Biological & Ecological Engineering

Top down view of a river in nature.
Degree Type
Corvallis Campus
Table of contents


Biological and ecological engineering lives at the interface of the life sciences and engineering to ensure the optimum use and sustainability of biological resources. Oregon State offers graduate degree programs in this discipline that combine a solid engineering base with a strong emphasis on life sciences.

Bioprocess engineering encompasses biosensors, molecular-level biosystems analysis, microbial fuel cells, and bio-based products and fuels, among others. Water resources engineering includes constructed wetland treatment systems, crop growth modeling, groundwater and subsurface contaminant transport.

Graduates emerge with advanced degrees that open doors to highly relevant and challenging careers in which they combine their problem-solving skills with technical expertise and imagination to address some of the many environmental challenges facing the world.

Graduate Information

Biological & Ecological Engineering (M.S., M.Eng, and Ph.D degree programs)

The graduate program in Biological & Ecological Engineering deals with diverse issues in the design and analysis of a wide range of biological and hydrologic systems. Focus areas are in bioprocessing, biosystems analysis and water resource engineering/watershed analysis. 

Research topics in Biological and Ecological engineering encompass biofuels production, metabolic engineering, microbial fuel cells, biohydrogen production, agrivoltaics, waste and waste water treatment, modeling and control of biological systems, biofuel systems analysis using techno-economic models and life cycle assessment.  Several of the research topics under Water Resources Engineering (see below) are also applicable to BEE.

*Water Resource Engineering at Oregon State University is an interdisciplinary program separate from BEE, with advisors in the BEE department. If you want to study WRE, you must apply to the Water Resources Graduate Program's Water Resources Engineering focus NOT Biological and Ecological Engineering, unless you are seeking a dual degree experience.

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