engineering professionals.

International Associations:

International Federation for Medical and Biological Engineering (IFMBE)

  • Website: IFMBE
  • Description: A global federation of biomedical and clinical engineering societies promoting international collaboration and advancement in medical and biological engineering.

International Society of Biomedical Engineering and Technology (ISBET)

  • Website: ISBET
  • Description: Focuses on fostering research, education, and development in biomedical engineering and technology worldwide.

World Association for Medical and Biomedical Technology (WAMBMT)

  • Website: WAMBMT
  • Description: Promotes international cooperation and knowledge exchange among biomedical technology professionals.

International Clinical Engineering and Health Technology Management Society (ICEHTMS)

  • Website: ICEHTMS
  • Description: Supports clinical engineers and health technology management professionals globally, emphasising safe and effective use of medical technology.

Where can I study further? (List of Registered Tertiary Institutions)

All of the above information will help you understand more about the career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with high school (grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies and where you will study.

See the list of universities, colleges, and online training academies that offer courses in engineering.

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