Educational Programs

Duke offers a variety educational opportunities at the intersection of engineering and medicine

For Medical Students, Residents, Fellows, or Faculty

Medical Scientists Training Program (MSTP)

The Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) prepares highly qualified medical students as physician-scientists. The program is offered through Duke's School of Medicine and Graduate School, and doctoral training may be pursued in biomedical engineering or another engineering discipline through the Pratt School of Engineering. Learn more

MD-MEng Joint Degree Program

Designed to train, "physician-inventors," this program enables MD candidates within the Duke University School of Medicine who have strong interests in health care, engineering, and innovation and entrepreneurship to earn a Master of Engineering degree from the Pratt School of Engineering. Medical students may contact Dr. Bruce Klitzman to explore this opportunity. 

Learn more about the MD-MEng program on its webpage on

Barr-Spach Scholarship 

This competitive scholarship provides support toward tuition and fees, and is awarded annually to third-year Duke medical students who have been accepted into the MD-MEng dual degree program.

It was created by a gift from Maynard Ramsey III, M’69, G’75, to honor his Duke mentors—biomedical engineering professor and associate professor of pediatrics Roger C. Barr, BS’64, PhD’68, and pediatric cardiologist Madison S. Spach, T’50, MD’54, HS’54-59.

Learn more about the 2022 - 2023 scholarship opportunity here


The InnovateMD program provides Duke residents and fellows with the opportunity to collaborate with engineering students and faculty in medical device innovation. The program combines project-centered experience with supplemental learning activities. Learn more

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For Medical and Engineering Students

Medicine and Engineering Interest Group (MEIG)

The Medicine and Engineering Interest Group (MEIG) stimulates interest and collaboration in medical design and technology among Duke University School of Medicine and Biomedical Engineering students. MEIG members come from across the two schools with diverse educational and training backgrounds. They frequently attend lunchtime talks with engaging speakers and experience interactive sessions with various technologies. Learn more

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For PhD and Master's Engineering Students

BME 773L: Advanced Biomedical Design 1

First semester of a 2-semester design course sequence (BME 774L) for graduate students. Students will expand on their formal engineering design principles knowledge by applying it to identify and research a need drawn from the Duke Hospital and medical personnel, local companies, and organizations around Duke University. Students will develop and determine design feasibility for a device, system, material, or process subject to real-world constraints.

I&E 720: Design in Health Care 1

Part one of Design Health, also cross-listed as STRATEGY 898-012. The course guides students through the process of human-centered design with the goal of developing a solution to a real-world, unmet need in healthcare. Students will learn to:

  1. Identify unmet, underserved, and unarticulated needs using human-centered qualitative contextual primary research methods such as ethnographic research
  2. Apply commercial business criteria in order to select viable business opportunities
  3. Use creative and research-based processes to generate and/or identify potential solutions, and
  4. Document their design process in accordance with regulations. This course blends taught content with practical field application and team-based project execution

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For Undergraduate and Graduate Students

Data+ Summer Opportunity MicroRNA graphic

a 10-week summer opportunity for Duke undergraduate students interested in exploring new data-driven approaches to interdisciplinary challenges in the health and life sciences. Students join small project teams, working alongside other teams in a communal environment. Initiative in Duke's Data+ program, students will learn how to marshal, analyze, and visualize data, while gaining broad exposure to the modern world of data science and making meaningful contributions to a research project related to health or 'omics data. MEDx co-sponsors teams that pursue challenges in biomedical healthcare research. Learn more

Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Senior Design Class 

The Mechanical Engineering Senior Design program constitutes of two classes—ME 421L (141L): Mechanical Design, and ME 424L (160L): Mechanical System Design. Students are guided through the various stages of a professional engineering design project, including the design, fabrication and experimental testing of a complex component or system. The Duke Mechanical Engineering Senior Design Experience is intended to help students prepare for the workplace. Learn more

BME Design Fellows

The Biomedical Engineering Fellows is an intensive design program for BME juniors interested in pursuing internships that will provide them with practical design experience. This program spans three semesters and a summer session. Learn more

BME 590: Fundamentals of Design Health Warren Grill (left) and Marcus Coleman (right). After spending a summer conducting neural prosthetics research in Grill's laboratory, Coleman joined the biomedical device innovation course to see neurosurguries in action.

The BME 590 course offers undergraduate and graduate engineering students the opportunity to shadow Duke Medicine physician mentors in the clinical setting in order to develop solutions to real-world challenges. Teams of at least four students are paired with a physician mentor at Duke Health, whom they shadow for many hours over the course of several weeks. The students brainstorm how they could use their engineering know-how to solve complex problems. Each class results in submitting invention disclosure forms to Duke's Office of Licensing and Ventures. Learn more

BME 464L: Medical Device Design

General principles of signal acquisition, amplification processing, recording, and display in medical instruments. System design, construction, and evaluation techniques will be emphasized. Methods of real-time signal processing will be reviewed and implemented in the laboratory. Each student will design, construct and demonstrate a functional medical instrument and collect and analyze data with that instrument. 

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Of Broad Interest

Design Health

The Design Health Program is a patient-focused program that discovers the pressing needs in healthcare and assembles teams from across engineering, business, medicine and other disciplines to create real-world solutions. The program provides an immersive learning experience where teams don't solve pre-defined problems, but actively identify, validate and prioritize problems that will impact human health. During this nine-month extracurricular, members of each team will gather data and insight into the clinical environment and use structured ethnography tools to identify unmet, underserved, and unarticulated needs. MEDx is actively involved in the Design Health program, from assisting mentors in identifying potential fellows to providing funding. Learn more

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