MPA: Healthcare Management Emphasis

Master of Public Administration with an Emphasis in Health Care Management

Offered By: College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Examine Key Responsibilities in Public Health Management

Healthcare management is a dynamic and evolving field that brings together key responsibilities in patient care, facility advancement and staff management.1 As a future public health professional, you will be taught how to lead a department or facility with a clear vision of benefiting both patients and staff. Examine crucial competencies within administration in healthcare with the Master of Public Administration (MPA) with an Emphasis in Health Care Management degree program at Grand Canyon University. GCU’s healthcare management emphasis is offered by the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

healthcare manager at her desk working
Get More Information!

Loading Form

Merging Healthcare and Administration With GCU’s MPA Program

This study in healthcare management administration prioritizes identification, analysis and resolution of ethical dilemmas. It also explores the principles of legal compliance, workplace safety and quality patient care. You will have the opportunity to develop your ability to balance the financial and operational requirements of healthcare facilities with the responsibility to provide quality services to the public. 

As a private Christian university, GCU integrates the Christian worldview into the coursework throughout this MPA program. We guide our students to work toward glorifying God by serving his people with integrity and ethical leadership.

GCU’s online MPA with a healthcare management emphasis is structured to maximize work-life balance while providing a relevant and in-depth learning experience. You can explore this field and prepare for your future by using GCU’s intuitive e-learning platform. Access your course materials from virtually anywhere and discuss the principles of healthcare administration and public health with your peers and instructors. 

If you prefer the academic stimulation of in-person instruction and discussions with fellow learners, GCU welcomes aspiring public health management professionals to our campus in Phoenix, where you can complete one class at a time as a member of an evening cohort. Work toward your MPA on a flexible schedule that fits around your existing responsibilities.

Total Credits: 38
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]

Topics and Skills You Will Be Taught in This MPA Program

You will begin the healthcare management emphasis within the MPA program by examining the general skills you need as a liberal arts graduate student. You will then work through a progression of courses designed to build foundational knowledge and core competencies in healthcare administration and public health. 

The competencies you will be taught in these courses are immediately applicable to healthcare management in the workplace. Throughout the curriculum, you will explore a range of topics, including:

  • Business and operational models suited to modern healthcare organizations
  • How to analyze and responsibly address ethical dilemmas that affect patients and staff members
  • The development, management, implementation and assessment of public healthcare programs
  • The factors that influence market performance and outcome
  • The public sector’s revenue and expenditure structure, including budget structure and expenditure and revenue policies
  • Best practices and concepts in talent management, workforce diversity, employee development and performance matrices

As you progress through the program, you will be expected to refine your outlook on what it takes to become an effective and ethical administrator in public health management environments. You will examine contemporary healthcare models through lenses of economy, quality, access and disparity.

Career Paths for Healthcare Management Emphasis Graduates

Developing graduate-level skills in healthcare management and administration can help you prepare for a potential leadership career in the nonprofit, government or private sectors.2,3 Earning an MPA with a healthcare management emphasis can demonstrate your commitment to ethical practices and effective leadership. Some of the careers that may be related to this degree include:

  • Healthcare quality improvement manager
  • Ambulatory care manager
  • Assisted living administrator
  • Healthcare clinic manager
  • Healthcare risk manager
  • Public health program manager

Earn Your MPA Degree at an Institutionally Accredited University

GCU has been institutionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 1968. This is a reflection of our commitment to upholding high academic standards for our learning community. The College of Humanities and Social Sciences shares the university’s commitment of supporting the principles and standards established by our accrediting bodies.

MPA: Healthcare Management Emphasis FAQs

Before enrolling in evening or online healthcare management courses, you may have some questions about the field and your planned career outcome. GCU has developed the following FAQs and answers to guide your decision-making process.

Earning your MPA with a healthcare management emphasis can be worth it if you want to pursue an influential career that can allow you the opportunity to make positive strides in the healthcare industry. Graduate-level courses are designed to prepare you in the areas of leadership, finance and public policy so you can seek positions you may find to be both challenging and rewarding.

A Master of Public Administration (MPA) with an emphasis in healthcare management provides a broad understanding of management, finance and public policy, specifically as they relate to the healthcare field and to public organizations. A Master of Health Administration (MHA) offers specialized classes taught by healthcare faculty that allow you to dive into the unique challenges of the healthcare industry, including financial management and legal issues. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) places a greater emphasis on business-related courses, including accounting, economics, finance, human resources and marketing.4

Admissions requirements vary from one school to the next. To apply for the MPA with a healthcare management emphasis at GCU, you must have an undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited, approved institution and meet the minimum GPA requirement. For more information about our admissions requirements, please fill out the form on this page to request a consult with a university counselor.

Patients face significant medical issues every day, and they rely on access to quality healthcare that allows them to manage their conditions and live life well. Healthcare management is critically important for ensuring patients can receive the quality care they need when they need it. Managers are also integral to the seamless, day-to-day operations of a healthcare facility.5

Earning a public health management degree is much like earning other types of degrees in that you’re likely to find some of the coursework challenging, while other areas are less challenging. Keep in mind that tackling challenging topics in the curriculum presents opportunities for academic achievement and personal growth. You’re likely to find it satisfying to overcome these challenges, as it means you’re working toward positioning yourself as a leader in healthcare who looks out for the best interests of your facility’s patients.

The requirements to become a healthcare manager will vary from one employer to the next. In general, aspiring health services managers need at least a bachelor’s degree, although some employers prefer to hire those with a master’s degree, like an MPA. Some employers may expect manager candidates to have prior, relevant experience in either an administrative or a clinical role within a facility.6 For example, you might start out in an entry-level medical coding job while you’re working your way up to the management level.

Prepare to meet modern challenges in healthcare while earning a degree in healthcare administration and public health. Contact a university counselor to learn more about earning this degree at GCU.

1 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2023, Sept. 6). What medical and health services managers do. Occupational Outlook Handbook. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

2 Healthcare Management Degree Guide. (n.d.). Top 20 jobs for health care managers. Healthcare Management Degree Guide. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

3 Healthcare Management Degree Guide. (n.d.). What kind of jobs can I get with a master’s of health care in non-profit organizations? Healthcare Management Degree Guide. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

4 Steele, H. (n.d.). MBA vs. MPA vs. MHA degrees: Which is best? Business Student. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

5 Castonguay, C. (2021, Jan. 26). Why study healthcare management now? Keystone Healthcare Studies. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

6 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2023, Sept. 6). How to become a medical or health services manager. Occupational Outlook Handbook. Retrieved Jan. 22, 2024. 

Total Credits: 38
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

38 credits
Degree Requirements:
38 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 liberal arts. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course focuses on how government and public organizations serve their stakeholders, the manner in which their services are carried out, how resources are managed, and how regulatory powers are complied with and/or managed. The best practices in public governance, issues related to transparency, participation, and accountability are examined.

Course Description

This course examines the day-to-day duties of public administrators. Relationship building, political awareness, and collaborative strategies are highlighted throughout the course. How to best employ skills for the effective running of an organization is incorporated.

Course Description

The effective strategic management of human capital is the differentiator of every successful organization. This course examines talent management, workforce diversity, succession planning, employee development and motivation, and performance matrix. This course addresses human resource competencies identified by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM). Using the strong strategic human resource acumen provided by this course, students will be well-prepared for positions as senior human resources specialists or as general managers.

Course Description

This course examines power and political structures employed within public administration. The ethical use of power and how to effectively influence others in public administration is practiced.

Course Description

This course examines leadership practices and qualities necessary to lead an organization. A focus is given to the science of organizational behavior and how it contributes to effective leaders and managers.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the revenue and expenditure structure of the public sector, including revenue policy, expenditure policy, and budget structure and administration.

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 exposes students to the role strategic planning and program evaluation play in developing, implementing, and assessing public health care programs. The use of a strategic planning and program evaluation framework for program proposals is covered.


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.

* 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.

Scroll back to top