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Major: Biological Engineering (BE)

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In This Section:

Accredited by ABET (see inside front cover)
Offered by: Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering
207 Riley-Robb Hall, 255.2173,

Our Commitment

The educational objectives of the Biological Engineering program are consistent with
those of the College of Engineering and Cornell University. We are committed to providing
an excellent undergraduate engineering program in a nurturing learning environment
where our graduates acquire knowledge and develop skills for professional success. Graduates
of our program include a diverse group of leaders and problem solvers who contribute
technically, professionally, and personally to our society.

Program Objectives

  • Produce graduates who pursue careers related to Biological Engineering based on a solid educational background in appropriate mathematics, physical and life sciences, liberal studies, and engineering.
  • Produce graduates who pursue advanced degrees in engineering and related professional fields.

Engineering Distributions

  • ENGRD 2020: Mechanics of Solids (required)
  • ENGRD 2XXX: ENGRD 2600: Principles of Biological Engineering (recommended) or
  • ENGRD 2510: Engineering for a Sustainable Society

Required Major Courses

Choose two of the following four:

  • BIOMG 1350: Cell and Developmental Biology
  • BIOG 1440: Comparative Physiology
  • BIOG 1445: Comparative Physiology, personalized instruction
  • BIOEE 1610: Ecology and the Environment


  • BIOG 1500: Investigative Biology Laboratory, or

  • BIOG 1107: Introductory Biology I: From Atom to Cell, and
  • BIOG 1108: Introductory Biology II: From Cell to Biosphere, and
  • BIOG 1500: Investigative Biology Laboratory

  • BIOMG 3300 or 3330 or 3350: Principles of Biochemistry, or
  • BIOMG 3310 and BIOMG 3320: Principles of Biochemistry, or
  • BIOMI 2900: General Microbiology Lectures, or
  • CEE 4510: Microbiology for Environmental Engineering

  • BIO XXXX: Biological Science course(s) with a biology prerequisite
  • BEE 2600/ENGRD 2600: Principles of Biological Engineering, or
  • BEE 2510/ENGRD 2510: Engineering for a Sustainable Society

  • BEE 3500: Biological and Bioenvironmental Transport Processes

  • BEE 2220: Bioengineering Thermodynamics and Kinetics, or
  • ENGRD 2210: Thermodynamics

  • CEE 3040: Uncertainty Analysis in Engineering, or
  • ENGRD 2700: Basic Engineering Probability and Statistics

  • BEE 3310: Bio-Fluid Mechanics, or
  • CEE 3310: Fluid Mechanics

Concentration Electives: Three courses from approved list.

Major-approved electives to complete remaining credits.

Major-approved Engineering Electives and Concentration Courses

One course must be a BEE Capstone course and one must be a BEE Laboratory
Experience course (see department web page for a current list of approved courses). BE
Concentrations: Biomedical Engineering, Bioprocess Engineering, or Bioenvironmental
Engineering (see department web page for a current list of approved concentration
courses). One course must satisfy the College of Engineering technical writing

The requirements for premedical study can be met with an additional 6–9 credits if
courses are carefully selected.




  • a. COE matriculates must enroll in CHEM 2090 (fall, spring); CALS matriculates must enroll in CHEM 2070 (fall). Students in either college may also substitute CHEM 2150 for either CHEM 2090 or 2070.
  • b. CS 111X and ENGRI required of COE matriculates. BEE 1510 and BEE 1200 required of CALS matriculates.
  • c. The Major program includes nine (9) credits of courses outside the Major. These are satisfied by ENGRD 2020, CEE 3040 or ENGRD 2700, and a non-BEE Major-approved elective.
  • d. In addition to the First-year Writing Seminars, a technical writing course must be taken as an engineering distribution, liberal studies, approved elective, or Major course.
  • e. Choose two of the following four: BIOMG 1350, BIOG 1440, BIOG 1445, or BIOEE 1610, plus BIOG 1500. May substitute BIOG 1107/1108 plus BIOG 1500. BIOG 1500 can be taken in spring. All BIO courses must be taken for letter grade.
  • f. Either biochemistry or microbiology is required: BIOMG 3300 or BIOMG 3330 or BIOMG 3350 or BIOMG 3310 plus BIOMG 3320 or BIOMI 2900 or CEE 4510.
  • g. Upper-level Biology: Any biology course at the 2000-level or above which has a biology prerequisite and is taken for a letter grade. This requirement may also be satisfied by an upper-level course in a science department (excluding engineering, fine arts, liberal studies and mathematics) which has a biology (not social science) content of 95% or greater and a biology prerequisite. Students must receive approval for these alternative courses by consulting their BE faculty advisor or the main BE Advising Office, 207 Riley-Robb Hall. (One credit seminars may not be used to meet this requirement.)
  • h. Electives must include a BEE capstone design course and a BEE laboratory experience course. See department web page for a current list of approved courses.
  • i. BEE 2220 or ENGRD 2210 and ENGR Stats preferably before semester 6.
  • j. Forty-six of the 51 minimum Required Major Course credits must be Engineering courses (including distribution courses).