The benefits of attending on-campus sessions in a Master of Health Administration are numerous. Although some programs can be completed online, residential requirements provide students with needed skills to help them compete in the job market. Students looking for a good MHA program will pay special attention to the curriculum requirements and what the school’s expected outcomes for each student are. Attending on-campus sessions during their course of study allow students to benefit in the following five ways.
When completing a program online, it is easy to feel detached from the school that offers it. After all, most of the interaction in an online program tends to be over the learning management system or email. This can make the experience feel isolating.
On the other hand, students who attend on-campus sessions benefit from a personal connection with the school, faculty and classmates. Physically visiting the campus, meeting the professors and talking with fellow students enriches the experience and allows students to get to know their program and peers in a more personal way, making them feel more invested in and supported.
The research is in, and it has been telling educators for decades that students learn best in collaborative environments where active-learning is required. Practices that best facilitate active learning include small group discussion, reflective practices, making students the experts and emphasizing activities that evaluate, synthesize, or analyze ideas and information. Many students also derive advantage from hearing their peers interact with the learning content.
These practices are difficult to simulate in an online environment, and as a result, students tend to experience greater learning during their on-campus sessions. Attending campus for class enables students the benefit of in-person learning where they are able to grapple with and engage ideas at higher levels of understanding.
A career in health management has a good outlook for the future, but students will still benefit from the networking that results from their on-campus MHA sessions. Not only will establishing contacts with their fellow students be good for job prospects and advancement, but the personal contact with faculty will also be advantageous in this arena.
Faculty tend to be great resources for students looking to network. Occasionally, faculty are asked to refer candidates for positions, and chances are high you will want a faculty member to serve as a reference. Attending on-campus sessions ensures you have the chance to prove yourself and make a good impression with these faculty members, something that should ultimately benefit you.
Better Student-Faculty Relationship
The in-person interaction with faculty can also lead to more than just a good reference on a job somewhere down the line. Instead, students have the chance to benefit from better student-faculty relationships. Studies suggest that students who connect with their professors engage with the learning content in more intensive ways.
This relationship can also lead to unlooked-for help. When a faculty member knows a student based on classroom interaction, that professor can better identify learning needs the student has but might not otherwise have voiced. A faculty member who can tell when a student is having a bad day or not understanding the material and who cares enough to address the student should lead to better learning and program outcomes.
Opportunities for Practical Application
The final benefit that attending on-campus MHA sessions confers is opportunities for practical applications. In fact, this is often one of the primary reasons that programs require students to come to campus. There are things in healthcare management that cannot be simulated online, and working in hands-on learning sessions offers students this chance to apply their knowledge with an eye to their future.
It is clear that on-campus requirements for the MHA program are an important component of the curriculum. Attending residentially allows students the chance to network, learn the material better, enjoy a personal connection with the school, engage with faculty and finally, to allow students the chance to apply their skills in practical ways. These five benefits of on-campus MHA sessions should eventually allow students to get more out of their time and financial investment in the program.