B.S., Valdosta State University, 1996Ph.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham, 2002Post-Doctoral Fellowship, University of Washington, 2002-2004Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, 2004-2006
Shannon Barker portrait

"My work focuses on the development and implementation of highly effective learning strategies and curricular design in BME undergraduate education."

Shannon Barker, PhD, BME Undergraduate Program Director

Shannon Barker, Ph.D., focuses on ensuring that the BME undergraduate program's educational objectives and learning outcomes, as well as its curriculum, reflect an innovative and highly effective learning environment that meets the needs of all of its students, as well as employers, graduate & professional schools, and accreditation bodies. She is an Assistant Professor and Undergraduate Program Director in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. She received her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Alabama at Birmingham under the advisement of Dr. David Curiel and completed two post-doctoral fellowships with Dr. Jeffrey Chamberlain at the University of Washington and Dr. Patrick Aebischer at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne.  

Before coming to UVA, Shannon was the Director of Graduate Training at the Georgia Institute of Technology & Emory University Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering, where she was part of a leadership team for a graduate program spanning multiple degree options, multiple institutions, and multiple countries. She also taught core courses in the undergraduate program. Shannon's initial role at UVA was in the Engineering's Dean's Office as Director of Graduate Education, where she worked with Deans and faculty to provide leadership, and direct and develop strategies and policies, that impact graduate students and post-docs in the School. Shannon has a passion for teaching students, and has won several awards in this area, including Outstanding Teacher of the Year in 2014 and the Gandy-Diaz Teaching Mentor award in 2016.

Shannon's CV



  • All-University Teaching Award from the Office of the Provost 2022
  • Hartfield Excellence in Teaching Award from the Jefferson Scholars Foundation 2022
  • Gandy-Diaz Teaching Mentor, 2016
  • Outstanding Teaching of the Year awarded by Georgia Tech's BMES Chapter 2014

Research Interests

  • Targeted Drug & Gene Delivery
  • Teaching and Pedagogy
Shannon Barker U. Virginia BME Undergraduate Program Director

Undergraduate Program Director Shannon Barker's teaching expertise includes the areas of physiology, cell and molecular biology and biomedical innovation.

In the News

Selected Publications

  • Teaching engineering design through a team-based multi-disciplinary humanitarian entering project. ABS 2023 American Society of Engineering Education Annual Conference
  • Creating inclusive classrooms: work developed during the ASEE Year of Impact on Racial Equity. ABS 2023 American Society of Engineering Education Annual Meeting
  • The use of infographics to teach students about healthcare disparities in a physiology course. ABS 2022 Biomedical Engineering Society Annual Meeting
  • The predictive value of admissions metrics on measures of success in a biomedical engineering PhD program ABS 2021 Biomedical Engineering Society Annual Meeting
  • The use of virtual design modules in an introduction to engineering course ABS 2021 American Society of Engineering Education Annual Meeting
  • A holistic PhD admissions rubric: design and implementation ABS 2021 American Society of ENgineering Education Annual Meeting
  • BME labs in the era of COVID-19: Transitioning a hands-on integrated lab experience to remote instruction using gamified lab simulations ABS Biomed Eng Educ
  • Viral-based modeling and correction of neurodegenerative diseases by RNA interference Gene Therapy 13:487
  • Combined transcriptional and transactional targeting improves the specificity and efficacy of adenovirus gene delivery to ovarian carcinoma Gene Therapy 10:1198
  • The secretory leukoprotease inhibitor (SLPI) promoter for ovarian cancer gene therapy J Gene Med 5:300
  • An immunomagnetic-based method for the purification of ovarian cancer cells from patient-derived ascites Gynecol Oncol 82:57

Courses Taught

  • BME 4064 BME Capstone Design II
  • BME 2102 Physiology II
  • ENGR 1624 Solving Engineering Problems in Medicine: An Introduction