Best Master’s Programs in Healthcare Administration 2020

By TMHC Staff

Last Updated: December 14, 2020

The increasing demand for healthcare services by people of all ages drives the need for professionals who can organize and manage healthcare staff, medical records, and financial information. Healthcare administrators find employment in hospitals, long-term care facilities, insurance firms, pharmaceutical companies, and many other healthcare-related organizations.

While the field requires each professional to possess a bachelor's degree, graduates of master's in healthcare administration (MHA) programs can expect greater career advancement and higher salaries. The best MHA programs feature coursework in population health management, information technology, human resources, and policy analysis, preparing graduates to provide quality patient care in collaboration with other healthcare professionals.

Reading our rankings of the best MHA programs can help launch your career in this rapidly growing field. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 32% increase in healthcare management positions from 2019-29, much faster than the national average for all occupations.

Methodology

View ranking methodology here.

Top 10 Master's in Healthcare Administration Degrees

Rank School
1 Georgetown University
2 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
3 Cornell University
4 University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
5 University of Florida
6 University of Southern California
7 Tulane University of Louisiana
8 George Washington University
9 Saint Joseph's University
10 Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Best Master's in Healthcare Administration Degrees 2020

1. Georgetown University

Georgetown, located in Washington, D.C., lists a master's in health systems administration (MHSA) among its top-ranked graduate programs. The MHSA curriculum focuses on care systems management and leads to a master of science. The one-year, accelerated program features an experiential integrative seminar and supervised graduate internships at local healthcare organizations. Each student can opt to pair with an executive mentor.

Admission requirements include a bachelor's degree in any field, academic transcripts, GRE/GMAT scores, a statement of purpose, three recommendation letters, and a video interview. The department encourages admitted students to complete a financial accounting course prior to starting the program. Students may transfer up to 10 credits.

Courses Include
  • Health economics
  • Health informatics
  • Operations management
  • Planning and marketing
  • U.S. health systems
Unique Features
  • Cost: $2,139 per credit
  • Credits Required: 42
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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2. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

UNC-Chapel Hill offers a master's in healthcare administration program for early- to midcareer healthcare professionals in two formats: full-time residential and online executive. The residential program curriculum combines classroom and experiential learning, including a 12-week internship, and culminates with a master's paper and comprehensive examination. The online program follows a cohort model and requires three on-campus residencies per year, along with a capstone and thesis. 

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA. UNC-Chapel Hill recommends GRE or GMAT scores in the top 50th percentile, along with coursework in accounting, microeconomics, and statistics. 

Courses Include
  • Emergency management
  • Information systems, technology, and tools
  • Introduction to law and ethics in healthcare management
  • Introduction to strategic planning and marketing
  • Politics, public health, and health policy
Unique Features
  • Cost: $2,302.25 per credit
  • Credits Required: 49 online; 60 residential
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education 

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3. Cornell University

Students at Cornell, located in Ithaca, New York, can earn an on-campus master of health administration in two years. The curriculum includes case studies, discussion, guest lecturers, and a 10-week summer internship, culminating with a capstone. Cornell also offers the program in hybrid format for working professionals with at least five years of experience. The 18-month curriculum includes online courses and on-campus intensives taken as a cohort. 

Program candidates need a bachelor's degree. Admission requirements include transcripts, a resume, GRE/GMAT (optional for hybrid program students), a statement of purpose, and two recommendations. The program prefers a 3.0 GPA and prior coursework in accounting or finance, microeconomics, and statistics.

Courses Include
  • Healthcare finance
  • Healthcare marketing
  • Healthcare organization
  • Microeconomics for management and policy
  • Population health
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,278.47 per credit
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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4. University of Michigan

University of Michigan students can choose between a traditional master of health services administration program at the Ann Arbor campus or hybrid executive program. The two-year on-campus program finishes with an integrated learning experience in which teams of students address an issue faced by a real-life client organization. Students also complete a 10-12 week internship. 

 

The hybrid program, for professionals with at least five years of work experience, spans 20 months. Students attend online lectures and nine intensive three-day weekends as a cohort and complete a case analysis capstone. 

Applicants to the on-campus program need a bachelor's degree in any field and submit transcripts, a statement of purpose, a reflective essay, three recommendations, and GRE or MCAT scores. 

Courses Include
  • Cost-effective analysis in health
  • Economics of healthcare
  • Health law
  • Health services system
  • Organizational theory and management
Unique Features
  • Cost: $960-$1,636 per credit
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission; Council on Education for Public Health

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5. University of Florida

The master of health administration program at UF trains future healthcare managers at the Gainesville campus. The two-year program includes a 10- to 12-week internship during the summer after the first year and a capstone seminar in the final semester. UF also offers a part-time, partly online option for working professionals that can be completed in three years.

Admitted students come from a variety of academic backgrounds, including business, science, and humanities. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA, along with a GRE verbal-quantitative score of 300 or a GMAT score of 500. Submission requirements include a statement of purpose, three references, two essay responses to prompts, and a resume. 

Courses Include
  • Healthcare data analytics
  • Legal and ethical issues in health administration
  • Professional skills seminar
  • Strategic management in health administration
  • U.S. healthcare system
Unique Features
  • Cost: $448.73 per credit
  • Credits Required: 57
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education 

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6. University of Southern California

At USC, the two-year master of health administration (MHA) program includes a residency at a Los Angeles-area healthcare facility and offers an optional dual MHA/master's in gerontology degree. Working students can also pursue their degrees part time through an accelerated format or evening classes.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit GRE scores, three recommendation letters, a statement of purpose, and a resume. USC prefers candidates with a 3.0 GPA, along with a GRE verbal section score of 153 and a quantitative score of 144. Prospective students must show completion of a college-level statistics course with a B or higher. 

Courses Include
  • Concepts and practices in managing healthcare organizations
  • Financial management of health services
  • Healthcare delivery
  • Multivariate statistical analysis
  • Problems and issues in the health field
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,938 per credit
  • Credits Required: 48
  • Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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7. Tulane University

Students at Tulane in New Orleans, Louisiana, can earn a master of health administration that focuses on population health management. A year-long administrative residency provides practical experience in an evolving healthcare climate. The program culminates with a comprehensive oral examination in which students analyze a case study and answer four questions that test competency-area knowledge in communication, leadership, professionalism, and management, along with critical thinking and analysis and finance.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited school, a statement of purpose and objectives, and three recommendations from employers or instructors. Tulane typically admits applicants with a 3.0 GPA and strong scores on the GRE, GMAT, or MCAT. 

Courses Include
  • Comparative health systems
  • Health law and regulation
  • Hospital organization
  • Leadership for clinical improvement
  • Monitoring for program management in global health
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,422 per credit
  • Credits Required: 62
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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8. George Washington University

GW, located in Washington, D.C., offers a master of health administration in which students gain field experience via a fellowship or residency. They also must log eight hours of professional enhancement through public health lectures, seminars, or symposia, following completion of an online collaborative institutional training initiative. GW also offers an online program for working professionals.

Applicants submit a statement of purpose and GRE, LSAT, GMAT, MCAT, or DAT scores. GW may waive test score reporting for candidates with a master's degree. Admission prerequisites consist of undergraduate courses in accounting and statistics, in which students earned at least a B. Admitted students complete an academic integrity activity online.

Courses Include
  • Community health management and advocacy 
  • Health services information applications
  • Medical informatics
  • Pathways to public health
  • Quality and performance improvement
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,825 per credit
  • Credits Required: 50
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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9. Saint Joseph's University

SJU's master's in health administration provides three concentration tracks: general, health informatics, and organizational development and leadership. Informatics students learn to employ data to improve patient care. The organizational development and leadership program teaches strategies for change management.

Students can take classes online and on the SJU campus in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Jesuit-based curriculum centers on service to others and social justice and includes fieldwork and a capstone. Most students graduate in 2-3 years. Admission requires a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution, official transcripts, two recommendation letters, a resume, and a personal statement. SJU prefers applicants with 3.0 GPAs, but invites those with lower GPAs to submit a written explanation.

Courses Include
  • Ethics of healthcare
  • Epidemiology and community health
  • Financial management of healthcare organizations
  • Healthcare and the internet
  • Health services research
Unique Features
  • Cost: $905 per credit
  • Credits Required: 36, general; 42, informatics/organizational development and leadership
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

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10. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Students pursuing a master of health administration can earn their degrees at Rutgers via two programs: traditional or executive. The traditional MHA program consists of evening and online classes for bachelor's degree-holders employed or planning employment in healthcare or moving into management. The program culminates with a professional practicum. 

The executive MHA program holds Saturday classes that prepare healthcare professionals with five years of experience for executive positions. Executive MHA students participate in experiential learning and develop a professional portfolio.

MHA applicants must submit transcripts showing a 3.0 undergraduate GPA, two recommendation letters, a personal statement, and a resume.

Courses Include
  • Information systems for healthcare
  • Leadership and professional development
  • Marketing for healthcare organizations
  • Principles of health administration
  • Population health
Unique Features
  • Cost: $739 per credit in-state; $1,251 out-of-state
  • Credits Required: 42, traditional; 45, executive
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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11. Mount Saint Mary's University, Los Angeles

MSMU, a women's college, offers a two-year master's in healthcare administration program. Students attend class two evenings a week at the Doheny campus near downtown Los Angeles. Experiential learning includes a mentored practicum and capstone project that teach promotion of effective healthcare systems and policies in an evolving industry.

A holistic admissions process requires a baccalaureate or professional degree with a 3.0 GPA (or explanation of less than a 3.0 GPA), along with an application essay, resume, transcripts, and two references. Promising candidates may participate in an interview. MSMU recommends undergraduate work in a healthcare-related field.

Courses Include
  • Advanced health policy analysis
  • Financing healthcare in America
  • Healthcare analytics for quality and outcomes improvement
  • Policy, politics, and policy analysis in public health and healthcare
  • The future of health: leading change; advancing health; improving care
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,036 per credit
  • Credits Required: 42
  • Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges

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12. Medical University of South Carolina

The state's only comprehensive academic center for health sciences, Charleston's MUSC offers a master's in health administration program and boasts a 92% employment rate for its graduates. Two tracks accommodate different types of learners: (1) executive, delivered primarily online for working health professionals, and (2) residential for students with limited or no healthcare experience. Only the residential track requires an onsite internship as executive-track students already work in the industry.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA and coursework in statistics and economics or accounting, along with technological proficiency. The executive program imposes an additional requirement of at least two years as a healthcare professional.

Courses Include
  • Decision analytics
  • Healthcare accounting
  • Health law and risk management
  • Human resources management
  • Management and health
Unique Features
  • Cost: $865-$983, executive; $970-$1,694 residential
  • Credits Required: 54, executive; 64, residential
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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13. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Located in Little Rock, UAMS lists a master of health administration among its graduate programs. The curriculum combines evening and online classes with experiential learning, and students can choose full- or part-time study. 

Full-timers can complete the program, which includes four classes per week, a paid summer residency program at a healthcare organization, and a management capstone, in 21 months. The part-time program spans 42 months and includes two classes per week, completion of a summer management project for a healthcare organization, and a capstone.

Applicants submit official transcripts showing completion of a baccalaureate degree and 2.75 GPA, GRE or GMAT scores, a personal statement, two recommendations, and a resume. 

Courses Include
  • Advanced applications in healthcare management
  • Applications in health systems financial management
  • Biostatistics
  • Epidemiology
  • Health information systems for administrators 
Unique Features
  • Cost: $450 per credit, in-state; $900, out-of-state 
  • Credits Required: 51
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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14. Moravian College

Students at Bethlehem, Pennsylvania's Moravian can earn a master of health administration online, on campus, or via blended course delivery. In collaboration with Moravian's master of science in nursing program and area healthcare organizations, the interdisciplinary MHA curriculum prepares graduates to lead in the rapidly changing health field. Students can complete their studies in two years.

Admission requirements include a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited school and official transcripts showing a grade of at least 2.8 in an undergraduate statistics course. Applicants also submit a resume and cover letter, two recommendations, an interview, and GMAT scores. Moravian suggests contacting the program for information about GMAT waivers.

Courses Include
  • Epidemiology and bioinformatics
  • Healthcare economics and financing systems
  • Leading change in organizations
  • Leading people in organizations
  • Policy, quality, and safety in healthcare
Unique Features
  • Cost: $2,808 per credit
  • Credits Required: 36
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

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15. University of Pittsburgh

Pitt students can pursue a master of health administration degree in a program that boasts a 95% placement rate of full-time employment within three months of graduation. The curriculum includes a management residency at a healthcare organization and culminates with a master's essay and oral presentation. Students can also opt for an MHA/MBA.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree, three credits of undergraduate algebra (or higher) or statistics, six credits in social and behavioral sciences (preferably including economics), and GRE scores. Pitt also accepts GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, and PCAT scores. Additional requirements include an interview, an objectives statement, and an optional writing sample.

Courses Include
  • Financial management foundations for healthcare and public health
  • Health law and ethics
  • Marketing healthcare and business planning
  • Microeconomics applied to health
  • Quantitative methods in healthcare
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,122 per credit in-state; $1,916 out-of-state
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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16. University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Situated in Minneapolis, UMN offers a master of healthcare administration that integrates business principles with healthcare delivery. UMN's programs features a 21-month curriculum that includes summer residencies at Twin Cities health facilities and organizations. UMN also offers a primarily online executive MHA for working professionals and a dual MHA/MBA degree program. 

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and provide transcripts demonstrating an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher. Other requirements include GRE scores of 300 or GMAT scores of 500, a letter of intent, a resume, and three recommendation letters.

Courses Include
  • Health and health systems
  • Health leadership and effecting change
  • Information technology in healthcare
  • Interprofessional teamwork in healthcare
  • Principles of problem-solving in health services organizations
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,014 per credit in-state; $1,332 out-of-state
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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17. Pennsylvania State University

Penn State houses one of the best MHA programs leading to a master of health administration. Experienced healthcare professionals can complete the program online or in person at the University Park campus. The cohort-based curriculum employs case studies and projects to facilitate practical learning, along with an interprofessional experiential capstone and supervised residency. 

Applicants submit transcripts demonstrating at least a 3.0 undergraduate GPA, two references, a resume, a personal statement, and essay-question responses. The admissions committee invites promising candidates to interview. While not required, admitted students who submit GRE/GMAT reports score within the 30th percentile. 

 

Courses Include
  • Advanced financial management principles in health services organizations
  • Change leadership in health services organizations
  • Health services organizational behavior
  • Information systems in health services administration
  • Managing healthcare operations
Unique Features
  • Cost: $889 per credit in-state; $1,512 out-of-state
  • Credits Required: 49
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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18. University of Washington

The UW campus in Seattle offers a two-year, full-time traditional master's in health administration program for early-career professionals, along with a two-year, part-time executive MHA program for midcareer professionals that meets in Bellevue, Washington. 

Students in the traditional program typically do not work while in school, but do complete a summer internship. Executive MHA program students usually work full time, so their program does not include an internship. Their classes meet one weekend per month. Both programs culminate with a capstone project. 

Admission requires a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA, transcripts, personal statements, and three recommendations. Only the traditional program requires GRE scores. 

Courses Include
  • Clinical systems management
  • Financial management
  • Group dynamics and team leadership
  • Introduction to health services and public health
  • Quantitative methods
Unique Features
  • Cost: $821 per credit, traditional; $980, executive
  • Credits Required: 76, traditional; 69, executive
  • Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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19. Seton Hall University

Seton Hall offers its master's in healthcare administration program online or on its South Orange, New Jersey, campus. The program tracks follow the same curriculum and conclude with a capstone project. Online students meet three times during the course of the program for five-day intensives and residencies. Graduates gain connections to job opportunities in nearby New York City or in New Jersey's biotechnology and pharmaceutical corridor.

Candidates for admission must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college with a 3.0 GPA. Professional experience may compensate for lower GPAs. Submission requirements include three recommendation letters, a statement of goals and career interests, and a resume. 

Courses Include
  • 21st-century healthcare systems
  • Emergency management for health professionals
  • Healthcare data analytics
  • Health management
  • Research methods and statistical analysis for healthcare
Unique Features
  • Cost: $1,310 per credit
  • Credits Required: 42
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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20. The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

OUHSC, located in Oklahoma City, counts a master's in health administration among its graduate programs. Students proceed through the program as a cohort and can opt to complete their studies in two or three years, including an administrative internship, capstone seminar, or field experience. Courses take place in three-hour blocks to help working students with scheduling. OUHSC also offers an MHA-JD dual degree program. 

The curriculum focuses on healthcare systems evaluation, communication, critical thinking, and ethical leadership. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university, submit GRE or GMAT scores, and participate in an in-person, phone, or web-conferencing admissions interview.

Courses Include
  • Forecasting and budgeting
  • Health policy and politics
  • Managed care and integrated delivery systems
  • Managerial epidemiology
  • Strategic management in health service organizations
Unique Features
  • Cost: $388.30 per credit in-state; $1,049.80 out-of-state
  • Credits Required: 54
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission; Council on Education for Public Health 

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21. University of Miami

The master's in health administration at UM in Coral Gables, Florida, takes a business-oriented approach to healthcare management, with a focus on decision-making and process improvement skills. The 18-month curriculum includes a capstone and internship at a Miami-area healthcare organization. Students hold undergraduate degrees in a range of fields, including science, math, politics, economics, and social science. UM does not require healthcare management experience.

Prospective students submit a resume, transcripts, a letter of recommendation, and GMAT scores. Admissions staff may invite strong candidates to interview. Admitted students attend a mandatory four-day orientation event.

Courses Include
  • Corporate strategy and organization
  • Critical thinking and persuasion for business
  • Managing through people
  • Professional skills development
  • Statistics for managerial decision-making
Unique Features
  • Cost: $2,100 per credit
  • Credits Required: 40
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education; Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

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22. AdventHealth University

Orlando, Florida's AHU offers a program leading to a master's degree in healthcare administration that prepares graduates for leadership roles in a growing healthcare market. Geared for working professionals, classes take place in the evenings with one Sunday required per course. AHU boasts a 100% employment rate within three months of graduation. The Christian-based curriculum emphasizes community service and professional competencies. 

AHU prefers applicants with at least two years of healthcare management experience or completion of a residency during the program. Submission requirements include transcripts showing completion of a bachelor's degree and a 3.0 GPA, along with undergraduate accounting, economics, and financing. Candidates may receive an invitation to interview. 

Courses Include
  • Health administration capstone
  • Health insurance, managed care, and reimbursement
  • Identity and mission
  • Role fidelity and the exercise of power
  • Scientific inquiry and research
Unique Features
  • Cost: $630 per credit
  • Credits Required: 51-54
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges 

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23. Loma Linda University

LLU's healthcare administration master's program focuses on business and leadership and encompasses four tracks with classes held on the Loma Linda, California, campus:

  1. A full-time, two-year track that includes 200 practicum hours each quarter
  2. A part-time, four-year option with 100 practicum hours per quarter
  3. A one-year track for clinical students in medical, dental, or pharmacy with reduced practicum hours and a GRE waiver
  4. A part-time program for working professionals with five years of healthcare management experience that substitutes an applied workplace project for the practicum hours

Admission requirements include a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA and coursework in accounting and microeconomics, along with GRE scores (unless waived) in the top 30-50% range and three letters of recommendation.

 

Courses Include
  • Fundamentals of healthcare finance
  • Foundations of fund development
  • Foundations of leadership
  • Healthcare delivery systems
  • Health policy analysis and synthesis
Unique Features
  • Cost: $895 per credit
  • Credits Required: 62
  • Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges

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24. University of Scranton

Pennsylvania's Scranton, located in the city of the same name, offers a master of health administration degree on campus or online. Grounded in ethics and justice, both options follow the same curriculum and include fieldwork experiences, such as residencies or internships. Distance learners take courses 100% online and can opt to specialize in health informatics or global health, the latter of which includes two study-abroad trips.

Admission requires official transcripts showing an undergraduate degree and GPA of at least 3.0, along with three recommendations. The MHA program may require GRE or GMAT scores. Online applicants should have a minimum of three years of professional work experience.

Courses Include
  • Healthcare financial management
  • Healthcare organization and administration
  • Health services and systems
  • Healthcare statistics and research methods
  • Human resource management
Unique Features
  • Cost: $965 per credit
  • Credits Required: 44-53
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education

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25. King's College (Pennsylvania)

Using a business-focused approach, King's offers a master's in healthcare administration via a 100% online option or on-campus evening classes at its Wilkes-Barre campus. King's also offers a 15-month, hybrid program with accelerated courses offered online and in-person meetings one evening a week. Culminating in a capstone project, the program seeks to advance socially responsible healthcare leaders and accommodate a variety of students, including working professionals and recent college graduates. 

Applicants should hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university and submit a personal statement of professional goals, a resume, and two recommendations from a supervisor, colleague, or professor.

Courses Include
  • Community health administration in a global context
  • Healthcare marketing and branding
  • Leadership and executive skills for healthcare managers
  • Quantitative business methods for healthcare
  • Understanding organizational ethics
Unique Features
  • Cost: $591 per credit
  • Credits Required: 37
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education; Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

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Applying to an MHA Program

Healthcare administration master's programs typically accept applicants with a bachelor's degree in disciplines like healthcare management, business, biology, public health, or other social sciences. Regardless of the undergraduate major, students may need to complete prerequisite coursework in economics or statistics.

The top MHA programs require each applicant to possess a minimum 3.0 GPA, provide a resume, and submit a personal statement. Candidates must arrange to send official transcripts, letters of recommendation, and in some cases, minimum GRE or GMAT scores. Some programs only accept students who can demonstrate previous work experience in a healthcare or management field.

The Association of University Programs in Health Administration provides a centralized application website for students interested in graduate studies in healthcare administration, healthcare management, and healthcare policy. The site provides a comprehensive directory of programs, school-specific application information, and other resources.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What does a healthcare administrator do?

    Healthcare administrators perform many duties to maintain the quality of healthcare services and improve organizational efficiency, including ensuring legal and regulatory compliance. They may manage an entire hospital network, a hospital facility or a medical practice, or a specific department or clinical division. These professionals manage personnel, authorize staff budgets, and set goals and objectives.

  • What is accreditation and why is it important?

    Regional accreditation, awarded to schools that meet high academic standards based on their geographic location, ensures financial aid eligibility, and facilitates credit transfer. The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) offers voluntary accreditation to some graduate programs in healthcare administration and related fields. CAHME-accredited programs meet criteria established for excellent healthcare management education.

  • What can I do with a healthcare administration degree?

    Healthcare administrators typically work in healthcare provider organizations, such as hospitals, outpatient care clinics, and community health agencies. The demand for these professionals has grown particularly strong in nursing homes, long-term care facilities, and physician's offices. MHAs also prepare graduates for managerial roles in other types of healthcare-related industries, including pharmaceutical and medical supply firms, insurance networks, state and federal public health agencies, and health data information management companies.

  • How long does it take to become a health administrator?

    The time needed to complete an MHA program varies by program format and credit load. Accelerated programs designed for students with relevant professional backgrounds in business or healthcare may take as little as 13 months. Still, most degree-seekers take 2-4 years to complete the 60-70 credits required for graduation. Many schools offer convenient online formats, but all CAHME-accredited programs require on-campus residencies.

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