Bioengineers work at the intersection of biology, engineering and medicine to tackle grand challenges in society. 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 highly interdisciplinary 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.
Career options include bioinformatics, consulting, genomics, health care, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, consumer products, hospitals and clinics, government regulatory agencies, patent law, academia, laboratory and research facilities, product and process development, quality and regulatory services, and operations and manufacturing.
- Our bioengineering program is ranked #19 by U.S. News & World Report.
- 80% of students reported having an internship or co-op during their degree program.
- 96% of students reported securing their first choice destination upon graduation.
- The average starting salary for a bioengineering graduate is $68,858 with an average signing bonus of $5,026.
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What You'll Study
The bioengineering major combines life science, physical science, mathematics and engineering principles to define and solve problems in biology, medicine and health care. The bioengineering major also translates medical assessment practices—such as using direct observation and immediate feedback in tandem with more traditional tests and projects—to better unify classroom experiences and clinical experiences.
Faculty within the department are organized into communities of practice, which help them to learn new teaching techniques. As you progress through the general bioengineering curriculum, you will develop competencies in math, statistics, and computation, applied engineering techniques, and specialized areas of study associated with your specific bioengineering track. Bioengineers interested in the growing fields of artificial intelligence, machine learning and biomedical image computing may benefit from a minor in CS. The bioengineering curriculum will prepare you for top industry jobs, and elite graduate and professional schools.
Bioengineering offers a Computational and Systems Biology technical focus area, which combines mathematical, statistical, and computational methods with molecular biology to understand and control the complex systems that regulate human biological processes. In this track of study you will receive training in genomic biology, biotechnology instrumentation, bioinformatics, and statistical and computational modeling. Application areas include disease modeling, development of analytical methods for decoding genetic information, pharmaceutical design, and development of personalized medical informatics systems. Specific computer science related topics taught in bioengineering coursework include: MATLAB (Simulink), deterministic and stochastic optimization, and machine learning.
Minor in Computer Science
The CS Minor is offered for students seeking significant knowledge of digital computing without the more complete treatment of a major in computer science. This minor may be taken by any student except majors in the Computer Science degree programs and in Computer Engineering.
The bioengineering curriculum prepares sets you up to either further your education at elite universities or land top industry jobs following graduation. About fifty-eight percent of our bioengineering graduates continue their education in graduate school, while about thirty-nine percent are hired for summer internships and full-time employment with top companies in medical devices, pharmaceuticals and consulting.
Common career options for bioengineering graduates include the following: 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, and operations & manufacturing. The average salary for bioengineering graduates was reported as $76,979 with an average signing bonus of $5,000.
employed or continuing education*
employed after graduation
attending graduate school
average starting annual income*
Sample employer destinations: Abbott, Accenture, National Institutes of Health (NIH) View All
Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) View All
*Post-graduate data was collected through the Illini Success initiative, which primarily relies on self-reported survey data sources. Statistics reported are from 2021-2022. Please note that total compensation may be greater than annual salary as other forms of compensation (e.g., signing bonus, commission, benefits) are not included. For more information on Illini Success data and methods, please visit the Illini Success website.