Biomedical Communications (BMC) offers an interdisciplinary graduate program in the design and assessment of visual media in science and medicine.
Drawing on our rich heritage of medical illustration, BMC bridges disciplines (art, science, medicine and communication) to develop visual material for health promotion, medical education, and as part of the process of scientific discovery.
Biomedical Communications (BMC) offers both an interdisciplinary Master of Science in Biomedical Communications (MScBMC) degree as well a BMC Undergraduate Minor Program that have an interdisciplinary focus in science communication.
The Master of Science in Biomedical Communications
The Master of Science in Biomedical Communication (MScBMC), unique in Canada, is one of 4 internationally accredited programs of its kind. Our graduate program combines theoretical and applied approaches to the profession of medical and scientific visualization.
The objectives of the program are to:
emphasize a content rather than media driven curriculum that assures a solid foundation in basic and clinical sciences;
facilitate the development of new visual communication tools for the purpose of educating medical, allied health, and non-medical audiences;
stimulate intellectual curiosity and self-directed learning;
advance knowledge transfer in the biomedical sciences through the development of the analytical skills essential to evaluating existing scholarly works, and formulating research questions that advance knowledge in the discipline.
Upon graduation, students are employed by: media and animation companies; medical legal companies; prepress companies specializing in print (textbooks & journals); advertising agencies serving the medical market; hospital media departments; academic departments in universities and colleges; and science centres.
The Master of Science in Biomedical Communications (MScBMC) is offered through the Institute of Medical Science in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto, and principally housed at the Mississauga campus (UTM).
Quality Assurance and CAAHEP Accreditation
In addition to rigorous oversight by the provincially mandated University of Toronto Quality Assurance Process (UTQAP), the BMC graduate program is externally accredited by the US-based Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP). CAAHEP accreditation is renewed every eight years, and requires ongoing reporting and oversight of various factors affecting the quality of the educational program. Accreditation ensures that the program meets or exceeds standards for the industry.
Our most recent accreditation review was in 2013.
Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
1361 Park Street
Clearwater, FL 33756
As part of our graduate program accreditation requirements, we must make available the positive placement results for the MScBMC program from our graduate and employer surveys. For the graduating years 2015-2017 (our latest data), the positive placement rate was 95+%. “Positive placement” includes full-time employment, self-employment, and continued educational activity; the rate is derived from surveys sent to our graduates 6-12 months after graduation, and is a 5-year average.
MScBMC graduates take on diverse leadership roles in industry, including:
Animators in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries
Lead illustrators in textbook and journal prepress companies
User experience designers in mobile health application develop- ment
Communications specialists for non-profit health organizations
Developers in the educational gaming industry
Creative directors in medical advertising
Creators of medical demonstrative evidence for the courtroom
Hospital-based designers of educational health communication materials
Researchers and educators in higher education
Currently there are 6 full-time faculty and 2 part-time faculty teaching in the M.Sc.BMC program. All BMC faculty are actively engaged in areas of the biomedical communications profession. Their creative activity is reflected in their teaching. Each year the BMC faculty make extensive revisions to the graduate curriculum to keep pace with changes in the field.
BMC faculty network broadly. Owing to the interdisciplinary nature of Biomedical Communications, the potential for collaborative projects continues to expand. Many faculty members from other Divisions / Departments / Centres / Faculties of the University have become interested in scholarly projects undertaken by BMC faculty and students.
A major strength of the BMC program is the breadth of the basic and clinical sciences faculty from U of T departments including Surgery, Immunology, Pathology and Biology who support the program. These clinicians and researchers volunteer to critique student work and participate as Supervisors, Co-Supervisors or Committee Members on students’ Masters Research Projects.
Our students come from a diversity of academic backgrounds. What they share is a solid knowledge-base in science, a knack for visual expression, and a passion for communicating to a range of audiences.