Master of Engineering Science in Biomedical Engineering – Structured

The Master of Engineering Science in Biomedical Engineering programme comprises postgraduate modules and a research project. All the modules, except Project (Biomedical Engineering) 886, will use contact sessions in the form of lectures as delivery mode, and some modules will also use tutorials and laboratory practicals. 

The lectures will give the students the broader context of each subject area. The tutorials develop students’ skills in applying the knowledge gained to solving problems related to the particular subject. Laboratory practicals will develop students’ practical skills and consolidate the practical application of theory. Substantial independent work is expected of postgraduate students in the modules, hence the relatively low contact time, to develop students’ abilities to master independently new knowledge and skills. 

Further, the assessments and assignments students will be given in all modules, but in particular in Project (Biomedical Engineering) 886, will develop students’ high level of theoretical engagement and intellectual independence, as well their ability to relate knowledge to complex problems. 

Project (Biomedical Engineering) 886 will require completion of a small individual research project aimed at solving a complex biomedical engineering problem. The research project will entail formulating objectives, planning the project, surveying the relevant literature and applying what was learned in the modules, as well as from the literature review and own research, to a biomedical engineering research project. 

Critical evaluation of the research results will also be required. The research project will be guided by a supervisor, through regular (typically weekly or bi-weekly) meetings of the student with the supervisor. Detailed feedback by the supervisor on drafts of the assignment produced in the project will play an important formative role. 

Masters programmes in biomedical engineering are offered by many leading universities internationally, e.g. KU Leuven (Belgium), University of Surrey (UK), John Hopkins University (USA), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, USA) and University of Sydney (Australia). 

The structure of the programme proposed here is aligned with that of KU Leuven to also create the platform for a future joint masters programme. The main difference between the KU Leuven programme and the one proposed here is that the Leuven programme requires four semesters of work (in SAQA terms 240 credits), while this program requireds 180 credits. Both programmes require a 60 research project and coursework for the remaining credits. 

Selection Criteria

  • Students must hold at least a relevant BEng, BScHons, PGDip in Engineering, other four-year bachelor’s degree at NQF-level 8, or master’s degree from a South African university of technology;

  • or hold other academic degree qualifications and appropriate experience (assessed using the regular “recognition of prior learning” procedures) that have been approved by the Engineering Faculty Board.

  • Students holding the following NQF level 8 qualifications can be admitted (subject to selection and appropriateness of preceding majors and minors). The PGDip in Engineering Science is the intended preceding programme, but applicants will also be considered if they hold a PGDip in a related discipline, BScHons (including medical, mathematical/physical and agri-sciences), BEng, or BScEng. Students from a BSc or BTech background can enter this programme after completing a suitable PGDip or BScHons.

  • Students will normally be required to have completed their preceding qualifications in the minimum time, with a credit-weighted average of 60%, as well as 60% in the final year of study preceding the masters.

  • Preference will be given to students with higher averages and with preceding studies better aligned with their selected area of specialisation within biomedical engineering.

  • Selection will also be applied to ensure that only students are admitted that have the academic ability to master the content with substantial self-learning.

Only a limited number of students are selected annually.

Module nameNQF level of the moduleCredits per moduleCompulsory/ optionalYear 1,2,3,4Total credits per year
Project (Biomedical Engineering) 886960C1180
Biomedical Engineering 874 915C1180
Biomedical Regulations 874915C1180
Physiology 874**915C1180
Kinesiology 874**98C1180
Numerical Methods 876*915C (or Biostatistics)1180
Biostatistics 873*912C (or Numerical Methods)1180
Biostatistics 874*912C (or Numerical Methods)1180
Research Methodology (Biomedical Engineering) 87297C1180
Entrepreneurship (Biomedical Engineering) 874915C1180
Biomaterials 874915O1180
Biomechanics 874 915O1180
Digital Image Processing 893915O1180
Finite Element Methods 814*915O1180
Numerical Fluid Dynamics 814*915O1180
Linear Algebra B 812*915O1180
Biomedical Engineering 88198O1180
Biomedical Engineering 88298O1180