The broad, multidisciplinary field of healthcare management covers the leadership, administration, and day-to-day operations of hospitals, clinics, and other medical facilities, along with healthcare providers and networks. Managers in this profession oversee staffing needs, supply inventories, equipment maintenance and sanitation, along with recordkeeping, billing, and insurance processes. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the healthcare management industry is expected to grow considerably in the years to come. The job growth projections for positions like medical/health services managers and medical records/health information technicians are projected to rise by more than 15% through 2014.
Most careers in healthcare management are attainable with a bachelor's degree in the field or other related disciplines, such as public health or health services administration. Healthcare management curriculums touch on the various duties and expectations employees have in this field. Many healthcare management programs feature required or optional practicum courses, which allow students to receive onsite training from experienced professionals and to apply their new skills in a practical setting.
Today, many students are choosing to earn their bachelor's degree in healthcare management online. Web-based programs follow the same rigorous curriculum as brick-and-mortar modules, leading to the same number of job opportunities for online learners after graduation. The asynchronous format that most online healthcare management degree programs use is also ideal for students with young children, part-time jobs, or any other commitments that may make it difficult to attend class on campus.
Read on to learn more about what you will learn in a healthcare management program, and what kind of career opportunities you can look forward to upon graduation.
- WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH A HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE?
With a healthcare management degree, you can help manage the day-to-day operations of hospitals, clinics, and other medical facilities. Read more here..
- IS A HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE WORTH IT?
Yes. This field is highly competitive, and degree-holders can expect their salaries to increase roughly 70% by the time they are mid-career professionals. Read more here..
- WHAT IS A HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE?
A health care management degree prepares graduates to pursue a variety of administrative roles at hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities. Read more here..
- WHAT DOES A HEALTHCARE MANAGER DO?
A health care manager oversees a variety of operations -- such as staff needs, supplies, sanitation, billing, and insurance -- at healthcare facilities. Read more here..
- CAN YOU BECOME A PA WITH A HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE?
On its own, a healthcare management degree is not sufficient for becoming a physician assistant. PAs must have a background in the medical sciences and need to possess advanced education and certification. Read more here..
Choosing a Program
WILL AN ONLINE HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE PROGRAM PROVIDE ME WITH THE SKILLS I NEED TO ADVANCE MY CAREER?
An online bachelor's in healthcare management will cover the basics of administrative tasks like patient billing, coding, and record keeping. Courses also discuss cleanliness and sanitation protocols, patient confidentiality, and other dimensions of medical law and ethics. Additionally, practicum courses build on coursework with hands-on training, giving students a realistic look at the workplace conditions and responsibilities they will have on the job.
WILL AN ONLINE HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE PROGRAM WORK WITH MY SCHEDULE?
An online bachelor's degree in healthcare management offers a flexible alternative to campus- based education. Students can access course lectures and readings, participate in class discussions, submit written assignments, take exams, and communicate with their professors on their own schedule. Current educational technology also enables them to study away from their home computer using a laptop, tablet, smartphone, or other Wi-Fi-compatible device. Conveniently, online students can also usually arrange practicum courses at local hospitals, clinics, or other sites near their residence.
WHAT JOBS CAN I GET WITH MY BACHELOR'S DEGREE IN HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT?
Online students who graduate with a bachelor's in healthcare management will be eligible for most entry-level positions in the field, including some managerial roles. Specific positions include medical records and health information technician, medical and health services manager, administrative services manager, and billing/coding specialists. In some of these occupations, employers prefer candidates who have earned a professional license or certification; the best online healthcare management degree programs will provide students the knowledge and skills they need to earn these additional credentials.
WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE PROGRAMS?
Choosing a program is a very personal decision, and only you can properly evaluate whether a target school's strengths match your educational needs. The following ranked list of schools should serve as a helpful starting point in your search for the best online healthcare management programs in the United States. If you want to work in healthcare, and you value the opportunity to study online, read on to learn more about the top online healthcare management programs in the country.
Accredited Online Healthcare Management Degree Programs
Colorado State University Global
|Greenwood Village, CO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 69%||
Established in 2007, Colorado State University Global Campus is an online-focused, public institution in the Colorado State University System. At its founding, the school enrolled just 200 students; today, that number has grown to 18,000. CSU Global offers web-based bachelor's programs across accounting, business management, criminal justice, and many other fields.
CSU Global's BS in healthcare administration and management builds students' management, marketing, human resources, planning, finance, and communication skills. The bachelor's degree consists of 120 credits, and students take 15 courses in the healthcare administration major. Some courses cover practical skills in healthcare administration, including supervision, operations management, and accounting. Other major classes cover broader concepts and trends in the industry.
For instance, a class on the U.S. healthcare system provides an overview of healthcare history, policy, and organizations. Through a course on health law and ethics, students learn about the legal and moral issues facing healthcare professionals and organizations.
Bachelor's students complete their degree entirely online through asynchronous classes, and CSU Global offers many resources to online learners. As they progress through their bachelor's program, students can take advantage of around-the-clock online tutoring and an academic writing center. As they near graduation, students can schedule a one-on-one, 50-minute consultation with a career coach. Learners can also sign up for mock interviews and receive resume help.
Applicants need two years of work experience and must provide SAT or ACT scores. CSU Global charges in-state and out-of-state students the same tuition rate.
Western Governors University
|Salt Lake City, UT||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 38%||
Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Western Governors University is a private, nonprofit institution that offers degrees in business, teaching, information technology, and health professions. The College of Business, which holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, boasts one of the top healthcare management online programs.
WGU's BS in business in healthcare management comprises 40 courses from general education requirements and major classes. Through general education courses, students learn about U.S. history, geography, logic, statistics, and other topics. In the rest of the curriculum, learners explore areas like healthcare regulations, healthcare technologies, and financial resource management. They also learn about quality improvement, risk management, ethics, and research in the healthcare industry.
WGU boasts a competency-based online learning format that enables students to progress through the curriculum at an accelerated pace. Some WGU students finish their bachelor's program in as few as 19 months. Through the competency-based model, students can move quickly through material they already know while spending extra time on unfamiliar topics. When students master a subject, they take an assessment -- typically a test, paper, or project -- and move on to the next course. Learners complete coursework asynchronously at their own pace.
Applicants must be at least 16 years old and hold a high school diploma or GED. They also need to submit official transcripts and complete an interview with an enrollment counselor.
Admitted students may begin their bachelor's program at the beginning of any month. WGU bills tuition per term, incentivizing students to finish their degrees faster.
Charter Oak State College
|New Britain, CT||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 68%||
Established in 1973, Charter Oak State College is a public, online liberal arts institution offering associate, bachelor's, and master's degrees. A member of the Connecticut State Colleges & Universities, the school offers an online BS in health care administration degree completion program.
Health care administration students complete 42 credits in the major through 14 courses. By the end of the program, students demonstrate strong knowledge of regulations, management strategies, legal issues, and financial practices in the health care industry. Major coursework also covers leadership, global issues in health care, and economics of health.
Through a class on continuous quality improvement in health care administration, students explore organizational behavior and operations management in health care facilities. A unique course on terrorism and disaster management examines the health care administrator's role in preparing a facility for emergency events. Toward the end of the program, learners study advanced health care management strategy through a required capstone course.
Charter Oak delivers the curriculum in an asynchronous and self-paced format. Learners who transfer in about 90 credits can earn their bachelor's degree in 1-2 years.
Charter Oak features an open enrollment policy, and any student 16 years or older can enroll. Applicants need at least nine college-level credits, and students can earn additional credit through exams, military training, and credentials. Undergraduates only need to earn six credits in residence at Charter Oak: a three-credit cornerstone course and a three-credit capstone.
University of St Francis
|Joliet, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 63%||
Based in Joliet, Illinois, the University of St. Francis is a private, Roman Catholic institution that serves nearly 4,000 students. The university offers dozens of undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs through four colleges. The College of Business and Health Administration delivers a fully online degree completion program in health care management.
Through its online BS in health care management, USF seeks to educate midcareer professionals and enable them to advance their careers. The program builds students' skills in leadership, decision-making, team building, and communication.
Students take 21 credits from general education courses that cover Christianity, research, writing, literature, and economics. They also take 27-29 credits of required major classes, including epidemiology, health care delivery, human resource management, and medical sociology. Students who need additional credits to graduate can enroll in electives that cover areas like technology in leadership, performance improvement, and global health.
USF delivers online courses in an asynchronous and self-paced format. Online learners take one class at a time and two courses each semester. The school also administers an on-campus version of the health care administration program through weekly, in-person classes. Learners can complete the entire degree online or in a blended format.
Applicants need a 2.0 GPA and at least 64 prior college credits to qualify for admission. Admitted students may apply up to 90 credits toward a bachelor's degree. Learners must complete 120 credits to graduate and earn at least 30 credits through USF. They must also take 15 upper-division credits at USF.
University of Alabama at Birmingham
|Birmingham, AL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 53%||
Established in 1969, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is a public research institution that offers dozens of online degrees. UAB is a member of the Association of University Programs in Health Administration, making it one of the best online schools for health care management.
UAB offers many options within its BS in health care management program. The general manager track readies students for leadership positions and prepares them to manage operations at a variety of facilities. The clinical manager track teaches credentialed or licensed healthcare professionals leadership skills that apply to their clinical field. Students who plan to earn an advanced degree in an area like health administration, health informatics, or medicine might opt for the preprofessional track. Learners can also pursue a long-term care administration concentration to learn how to manage resident care facilities.
Additionally, students who plan to earn a master's degree can take advantage of accelerated dual-degree programs. For instance, health care management students can opt for a fast track program that lets them earn a bachelor's degree and an MS in health informatics in four years.
The bachelor's degree requires 120 credits in total, and students must take general education courses in mathematics, public speaking, and accounting. General track learners explore topics including clinical information systems, research methods, medical terminology, and strategic management.
Applicants need a 2.5 GPA to qualify for the general manager track. The preprofessional and long-term care administration programs require a 2.75 GPA or higher. Bachelor's-to-master's fast track programs require at least a 3.0 GPA.
|Ottawa, KS||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 46%||
Based in Ottawa, Kansas, Ottawa University is a private, nonprofit institution that serves over 4,000 students at campus locations and online. The school boasts more than 30 web-based programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
Students at OU's School of Business can pursue an online BA in health care management. The online program readies students without clinical licenses for administrative and management jobs in the industry.
Through a 124-credit curriculum, health care management students learn about health services delivery along with leadership, ethics, strategy, and policy. In foundation courses, learners explore topics such as business statistics, economics, and accounting. Major courses include management of health care organizations, health care law and ethics, and human resources in health care organizations.
Health care management students can focus their studies through concentrations in economics, finance, human resources, marketing, or leadership and management. Leadership and management students take classes that cover organizational behavior, communication, project management, and change leadership.
Online learners take classes asynchronously through eight-week sessions. As they work toward a degree, students benefit from online career guidance, a job board, and around-the-clock technical assistance.
Applicants must submit an application and official transcripts for consideration. OU boasts a generous transfer policy that allows students to apply up to 80 credits toward their 124-credit bachelor's program.
|Bellevue, NE||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 17%||
Established in 1966, Bellevue University is a private, nonprofit university serving close to 9,000 students through four colleges. Bellevue offers more than 75 online degrees at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels. Online bachelor's students can pursue degrees in business, technology, leadership, and liberal arts, among other fields.
The BS in healthcare management prepares graduates for careers in fields like health insurance, health information technology, financial management, and human resources. Like most accredited online schools for healthcare management, BU teaches students the basics of business administration and the healthcare industry.
Healthcare management students must complete 127 credits through general education courses, electives, and major classes. As part of their general education coursework, all BU students take three courses on American values, democracy, and freedom.
The major consists of 10 four-credit classes. One introductory course, foundations for professional success, develops students' communication, problem-solving, and collaboration abilities. A course on marketing healthcare services explores market research, consumer behavior, and branding. Through a unique class on evidence-based management, students examine research methods and data analysis in healthcare organizations.
At the end of the curriculum, students complete a capstone project. They hone their research skills while exploring a healthcare management issue related to a particular organization.
Bellevue delivers the healthcare management program in an accelerated, cohort-based format. Students move through one asynchronous course at a time alongside a group of classmates. For admission to the accelerated program, applicants must possess an associate degree or 60 postsecondary credits.
|Virginia Beach, VA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 61%||
Founded in 1978, Regent University is a private, Evangelical institution based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The school serves about 11,000 students through over 130 associate, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral programs. Learners can choose from programs spanning religious studies, government, business, cybersecurity, and many other fields. Regent boasts dozens of distance learning programs, including an online bachelor's degree in healthcare management.
BS in healthcare management students complete 120 credits. All students take foundational religion courses that explore the New Testament, the Old Testament, Christian history, and Christian thought. In the healthcare management major, learners delve into healthcare informatics, financial management, and human resources. Through a capstone component, students complete a supervised practicum and/or written project. The project should make the case for a new healthcare program or policy.
Regent administers online classes asynchronously through Blackboard. However, through Blackboard Collaborate, students enjoy the option to listen to lectures in real time. Online courses run eight weeks, and students should expect to dedicate 15-20 hours per week to each three-credit class.
Distance students benefit from many resources while earning their degrees. At the beginning of the bachelor's program, learners participate in an orientation that teaches them how to use the online learning platform. Additionally, Regent assigns each student a success coach who, through video chat, offers support and counseling. Learners can take advantage of math and writing tutoring over the phone and online.
Students may transfer in up to 90 credits from a community college or another accredited institution.
|Bristol, TN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 52%||
King University is a private, nonprofit institution based in Bristol, Tennessee. Founded in 1867, the Presbyterian-affiliated school offers degrees in nursing, intelligence studies, political science, and many other disciplines. King students can pursue 15 online programs at the associate, bachelor's, and master's levels.
Students complete King's BS in healthcare management degree completion program entirely online through asynchronous courses. The major consists of 48 credits that learners can finish in as few as 16 months. The total time it takes to earn a degree depends on how many credits a student transfers in.
Through 12 major courses, students explore areas like management, finance, law, and communication. In addition, the program incorporates several public health topics, including epidemiology, biostatistics, healthcare policy, and population-based health. Uniquely, students learn about sustainability in healthcare through a required course.
In addition to major coursework, students take 30 credits of core requirements. All bachelor's degree seekers must enroll in a class on the foundations of Christian thought and practice. Additionally, students must meet course distribution requirements across several categories, including science, quantitative literacy, and English composition. Learners can earn 46 credits from electives.
Applicants need a 2.2 college GPA and at least 45 postsecondary credits for consideration. Admitted students may transfer in up to 76 credits toward a bachelor's degree and must complete 24 credits in residence. Students interested in the healthcare industry might also consider King's online BS in health informatics.
|Lynchburg, VA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 47%||
Liberty University is a private, evangelical institution that enrolls over 100,000 students through more than 600 programs. The school offers over 400 online programs, including a bachelor's in business administration with a specialization in healthcare management that holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.
Students who pursue the healthcare management concentration focus on healthcare practices, policies, and ethics. A course on legal and ethical issues in healthcare covers topics like contracts, medical records, and consent. A healthcare informatics class examines the technologies that managers use to maintain health records, organize workflow, and effectively deliver medical services. Overall, students take seven concentration courses that total 21 credits.
Learners also complete 39 credits of core business administration classes that discuss economics, international business, business law, marketing, and finance, among other topics. Regardless of their major or concentration, bachelor's students take 39-42 credits of general education courses that cover subjects like communication, math, and social science. Students complete 12 credits of religion courses on the Old and New Testaments, Christian life, and theology.
Liberty administers the healthcare management program entirely online in an asynchronous format. Students take courses in eight-week sessions and finish the curriculum in three years on average. Transfer students may transfer in up to 75% of required credits from prior college work.
|Denver, CO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 71%||
Founded in 1877, Regis University is a private Jesuit institution based in Denver, Colorado. The school serves over 10,000 learners through five colleges and 132 programs. Regis boasts 80 online programs at the certificate, undergraduate, and graduate levels.
The online BS in health care administration features a fully online format. Students take classes through eight-week sessions and can begin the program at six start dates per year. Learners move through coursework asynchronously and finish the degree in 24-30 months. Regis expects students to spend 10-20 hours per week on each course outside of class time.
Students earning the health care management degree online complete 120 total credits. Before beginning major requirements, learners must take at least 12 credits of core classes, including English composition. Core courses also cover philosophy, literature, statistics, and comparative religion. Once students move on to major requirements, they explore patient safety, health care informatics, information systems, and the politics of health, among other areas.
At the conclusion of the program, learners complete a capstone project along with an internship in a professional field like hospital accounting, public relations, or marketing.
Applicants must submit an application, official transcripts, a resume, and a personal statement. They need at least a 2.5 GPA for full admission, but Regis considers applicants with below a 2.5 on a case-by-case basis. The school accepts up to 90 transfer credits from prior study at a regionally accredited college.
|Parkville, MO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 23%||
Park University is a private liberal arts institution founded in 1875. The school serves over 16,500 learners through its main campus in Parkville, Missouri along with 40 locations across the United States. Students can choose from 64 academic programs, including 48 bachelor's degrees, eight associate degrees, and eight master's options. Park offers over a dozen online bachelor's programs and delivers a BS in healthcare management.
Students earning the healthcare management degree online complete 63 credits through the major. They take 13 core business classes for a total of 39 credits. Foundational business courses cover topics including business statistics, business policy, macroeconomics, and microeconomics. Additionally, all undergraduates studying at Park's School of Business take a course in applied computer technology for business.
Healthcare management majors also take 24 credits in healthcare-specific topics. Required healthcare management courses explore areas like risk management, community-based healthcare delivery, and third party reimbursement. Learners take one healthcare management elective, and the bachelor's degree requires a minimum of 120 credits.
Prospective students must meet at least two of the following requirements: a 2.0 GPA, a rank in the top 50% of their high school class, and minimum ACT or SAT scores. Applicants who possess at least a 3.0 GPA qualify for admission regardless of ACT or SAT scores. Students can begin the healthcare management program in January, March, June, August, or October. They take classes through accelerated, eight-week sessions.
Saint Leo University
|Saint Leo, FL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 48%||
Founded in 1889 by the Order of Saint Benedict of Florida, Saint Leo University is the oldest Catholic institution of higher learning in Florida. Today the school educates nearly 15,000 students through a main campus, 35 regional education centers, and online programs. Online learners can choose from 72 academic options, including 20 bachelor's degrees.
The 120-credit BS in health care administration prepares students for management positions in hospitals, government health programs, pharmaceutical companies, laboratories, and long-term care facilities. Students complete 21-30 major credits, which cover areas including health policy, the U.S. public health system, and management strategies. Students also take 36 credits of core business classes and 42 credits of general education coursework.
Health care management students who are not employed in the industry must complete an internship as part of their final 15 credits. During the internship, students integrate the management and health care skills they acquired throughout the program. Students can earn 3-12 credits for the internship, depending on the amount of work they complete.
Saint Leo provides resources for distance learners, including guidance from advisers. Online students can access career services, communicate with career counselors, and look for jobs through Handshake. Additionally, Saint Leo boasts many online clubs, including a health care management association.
Dallas Baptist University
|Dallas, TX||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 58%||
Dallas Baptist University is a private, Southern Baptist institution founded in 1898. The school enrolls more than 5,000 students and boasts a 13-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. DBU offers 78 undergraduate programs, 31 master's programs, and two doctoral degrees. The university provides 26 online bachelor's degrees, including a bachelor of arts and sciences in health care management.
Students pursuing the health care management degree online complete at least 120 credit hours, including 39-49 credit hours in general studies topics, such as natural science, history, and mathematics. Students also take an introductory course in fine arts and a kinesiology class that covers the basics of exercise, wellness, and fitness.
Major coursework comprises 30 credit hours. Like many health care management online programs, DBU's program includes coursework in health care ethics, finance, human resource management, and marketing. An optional course on multicultural perspectives explores race, ethnic relations, discrimination, and racism in the United States. An advanced seminar in health care management examines various health care delivery systems in the U.S., Canada, and Western Europe.
DBU boasts an average online class size of 11 students. In the fall and spring semesters, students take online classes in 16-week sessions. Online summer courses last 10 weeks, while winter classes last four or eight weeks. Students can supplement online classes with in-person coursework, and some distance learners earn their degree more quickly by attending one-week intensives at DBU's main campus.
Southern New Hampshire University
|Manchester, NH||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 49%||
Based in Hooksett, New Hampshire, Southern New Hampshire University is a private institution in operation since 1932. The school serves more than 90,000 online students and offers more than 200 online degrees, including bachelor's degrees in engineering, finance, liberal arts, and health professions.
SNHU's BS in healthcare administration comprises 120 credits of general education courses, major classes, and electives. General education coursework includes courses in anatomy and physiology, statistics, and business systems design. Like many accredited online schools for healthcare management, SNHU requires students to complete core classes in English composition, mathematics, social and behavioral sciences, and history.
The curriculum includes 15 major courses totaling 45 credits. Learners explore business administration topics, such as economics, marketing, finance, human relations, and organizational behavior, from a healthcare perspective. A course on population health and cultural competence examines how social and cultural factors affect a community's well-being.
Learners take three elective courses in the major, along with eight free electives. Additionally, students can choose from two concentrations, which each comprise three courses. Students can concentrate in health information management to learn about data management, technologies, and healthcare information technology infrastructures. The patient safety and quality concentration explores strategies and techniques that healthcare professionals use to promote safety awareness in facilities.
SNHU delivers the healthcare administration program entirely online through asynchronous courses. Students must submit assignments by regular deadlines, which usually fall on Thursday and Sunday nights.
|St. Charles, MO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 50%||
Founded in 1827, Lindenwood University is a private liberal arts institution that serves nearly 16,000 students. The school boasts 131 undergraduate and graduate degree options, including 31 online programs. Lindenwood offers more than 20 online bachelor's degrees, such as a BS in business administration with more than a dozen available emphasis areas, including accounting, finance, management, and nonprofit administration.
Learners who pursue the healthcare management emphasis take four of their seven elective courses in healthcare management. Healthcare management students explore healthcare finance and economics, along with legal issues in healthcare. They also take a class on healthcare delivery in the U.S., which examines the healthcare industry's impact on the national and international economies.
Regardless of concentration area, students earning the BS in business administration complete at least 42 credit hours of general education coursework. They take at least three credit hours in each of 14 subject areas, including human culture, natural science, and U.S. government.
Business administration students can complete the degree entirely online through asynchronous courses. Distance learners take 12-week, online healthcare management classes during the fall and winter quarters.
Lindenwood offers online student resources, including access to writing tutors who help students choose topics, create outlines, produce rough drafts, and revise their work. Online students can also access tutoring through SmartThinking. Additionally, distance learners can consult with a life coach, who can help them set academic goals.
Mercy College of Ohio
|Toledo, OH||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 58%||
Based in Toledo, Mercy College of Ohio is a private, Catholic institution focused on healthcare education. Founded as a nursing school in 1918, Mercy now offers certificate, associate, bachelor's, and master's programs in areas including biology, medical imaging, health information technology, and healthcare administration.
Mercy offers an online degree completion program in healthcare administration that is ideal for students who want to begin a career in healthcare and for learners already working in healthcare facilities. Through 39 credit hours of major coursework, students explore healthcare administration topics, including the U.S. healthcare system, healthcare marketing, ethics, and patient safety. Learners without professional healthcare experience may need to complete a 120-hour practicum worth one credit hour.
Mercy delivers online healthcare administration classes through Canvas. While students complete most coursework asynchronously, some instructors incorporate scheduled, synchronous chats. Distance students generally spend 6-10 hours per week on each course, and classes typically include video lectures and threaded discussions. After enrolling, students can complete an orientation of the online learning system.
Applicants need at least a 2.3 GPA and either an associate degree, a bachelor's degree, or 60 transferable credit hours, including general education coursework in the natural sciences, English, mathematics, and social or behavioral sciences.
Florida Institute of Technology-Online
|Melbourne, FL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 60%||
Established in 1958, Florida Tech is a private research university based in Melbourne. The university offers more than 200 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral programs through four colleges. Florida Tech's College of Business boasts accreditation from the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, making it one of the best online schools for healthcare management.
Students pursuing the online BA in business administration can choose from concentrations in accounting, computer information systems, management, marketing, and healthcare management. Healthcare management students take a combination of general business courses and healthcare-specific classes. Students learn how to develop business plans and create effective business presentations. Learners also explore business finance, operations, structures, and laws from a global perspective.
Healthcare management students take a community health evaluation course that covers health promotion strategies, disease prevention, and descriptive epidemiology. Other core healthcare classes explore managed care, medical ethics, and healthcare organizations.
Business administration students complete a total of 121 credits through major courses and general education requirements. Most learners earn the online bachelor's degree in healthcare management in about four years, and Florida Tech delivers online classes in eight-week, asynchronous sessions.
Distance learners can access support resources, including online library materials and virtual tutoring. Florida Tech provides career services to help students construct resumes and apply for jobs.
|Midway, KY||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 52%||
Midway University is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). The university educates students through a main campus in Midway, Kentucky, and through online programs. Midway offers 25 online bachelor's degrees, including programs in business administration, education, communications, and healthcare administration.
Students pursuing the BS in health care administration complete 120 credit hours. They take 12 major courses that explore topics including health careers, medical staff organization, health insurance claims management, and health care policy. Students also complete a capstone requirement worth three credit hours.
Supporting business courses cover the basics of accounting, business research methods, marketing, and economics. Additionally, online learners take 34 credit hours of general education courses that cover subjects including writing and environmental issues. Health care administration students complete the degree entirely online through accelerated, eight-week courses. Learners study asynchronously and can begin the program at five start dates throughout the year.
Distance learners have access to resources including academic and career services. Midway's career counselors help distance learners can find jobs, internships, and shadowing opportunities. Additionally, students can take advantage of a writing lab, virtual tutoring, and online math tutorials. Applicants need at least a 2.5 GPA and must submit ACT or SAT scores. Admitted students can earn credit for previous coursework, military training, and prior learning assessments.
|Philadelphia, PA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 71%||
One of the 15 largest private universities in the U.S., Drexel University serves more than 24,000 students through 15 colleges and schools. Drexel students can pursue more than 200 academic programs at the university's three Philadelphia-area campuses and online. The university introduced online learning in 1996 and today enrolls more than 4,000 learners in more than 140 online programs.
The university's College of Nursing and Health Professions offers an online BS in health services administration. The curriculum aligns with the National Center for Healthcare Leadership's educational guidelines and comprises 180-184 quarter credits. Students take courses asynchronously during four 10-week quarters each year.
The health services administration major consists of 11 required courses and nine electives. Students must pass three writing-intensive courses, two within the major and one in any field. Health services administration courses that satisfy the writing requirement include healthcare marketing, healthcare policy, and nonprofits and healthcare.
First-time freshmen, defined as applicants with fewer than 24 prior college credits, must have earned their high school diploma or GED at least two years before enrolling at Drexel. Applicants with 24 or more college credits must hold at least a 2.5 GPA, but the program director considers students with lower grades on an individual basis. Transfer students can apply up to 135 quarter credits, the equivalent of 90 semester credits, toward the BS in health services administration.
University of Maryland - University College
|Adelphi, MD||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 9%||
Founded in 1947, the University of Maryland University College serves working professionals and service members. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees online and at locations across the United States. Distance learners can choose from more than 90 online degrees, specializations, and certificates.
The BS in health services management requires 120 credits of electives, major courses, and general education classes. During their first six credits, students take an introductory research course that explains how to find and evaluate sources. Learners take 33 credits of major coursework and devote 46 credits to free electives or a minor. Students can apply up to 90 transfer credits toward their bachelor's degree.
Students complete the degree entirely online through asynchronous courses, but learners can opt for some hybrid classes. UMUC delivers courses in eight-week blocks, and most classes feature weekly or biweekly assignment due dates. For most online courses, UMUC provides free digital materials, such as e-books, library resources, and websites, so students do not need to buy textbooks.
UMUC provides extensive support to online students. Learners can consult with librarians through email, over the phone, and through text messages. Students can access online databases, research guides, and e-books through the library website. Additionally, undergraduates can sign up for virtual tutoring sessions in subjects such as accounting, economics, finance, and statistics. As students near graduation, they can consult with career counselors and network with alumni.
Concordia University - Saint Paul
|Saint Paul, MN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 55%||
Founded in 1893, Concordia University St. Paul is a liberal arts institution affiliated with the Lutheran Church. The school boasts more than 80 undergraduate, master's, doctoral, and preprofessional programs in disciplines including literature, history, pharmacy, and business. Students can choose from more than 40 online programs, including 21 bachelor's degrees.
The BA in health care administration, like many health care management online programs, requires 120 credit hours. Students complete 40 credit hours through 10 major courses. A strategic leadership course teaches students to manage people, teams, and resources in a competitive and constantly changing market. Through a course on health care diversity and global issues, learners explore values, customs, and perceptions found in diverse populations. A class on health care information systems prepares students to collect, store, and manipulate data in a health care facility.
Along with major courses, students complete general education requirements in areas including communication, fine arts, political science, and mathematics. Additionally, CSP requires learners to take an introductory religion course and an intermediate religion course.
CSP delivers the health care management degree entirely online through asynchronous courses. Students complete classes in seven-week blocks and move through the curriculum with a cohort of peers. Online students can take advantage of online library resources and a technical help desk.
Applicants need at least a 2.0 GPA, and first-time freshmen who graduated high school within the last three years must submit SAT or ACT scores. Additionally, prospective students must describe a life-changing experience through an essay of 400-1,000 words.
University of Minnesota - Crookston
|Crookston, MN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 54%||
Established in 1966, the University of Minnesota Crookston is a public institution and is one of five campuses in the University of Minnesota System. The school enrolls more than 1,800 students through four departments, and about half of UMC learners study online.
UMC's BS in health management prepares recent high school graduates for healthcare careers. The program is also ideal for early-career health care professionals aspiring to leadership roles. The health management curriculum holds approval from the
Minnesota Board of Examiners of Nursing Home Administrators along with the National Association of Long-Term Care Administrator Boards. Because of this approval, graduates of the program qualify to take national and state licensing exams to become nursing home administrators.
The health management bachelor's degree requires 120 credits, and students take 62 major credits. Major coursework covers general business topics, such as human resource management, marketing, accounting, and business writing. Students also take health care-specific classes in areas including medical terminology and health information systems. A course on health care policy compares health care issues and delivery systems around the world.
Students take classes asynchronously during 16-week fall and spring semesters and an accelerated eight-week summer term. In the fall and spring, students typically spend 9-12 hours per week on each course. Condensed summer classes typically require 18-24 hours each week. UMC delivers online courses through Canvas.
City University of Seattle
|Seattle, WA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 49%||
City University of Seattle is a private, nonprofit institution in operation since 1973. The school maintains more than 20 locations worldwide and provides flexible and accessible programs. Students can choose from online programs at the associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and certificate levels.
Learners complete the 180-credit BS in healthcare administration entirely online through asynchronous classes. Like many of the best online schools for healthcare management, CityU teaches students about major financial, legal, and ethical considerations in the healthcare industry.
The curriculum includes 90 lower-division credits in areas including composition, mathematics, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Students take a course on critical thinking and a class on ethics and leadership, which examines philosophical approaches to decision-making and solving practical ethical problems.
Upper-division coursework includes 10 five-credit healthcare administration classes. The program culminates in a faculty-supervised capstone project during which students use the skills they develop throughout the program. The capstone project can focus on management, policy, marketing, quality assurance, or finance.
Applicants must submit an online application and official transcripts. Transfer students can apply up to 135 credits from a community college, technical school, or four-year institution. Additionally, CityU awards credit for non-academic experience through a prior learning assessment. Students can earn up to 45 credits for experience from with jobs, training programs, volunteer work, military service, and hobbies.
|La Jolla, CA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 42%||
National University is a private institution that educates students online and on more than 20 campus locations across California and Nevada. The university introduced online programs more than 20 years ago and today offers more than 90 fully online degrees. NU's School of Health and Human Services offers a BS in healthcare administration that students can complete entirely online. Learners take classes asynchronously in four-week sessions, and they focus on one subject at a time.
The BS in healthcare administration program belongs to the Association of University Programs in Healthcare Administration. Students in the program complete at least 180 quarter units of general education courses and major classes. To prepare for major coursework, students take 13 introductory courses covering topics in personal health, medical terminology, communicable disease, and biostatistics. Preparation coursework also explores sociology, economics, and accounting.
NU recommends that students complete all preparation courses before beginning major coursework. Major classes explore topics including global health systems, health informatics, and case management. All healthcare students take a capstone course, and California-based learners can participate in a healthcare internship.
Students can access online support resources, including math tutoring and 40-minute virtual consultation through the writing center. Online learners can also access resources about resume writing, interview strategies, and networking. High school graduates with some college experience need at least a 2.0 GPA for full admission. NU accepts applications year-round.
What Else Can I Expect From an Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Management Program?
Combining two of the most popular undergraduate fields, healthcare management online programs encompass a wide range of topics within healthcare and business. Not all bachelor's in healthcare management programs are the same, with many offering their own unique courses and concentrations. Other requirements, including number of credits, average completion time, cost, and career outlook, can vary from program to program. Most online healthcare management programs are offered as a bachelor of science degree and are taught through a school's business college.
CONCENTRATIONS OFFERED FOR A BACHELOR'S IN HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT ONLINE
|Concentration||Description||Careers This Concentration Prepares For|
|Healthcare Administration||Many students who earn a bachelor's in healthcare management online choose to concentrate in healthcare administration. This concentration focuses on running a hospital or health system at optimal efficiency. Students will develop high-level organizational skills and study a wide range of topics, including finance, efficient management, healthcare law, accounting, and general management.||Hospital administrator, insurance company administrator, physician/private practice manager, health software specialist, billing specialist, patient relations specialist|
|Health Informatics||Health informatics describes the field within healthcare technology that involves managing data. Tech-savvy health management majors who choose a concentrate in informatics will learn about EHR/EMR, billing coding, and general administration information systems.||Clinical informatic specialist, healthcare administrator, hospital billing professional, healthcare software analyst.|
|Medical Services Management||Sometimes combined with healthcare administration, health services management requires students to organize and manage a diverse array of services within an organization. This concentration focuses on leadership and managerial skills for large health systems, hospitals, medical centers, and insurers.||Executive or administrator at a large health system, insurance company, physician group or hospital|
CURRICULUM FOR A BACHELOR'S HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT DEGREE ONLINE
Every healthcare management online degree comes with its own specific curriculum. While each online school has its own course requirements and offerings, many cover the same foundational subjects and concepts. The following subjects are taught as core requirements in most healthcare management online degree programs.
- Accounting: Accounting is at the core of management in many fields, especially healthcare. Administrators regularly act as liaisons with insurers, patients, physicians and hospital executives. As a result, foundational knowledge of proper accounting ethics has become a mainstay in every school's healthcare management curriculum.
- Health Systems: Before a student can learn how to manage a doctor's office or hospital, they must understand how the modern healthcare system works. Schools with a health systems concentration typically offer courses on the American and global healthcare systems.
- Operations Management: Operations management is a core principle of any business. From understanding the theory to putting it into practice, this course deals with how a healthcare system or facility can be operated and organized optimally.
- Health Information Technology: From EHRs to ICD-10, information technology is in every part of the healthcare system. All online degree healthcare management students learn the basics of IT and decide whether or not to pursue it as a concentration.
- Human Resources in Healthcare: This standard healthcare management core focuses on managing people, recruiting new employees and dealing with common healthcare personnel problems.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET AN ONLINE BACHELOR'S IN HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT?
The average bachelor's in healthcare management online degree includes 120 credits and takes roughly four years to complete. Many of these programs include general education requirements and require students to choose a major and minor. Online students may be able to earn their degree faster if they are able to enroll in an accelerated program or apply extra credits from previous college education or college entrance tests.
The biggest factors that determine time to completion are credit requirements, pacing of academic terms, whether a student studies full-time or part-time, and whether a program includes lengthy theses, residencies, or capstone projects.
Accreditation for Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Management Degrees
Attending an accredited healthcare management online program is an industry standard. Accreditation of a school or program means that it has been recognized as fulfilling various academic criteria designated by the government, peer institutions, and professional organizations.
Schools can either be nationally or regionally accredited. Regional accreditation applies to most institutions and their online programs, while national accreditation applies to distance learning, vocational, and practical education colleges and universities. Regional accreditation in the U.S. is done by one of six groups recognized by the Department of Education and the non-governmental professional organization the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). The CHEA is in charge of national accreditation and oversees several approved organizations that give out accreditation to schools based on multiple categories.
In addition to national and regional accreditation, some programs receive their own forms of accreditation from subject-specific professional organizations. The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education is one of the CHEA-recognized health care management organizations.
Before applying, check the U.S. Department of Education's website to ensure that your prospective program is accredited.
Employment Outlook for Bachelor's in Healthcare Management
Historically, the healthcare industry's job outlook has always been high, due to the constant demand for qualified professionals in this field. Demand has grown in recent years, thanks to a sharp uptick in the number of patients requiring medical care in the United States. More than 20 million previously uninsured Americans now have medical coverage under the Obama Administration's Affordable Care Act, and an aging baby boomer population has also contributed to this increased demand for healthcare. As a result, industry projections in healthcare management are currently quite strong.
Using data from the BLS, the following table looks at job growth predictions for some of the most common careers in healthcare management.
|Occupation||Industry Growth Projection (2014-24)||Change in Number of Jobs (2014-24)|
|Medical Records and Health Information Technicians||15%||+29,000|
|Medical and Health Services Managers||17%||+56,300|
|Administrative Services Managers||8%||+23,500|
|Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians||16%||+52,100|
|Health Educators and Community Health Workers||13%||+15,600|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
The BLS also notes that the unemployment rate for healthcare support specialists, including administrative and managerial roles, is currently set at 5.7. By comparison, the national unemployment rate for all jobs is 4.9%. However, unemployment tends to decrease for healthcare management degree-holders after a few years in the workforce. A survey by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) revealed a 3.7% unemployment rate for college graduates between the ages of 25 and 29 with a bachelor's degree in general health and medical services.
Earning a Living
According to the BLS, the median annual salary for all 'healthcare occupations' is $62,610. Your earning potential in this industry will largely depend on two factors: the specific, healthcare-related bachelor's degree you earn and the number of years you have worked. The table below highlights salary expectations for different healthcare degree recipients at two key career benchmarks.
|Bachelor's Degree Field||Median Annual Salary for Entry-Level Employees (0-5 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Mid-Career Employees (10+ Years)|
|Health Information Management||$41,700||$63,800|
|Business and Healthcare Management||$40,000||$62,500|
|Health Care Administration||$39,400||$59,900|
|Health Care Management||$37,800||$55,600|
|Health Services Administration||$36,300||$51,500|
All eight of these degrees lead to strong salary growth after 10 years. Degree-holders with a health-based degree get the highest growth projection, as they can expect their salary to climb 70.0% between their first job and mid-career. The average growth rate for all eight degrees is 54.9%.
Other factors that will impact your salary expectations include your location, job description, and the size of your company. The following table looks at career salary growth projections for five common career pathways in healthcare management.
|Occupation||Median Annual Salary for Entry-Level Employees (0-5 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Mid-Career Employees (5-10 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Experienced Employees (10-20 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Late-Career Employees (20+ Years)|
|Health Care Manager||$51,065||$62,573||$65,930||$72,876|
|Health Care Administrator||$51,000||$67,000||$77,000||$75,000|
|Registered Health Information Administrator||$44,000||$45,000||$52,000||$65,000|
|Medical Health and Services Manager||$51,000||$69,000||$70,000||$77,000|
|Medical Records Administrator||$41,000||$41,000||$45,000||$58,000|
All five occupations on the table saw at least 41% salary growth after 20 years in the workforce. Medical health and services managers saw the highest growth rate, a 51% increase between entry-level and late-career benchmarks.
Career and Further Education Opportunities
College students who leave school with a bachelor's degree in healthcare management will leave school qualified for dozens of entry-level positions, along with select managerial roles typically reserved for candidates who have earned an undergraduate degree. Below, we've reviewed four common career pathways for professionals with a healthcare management degree.
Medical Records and Health Information Technicians: These professionals are responsible for collecting, organizing, and storing patient data at hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities. This career path has become highly digitalized in recent years, and technicians must become familiar with key electronic billing and coding procedures.
Medical and Health Services Managers: Also known as healthcare executives or healthcare administrators, these professionals oversee the various medical services offered at healthcare facilities. Some manage entire staffs, while others are concentrated in specific departments.
Administrative Services Managers: These professionals generally oversee an organization's administrative operations. In healthcare facilities, administrative services managers typically handle medical recordkeeping, equipment maintenance needs, facility upkeep, and logistical demands.
Health Educators and Community Health Workers: These professionals develop community-level projects and initiatives aimed at promoting positive health and lifestyle choices. They often meet with community leaders and members to research target demographics, and may also collect information through surveys and in-person interviews.
|Occupation||Median Annual Salary|
|Medical Records and Health Information Technicians||$37,110|
|Administrative Services Managers||$94,500|
|Computer Network Architects||$86,110|
|Health Educators and Community Health Workers||$43,840|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
Making connections and learning as much as you can about health care management is crucial to your professional success. Professional organizations offer a great entry point for students who want to learn more about their chosen career path. Below you'll find three of the country's most prominent organizations established for healthcare management professionals. These organizations host networking events, provide online trainings, maintain active job boards, and offer other services for career-ready college graduates.
- Association for Healthcare Administrative Professionals: AHCAP is a non-profit organization dedicated to healthcare management professionals. Members enjoy several benefits, including six free webinars per year, reduced tuition for continuing education opportunities, and an invitation to the organization's annual conference.
- Health Care Administrators Association: First formed in 1980, the HCAA supports educational opportunities, professional networking, and advocacy for third-party administrators in health and medicine, including insurance providers and health consultants. The association offers a Certified Self Funding Specialist certification. The website also features an online job board.
- American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management: Founded in 1968, AAHAM today oversees more than thirty regional chapters across the United States. The organization specializes in education and advocacy related to areas like medical reimbursement, patient registration, data management, and medical recordkeeping.
Financing Your Online Healthcare Management Program
Despite the relative affordability of online programs, most students still need financial assistance. Students should complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form to learn more about loans, grants, and other opportunities offered through the U.S. government. Additionally, private grants and scholarships are widely available through nonprofit organizations, companies, and other sources. Check out our collection of resources below to learn more about financial aid options.
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 programs can provide an affordable and flexible option for women trying to balance the demands of work, family, and earning their degree. We've curated a list of valuable scholarships specifically for women.
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.
- Best Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Management Programs for 2018
Ranking School Location 1 Colorado State University-Global Campus Greenwood Village, CO 2 Brigham Young University-Idaho Rexburg, ID 3 University of Alabama at Birmingham Birmingham, AL 4 East Carolina University Greenville, NC 5 University of St Francis Joliet, IL 6 Dallas Baptist University Dallas, TX 7 Regis University Denver, CO 8 Liberty University Lynchburg, VA 9 Western Governors University Salt Lake City, UT 10 Ottawa University-Online Ottawa, KS 11 Concordia University-Saint Paul Saint Paul, MN 12 Florida Institute of Technology-Online Melbourne, FL 13 Midway University Midway, KY 14 George Washington University Washington, DC 15 National University La Jolla, CA 16 Cleary University Ann Arbor, MI 17 Bellevue University Bellevue, NE 18 Charter Oak State College New Britain, CT 19 Mercy College of Ohio Toledo, OH 20 Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA 21 Loma Linda University Loma Linda, CA 22 Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health Omaha, NE 23 City University of Seattle Seattle, WA 24 University of Minnesota-Crookston Crookston, MN 25 University of Louisiana at Lafayette Lafayette, LA 26 Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, KY 27 University of Maryland-University College Adelphi, MD 28 National Louis University Chicago, IL 29 Drexel University Philadelphia, PA 30 King University Bristol, TN
- Best Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Management Programs for 2017
Rank School Location 1 East Carolina University Greenville, NC 2 University of St Francis Joliet, IL 3 Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Lubbock, TX 4 Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA 5 George Washington University Washington, DC 6 Dallas Baptist University Dallas, TX 7 Drexel University Philadelphia, PA 8 Brigham Young University-Idaho Rexburg, ID 9 Regis University Denver, CO 10 Concordia University-Saint Paul Saint Paul, MN 11 Cleary University Ann Arbor, MI 12 Midway College Midway, KY 13 Misericordia University Dallas, PA 14 Northwood University-Michigan Midland, MI 15 Concordia University-Wisconsin Mequon, WI 16 Viterbo University La Crosse, WI 17 Concordia University-Chicago River Forest, IL 18 University of Minnesota-Crookston Crookston, MN 19 Saint Joseph's College of Maine Standish, ME 20 Ottawa University-Online Ottawa, KS 21 Southwestern College Winfield, KS 22 Saint Leo University Saint Leo, FL 23 Champlain College Burlington, VT 24 Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, KY