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FAQ for M.S. Students in Bioengineering: Cell and Bioprocess Engineering Track

  1. What is the expected background for the program?
    Applicants to the M.S. in Bioengineering: Cell and Bioprocess Engineering program are generally expected to hold a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering, Biochemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Biotechnology, or a related discipline.

  2. Are there particular courses that I should have taken?
    Students in the program are expected to have taken calculus, biology, chemistry, and physics.

  3. Can I pursue the program on a part-time basis?
    Yes. Many of the courses for the track are offered in the evening or late in the afternoon to accommodate students who are working full-time.

  4. I am currently in the Tufts Biotechnology Certificate program. Can I transfer the course credits I earned through this program into the M.S. degree program?
    Yes, you may transfer up to 4 qualifying course credits. Qualifying course credits are those that correspond to the required courses or approved elective courses for the M.S. degree program. Please see degree tracking sheet (non-thesis option and thesis option) for program course requirements.

  5. I am in the thesis track. When and how do I select my research advisor?
    All new M.S. students in the thesis track must discuss potential thesis project topics with their prospective faculty advisors of interest. Incoming students are encouraged to contact potential faculty advisors as early as they wish, after declaring their intent to enroll at Tufts.

    Approximately three weeks into the Fall semester, all new thesis students will be required to submit to the track advisor the names of at least two different potential faculty advisors with whom they have discussed possible thesis topics, in ranked order of preference. The track advisor will then make research advisor assignments for all new thesis students upon careful examination of student preferences and the availability of research projects. Best efforts will be made to give students their first choice of advisor, whenever possible. New thesis student-advisor pairings will be announced by late September/early October.

  6. Do I need to register for the ChBE Departmental Seminar course?
    No. BIOE M.S. students register for the program-specific seminar, BIOE 291, in the fall, and BIOE 292 in the spring. Each of these seminar courses carries a credit of 0.5 units, and is graded on the standard letter grade scale.

  7. Can I serve as a TA for a course?
    No. M.S. students do not serve as teaching assistants, per School of Engineering guidelines.

  8. Can I receive a stipend for performing my thesis research?
    No, there is generally no financial support provided for M.S. students.

  9. Where can I get information on the courses approved for breadth elective?
    The breadth requirement is fulfilled by taking one 1.0 credit course from another track in the Bioengineering M.S. Program. Course descriptions can be found on SIS.

  10. Can I switch to another track within the BIOE program?
    You will need the approval of the track to which you would like to transfer. Submit your request in writing to the appropriate track advisor (see answer to FAQ #12) and the program director (Professor Kyongbum Lee).

  11. If I am currently in the M.S. non-thesis track, can I switch into the M.S. with thesis track?
    With the support and approval of a potential faculty research supervisor, then you may apply to switch into the M.S. with thesis track by submitting a written request to the program director for review. The program director will then seek approval from the program's academic committee, whose members are the track advisors.

  12. Who can I contact to learn more about the other tracks in the program?
    You can contact the track advisors: