Online MSHA Degree – Master of Science in Health Administration

Master of Science in Health Administration

Offered By: College of Nursing and Health Care Professions

What Is a Master’s in Health Administration (MSHA) Degree?

Grand Canyon University’s Master of Science in Health Administration (MSHA) provides students with the skills and experience necessary to perform as middle- and upper-level managers in a variety of health organizations. This online degree from the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions helps students gain the skills and experience necessary to serve as innovative change agents, as well as leaders of organizational improvement and adaptation within the health administration industry. Graduates typically pursue careers where they focus on running the business side of a healthcare organization, facility or hospital.

MSHA students will learn how to effectively communicate and manage employees, use critical thinking skills and respectfully recognize the diversity of their patients and populations while abiding by the health organization’s rules. Additionally, they will learn in the master’s in health administration degree program how to collect and analyze evidence and information that can be applied to improve patient safety, clinical processes and health outcomes.

Hospital and healthcare administrators are privileged with the opportunity and responsibility of making a profound impact on a community.

What You Will Learn in GCU’s MSHA Program

The MSHA program uses a hands-on curriculum toward the end of the program in practicum to emphasize the conceptual, analytical and application skills required to manage in contemporary health organizations. All courses in the master’s degree in health administration program at GCU are taught by experts in their respective fields who share extensive knowledge and experience. This 48-credit master’s program begins with an introduction course for all graduate students studying health professions. MSHA students are also required to complete a 16-week practicum.

  • Analysis of Contemporary Health Care Delivery Models
  • Legal and Ethical Principles in Health Care
  • Health Care Policies and Economics
  • Health Care Research Methods, Analysis and Utilization
  • Organizational Structure, Dynamics and Effectiveness
  • Leadership Styles and Development
  • Essential Health Care Business Analysis

Through the topics covered, GCU also puts an emphasis on our Christian worldview, as well as the value of servant leadership. As a Christian university, we inspire students to find their purpose by integrating a religious model of servant leadership into the MSHA online curriculum.

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Estimated median annual wage for medical and health services managers as of May 20201

Careers With a Master’s in Health Administration

Graduates of GCU’s Master of Science in Health Administration program are prepared to manage their employees in an effective and respectful manner. MSHA graduates often go into administrative positions in hospitals, long-term care facilities, outpatient facilities, physician offices, mental health agencies, insurance companies, public health agencies, as well as other types of health organizations. Master’s in health administration graduates may go on to hold titles including facilities manager, medical and health services manager and postsecondary business teacher

MSHA Degree FAQs

For many professionals who are looking to grow in the healthcare field, earning a master’s in healthcare administration is worth the time and money investments. As a health services manager, you will perform many important tasks and responsibilities of running the business side of a healthcare facility. An MSHA will help prepare you to become a respected expert in healthcare matters and earn the compensation to show for it. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical and health services managers have a median annual wage of $104,280 as of May 2020.1

Healthcare administrators have a big job with many responsibilities, including handling finances, maintaining daily operations of the facility, hiring staff, managing personnel matters and staying up-to-date with government regulations. On the flip side, as a healthcare administrator, you have the privilege of making a difference in the lives of patients and healthcare providers. This career is excellent for visionaries who have a passion for quality healthcare and patient safety.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates job growth for medical and health services managers to increase by about 32% from 2019 to 2029, faster than average, accounting for an estimated increase of 133,200 jobs in the field.2 By earning a master’s in health administration and obtaining the necessary credentials and job experience, you can be confident in your search for a career in this field.

If you consider yourself a visionary who wants to make improvements in the healthcare field, the role of a healthcare administrator may be the right path for you. Healthcare administrators are the behind-the-scenes professionals who prioritize the quality of patient care, delivery of care, patient services, community programs, and the hiring of the best providers who can handle the needs of patients. The need for healthcare administrators combined with great pay and benefits make this a lucrative career option.

Earning a MSHA helps open the doors to many career opportunities across the healthcare field. The most common workplace settings for healthcare administrators are hospitals, medical labs and physicians’ offices. Healthcare administration professionals are also hired by insurance companies, government agencies, pharmaceutical companies and outpatient care facilities.

1 The earnings referenced were reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (“BLS”), Medical and Health Services Managers as of May 2020. Due to COVID-19, data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may also impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the BLS. BLS calculates the median using salaries of workers from across the country with varying levels of education and experience and does not reflect the earnings of GCU graduates as Medical and Health Service Managers. It does not reflect earnings of workers in one city or region of the country. It also does not reflect a typical entry-level salary. Median income is the statistical midpoint for the range of salaries in a specific occupation. It represents what you would earn if you were paid more money than half the workers in an occupation, and less than half the workers in an occupation. It may give you a basis to estimate what you might earn at some point if you enter this career. You may also wish to compare median salaries if you are considering more than one career path.

2 COVID-19 has adversely affected the global economy and data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well. Accordingly, data shown is based on 2019, which can be found here: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Medical and Health Services Managers

Total Credits: 48
Online: 8 weeks
[More Info]
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the total program requirements in transfer (whichever is less)
Online: $575 per credit [More Info]

Course List

48 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
48 credits

Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the health care professions. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course allows learners to develop a comprehensive understanding of contemporary health care models from financial, economic, quality, access, and disparity perspectives, and to relate the ethical, cultural, political, and financial factors that drive and support them. It is from this broad, integrative, and comparative perspective that learners begin defining their role and perspective as administrators within the health care system. Learners begin to investigate their options and define their potential to serve as leaders of systematic improvement, within their health care discipline, based on changes in these driving factors.

Course Description

This course focuses on the recognition, analysis, and resolution of ethical dilemmas in health occupations. Students examine legal liabilities involved in health care administration, including workplace safety and a health care facility’s obligation to provide protection from injury for patients, their families, and staff.

Course Description

This course focuses on health care economics and policy. The core principles of health economics are studied, and students begin to explore practical financial-analysis skills that have immediate application within the health care industry. Students also study managerial decision-making processes based on cost, service, and other economic variables as well as how those decisions influence outcomes. Students will investigate health care policy and reform to understand the impact it makes on everyday practices of health care organizations.

Course Description

This course focuses on the critical analysis of health care research and its application to the administration and delivery of health care services. Emphasis is placed on strategies to access current and relevant data, synthesize the information, and translate new knowledge into practice. Learners are introduced to concepts of measurement, reliability, and validity, as well as ethical issues in the design and conduct of research through an evaluative process of health care initiatives and projects.

Course Description

This course focuses on the analysis of health care organizational structure and effectiveness. Topics include the distributive leadership model, decision making through collaboration and teamwork, and the integrative analysis of how change impacts other components of the system.

Course Description

This course explores the nature of business leadership models and theories, examines these models through a broad variety of insights and viewpoints, and provides a description and analysis of these approaches to leadership, giving special attention to how the models can improve leadership in real-world organizations.

Course Description

This course focuses on the critical analyses of health care business operations and performance. Topics include analysis of financial performance, operational process analysis, and quality of service evaluation.

Course Description

This course focuses on essential managerial communication skills. Human resource topics include conflict management, negotiation, mediation, and coaching, as well as change management principles and the types of communication required for paradigm modification. Interdepartmental, cross-discipline, and external partner marketing topics are included. Consumer communication and collaboration techniques are also discussed.

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students to meet the professional standards of practice related to their future discipline within the industry. Emphasis is placed on critical thinking, utilization of resources, communication strategies, and goal setting. Students prepare a professional portfolio and resume. Students apply various networking techniques and practical interview skills to ensure professional readiness for their chosen health care careers.

Course Description

The focus of this course is to begin integrating all previous study and to identify the focus of students' final capstone project. Students evaluate and integrate the methodologies, considerations, and strategies for project or program design, planning, implementation, and evaluation that are relevant or specifically required by their specific health care discipline. Topics of investigation and consideration include (but are not limited to) financial and economic impact; resource allocation; competition; public and private educational requirements; availability of information technology; impact assessment of change; process improvement assessment; social, behavioral, and environmental impact; legal/ethical issues; and any other factors that impact the provision of care or subsequent outcomes within an organization and community. A collaborative group project approach is emphasized to enhance contribution and consideration from diverse experiences within the health care field. Prerequisite: HLT-610, HCA-610, or HIM-650.

Course Description

This capstone course provides an opportunity for learners to complete the development of a comprehensive evidence-based project, plan, or proposal that addresses a problem, issue, or concern in their professional practice and can be implemented upon completion of the program. Projects address a problem amenable to research-based intervention; include a relevant and comprehensive literature review; propose a solution; and include a fully developed program, project, or business plan. The project also contains all the necessary information to implement the proposed solution, evaluate its outcome(s), and disseminate the findings. Prerequisite: Successful completion of all courses in the program except HCA-670.

Course Description

This course promotes the synthesis and application of knowledge and skills from the Master of Health Administration (MS-HA) program. Learners identify a mentor and develop a relationship through which they examine the connection between theory and practice. Learners engage in leadership and administrative activities (e.g., committees, projects, staff education, and quality improvement) and, through reflection and writing, analyze and evaluate leadership behaviors and processes. Practicum/field experience hours: 150. Prerequisite: Successful completion of all previous coursework in the program.


GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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