Medical Device Design

Key information

Duration: 1 year full-time
Start date: October 2017
CampusSouth Kensington
ECTS: 90 credits

Course Director
Professor Etienne Burdet

Admission tutor
Liam Madden

Open to applications
View entry requirementsApply now


You focus on the understanding of neuromechanics, biomimetics design, signal and image processing and the application of robotics in health and everyday life.

Our one-year full-time MSc in Human and Biological Robotics is a wide-ranging course covering robotics for humans and society, service and social robotics, rehabilitation technology, as well as machine vision, artificial intelligence and machine learning.

This new Master's course has a unique focus on engineering methods which investigate human and animal sensing and sensorimotor control, and on the design of biomimetic systems and assistive devices for humans. It builds upon the unique strengths of the Department of Bioengineering and the wider College in this new field. 

You will be well supported by the Imperial Robotics Forum, which groups together robotics researchers at Imperial doing multidisciplinary research at the cutting edge of several disciplines. 

The course is taught by the Department of Bioengineering, where you will spend most of your study time, with additional input from the Departments of Aeronautics, Computing, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and the Dyson School of Design Engineering.


You will follow an exciting programme of study at the forefront of an emerging discipline, which aims to ensure graduates develop a deep understanding of human and biological robotics.

There is also an emphasis entrepreneurship and collaboration with other disciplines, which makes sure graduates are highly employable across many types of organisations.

Our graduates are well placed for the following fields:

  • Further research in universities, research institutes, industry and healthcare
  • Design and production (of medical devices and biomimetic systems)
  • Freelancing, entrepreneurship and start-ups
  • Technical and commercial consulting


Modules shown are for the current academic year, and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.


Core modules

You study all of the core modules below.

  • Introduction to Robotics
  • Medical Device Entrepreneurship
  • Statistics and Data Analysis
  • Systems Physiology

Project-based modules

You will choose one module from below:

  • Embedded C for microcontrollers
  • H-CARD: Human Centred design of Assistive and Rehabilitation Devices
  • Machine Learning for Computer Vision
  • Robotics

Optional modules

You will choose four modules from below.

  • Biomechanics
  • Biomimetics
  • Brain Machine Interfaces
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Hearing and Speech Processing
  • Human Neuromechanical Control and Learning
  • Machine Learning and Neural Computation

MSc Individual Project

The MSc Individual Project allows you to specialise in a relevant area of your choice, perhaps to suit interests, or future career plans.

The project will account for over 900 study hours and attribute 40% of your overall MSc grade.

Teaching and assessment


  • Demonstrations
  • Group exercises
  • Guided practical classes
  • Laboratory work
  • Lectures
  • Individual research project
  • Presentations
  • Seminars
  • Workshops


  • Coursework including multiple choice progression tests, problem sheets, and quizzes 
  • Oral presentations
  • Written examinations (open and closed book)
  • Written reports, including a dissertation

Staff expertise

You will be taught primarily in the Department of Bioengineering with potential for input from other Departments. Additionally you will benefit from close links with the Imperial Robotics Forum, a multidisciplinary group made up of over 20 laboratories, more than 30 principal investigators and 150 researchers and PhD students.

Course timetable

You will receive your course timetable by the beginning of your studies in October and the core teaching hours for the College are 9am–6pm.

Tuition fees and funding

The level of tuition fees you pay is based on your fee status, which we assess based on UK government legislation.

For more information on the funding opportunities that are available, please visit our Fees and Funding website.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees (Home and EU students)

2017 entry

Tuition fees (Islands and Overseas students)

2017 entry

Postgraduate Master's loan

If you are a Home or EU student who meets certain criteria, you can apply for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan of up to £10,000 from the UK government. The loan is not means-tested, and you can choose whether to put it towards your tuition fees or living costs.


We offer a range of scholarships for postgraduate students to support you through your studies. Try our scholarships search tool to see what you might be eligible for.

There are a number of external organisations also offer awards for Imperial students, find out more about non-Imperial scholarships.

Accommodation and living costs

Living costs, including accommodation, are not included in your tuition fees.

You can compare costs across our different accommodation options on our Accommodation website.

A rough guide to what you might expect to spend to live in reasonable comfort in London is available on our Fees and Funding website.


We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

For advice on the requirements for the qualifications listed here please contact the Department (details at the bottom of this page).

We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. If the requirements for your qualifications are not listed here, please see our academic requirements by country page for guidance on which qualifications we accept.


Minimum academic requirement

2:1 in an engineering, physical science or mathematical subject.

International qualifications

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a UK qualification. 

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications. For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirement (all applicants)

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

How to apply

All applicants must apply online.

You can usually apply for up to two courses, although your second choice will only be considered if your first-choice application is unsuccessful.

Most courses don't have a formal closing date, but popular courses close when they are full, so you should apply early to avoid disappointment. There may also be funding deadlines that apply to you.

You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.

Offer holders will need to pay a deposit to secure your place. This will be deducted from the balance of your tuition fees.

For full details on the online application process, or to start your application, please visit the How to Apply section of our website.

ATAS certificate

An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

Further information

Where it all begins video

Contact us

T: +44 (0)20 7594 5179

Imperial students

Applying for your visa

Visit the International Student Support website for information on applying for a visa.

Imperial students


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