Rush University Banner Rush University Rush University Medical Center Contact Us
Rush University Banner
Search

The Graduate College > Biomechanics > About the Program
About Rush University
MS Program Description:

The Master of Science in Biomechanics program is designed to educate bioengineers in a clinical setting who will participate in the conduct of research to improve orthopedic care. Graduates of this program can collaborate with other researchers to perform high-quality, up-to-date research in orthopedic biomechanics at colleges and universities, government agencies and orthopedic-related industries. Graduates can also use this as a stepping stone towards obtaining a PhD degree in Biomechanics after gaining appreciable practical experience either in the orthopedic industry or research institutions conducting high-quality musculoskeletal biomechanics research. Students in the program will work with faculty and scientists from different divisions at Rush University such as division of Biomechanics, Biochemistry, Anatomy, Physiology and Molecular Biophysics to learn essential skills in research methods, data analysis and descriptive and inferential statistics applied to the biological and engineering aspects of musculoskeletal biomechanics. The program of study involves formal courses in biomechanics, biomaterials, anatomy, tissue and cell biology, research methods and biostatistics. As a part of the program, students must complete a research project that culminates in a thesis.

Specific objectives of the program are to: 1) train bioengineers in the application of biomechanics to clinically related musculoskeletal problems through Òbench to bedside and back againÓ research that improves orthopedic care; 2) provide bioengineers with core competencies needed for the design and analyses of clinical biomechanical problems in the field of orthopedics; and 3) provide bioengineers the foundation that is needed to assume professional leadership roles in a variety of settings for research and design in the area of orthopedic biomechanics.

The master’s degree is very much a viable diploma, independent of the PhD qualification. Local industry leaders and employers have reported through interview with faculty in our Graduate College that they have a greater need for MS-prepared individuals to work in their laboratories. Graduates of the Master’s program will be qualified to work in orthopedic related industries, hospitals, government and nonprofit agencies to assist in the design of biomechanical devices and evaluate their effectiveness. MS graduates are more likely to assume positions in industry.

Biomechanics: Curriculum

When the applicant enters the program, a research advisor is assigned and the student begins directed research on an active project. In the first three semesters, there is minimal research as classroom studies are emphasized. During these semesters, master’s Graduate College students take the Graduate Core Curriculum (GCC) classes, required biochemistry (BCH) course and required Biomechanics (BMC) courses. The summer semester is devoted to MS Thesis research. Research and advanced Biomechanics courses provide the core of the second-year studies. The master’s students are involved in a directed research project.

 A typical course sequence is described as follows:

Year 1

Fall Semester

BMC 501 Statics and Dynamics 3

BMC 502 Strength & Properties of Materials 3

BMC 505 Anatomy/Musculoskeletal System 3

GCC 502 Cellular Biochemistry 2

GCC 512 Reading in Cellular Biochemistry 1

Spring Semester

BMC 511 Biomechanics 3

BMC 513 Kinematics of Human Motion 3

BMC 512 Bioengineering Material 3

GCC 506 Research Ethics 1

BCH 624 Connective Tissue Biochemistry 2

Summer Semester

BMC 503 Introduction to Research 1

BMC 504 Journal Club 1

BMC 521 MS Thesis 7

Year 2

Fall Semester

BMC 514 Spine Biomechanics 3

GCC 546 Statistics 2

BMC 521 MS Thesis 7

Spring Semester

BMC 521 MS Thesis 6

GCC 508 Writing Practicum 2

 

GCC courses are Graduate College Courses taken by master’s students from a variety of different Graduate College programs. These courses provide a basic understanding in the biomedical sciences and acquaint the students with the biomedical literature. BCH-prefixed courses are specific to the Division of Biochemistry. BMC-prefixed courses are specific to the Division of Biomechanics.

The Division of Biomechanics reserves the right to revise courses and the student may be required to take the replacement courses. Such a requirement would not apply to students who have already taken a course.

 
Minimal Credit Hours Required for MS Degree

All MS students must complete a thesis as a part of degree completion requirements. The thesis is completed through faculty-guided research. The thesis may be original or an important extension of an existing theory/principle and cannot have been used to meet the requirement of any other degree, either at Rush University or any other university. Each student will have a thesis committee whose role is to assure that the student’s thesis is of high quality and meets the standards of the division, the College and the University. The thesis committee is chosen by the student in conjunction with the student’s primary advisor and should consist of at least three total members to include the student’s primary advisor. The primary advisor must be a member of the Graduate College. Once the committee convenes, it will choose a chairperson who cannot be the student’s primary advisor. The chairperson will oversee the scheduling and activities of the committee.

 

Research Requirements (Thesis): Please see course catalog

 

DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY IN BIOMECHANICS  
 

PhD Program Description
 
The PhD in Biomechanics is designed to educate bioengineers in a clinical setting to perform Òbench to bedside and back againÓ research that improves orthopedic care. This program will train engineers/scientists in the application of biomechanics to clinically related musculoskeletal problems with the help of faculties from different divisions at Rush University such as divisions of Biomechanics, Biochemistry, Anatomy, Physiology and Molecular Biophysics. Graduates of this program will perform high quality, cutting edge research in orthopedic biomechanics at colleges and universities, government agencies, hospitals, non-profit agencies and orthopedic related industries. Students in the program will work with faculty and scientists to generate new knowledge in the field of musculoskeletal biomechanics through the application of sophisticated research methods and statistics.
 
The program of study involves formal courses in biomechanics, advanced biomaterials, anatomy, bone biology, tissue and cell biology, techniques in biomedical sciences, implant design, tribology of implants, kinematics of human motion, spine biomechanics, ethics, research methods and biostatistics. As a part of the program, students must complete a comprehensive written preliminary examination on fundamental principles related to biomechanics, design and conduct research that culminates in a dissertation, and disseminate their findings through scholarly publications and presentations.
 
Specific objectives of the program are to:
1) train bioengineers in the application of biomechanics to clinically related musculoskeletal problems through "bench to bedside and back again" research that improves orthopedic care
2) provide bioengineers with core competencies needed to design research projects and analyze clinical biomechanical problems in the field of orthopedics
3) provide bioengineers the foundation that is needed to assume professional leadership and research roles in the area of orthopedic biomechanics across a variety of settings.
 
Biomechanics: Curriculum
 
The PhD in Biomechanics will require a of minimum of 132 semester hours of academic course work taken at the graduate level and consists of core courses in biomechanics, strength and properties of biomaterials, basic anatomy and cellular biochemistry (15 semester hours); research core courses in biostatistics, writing practicum, ethics and journal club, introduction to laboratories, experimental design and models of research and introduction to research (11 semester hours); professional track course in connective tissue biochemistry, kinematics of human motion, bioengineering material and spine biomechanics (11 semester hours); advanced topics such as non-linear tissue biomechanics, implant biomechanics, bone biology, advanced biomaterials and tribology of implants that will help the students to perform high quality, up-to-date research in orthopedic biomechanics (18 semester hours) and doctoral dissertation work (74 semester hours). In addition, students will be able to further their knowledge in any subject using the 3 semester hours of elective or independent study. The program may be completed in approximately 4 years of full time study.
 
Upon matriculation the division shall provide the student with a handbook which contains information outlining:
 
• all course requirements with a year-by-year synopsis of recommended courses with course numbers
• required grade performance for all required and elective courses
• requirements for qualifying exams
• description of the general content of the qualifying exam
• process for passing qualifying exams
• process for remediating qualifying exams
• selection of an advisor
• requirements for dissertation committee selection
• expectations for research work
• form of dissertation proposal
• dissertation committee process
• requirements for completion of degree
• time line for degree completion and other materials relevant to the division not covered by the Graduate College student policies
 
A typical course sequence is described as follows:
 
Year 1
 
Fall Semester
BMC 501 Statics and Dynamics 3
BMC 502 Strength & Properties of Materials 3
BMC 505 Anatomy/Musculoskeletal System 3
GCC 502 Cellular Biochemistry 2
GCC 512 Reading in Cellular Biochemistry 1
 
Spring Semester
BMC 511 Biomechanics 3
BMC 513 Kinematics of Human Motion 3
BMC 512 Bioengineering Material 3
GCC 506 Research Ethics 1
BCH 624 Connective Tissue Biochemistry 2
 
Summer Semester
BMC 503 Introduction to Research 1
BMC 504 Journal Club 1
BMC 631 Doctoral Dissertation 7
 
Year 2
 
Fall Semester
BMC 514 Spine Biomechanics 3
BMC 611 Non Linear Tissue Mechanics 3
GCC 546 Statistics 2
GCC 505 Introduction to Laboratories 2
BTN 525 Experimental Design and Models
of Research 2
 
Spring Semester
BMC 612 Advanced Strength of Materials 3
BMC 613 Implant Biomechanics 3
BMC 614 Bone Biology 3
BMC 615 Advanced Biomaterials 3
GCC 508 Writing Practicum 2
 
Summer Semester
BMC 616 Tribology of Implants 3
BMC 699 Elective 3
BMC 631 Doctoral Dissertation 3
Year 3 and Year 4
BMC 631 Doctoral Dissertation 64
 
PhD Research Requirement - Please see course catalog for more information on the dissertation and examination requirements.
Research Dissertation (PhD) (74 semester credit hours total minimum requirement)
Preliminary examination
 
Biomechanics: Faculty Research Interests
 
Dr. Alejandro Espinoza
develops methods to analyze joint/spine motion and loading patterns in both normal populations as well as in those altered by degenerative conditions such as arthritis/disc degeneration or aging. His research focuses on analysis of structure-function relationships in bone and joints.
Dr. Nadim James Hallab
is director of the Biomaterials Laboratory and is interested in the biocompatibility of orthopedic implants. He investigates: 1) implant debris, both ions, particles and metal-protein complexes, 2) implant degradation from corrosion and wear of modular junctions, 3) immune reactivity to implant debris, 4) cell toxicity responses to implant debris, 5) potentiodynamic surface optimization for directing cell bioreactivity, and 6) novel implant fixation and surgical techniques using in vitro mechanical testing.
Dr. Nozomu Inoue
works on spine biomechanics, specifically the biomechanics of spinal surgery and the effect of degenerative changes of discs and facet joints on segmental instability and motion. Currently his major research areas are development of 3D medical image-based computer models for quantitative analyses of spinal alignment and facet kinematics.
Dr. Joshua J. Jacob’s
interest is in analyzing biocompatibility of permanent orthopedic implants; corrosion and wear of metallic biomaterials; clinical performance of joint replacement devices.
Dr. Hannah Lundberg
combines novel computational and experimental modalities to better represent joint (natural and implant) function in vivo and improve surgical outcomes. Current emphasis is on using computer modeling to predict total knee replacement forces and behavior during everyday life.
Dr. Raghu Natarajan’s
interest is in the development of Finite Element models of hip and knee joints as well as models of both lumbar and cervical spines. His current modeling activity includes development of models of lumbar spine with varying degree of degenerative disease and understand how adjacent disc disease progresses in patients.
Dr. Vincent Wang
uses biomechanical, imaging and extracellular matrix biologic approaches in animal models to study mechanisms of tendinopathy. Particular emphasis is placed on the roles of ADAMTS enzymes in aberrant matrix remodeling as well as the potential therapeutic benefit of mechanical loading in promoting tendon healing.
Dr. Markus Wimmer
investigates the effects of load and motion in human joints. Using both gait analysis and in vitro simulation, he studies wear and lubrication of natural and artificial joints. He is working on a better understanding of the degradation mechanisms in vivo, and trying to enhance preclinical wear testing methods.
Dr. Mathew Mathew’s interest is in corrosion and tribocorrosion of biomaterials. Tribocorrosion is a combined study of wear and corrosion and their synergistic interactions in relation to orthopedic implants, particularly hip prostheses. The study has significant implications on the patients with implants, which are exposed to mechanical articulation and under adverse chemical in-vivo environment (infections, varying pH levels etc). He is also a Research Assistant Professor at College of Dentistry, UIC. Chicago. He leading the tribocorrosion research in dentistry (Dental Implants and Temporomadibular Joints (TMJ)) and actively involved in the Institute of Biomaterials, Tribocorrosion and Nano-medicine (IBTN).
 


Rush Medical College | College of Nursing | Graduate College | College of Health Sciences | Library | GME
CME | Calendar of Events | Web Privacy Statement | Accessibility Statement | Students with Disabilities | Site Map
Students | Faculty | Researchers | Alumni | Residents & Fellows

© Rush University, Chicago, Illinois