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MIT Course Catalog 2014-2015

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Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Program

Founded in 1970, the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology (HST) Program is one of the oldest and largest biomedical engineering and physician-scientist training programs in the United States and the longest-standing collaboration between Harvard and MIT. Since 2012, HST has been housed in the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science (IMES).

HST's unique interdisciplinary educational program brings engineering as well as the physical and biological sciences from the scientist's bench to the patient's bedside. Conversely, it brings clinical insight from the patient's bedside to the laboratory bench. In this way, HST students are trained to have deep understanding of engineering, physical sciences, and the biological sciences, complemented with hands-on experience in the clinic or in industry; and they become conversant with the underlying quantitative and molecular aspects of medicine and biomedical science. Within HST, approximately 300 graduate students work with eminent faculty and affiliated faculty members from throughout the MIT and Harvard communities.

In addition to its outstanding record of accomplishment for research in human health care, HST educational programs are distinguished by three key elements:

  • A strong quantitative orientation
  • Required hands-on experience in a clinical setting
  • A focused interdisciplinary research project

HST currently offers degrees in three multidisciplinary areas of graduate study:

  • Medical Sciences MD Program
  • Medical Engineering and Medical Physics Doctoral Program
  • Speech and Hearing Bioscience and Technology Doctoral Program

Doctoral Programs

Medical Sciences

HST's Medical Sciences Program leads to the MD degree from Harvard Medical School. It is oriented toward students with a strong interest and background in quantitative science, especially in the biological, physical, engineering, and chemical sciences. The subjects in human biology developed for this curriculum represent the joint efforts of life scientists, physicians, physical scientists, and engineers from the faculties of Harvard and MIT.

The programs of study are designed to meet the interests and needs of the individual student. The student is encouraged to pursue advanced study in areas of interest that may complement the subjects offered in HST. Such study may be undertaken as part of the MD degree requirements or may be pursued in a program that combines the MD with a master's or doctoral degree. HST students join the students of the regular Harvard Medical School curriculum in the clinical clerkships.

Because HST is committed to educating physicians who have a deep understanding of the scientific basis of medicine and who are well equipped for an interdisciplinary research career, HST encourages students in the MD curriculum to devote time to research and requires a thesis for completion of the degree. Many MD students desire even more research training than is possible during the standard four-year MD curriculum. For such students, one option is to pursue a formal PhD program in addition to an MD program. Another option expands the MD program to five or more years in order to include a major research training component.

Further details on the Medical Sciences Program and application forms may be obtained from the Office of Admissions, Harvard Medical School, 25 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02115. Applications must be submitted by October 15 of the year before desired matriculation. For further information, candidates can contact HST's medical sciences admissions coordinator at hst-md-admissions@mit.edu.

Medical Engineering and Medical Physics

The Medical Engineering and Medical Physics (MEMP) Program is a five-to-seven–year program that leads to the PhD in Medical Engineering and Medical Physics awarded by MIT or by the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences. The program trains students as engineers or physical scientists who also have extensive knowledge of the medical sciences. By understanding engineering and physical science applications, as well as their clinical implications, graduates of this program are well positioned to define new questions and formulate novel approaches in biomedical research.

The MEMP program is founded on a philosophy of openness and collaboration, characteristics that encourage innovative and independent thinking and creativity. This philosophy is fostered by the unique environment in which MEMP students study. While each MEMP student has depth in one classical discipline of engineering or physical science, the collective community has students in all disciplines. MEMP students also have peers with diverse career paths in medicine, science, engineering, business, and government. This community promotes an open exchange of ideas and exposes students to different perspectives on the health sciences. Moreover, MEMP students have access to research opportunities in labs at Harvard, MIT, and the Harvard teaching hospitals. Students can do research with faculty at any of these institutions and have many opportunities through classes, events, and projects to interact with faculty from all of these institutions.

The program's academic curriculum includes multiple components that prepare students to be medical innovators who will advance human health. First, HST provides MEMP students with a thorough graduate education in a classical discipline of engineering or physical science. Each student selects a concentration area, such as mechanical engineering, chemistry and chemical engineering, materials science, electrical engineering, computer science, physics, aeronautics and astronautics, brain and cognitive science, or nuclear engineering, and completes substantial coursework in this discipline.

Students then become conversant in the biological sciences through preclinical coursework followed by a series of clinical experiences. Courses such as pathology and pathophysiology are taken together with HST MD students. Then students engage in immersive clinical experiences where they acquire a hands-on understanding of clinical care, medical decision-making, and the role of technology in medical practice. Through these experiences, students become fluent in the language and culture of medicine and gain a firsthand understanding of the opportunities for, and constraints on, applying scientific and technological innovations in health care.

Two seminar classes help students integrate science and engineering with medicine and develop professional skills. A two-stage qualifying examination ensures that each student is proficient in his or her chosen concentration area, can integrate information from diverse sources into a coherent research proposal, and is able to defend that research proposal in an oral presentation.

Finally, MEMP students investigate important problems at the interfaces of science, technology, and clinical medicine through individualized research projects that prepare them to undertake independent research. MEMP students have the opportunity to perform thesis research in laboratories at MIT, Harvard, and the Harvard affiliated teaching hospitals.

Neuroimaging and bioastronautics are areas of specialization within MEMP for which HST offers specially designed training programs. MEMP candidates may choose to apply through MIT, Harvard, or both. Those applying to MEMP through MIT should submit a single application. Those applying to MEMP through Harvard must also apply to the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences or the Biophysics Program. Additional information about applying to MEMP is available at http://hst.mit.edu/academics/memp/admissions/.

Speech and Hearing Bioscience and Technology

HST's doctoral program in Speech and Hearing Bioscience and Technology (SHBT), formerly Speech and Hearing Sciences, prepares students with an undergraduate background in science or engineering to have a broad acquaintance with the field of speech and hearing, and to develop specialized knowledge that focuses on a particular approach in research. The only program of its type in the country—and the only doctoral training program funded in this area by the National Institutes of Health—SHBT is designed to develop research scientists who can apply the concepts and methods of the physical and biological sciences to basic and clinical problems in speech and hearing using innovative research. No other research training program provides the multidisciplinary depth and breadth offered by SHBT. The five-to-seven–year program leads to a PhD in speech and hearing bioscience and technology from MIT. SHBT's more than 50 participating faculty members represent 10 academic departments from Harvard and MIT, with research facilities at MIT, Harvard University, Harvard Medical School and affiliated teaching hospitals, and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (MEEI). The small class size of this unique program ensures personalized and high-quality training by a diverse and dedicated faculty from the two institutions.

SHBT's curriculum provides an effective method of training researchers by introducing the physical and biological bases of speech and hearing mechanisms involved in the communications process. While SHBT seeks to develop research scientists rather than clinical practitioners, there is a strong emphasis on providing students with exposure to clinical problems, approaches, and techniques. Graduates are thoroughly prepared for successful careers in basic and applied research in industry, universities, or government laboratories involved with biological and synthetic communication systems.

Typically, a student's first two years in the program are devoted to coursework, which is supplemented by significant exposure to various research projects. Courses in the first year assume familiarity with calculus and differential equations, college-level physics, probability and statistics, and biology. The core curriculum covers the anatomical, acoustical, physiological, perceptual, and cognitive basics, as well as the clinical approaches to speech and hearing problems. The early introduction of important concepts in acoustics, anatomy, and physiology provides a solid base from which to pursue individual research interests. Early in the curriculum, students are introduced to various research laboratories that use different approaches to solving speech and hearing problems. This involvement in research provides an immediate application of classroom subjects. Students work with research advisors to develop a thorough understanding of basic concepts and tools in their fields of concentration. Later, students participate in subjects that require them to apply basic concepts to clinical problems and scientific research. Throughout the curriculum, special attention is devoted to developing personal integrity, scientific values, and scholarly practice. With faculty guidance, each student plans a concentration tailored to the student's particular interest.

By the end of their second year, students identify an area of professional interest and choose a research project that forms the basis for their doctoral thesis. SHBT research in the speech and hearing sciences focuses on the biological and physical mechanisms underlying human communication by spoken language. The processes addressed by these sciences include the physical acoustics of sound and the perceptual neurophysiological bases of hearing, as well as the linguistic, cognitive, and motor levels of processing by talkers and listeners.

The SHBT training program is offered through HST to students who enrolled in fall 2011 and earlier.

The program is formally transitioning and is now administered through Harvard Medical School's Division of Medical Sciences (DMS). Interested candidates should apply via DMS, not through HST. Please see http://www.hms.harvard.edu/dms/shbt/ for more information.

Inquiries

Additional information on degree programs, admissions, and financial aid can be obtained from HST's Academic Office, Room E25-518, 617-253-7470.

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The Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology (HST) Program’s unique interdisciplinary educational program brings engineering as well as the physical and biological sciences from the scientist’s bench to the patient’s bedside. Conversely, it brings clinical insight from the patient’s bedside to the laboratory bench. In this way, HST students are trained to have deep understanding of engineering, physical sciences, and the biological sciences, complemented with hands-on experience in the clinic or in industry; and they become conversant with the underlying quantitative and molecular aspects of medicine and biomedical science.

HST’s academic programs are described in Part 2, in the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Program chapter.

 

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Faculty

Emery N. Brown, MD, PhD
Edward Hood Taplin Professor of Medical Engineering, MIT
Professor of Computational Neuroscience and Health Sciences and Technology, MIT
Warren M. Zapol Professor of Anaesthesia, MGH
Associate Director, Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, MIT
Codirector

David E. Cohen, MD, PhD
Ebert Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, HMS
Director of Hepatology, BWH
Codirector

Matthew P. Frosch, MD, PhD
Lawrence J. Henderson Associate Professor of Pathology and Health Sciences and Technology, HMS
Director, Neuropathology Service, MGH
Associate Director

Richard N. Mitchell, MD, PhD
Lawrence J. Henderson Professor of Pathology and Health Sciences and Technology, HMS
Vice Chair for Education, Department of Pathology, BWH
Associate Director

Professors (Primary Appointment at MIT)

Sangeeta N. Bhatia, MD, PhD
John and Dorothy Wilson Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Howard Hughes Medical Investigator
Senior Associate Member, Broad Institute

Louis D. Braida, PhD
Henry Ellis Warren Professor of Electrical Engineering and Health Sciences and Technology

Arup K. Chakraborty, PhD
Robert T. Haslam (1911) Professor of Chemical Engineering
Professor of Chemistry, Biological Engineering, and Physics
Director, Institute of Medical Engineering and Science

Richard J. Cohen, MD, PhD
Whitaker Professor in Biomedical Engineering

Elazer R. Edelman, MD, PhD
Thomas D. and Virginia W. Cabot Professor of Health Sciences and Technology, MIT
Professor of Medicine, BWH
Director, MIT Clinical Research Center

Dennis M. Freeman, PhD
Professor of Electrical Engineering
MacVicar Faculty Fellow
Dean for Undergraduate Education

John D. E. Gabrieli, PhD
Grover Hermann Professor in Health Sciences and Technology and Cognitive Neuroscience
Director, Martinos Imaging Center at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research

Lee Gehrke, PhD
Hermann L. F. von Helmholtz Professor of Health Sciences and Technology, MIT
Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, HMS

Martha L. Gray, PhD
J. W. Kieckhefer Professor of Medical and Electrical Engineering

David E. Housman, PhD
Ludwig Professor of Biology

Robert S. Langer, Jr., ScD
Kenneth J. Germeshausen Professor of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering and Health Sciences and Technology
Institute Professor

Irving M. London, MD
Professor of Biology, Emeritus, MIT
Professor of Medicine, Emeritus, HMS

Roger G. Mark, MD, PhD
Distinguished Professor in Health Sciences and Technology and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Collin M. Stultz, MD, PhD
Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Peter Szolovits, PhD
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering and Health Sciences and Technology

Laurence R. Young, ScD
Apollo Program Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Health Sciences and Technology, Emeritus

Professors (Primary Appointment at Harvard and Affiliated Hospitals)

R. Rox Anderson, MD
Professor of Dermatology and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Joseph V. Bonventre, MD, PhD
Samuel A. Levine Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Brett Bouma, PhD
Professor of Dermatology and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Thomas N. Byrne, MD
Clinical Professor of Neurology and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Bertrand Delgutte, PhD
Professor of Otology and Laryngology and Health Sciences and Technology, MEEI

John J. Guinan, Jr., PhD
Professor of Otology and Laryngology, MEEI

Robert E. Hillman, PhD
Professor of Surgery, MGH

Robert D. Howe, PhD
Abbott and James Lawrence Professor of Engineering, Harvard University

Isaac S. Kohane, MD, PhD
Professor of Pediatrics and Health Sciences and Technology, CHB

M. Charles Liberman, PhD
Professor of Otology and Laryngology and Health Sciences and Technology, MEEI

Bruce R. Rosen, MD, PhD
Professor of Radiology and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

John J. Rosowski, PhD
Professor of Otology and Laryngology and Health Sciences and Technology, MEEI

Frederick J. Schoen, MD, PhD
Professor of Pathology and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Lee H. Schwamm, MD
Professor of Neurology, MGH

Brian Seed, PhD
Professor of Genetics and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Daniel C. Shannon, MD
Professor of Pediatrics and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Mehmet Toner, PhD
Helen Andrus Benedict Professor of Surgery and Health Sciences and Technology, MGH

Associate Professors (Primary Appointment at MIT)

Elfar Adalsteinsson, PhD
Associate Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Daniel Griffith Anderson, PhD
Samuel A. Goldblith Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering and Health Sciences and Technology

Hugh M. Herr, PhD
Associate Professor in Media Arts and Sciences, and Health Sciences and Technology

Leonid A. Mirny, PhD
Associate Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Physics
Associate Member, Broad Institute

Associate Professors (Primary Appointment at Harvard and Affiliated Hospitals)

M. Christian Brown, PhD
Associate Professor of Otology and Laryngology, MEEI

Martha Bulyk, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Pathology, and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH
Associate Member, Broad Institute

Deborah Burstein, PhD
Associate Professor of Radiology and Health Sciences and Technology, BIDMC

W. H. Churchill Jr., MD
Associate Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Utkan Demirci, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Jeffrey M. Karp, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Alireza Khademhosseini, PhD
Associate Professor in Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Jagesh V. Shah, PhD
Associate Professor of Systems Biology and Medicine, BWH

Christopher A. Shera, PhD
Associate Professor of Otology and Laryngology and Health Sciences and Technology, MEEI

Assistant Professors (Primary Appointment at MIT)

Kwanghun Chung, PhD
Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering and Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Hermann L. F. von Helmholtz Career Development Assistant Professor, Institute of Medical Engineering and Science
Associate Member, Broad Institute

Thomas Heldt, PhD
Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Hermann L. F. von Helmholtz Career Assistant Development Professor, Institute of Medical Engineering and Science

Assistant Professors (Primary Appointment at Harvard and Affiliated Hospitals)

Shiladitya Sengupta, PhD
Assistant Professor of Medicine and Health Sciences and Technology, BWH

Benjamin Vakoc, PhD
Assistant Professor of Dermatology, MGH

 

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