If you're seeking a career in one of the fastest-growing fields in the nation, healthcare administration is the place to find it! An aging population is demanding more preventative care, and physicians need help providing it. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job growth rate for healthcare administrators is 17% — significantly higher than most other professions.
With that kind of outlook, it's easy to see why so many people choose to earn a healthcare administration associates degree online. Combining concepts in business and medicine, healthcare administration is a dynamic field that offers many rewarding career options.
What are the best healthcare administration programs of 2020? Here are our top 10:
|1||Community Care College||Tulsa, OK|
|2||Colorado Christian University||Lakewood, CO|
|3||Keiser University||Fort Lauderdale, FL|
|4||St. Johns River State College||Palatka, FL|
|5||Concordia University Wisconsin||Mequon, WI|
|6||Pitt Community College||Winterville, NC|
|7||Clinton Community College||Plattsburgh, NY|
|8||Oklahoma State University Oklahoma City||Oklahoma City, OK|
|9||Iowa Central Community College||Fort Dodge, IA|
|10||Florida Institute of Technology||Melbourne, FL|
2020 Best Accredited Online Associate in Healthcare Administration Programs
Community Care College
|Tulsa, OK||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 68%||
CCC's associate in healthcare administration program features an entirely online curriculum that teaches in-demand skills like medical terminology, procedure coding, and medical billing. Full-time students can earn their degree in 20 months. The program delivers all coursework asynchronously, which may appeal to learners who also work full time.
CCC's career advisors help degree-seekers write resumes, develop interview skills, and practice salary negotiations. Students can also research the latest job openings in Oklahoma and beyond.
The college's concurrent enrollment program allows high school juniors and seniors to start their college education early. Members of the Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Choctaw Nations receive tribal funding. Additional financial aid resources include federal aid, state aid, and veteran benefits.
Colorado Christian University
|Lakewood, CO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 52%||
CCU's associate in healthcare administration program awards an AS and includes courses in healthcare terminology, delivery systems, and informatics. Most degree-seekers take one course at a time, and learners can complete the program in two years. The curriculum is taught from a Christian perspective.
CCU's Life Directions Center (LDC) pairs each incoming student with an advisor. In addition to offering career counseling and job search tools, LDC advisors help learners identify career paths that align with both their degree and Christian principles.
This program accepts up to 45 transfer credits, and applicants do not need to submit recommendation letters or standardized test scores. Active-duty service members and their dependents enjoy a tuition discount of nearly 50%. Most of CCU's students qualify for some form of financial aid.
|Fort Lauderdale, FL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 69%||
Learners preparing for an entry-level career pursue Keiser's online associate degree in health services administration. The 60-credit curriculum features coursework in healthcare computer applications, the principles of management, and entrepreneurship. General education courses cover topics like environmental science and English literature.
Kaiser's career advisors maintain a job board on the university's website and host professional development workshops that cover networking skills and money management. The university's free LearningExpress service offers multiple job guides and resources.
Kaiser recommends that prospective degree-seekers contact the admissions office before applying. The university accepts GED scores and does not charge out-of-state tuition. The Keiser University Scholarship Program considers all incoming students for financial aid.
St. Johns River State College
|Palatka, FL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 46%||
SJR State's associate in health services management program takes full-time students two years to complete. Learners hone skills related to healthcare coding, human resource management, and the concepts of disease. The program culminates in a capstone experience.
Over 90% of SJR State alumni find work soon after graduation. The college provides all learners with a three-step career plan that includes taking self-assessments, exploring careers, and developing interviewing skills. Other online resources include career workshops and resume critiques.
Admission requirements include transcripts and a virtual orientation. The vast majority of SJR's learners receive federal loans and grants. Graduates of this two-year program can transfer into SJR State's bachelor's in organizational management program and pursue a specialization in healthcare administration.
Concordia University Wisconsin
|Mequon, WI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 59%||
CUW's associate in healthcare management program uses a 64-credit curriculum with coursework in business statistics, eldercare, and organization management. Students complete a six-week practicum in their final semester; this experience qualifies them to sit for Wisconsin nursing home administrator licensure.
Almost 90% of CUW alumni begin a career or bachelor's program within 180 days of graduating. Students seeking career advice can speak with an advisor at the Center for Academic Advising and Career Engagement. They can also sign up for the university's alumni mentor program.
CUW accepts applications throughout the year. Learners with previous college credits must have a minimum 2.0 undergraduate GPA. The university charges the same tuition rate to all students, regardless of residency.
Pitt Community College
|Winterville, NC||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 22%||
PCC's online medical office administration program prepares students for entry-level careers through coursework that covers medical coding, electronic health records, and relevant computer applications. Alumni of this two-year program can work in hospitals, laboratories, and other healthcare facilities.
PCC provides all students with access to Bruiser's Briefcase — an online hub that features job and internship opportunities, as well as a career events calendar. Other online resources include virtual job shadowing and mock interviews.
Admission requirements include a residency declaration and a short application. PCC is located in Winterville, North Carolina, and holds regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Clinton Community College
|Plattsburgh, NY||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 29%||
CCC's associate in health services management program offers a 60-credit curriculum with courses in medical terminology, sociology, and human resource management. The program has no in-person requirements. Alumni often find work as hospital office managers and health services directors.
Degree-seekers can research the latest healthcare administration careers and develop interviewing skills on CCC's website. The college's career advisors also offer students a 24/7 resource library that contains helpful advice.
CCC recommends but does not require that applicants submit ACT or SAT scores. New York residents receive a significant tuition discount. All incoming students can apply for Clinton Community College Foundation Scholarships.
Oklahoma State University Oklahoma City
|Oklahoma City, OK||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 10%||
OSU-OKC's online associate degree in healthcare administration prepares graduates for several career paths related to customer care and office management. The 63-credit curriculum includes coursework in biological and medical terminology, healthcare coding, and healthcare provider relationships. Learners must maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA to graduate
Distance learners can attend webinars with recruiters and career coaching sessions. The university also hosts in-person job fairs throughout the state. Students can download cover letter, interview, and resume tips on the college's website.
First-year applicants must submit ACT scores. OSU-OKC does not require an application fee. Students who maintain a minimum 2.5 undergraduate GPA can apply for a tuition waiver scholarships.
Iowa Central Community College
|Fort Dodge, IA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 35%||
Located in Fort Dodge, Iowa Central offers several distance learning programs, including an online associate degree in healthcare administration. The program prepares graduates for entry-level careers as medical coders, community health workers, and health information managers.
The program's 66-credit curriculum includes required courses like introduction to gerontology, public speaking, social problems, and introduction to ethical conflict. Most students graduate in two years. During the program, participants can rent electronic versions of their textbooks to save on costs.
Iowa Central accepts transfer credits from regionally accredited institutions on a case-by-case basis. The college does not charge an application fee. Once accepted, students must complete placement testing.
Florida Institute of Technology
|Melbourne, FL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: N/A||
Based in Melbourne, Florida Tech educates more than 2,000 distance learners annually and offers online degrees at the associate, bachelor's, and master's levels. Its online program options include an associate of arts in healthcare management. Graduates of this program can pursue in-demand work as case coordinators and medical administrators.
Faculty deliver asynchronous coursework that distance learners can access at their convenience. In addition to general education requirements, students complete major-related classes that cover topics like medical ethics, healthcare organizations, and principles of management.
The school does not charge an application fee. Florida Tech is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
What Else Can I Expect From an Online Associate in Healthcare Administration Degree Program?
Mixing business skills into a healthcare atmosphere, online colleges for medical office administration help provide students with the skills and knowledge necessary to work in hospitals, doctor offices, nursing homes, and more. Individual online associate programs vary in a number of ways, including cost, credit requirements, curriculum, completion time, and specialization.
- HOW MUCH DOES A HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATOR MAKE WITH AN ASSOCIATE DEGREE?
Healthcare administrators with an associate degree make between $30,000 and $37,000. Read more here..
- WHAT CAN I DO WITH A HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION ASSOCIATE DEGREE?
Professionals with an associate in healthcare administration are prepared for careers as health information technicians, medical assistants, and assistant administrators. Read more here..
- HOW MUCH IS AN ONLINE DEGREE IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION?
The cost of an associate in healthcare administration will vary between schools. For more accurate information, students should check with their prospective colleges. Read more here..
- WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH A HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION DEGREE?
An associate in healthcare administration prepares graduates for many careers, including health information technician, medical assistant, and assistant administrator. Read more here..
- WHAT IS AN ASSOCIATE OF ARTS IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION?
Many healthcare administration programs teach students how to manage patient health records and bill insurance companies. Some programs also teach learners how to manage staff. Read more here..
CONCENTRATIONS OFFERED FOR AN ONLINE ASSOCIATE DEGREE IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION
|Concentration||Description||Careers This Concentration Prepares For|
|Medical Office Administration||Most healthcare management associate degrees online are focused on preparing students to run the day-to-day operations of modern healthcare facilities. Courses typically include topics such as business, organization, and healthcare systems.||Career settings include hospitals, medical offices, and nursing homes as an administrator|
|Health Records Management||Health records have become one of the most important and complex areas of healthcare in the past 20 years. Concentrating on record management means focusing on organizational management and new EHR and EMR software.||Medical record manager, healthcare facility assistant, EHR/EMR software analyst|
|Healthcare Finance||With more business classes and courses on the complex healthcare billing laws, a concentration in finance gives students the ability to specialize in the business side of healthcare.||Billing specialist, ICD-10 coding analyst, healthcare facility administrator|
CURRICULUM FOR AN ONLINE ASSOCIATE DEGREE IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION
The individual courses and the required curriculum vary from program to program. Not all courses or concentrations are offered at every school. There are a few core concepts that are covered in most online colleges for medical office administration. These courses can be found at most online schools:
- U.S. Healthcare System: Before a student can work in a medical office, it's critical that they learn about the U.S. healthcare system, past and present. This class helps illuminate everything from insurance billing to pharmaceutical costs.
- Healthcare Management: Most schools offer more than one class on healthcare management. From business leadership to optimal healthcare office organization, these classes can vary in focus, but all are designed to prepare students for working in healthcare administration.
- Legal and Ethical Issues in Healthcare: Healthcare administrators deal with sensitive and private patient information. Understanding the ethical and legal requirements of the job is an important part of keeping yourself and the office protected.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET AN ONLINE ASSOCIATE DEGREE IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION?
The average completion time of a healthcare administration associate degree online is about two years, but it can be impacted by a variety of factors. Although most programs can be completed in two years, credit and class loads can vary significantly, ranging from 18 to 60 credits or three to five classes per semester. The style of instruction and academic calendar also affect completion time, with individually paced and accelerated formats moving quicker than traditional academic terms or cohort learning.
Accreditation for Online Associate in Healthcare Administration Programs
Prospective online healthcare administration associate degree students should be sure that the program they choose is accredited. Accreditation means that an agency, made up of leaders at peer colleges and universities, has decided that a specific school or program reaches the high standards to grant degrees.
Colleges and universities are either nationally or regionally accredited. Any school can become nationally accredited by agencies that are recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Typically, online and vocational schools are nationally accredited. Most traditional brick and mortar universities and their online programs are regionally accredited. Regional accreditation is is from one of six region-based agencies in the U.S. that are recognized by the Department of Education (DOE) and the CHEA. Some programs are accredited independently of the school by industry organizations. For example, law schools are accredited by the American Bar Association.
The DOE does not accredit schools directly. The federal agency acts as an oversight power recognizing legitimate agencies, setting standards, and ensuring proper conduct. CHEA operates similarly, but has no government connection. Learn more about which schools are accredited and by whom from the DOE website.
What Can I Do With an Associate in Healthcare Administration Degree?
If you're an excellent communicator with a knack for organizing and taking charge, you're in the right occupational field! Earning an associate degree in healthcare administration online can open up a wealth of possibilities for graduates seeking challenging and rewarding careers. Healthcare administration is a broad field, and offers many opportunities to specialize in the area best suited to you. Whether you're interested in coding or clerical work, here are a few career paths many graduates take:
Health Information Technician: Health information technicians manage paper and electronic medical records. Utilizing various coding systems, they maintain patient privacy and ensure that patient information is accurate and up to date.
Medical Assistant: Depending on the type of facility or department that employs them, the duties of a medical assistant may differ greatly. Most medical assistants perform a combination of clinical and administrative tasks, providing support to other healthcare personnel.
Assistant Administrator: Working beneath a top administrator, assistants handle a variety of tasks necessary for larger medical facilities to run efficiently. Assistant administrators may direct programs or departments, perform clerical tasks, or maintain department standards.
|Position||Median Annual Salary||Projected Growth Rate|
|Health Information Technician||$37,110||15%|
After earning an online associates degree in healthcare administration, some people choose to transfer to a bachelor's program. Typically required for management positions, a bachelor's degree can greatly increase job opportunities— and salaries. With the Bureau of Labor Statistics declaring a median salary of $94,500 for healthcare managers, more and more students are opting to transfer. If you've earned a healthcare administration associates degree online, you may wish to pursue a bachelor's in a related field, such as:
Health Information Management: Emphasizing concepts in digital privacy and internet security, this program prepares students for one of the most in-demand jobs in the field. Coursework enhances students' prior knowledge of healthcare principles with the latest concepts in information technology and medical law.
Clinical Management: This multidisciplinary program teaches the skills in leadership, finance, and medicine needed to successfully manage a healthcare facility. Courses may focus on economic and legal aspects of the profession. Many programs include job training through internships.
Nursing Home Administration: Addressing concepts unique to long-term care facilities, core courses highlight ethical matters, facility management, and medical issues specific to the elderly. Coursework prepares students for the licensure exams required of all nursing home administrators.
Employment Outlook for Associate in Healthcare Administration Graduates
ASSOCIATE IN HEALTHCARE ADMINISTRATION SALARY
Employees who have earned an online associates degree in healthcare administration will find that there are many factors besides education that influence salaries. Location, individual employers, and years of experience can all impact earnings. Using information from PayScale, this table demonstrates the median salary of five entry-level positions.
|Job Title||Median Salary for Entry-Level Employees|
|Health Information Technician||$35,518|
Whether you're currently working on an online associates degree in healthcare administration or you're a recent graduate, professional organizations can assist with everything from extra credit to finding employment. Membership in an organization may confer valuable networking opportunities through annual conferences and private online communities. Many associations offer special certification programs or training courses, or assist with licensure. The following are only a small sample of professional organizations that can help you succeed:
- Association for Healthcare Administrative Professionals: This premier organization allows members to apply for a Certified Healthcare Administrative Professional designation. Students at some schools may earn course credits by attending the organization's webinars.
- Health Care Administrators Association: Members can gain insight and networking opportunities from this association's conferences and seminars.
- American College of Health Care Administrators: Providing a wealth of educational and professional resources, the American College of Health Care Administrators offers a strong mentoring program, state licensure assistance, and several online training courses.
Financing Your Online Associate in Healthcare Administration Program
Do you need help paying for all or part of your online healthcare administration associate degree? Start by filling out a FAFSA form to see if you qualify for scholarships, loans, or grants. Like their traditional counterparts, online students are eligible to receive federal financial aid. Depending on your personal or educational background, income level, or area of specialization, you may also be eligible for scholarships through professional or cultural organizations.
Approximately two-thirds of today's college students rely on loans to fund their education, but there are plenty of overlooked financing options you can use to reduce your overall student debt.
Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a crucial first step for any student with financial needs. Our FAFSA guide features a step-by-step rundown on the process and answers to several frequently asked questions.
Financial aid for online learning is equivalent to what you'll find for campus-based learning, but that hasn't always been the case. Learn about the changes that have taken place, as well as the different funding opportunities available to online students.
Online college programs can be a flexible, affordable option for single parents who are interested in earning a degree and securing their family's financial future. We've compiled a list of scholarships, grants, and other financial aid options geared toward single moms and dads.
Millions of dollars in free money is available to U.S. military personnel, but much of it goes unused. Learn more about grants, scholarships, and other financial aid opportunities available to veterans, active-duty service members, and reservists.