Biological Engineering Concentration

Biological Engineering Concentration

Biological Engineering Concentration

This concentration provides a mechanism to give students credit for their focused study in bioengineering. Extending this opportunity to students is valuable to them because of growing industrial interest in these areas of chemical engineering. In 1992, NIH defined "biomolecular engineering" as: "Research at the interface of chemical engineering and biology with an emphasis at the molecular level."

Recent trends in chemical engineering research, the decisions of government agencies, and the opinions of leading academics were taken as the platform for the development of the bio-related concentration.

Modern biology has emerged as an underlying fundamental science in chemical engineering. Advances in biology are prompting new discoveries in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, medical technology, and chemical industries. Developing commercial-scale processes based on these advances requires that new chemical engineers clearly understand the biochemical principles behind the technology, in addition to developing a firm grasp of chemical engineering principles. Many jobs in the "Fast Company 25 Top Jobs for 2005" list are bio-related. Finally, New Jersey is a global and national leader in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

Instead of working at the "macro" scale, as traditional biochemical engineers have, there is a need for students to be able to work across scales - from the molecular level to the microscopic to the macroscopic. Traditional biochemical engineering focused on bioreactor design, agitation, and microbial cultures as a whole - macroscopic processes. Current and future applications will require students to be familiar with the molecular details of the product of interest, which help determine how to design and operate microscopic and macroscopic operations for production and purification. This concentration is a cohesive set of courses that focus on a biological engineering within chemical engineering and requires at least 13 semester hours of credit. The requirements to earn a concentration in biological engineering are as follows:

Course Credits  13 s.h.

BIOL01.211 Biology for Chemical Engineers
ENGR01.301, 302, 401 and 402 Jr/Sr Clinic Bio-related project
  Electives - from approved list


Junior/Senior Engineering Clinic is a required 2-credit course for students in all engineering disciplines. This course is a hallmark of the Rowan College of Engineering and provides undergraduate students with hands-on experience on practical engineering research and design problems, frequently in collaboration with local industrial sponsors. All engineering students are required to take four semesters (8 credits) of Junior/Senior Clinic. Students who wish to earn a concentration in biological engineering must select an approved Junior/Senior Clinic project for at least one of their four semesters. Note that students can also fulfill the project requirement through independent study on bio-related projects (Independent Study in Engineering ENGR01.391).

Because the department wishes to maintain a "depth and breadth" approach to the biological engineering concentration, a student will not be allowed to apply more than 4 credits worth of Junior/Senior Clinic to their concentration. Students must earn the balance of the 13 credits by taking any combination courses from the following list:

Approved* List of Electives - Chemical Engineering

*Note that these lists are not exhaustive. Please contact the faculty coordinator, Dr. Kevin Dahm (, with any questions regarding approval of courses not listed.

CHE06.462 Bioprocess Engineering 3 s.h.
CHE06.472 Principles of Biomedical Processes 3 s.h.
CHE06.476 Principles of Bioseparation Processes 3 s.h.
CHE06.482 Principles of Food Engineering 3 s.h.
CHE06.483 Principles of Engineering Exercise Physiology 4 s.h.
CHE06.484 Fundamentals of Controlled Release 3 s.h.
CHE06.486 Membrane Processes 3 s.h.
CHE06.490 Approved Special Topics Course 3 s.h.
CHE06.473 Principles of Biomaterials Engineering 3 s.h.
CHE06.478 Tissue Engineering Fundamentals 3 s.h.
CHE06.471 Principles of Biomedical Control Systems 3 s.h.

Approved* List of Electives - Other engineering disciplines

*Note that these lists are not exhaustive. Please contact the faculty coordinator, Dr. Kevin Dahm (, with any questions regarding approval of courses not listed.

CEE08.412 Environmental Treatment Process Principles 3 s.h.
ECE09.404 Principles of Biomedical Systems and Devices 3 s.h.

Approved* List of Electives with Bio Focus

*Note that these lists are not exhaustive. Please contact the faculty coordinator, Dr. Kevin Dahm (, with any questions regarding approval of courses not listed.

BIOL01.430 Cell Biology 4 s.h.
BIOL01.435 Cell Culture Technology 4 s.h.
BIOL11.405 Environmental Microbiology 4 s.h.
BIOL14.440 Intro to Biochemistry 3 s.h.
BIOL22.410 Concepts in Human Genetics 4 s.h.
BIOL22.450 Molecular Genetics 4 s.h.
CHEM07.348 Biochemistry 4 s.h.
CHEM07.410 Medicinal Chemistry 3 s.h.
CHEM08.305 Biophysical Chemistry 4 s.h.

The current chemical engineering curriculum requires students to take two advanced chemical engineering electives and one advanced chemistry elective. Consequently, the biological engineering concentration is readily attainable under the current chemical engineering curriculum: it requires a focused selection of project work and electives but no "additional" courses.