BMEBT Ph.D. Admission Requirements


Applicants from many different science and engineering undergraduate programs are invited to apply. Because the degree brings together biomedical engineering with biotechnology, it is designed equally for students with life sciences or engineering/ physical science backgrounds. 

Applications will be accepted from individuals holding appropriate bachelor’s degrees or master’s degrees (or the US baccalaureate equivalents from a foreign institution). Applicants should have a background in life science, physical science, or engineering. 

However, we are less interested in your specific background and more interested in your: 


  • personal and career goals
  • demonstrated academic ability and research potential
  • commitment to an interdisciplinary, team-work approach 

Admissions Requirements

Applicants submit the following and are expected to meet the standards indicated:

  • In general students with an overall undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or higher will be considered for admission. Applicants must present official undergraduate and graduate transcripts from all schools attended.
  • Applicants accepted into the program should present a minimum Graduate Record Exam (GRE) combined verbal + quantitative score of 1100 (old) or 300 (new). Only official GRE scores from the Educational Testing Service will be considered acceptable. The GRE can be waived for applicants with a prior graduate degree from an accredited US institution; an application without the GRE must demonstrate exceptional potential.
  • Applicants must have a minimum of two semesters of calculus and have strong quantitative skills.
  • International applicants should present a minimum Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of 550 (paper version) or 213 (computer version). Only official TOEFL scores from the Educational Testing Service will be considered acceptable.
  • Three letters of recommendation, from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic ability and potential to conduct original research at the doctoral level, will be required.
  • Applicants will also be required to submit a Statement of Purpose (personal essay). This statement is an important element in the application packet. It has two related roles:
  1. Indication of an applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the program. Applicants should indicate their qualifications for and motivation to undertake this program as well as their personal and career goals. Specifically, the statement should indicate the applicant’s background, research credentials, and career plans as they relate to the multidisciplinary nature of the doctorate, and discuss research experience (academic, industrial) and any publications, grants, or patents;   
  2. Indication of how an applicant will fit into the program. Applicants should indicate their specific areas of interest within Biomedical Engineering and Biotechnology, so that a fit between their interests and qualifications and the specific specialization options that the program offers can be determined. If the applicant has a specific interest in working with one or more of the program’s faculty, s/he should describe that specific interest and identify those faculty members. The Statement of Purpose should also exemplify the applicant’s writing skills.
  • We invite applicants also to submit a personal résumé.

Individual circumstances can be taken into account, and extraordinary qualifications in some areas can be used to outweigh weaknesses in others.

Transfer of Credits/Advanced Standing

Students who have previously completed graduate course work may transfer up to six credits, following the UMass Dartmouth graduate transfer policies. The transfer credit may replace core or specialization course requirements. The project/directed studies, seminar, and dissertation research credits will not be accepted for transfer from institutions outside of the UMass system.

Students may also have core courses waived without transfer of course credit. Students would still be responsible for the full credits required of each degree (31 credits for the MS and 63 credits for the PhD), but would not have to take the waived course.

Students who join the program with an earned master’s degree may receive Advanced Standing in the doctoral program. The number of credits required to complete the PhD will be determined in individual advisement, but at a minimum 9 course (core or specialization) credits, the capstone project course (3 credits), doctoral seminar (taken twice, 1 credit each) and 30 dissertation research credits will be required. Advanced Standing students will be required to pass the Qualifying Examination before progressing to the dissertation stage. Students who enter the program with advanced standing will not earn the MS degree.

Please forward all credentials to:
Office of Graduate Studies
UMass Dartmouth
285 Old Westport Road
Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300

Questions about credentials?
508.999.8604 voice
508.999.8183 fax