Department of Healthcare Administration

The Department of Master of Science in Healthcare Administration offers the MS in Healthcare Administration degree program.

Welcome to the Department of Healthcare Administration.

The Master of Science in Healthcare Administration is for those with bachelor degrees in nonclinical fields who are working professionals that want to advance and are interested in management and leadership positions in healthcare settings. The program provides students with the competencies necessary to develop and implement solutions that address today's unique challenges facing the healthcare industry. Conceptual, analytical, and experiential skills required to manage contemporary healthcare organizations are emphasized with field experience designed to advance preparation for a management role.

Courses are taught by faculty from both the School of Nursing and the School of Business and Management. The program includes topics in contemporary healthcare delivery models, leadership and management, healthcare informatics and technology, healthcare finance and business analysis, decision making and project management, legal and ethical principles in healthcare, and workforce management. Students choose a specialty track in quality and innovation, or financial management in healthcare, or international health. This Christian-value-driven, competency-based Master of Science in Healthcare Administration program provides students with the capacity to lead and manage healthcare organizations both effectively and ethically. The program is offered as an asynchronous online program.

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) in Healthcare Administration and Leadership is for BSN-prepared registered nurses who are looking to advance their careers and move into early- to mid-level management and leadership roles in myriad healthcare settings. The program provides values-based education to develop nursing leaders who are effective collaborators, motivated by a spirit of commitment to the profession, and have a genuine compassion for others. Students acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to lead and manage healthcare teams in organizations, functioning in areas such as operations management, project management, and healthcare consulting.

The program includes graduate nursing core courses focused on a critical analysis of nursing and healthcare research and theory, bioethics, healthcare policy, and the integration of spirituality in health care. Interdisciplinary administration and leadership coursework is offered through the School of Nursing and APU’s School of Business and Management. Content includes leadership styles and theories, strategic planning, quality improvement and patient safety, change management, effective communication and conflict resolution skills, staffing challenges and constraints, financial management, and healthcare informatics. Students apply their knowledge and develop competencies in healthcare settings during practicum experiences. Upon completion of this program, students will have had the educational content required to sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center and American Organization for Nursing Leadership nurse leadership examinations.

MHA 560, Strategic Leadership in Health Care, 3 Units

Students in this course develop knowledge, skills, and attitudes about leadership across the healthcare continuum as they consider the professional role of the healthcare administrator from leadership and management perspectives. Areas of emphasis include leadership theory, structure of healthcare institutions, systems thinking and decision making, and performance improvement including quality and safety issues, risk management, and effective communication skills. Application of business skills is integrated, and students consider the theoretical and research background, current issues and trends, and leadership and administrative implications of specific topics.

Prerequisite: Admission to the M.S. in Healthcare Administration program.

MHA 570, Quality Management, 3 Units

The course focuses on the conceptual foundation of healthcare quality, systems thinking, and the principles of healthcare quality management that include measurement, assessment, and improvement. Students use improvement models, apply tools and process techniques to communicate organizational, clinical, and safety outcomes. The integration of evidence for organizational decision-making with quality improvement processes serve as the framework for students to create a data-driven, quality management project plan. Students incorporate practical solutions to craft measurable expectations, realistic timelines, and an organized project management approach for direct application.

Prerequisite: PADM 512

MHA 571, Integrative Theories of Innovation in Health Care, 3 Units

This course helps student identify and develop skills in producing lasting innovations in healthcare settings. Course material builds on past theories of change, such as those by Lewin and Kotter, and includes other theories that support and sustain organizational change. It also features content on Rogers' diffusion of innovation theory, disruptive innovation, and strategies to promote the adoption of innovation.

MHA 574, Global Field Study in Health Care, 3 Units

This course provides a framework for graduate students to engage in field study in various countries around the world. Students participate in organizational assessment visits to healthcare organizations locally and globally to discuss the role of the administrator and how they apply and practice leadership, management, and change principles, concepts, and theories covered in the graduate curriculum. The global competency domains for healthcare leaders - leadership, communication and relationship management, professional and social responsibility, health and the healthcare environment, and business - are explored as part of the healthcare management profession.

MHA 580, Administrative Practicum, 2 Units

This course gives students the opportunity to experience the role of the healthcare administrator. Each student chooses an individualized administration practicum in a specific area of emphasis, approved and monitored by the faculty member and preceptor. Competencies that govern the role of the healthcare administrator are explored in depth, and students focus on the context for enacting the role of an administrator in a healthcare delivery system.

Prerequisite: All Academic Core and Administrative courses; MHA 597 can be taken concurrently.

MHA 586, Healthcare Analytics, Big Data, and Applied Statistics, 3 Units

This course is an introduction to healthcare data science and analysis that builds knowledge of the technical infrastructure, sources, and storage of electronic data. Statistical analysis, data mining, text analytics, and predictive analytics are explored to frame questions and inform decision making. Students utilize different information retrieval methods to answer clinical and operational questions by performing simple data analysis and visualization of healthcare data. Strategies are discussed for how to optimally use data and glean knowledge from within big data to advance healthcare organizations and demonstrate value. Students also explore Christian worldview principles demonstrating ethical data use in health informatics that respects the dignity and uniqueness of others, and the security and privacy of data.

Prerequisite: MHA 596

MHA 595, Special Topics, 3 Units

In this course, a topic of current interest to students is examined in depth. Students analyze and evaluate topics/issues to reach and express a position, enhance personal development and/or to develop a particular project. If students elect this course more than once during their program, each such course must address a different topic.

MHA 596, Foundations of Healthcare Informatics, 3 Units

This course provides an overview of basic concepts for practice in healthcare-oriented informatics. These core concepts include an introduction to clinical and translational informatics; foundational theory and practical application of clinical decision-making and computerized decision support; healthcare systems and their organization; the special issues of administration, security, and operations of electronic records in the healthcare setting; human factors issues; information science in the healthcare domain; standards, terminologies, and the uniqueness of biomedical data; and a special focus on emerging technologies.

MHA 597, Capstone, 1 Unit

Students integrate prior learning through the formulation of a case report providing strategic direction to a healthcare organization. The completed strategic plan demonstrates integration of theoretical, clinical, and research knowledge from coursework throughout the program, and is applied to a healthcare problem in an actual healthcare setting: Students perform a SWOT analysis, a review and synthesis of current literature, select an appropriate theoretical framework, determine solutions to the problem, and develop an implementation plan. Students also create an electronic professional portfolio to highlight competencies gained throughout the program. Course success is dependent upon the candidate's ability to clearly identify a healthcare problem and develop an evidence-based solution. Participation in writing assignments is required for successful completion of this course. The responsibility for deep exploration of the chosen scenario and preparation for writing the case report rests with each candidate.

Prerequisite: All Academic Core and Administrative courses must be completed; MHA 580 may be taken concurrently.

MHA 599, Readings in Healthcare Administration, 1-3 Units

A student may elect to pursue special interests for credit at any time during the program under the supervision of a faculty member. University policy states that the student must earn a grade in an independent study course in order to receive credit toward graduation.

FIN 502, Business Finance for Managers, 3 Units

This course provides an introduction to concepts and tools of business finance for managers. Students study financial statements and their interpretation, business performance measures, the management of cash and the short term financial needs of the organization, and how to make good capital budgeting decisions. Students will analyze company performance and make recommendations by applying class content to financial issues.

FIN 536, Entrepreneurial Finance, 3 Units

This course examines the financial decisions of entrepreneurs and venture capital investors based on the stages of a venture development. Topics include financial options for entrepreneurs and investors, preparations for and analysis of a new business' financial statements, and the valuation of the venture.

Prerequisite: FIN 513 (MBA students only; MBM and MSHA students have no prerequisite for this course)

FIN 567, Advanced Financial Analysis, 3 Units

Students explore the practical applications of financial management based on case studies. Major topics include financial statement analysis, financial forecasting, cost of capital estimation, capital budgeting decisions, capital structure decisions, equity financing, and mergers and acquisitions.

Prerequisite: FIN 513 (MBA/Accounting students only), FIN 502 (MSHA students only)

GNRS 504, Bioethics and Healthcare Policy, 3 Units

This course will outline the role of the healthcare leader in ensuring human rights are upheld in healthcare systems. This course focuses on bioethical analysis, decision-making and moral policy analysis, and formulation. Through course discussion, group and individual assignments, and oral and written presentations, students will analyze and apply bioethical principles to decision- and policy- making processes in the workplace and at national levels. Healthcare ethics and policy will be considered from a Christian worldview.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing

GNRS 506, Spiritual Concept Analysis in Health Care, 3 Units

Scholarly research and analysis of selected concepts in the spiritual care of persons from the Judeo-Christian perspective provide a central focus to the course. Students also examine healthcare research/other healthcare literature for adequacy with respect to the concept they select. Various assignments facilitate greater student awareness of their own spiritual journey and knowledge of faith traditions other than their own. The course is conducted as a tutorial/seminar experience.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing

GNRS 508B, Research and Theory in Healthcare, 4 Units

This course prepares the healthcare administrator to apply theory and research evidence in healthcare environments. The relationship between theory and research is examined, exploring questions about the nature, construction, and use of each. Selected theories are explored, and students learn how ideas are developed and used in practice and research. Students learn the fundamentals of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research and deepen their understanding through systematic search, critique, and summary of research studies with application to healthcare. Students work in groups to develop a research plan addressing a healthcare-derived question. Experience in statistical analysis of research data is included.

Prerequisite: GNRS 613

GNRS 543, Transitions Across the Care Continuum, 4-6 Units

This course focuses on principles and models of care and their implementation in a multidisciplinary practice environment that emphasizes healthcare delivery through integration of services and transition management. Students are introduced to decision making related to allocation of resources and services, development of protocols, and evaluation of management approaches. Evidence-based approaches to the clinical, administrative, educational, and research dimensions of patient care are emphasized. Evaluation of care management activities with the student's selected clinical population is an integral component of the course.

Prerequisite: NP students: completion of Advanced Practice Core; CNS students: completion of Advanced Practice Core and GNRS 520 or GNRS 530; HAL students: completion of MSN Core and GNRS 560.

Corequisite: Practicum

GNRS 560, Strategic Leadership in Health Care, 3 Units

This course is designed to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes about leadership across the healthcare continuum. The student will consider the professional role of the healthcare administrator both from a leadership and a management perspective. Areas of concentration will include leadership theory, structure of healthcare institutions, systems thinking and decision-making, performance improvement including quality and safety issues, risk management and effective communication skills. Application of business skills will be integrated. Students will consider the theoretical and research background, current issues and trends, leadership and administrative implications of specific topics.

MGMT 561, Managing Teams and Conflict, 3 Units

This course helps the student understand small-group behavior. It uses experience-based methods, cases, reading material, and simulation, and examines role behavior, group dynamics, conflict control, leadership, and group development. It also addresses motivation and problem solving as essential elements of organizational behavior.

GNRS 567, Healthcare Administration and Leadership Supervised Practicum, 3 Units

This course provides the student with the opportunity to experience the role of healthcare administrator. An individualized administration practicum in a specific area of clinical emphasis is chosen by the student and approved and monitored by the faculty and preceptor. Competencies that govern the role of the healthcare administrator are explored in depth. Students focus on the context for enacting the role of administrator in a healthcare delivery system.

Prerequisite: All core and role courses

GNRS 568, Healthcare Finance, 4 Units

This course is an introduction to financial concepts and skills need for healthcare leaders, managers, and executives. The student will develop skills in assessing multiple dimensions of financial performance and methods to improve the financial health of an organization in the context of current patient care system.

GNRS 597, Comprehensive Examination Directed Study, 1 Unit

This course guides the student through the process of demonstrating an integration of theoretical, clinical, and research knowledge. Critical thinking is enhanced through careful consideration of information presented during discussion. The examinations are taken as part of this seminar.

Prerequisite: Completion of all Academic Core and degree specialty courses. Final specialty course may be taken concurrently.

GNRS 613, Graduate Statistics, 3 Units

This course presents the knowledge of descriptive, correlational, and inferential statistics used in research that serves as the basis for evidence-based practice. Students develop the ability to perform descriptive and inferential data analysis techniques, use software applications to aid in statistical calculations and presentation, and interpret findings.

MGMT 502, Developing Management Skills, 3 Units

This course provides an introduction to management skills necessary for the twenty-first century characterized by chaotic, transformational, and rapid-fire change. Scientific evidence demonstrates how management skills are associated with personal and organizational successes. Although management skills are applicable in most areas of your life, this course will focus on work setting management skills to help students improve their own competency in a managerial role.

MGMT 503, Business Strategy: Theory and Practice, 3 Units

This course provides a review of management as an area of theoretical development as well as a field of practice. It comprises classical management theories and modern approaches to organization and business. Main blocks of the course are functions of management, managerial processes and interaction between organizations and their environment. This course includes elements of organizational behavior. Business cases are used as application of theoretical concepts.

MGMT 516, High-Performance People Management, 3 Units

This course provides students with the social science tools needed to solve organizational problems and influence the actions of individuals, groups, and organizations. It prepares managers to understand how to best organize and motivate the human capital of the firm, manage social networks and alliances, and execute strategic change.

MGMT 517, Managing Human Capital, 3 Units

Students study the establishment of human resource objectives and requirements in an organization. Emphasis is on executive decision making in dealing with formal employee-employer relationships. Collective bargaining, organization of employees, negotiation, and administration of collective bargaining agreements are covered.

Prerequisite: HROD 500 or GNRS 560

MGMT 541, Global Business Management, 3 Units

This course focuses on the environmental and functional differences between U.S. and international business, including exporting, balance payments, strategic planning, organization of multinational firms, international financial planning and cash management, foreign exchange planning, comparative management philosophies, international marketing strategies, incorporation for international operations and external relations of the multinational corporation.

PADM 512, Healthcare Administration, 3 Units

This course covers the foundations of healthcare administration in the United States, introducing students to the structure and function of the healthcare system. Topics include theory and models of healthcare administration, public policy impacts and scarcity, partnerships and achieving equality in healthcare governance at the national, state, and local levels, community environments, and critical issues in health services. Students explore Christian faith-based alternatives for alleviating healthcare burdens, and conduct a community health system analysis.

Prerequisite: Admitted to MPA or M.S. in Healthcare Administration program, Nursing, MBA/MBM Program or permission of MPA director.