Skip to main content
Unit of study_

BMET9400: Biomechanical Design

Semester 1, 2024 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

The ability to design within the context of biomedical engineering requires cross-disciplinary knowledge and an appreciation and application of professional engineering standards and ethics. This unit provides students the opportunity to experience the design process and to develop good engineering skills. Students will build on skills and knowledge developed in prerequisite units and be introduced to standards and creative tools relevant to biomedical applications. The importance of standard engineering drawings in the communication and definition of parts and assemblies, the use of a CAD package to create them, and the importance and deeper understanding of standard components will be integral to the learning in this unit. Students will also learn and use the design process from initial idea to finished product, and practice various methods used to generate creative solutions.

Unit details and rules

Unit code BMET9400
Academic unit Biomedical Engineering
Credit points 6
MECH2400 or BMET2400
Assumed knowledge

(ENGG1801 or ENGG1810) and ENGG1802. HSC Maths and HSC Physics

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Young No,
Lecturer(s) Young No,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Small continuous assessment Tutorial Activities
Participation and submission of tutorial based activities over the semester
5% Multiple weeks ~1-2 pages
Outcomes assessed: LO4 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5
Assignment Assignment Module 1
Engineering Drawing Assessment
25% Week 05
Due date: 22 Mar 2024 at 23:59
To be done during Weeks 1-5
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO4 LO6 LO8
Assignment Assignment Module 2
Assessment on human anthropometry, biomechanics, and ergonomics
30% Week 08
Due date: 19 Apr 2024 at 23:59
To be done during Weeks 5-8
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8
Assignment Biomechanics Calculation Take Home Quiz
Take-home quiz on human biomechanics, anthropometry, and joint statics
10% Week 09
Due date: 26 Apr 2024 at 23:59
~60 mins to complete
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO3
Assignment group assignment Assignment Module 3
Design of an artificial implant
30% Week 13
Due date: 24 May 2024 at 23:59
To be done during Weeks 9-13
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9
group assignment = group assignment ?

Assessment summary

Assignment Module 1: Engineering Drawing of a Lego minifigure + accompanying report

Assignment Module 2: Solidworks/CAD file of an anthropometrically representative model of a human body + an ergonomically designed accessory with accompanying short report

Assignment Module 3: Solidworks/CAD file and FEA report of an  implant (individual) with accompanying design report (group). Students will be working in groups of four.

Biomechanics Calculation Take Home Quiz: A short take home quiz to assess student’s ability to solve mechanics problems based around the human body.

Assessment criteria

Detailed rubrics will be published on Canvas for each of the module assessments. Briefly, students would be graded on the quality of the engineering drawings and CAD-files submitted, as well as the quality and depth of the accompanying discussions behind the design rationale.

Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for
Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the
Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a
final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

The Assessment Procedures 2011 provide that any written work submitted after 11:59pm on the due date will be penalised by 5% of the maximum awardable mark for each calendar day after the due date. If the assessment is submitted more than ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

Support for students

The Support for Students Policy 2023 reflects the University’s commitment to supporting students in their academic journey and making the University safe for students. It is important that you read and understand this policy so that you are familiar with the range of support services available to you and understand how to engage with them.

The University uses email as its primary source of communication with students who need support under the Support for Students Policy 2023. Make sure you check your University email regularly and respond to any communications received from the University.

Learning resources and detailed information about weekly assessment and learning activities can be accessed via Canvas. It is essential that you visit your unit of study Canvas site to ensure you are up to date with all of your tasks.

If you are having difficulties completing your studies, or are feeling unsure about your progress, we are here to help. You can access the support services offered by the University at any time:

Support and Services (including health and wellbeing services, financial support and learning support)
Course planning and administration
Meet with an Academic Adviser

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Engineering Drawing – Basics and Projections Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO4 LO8
Week 02 Engineering Drawing – Dimensioning and Tolerancing Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO2 LO4 LO6 LO8
Week 03 Engineering Drawing – Assembly drawings and drawing documentation Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO2 LO4 LO6 LO8
Week 04 Revision of mechanics/kinematics; anatomical positions and gait kinetics Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4
Week 05 Anthropometry and ergonomics Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO6 LO8
Week 06 Statics of the musculoskeletal system Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4
Week 07 Biomedical Engineering Design and Development principles Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 08 Intro to Finite Element Analysis simulation Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO7
Week 09 Screw and Dental Biomechanics Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4
Week 10 Biomechanics of Hip and Knee replacements Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO3 LO5
Week 11 Fluid mechanics in blood vessels and lungs Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO4 LO6 LO7
Week 12 Advances in 3D printing Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 13 Revision and Reflection Lecture and tutorial (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8

Attendance and class requirements

Students are expected to attend and actively engage in all timetabled activities of a unit of study. Students are required to be in attendance at the correct time and place of any formal or informal examinations and scheduled assessments. Non-attendance on any grounds insufficient to claim special consideration will result in the forfeiture of marks associated with the assessment.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings


You do not need to purchase these textbooks – however you may wish to borrow these from the library.

Paul H. King, Richard C. Fries, Arthur T. Johnson , Design of Biomedical Devices and Systems 4th Edition (4th Edition). United States of
America, CRC-Press, 2019. 978-1138723061.
A.W. Boundy, Engineering Drawing + Sketchbook (8th Edition). Australia, McGraw Hill Australia, 2011. 9780071016766.
Gail Baura, Medical Device Technologies: A Systems Based Overview Using Engineering Standards (1st Edition). Oxford, U.K., Elsevier, 2012.
James Trevelyan, The Making of an Expert Engineer (1st Edition). London U.K., CRC Press Taylor & Francis Group, 2014. 978-1-138-


Biomechanics references

Winter, David A. Biomechanics and motor control of human movement. John Wiley & Sons, 2009

Özkaya, Nihat, et al. Fundamentals of biomechanics: equilibrium, motion, and deformation. Springer, 2016

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Develop knowledge and understanding on human biomechanics (anthropometry, whole body mechanics, joint mechanics)
  • LO2. Demonstrate freehand sketching and drafting practices to Australian and International drawing standards.
  • LO3. Evaluate and model basic joint biomechanics
  • LO4. Appreciate and apply idea generation methods and design analysis techniques to address an engineering problem
  • LO5. Apply principles of selection criteria and cost-benefit-risk balance for good engineering design
  • LO6. Develop skills in design analysis techniques and layout
  • LO7. Develop skills in design development and testing
  • LO8. Communicate designs, processes and results in a format appropriate to the audience, using written and graphical communication methods.
  • LO9. Critically reflect on the use of engineering design tools and processes

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

Minor changes to the assessment requirements will be made based on previous year's feedback.


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.