|Abstract:||The advent of hydrogels for biological applications has sparked interest in the both the medical and engineering community in recent years as a means to investigate cellular level processes. An area that has shown promising application of hydrogel materials has been in the study of stem cell development. Proven that the microenvironment of the stem cell plays a critical role in its development, hydrogels can closely mimic the intricate physical, biological, and chemical landscape encompassing various cell types. Hydrogels are simply polymer network with large water content, and their robust nature allows versatile manipulation. From patterning different geometries, coating with adhering proteins or bioactive peptides, and construction of complex physiological architectures, hydrogels provide a wide set of tools to investigate stem cell development. Interested in a wide range of questions in cellular development, we explored effects of different aspects of the environment. We patterned polyacrylamide hydrogels with patterns similar topologically to tissue architecture to observe increased conversion, used this system with it’s tunable compliance to study natural biochemical lipid derivatives to observe significant cellular response, and created PEG based 3D coculture environments to study the interface of cell types for increased angiogenesis.