Master On Campus

Medical and Biological Illustration

Johns Hopkins University

22 months
56500 USD/year
56500 USD/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


Medical illustration training at Johns Hopkins University formally began in 1911 under the leadership of Max Brödel with an endowment from Henry Walters. While the first students earned certificates, since 1961, students have earned a Master of Arts in Medical and Biological Illustration (MBI)


The Medical and Biological Illustration (MBI) program at Johns Hopkins University has enjoyed continuous accreditation since 1970. The next review by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), in cooperation with the Accreditation Review Committee for the Medical Illustrator (ARC-MI), is set for 2026.

The MBI graduate program provides broad interdisciplinary education and training in medical illustration. This 22-month program meets both the scholarship requirements of the University for a Master of Arts degree and the visual communication needs of today’s health science professionals. The academic calendar, faculty and student affairs are administered by the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

As part of the Department Art as Applied to Medicine in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, students in the MBI program have easy access to all the facilities of the world-renowned Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. The integral connection between the MBI graduate program and the medical illustration services provided by faculty of the Department allows students to mentor with practicing Certified Medical Illustrators (CMI), to use the most technologically advanced production equipment, and to observe faculty members as active illustrators in the Hopkins community.

Today, its graduates continue the Hopkins “tradition of excellence.”

The Profession

There is a growing need for clear accurate visuals to communicate the latest advancements in science and medicine. Effective medical illustration can teach a new surgical procedure, explain a newly discovered molecular mechanism, describe how a medical device works, or depict a disease pathway. Through their work, medical illustrators bridge gaps in medical and healthcare communication.

Graduates of the Johns Hopkins Medical and Biological Illustration program have a strong history of high employment rates with some students receiving job offers prior to graduation. Of the graduates from 2015-2019, 94% were employed within the first 6 months and only 9% were self employed (that drops to 6% self employed at 12 months after graduation).

Looking ahead, medical illustrators will continue to fill the vital role of illuminating medicine. Growth areas in medical illustration include: 3D modeling and animation, virtual and augmented reality, and interactive design.

Programme Structure

Courses included:

  • 2D Animation 
  • 3D Modeling and Animation 
  • Anatomical Illustration and Radiological Visualization 
  • Biological Illustration 
  • Business Practices for the Medical Illustrator 
  • Communications Media: Photography 
  • Communications Media: Graphic Design 
  • Continuous Tone Illustration 
  • Design of Interactive Learning Experiences 

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 22 months

Start dates & application deadlines


60 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

GRE admission requirements GRE®

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Baccalaureate degree (BS, BA, BFA, etc.) 
  • High academic standing 
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE) optional
  • Exemplary Science Preparation (comparable to pre-med) is required of all applicants
  • Strong Art Portfolio
  • Excellent Written and Verbal Communications Skills with at least one course in English Composition (GRE or TOEFL scores may substitute)

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    56500 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 56500 USD per year during 22 months.
  • National

    56500 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 56500 USD per year during 22 months.

Living costs for Baltimore

1240 - 2100 USD /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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Medical and Biological Illustration
Johns Hopkins University


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