Masters Research Project

All MScBMC students complete a Master’s Research Project (MRP) as part of the MScBMC curriculum. The MRP is a platform for research into the visual communication of science and/or medicine. It provides an opportunity for students to develop their abilities in literature evaluation, research design, audience analysis, and the design, iteration, and implementation of a comprehensive communications instrument.

The focus of the project is meant to be research in visual communication and its allied fields (e.g., visual narrative, learning, UX design, usability, etc.) and not on the scientific topic area (i.e., Immunology). The graduate student functions as primary designer, researcher, author, illustrator, and communicator for his or her MRP. Active leadership and management of the project is a key success metric.

A Master’s Research Project will be based upon a problem statement and hypothesis that is approved by the student’s graduate committee in one of the two fields of focus: Biomedical Media Design or Biomedical Visualization Design.

See examples of projects in the MRP showcase.


Graduate Committee

The MRP committee should consist of at minimum two members; usually this consists of a supervisor and a scientific advisor/content expert. At least two members of the committee must have School of Graduate Studies (SGS) appointments. If the scientific advisor does not have an SGS appointment, then a third committee member with an SGS appointment must be added.

  • Supervisor: Must have an IMS and SGS graduate appointment, and is preferably a BMC faculty member.

  • Second Member: Must have an SGS appointment, and is often a scientific advisor and content expert in the topic of the MRP.

  • Third member (optional): If the second member is not the content expert, then the third member must be the content expert and must sign the final approval form to verify that the material in the project meets appropriate standards of accuracy.

There is no official upper limit on the number of committee members, but students should be aware that the more committee members they have, the more difficult it will generally be to schedule meetings.


Committee Meetings

MScBMC candidates will meet with their MRP Supervisor regularly.

At least three formal committee meetings with all committee members in attendance must be held during MRP progress. At these meetings the student must demonstrate significant progress in the development of the project and evaluation/paper (if applicable). Minutes from each meeting (bullet form is appropriate) must be submitted to both the supervisor and the director of BMC.

Visit and click through the student timeline to see suggested MRP milestones.