Best Online Masters in Healthcare Administration Degrees for 2023

Master's Degree in Healthcare Administration Career Options & Salary

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Why Earn a Master’s in Healthcare Administration?

Health administration is a growing field with a need for healthcare administrators at every level, from clinics to hospitals and other healthcare organizations. The appreciation for these positions is relatively new in this field and it is critical in eliminating time, materials, and labor waste in the healthcare industry to improve healthcare outcomes and the overall patient experience. Most people choose to pursue this degree in order to gain invaluable, hands-on work experience in their preferred career path. Whether prospective students wish to manage nurses or to create operational efficiency at a hospital or other healthcare organizations, an online or traditional Master of Healthcare Administration degree (MHA program) can be essential to your goals.

An online master's in healthcare administration program at a private or state university will offer prospective students in health administration access to professional organizations, professional experience, and required courses, curriculum, and learning in a variety of subjects, including:

  • Health Sciences
  • Healthcare Management/Health Management
  • Health Systems Management
  • Health Informatics
  • Public Health
  • Health Law and Ethics
  • Health Policy
  • Business Administration
  • And More


Most industry professionals in healthcare administration are the first to say that you cannot advance your career without a master’s degree. Online options allow prospective learners to attend while continuing to keep up with their job responsibiities. If you have any sort of aspirations to healthcare administration jobs or other high-level careers, this degree is mandatory for most employers. It's possible that some smaller employers will advance someone with a bachelor’s degree and a significant amount of professional experience; however, if you earn an online master’s degree in health administration, you will far more easily beat out someone with a bachelor’s degree for nearly any healthcare administration position. If you specialize your MHA, you will gain even more credibility and you will make more money than those with a bachelor’s degree. You may also choose between a variety of degree titles such as Master of Science in Healthcare Administration, Master of Science in Health Systems, Master of Health Administration (MHA), a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree with a concentration in public health, health policy, etc. Many of these are available through online only programs and others are available through hybrid options, which provide some online courses and other in-person courses.


A Master of Healthcare Administration program (MHA) does have a few drawbacks early in your career. One of these is that students or graduates often still require hands-on work experience in the healthcare industry to obtain positions as healthcare administrators. With an online or traditional bachelor’s degree, you can begin working right away to complete the required work experience while you’re working on your online Master of Health Administration. You can also spend time working in different areas of healthcare with your bachelor’s degree to determine the area in which you would like to specialize. This will help save you time and money when you start your master’s degree. Also, some healthcare careers will not benefit financially from a master’s degree. If you do not have management, executive, or C-level aspirations, an MHA may not be in your best interest in regard to your return on investment.

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What are the Best Online Master's in Healthcare Administration (MHA) College Programs?


University of Pennsylvania

  • Net Price: $24,167
  • Retention Rate: 95%
  • Graduation Rate: 96%
  • Total Enrollment: 26,552
  • Undergrad Students: 11,155
  • Graduate Students: 15,397
  • Diplomas Awarded: 100
  • Grads Salary: $86,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 6:1
  • University of Pennsylvania

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • Net Price: $10,038
  • Retention Rate: 95%
  • Graduation Rate: 91%
  • Total Enrollment: 30,092
  • Undergrad Students: 19,395
  • Graduate Students: 10,697
  • Diplomas Awarded: 103
  • Grads Salary: $73,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 13:1
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Purdue University

  • Net Price: $12,294
  • Retention Rate: 93%
  • Graduation Rate: 83%
  • Total Enrollment: 46,655
  • Undergrad Students: 35,706
  • Graduate Students: 10,949
  • Diplomas Awarded: 210
  • Grads Salary: $78,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 13:1
  • Purdue University

University of Maryland

  • Net Price: $17,643
  • Retention Rate: 95%
  • Graduation Rate: 87%
  • Total Enrollment: 40,709
  • Undergrad Students: 30,875
  • Graduate Students: 9,834
  • Diplomas Awarded: 9
  • Grads Salary: $79,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 17:1
  • University of Maryland

Texas Tech University

  • Net Price: $15,452
  • Retention Rate: 87%
  • Graduation Rate: 63%
  • Total Enrollment: 5,274
  • Undergrad Students: 1,393
  • Graduate Students: 3,881
  • Diplomas Awarded: 139
  • Grads Salary: $87,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 7:1
  • Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

  • Net Price: $17,729
  • Retention Rate: 93%
  • Graduation Rate: 84%
  • Total Enrollment: 52,017
  • Undergrad Students: 36,061
  • Graduate Students: 15,956
  • Diplomas Awarded: 68
  • Grads Salary: $76,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 17:1
  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

University of Southern California

  • Net Price: $39,759
  • Retention Rate: 91%
  • Graduation Rate: 92%
  • Total Enrollment: 46,287
  • Undergrad Students: 19,786
  • Graduate Students: 26,501
  • Diplomas Awarded: 187
  • Grads Salary: $87,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 9:1
  • University of Southern California

California State University-Long Beach

  • Net Price: $10,568
  • Retention Rate: 89%
  • Graduation Rate: 73%
  • Total Enrollment: 40,069
  • Undergrad Students: 34,216
  • Graduate Students: 5,853
  • Diplomas Awarded: 46
  • Grads Salary: $73,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 24:1
  • California State University-Long Beach

MCPHS University

  • Net Price: $39,316
  • Retention Rate: 82%
  • Graduation Rate: 70%
  • Total Enrollment: 7,501
  • Undergrad Students: 3,970
  • Graduate Students: 3,531
  • Diplomas Awarded: 12
  • Grads Salary: $98,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 13:1
  • MCPHS University

University of St. Francis

  • Net Price: $16,761
  • Retention Rate: 81%
  • Graduation Rate: 60%
  • Total Enrollment: 3,529
  • Undergrad Students: 1,627
  • Graduate Students: 1,902
  • Diplomas Awarded: 73
  • Grads Salary: $81,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 13:1
  • University of St. Francis
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Overview of a Healthcare Administration Master's

What Healthcare Administration Master’s Degrees are Available Online?

  • Online Master of Healthcare Administration
    An MHA is probably the most common online master’s degree in healthcare administration. They may be called a master in health services administration, a master in health administration management or something else similar. In the end, they are all the same degree with slightly different curriculums and titles. The programs will all center around a general education on healthcare management, leadership, and business and there are a variety of them available through online learning. Some online options don't require a GMAT, which allows greater access for students.
  • Master of Science (MS) in Healthcare Administration
    An MS in healthcare administration is similar to an MHA with slight variations on the focus of the degree programs, though there are still online options. MS degrees are inherently more focused on analytical, technical, and scientific areas of a program. You will learn about the intricacies of management and leadership throughout healthcare institutions, including finance, data-driven decision making, quality and process improvement, critical thinking, strategic methodologies, human capital, and more.
  • MBA in Healthcare Administration
    An MBA in healthcare administration allows for program participants to acquire all the benefits of a business MBA with a few core courses in healthcare administration. You can also choose a dual degree program of an online master in healthcare administration that leads to an MBA. This will often save you time and money while also having more courses in healthcare administration, though this specialization might make it harder to access the program through online only programs.

Admission Requirements

While each online healthcare administration master’s degree program may have unique requirements, most will require a minimum GPA from your undergraduate degree. This includes online programs. This minimum will likely also change between different colleges and universities. Additionally, if you do not meet the minimum requirements, you may be required to complete the GRE or GMAT graduate school exam and meet a minimum score of their choosing in place of your GPA. You will also require letters of recommendation, work experience in relevant fields, and a statement of purpose explaining your long-term professional goals and reasons for pursuing an MHA degree. Individuals from other countries where English is not the primary language will be required to complete the TOEFL or IELTS. It will also be beneficial to demonstrate your commitment to giving back to the community and to participate in extracurricular activities. Online and more traditional programs both require the same admissions documents, though this will shift from school to school.

How long does it take to earn an Online Healthcare Administration Master’s?

The length of time it takes a person to complete an online master’s degree in healthcare administration will depend entirely on the amount of time you are capable of dedicating to the program. It is important to note that these programs are often highly competitive, as the healthcare industry is limited in the number of available administration positions in comparison to medical professions, such as doctors, nurses, medical assistants, etc. Because of this competition, it is critical to take your applications seriously and to choose a program that is the right fit for your experience and future goals. These programs will vary between two and four years. While most programs are available online, it is important to note that you may still be required to complete some portions of a program in person. This may be through a hybrid format, where some courses will be online and some will be in-person, or it might be through mostly online courses with a 2-week period spent attending seminars or similar events.

Potential Careers in Healthcare Administration with a Master’s

  • Medical Director
    A medical director makes policies on the use and application of medicine in a hospital or department. They also evaluate the performance of employees in utilizing these protocols.
    Average Income: $208,700
  • Healthcare Program Director
    A healthcare program director makes sure that projects which cross multiple departments go off without a hitch. They may also focus on specific systems or outcomes such as patient records systems or community engagement.
    Average Income: $81,200
  • Nursing Director
    Nursing directors manage a large or small group of registered nurses and the care of patients. They will act as the liaison between physicians and the nurses to ensure all parties are being treated well and that concerns are conveyed in a positive and productive manner. You will also be required to be a registered nurse.
    Average Income: $89,600
  • Clinical Nutrition Manager
    A clinical nutrition manager might work for a variety of employer types, such as for the community, other health professionals, patients, or families. You will address the nutritional concerns of your clients and work to develop an optimal strategy for implementation that will face the least resistance.
    Average Income: $63,700
  • Chief Medical Officer (CMO)
    A CMO is the top healthcare administrator who manages the entire medical facility. They work with any number of individuals, including additional administration, the board of directors, and medical staff. A CMO must make decisions about operations, budgets, patient care, labor, as well as manage millions-billions of dollars in budgets.
    Average Income: $342,900

Options to Advance

An online master’s degree in healthcare administration will give you access to the highest positions in healthcare administration. If you are a registered nurse, this can lead to becoming a nursing director, then a program director, etc. Eventually, these positions can lead to a CMO position for the right candidate. You do not necessarily have to be a hands-on medical professional to become a healthcare administrator. Many positions are held by purely business professionals, as they are business positions. However, advancement will be easier if you continue your education with healthcare administration specializations. You can even become a healthcare entrepreneur with an MHA degree or pursue a career in education or research.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a master’s in healthcare administration worth it?

The short answer to this question is yes. A master’s degree is nearly always a positive, especially when you work in a complex industry like healthcare. The healthcare field is always shifting, adopting new regulations, requiring new technology, and more. Earning a master’s degree can give your career a boost, not only because you will now have a master’s degree, but also because you will have gotten an update on the education in your field through this new degree. Add to this that the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects there to be a 15% increase in job prospects in this field in the next 10 years, which is faster than most other job growth, and you can definitely expect some kind of positive return from earning your master’s degree in healthcare administration.

Why healthcare administration?

Healthcare administrators often come from the ranks of those who already work in the healthcare industry. It’s a good option for those who want to work in healthcare but don’t feel that they have the skills necessary to make good nurses or doctors, but it’s also a good shift for those who have worked as healthcare workers but need to move away from the more stressful roles that work directly with patients. This can also give their roles in healthcare administration a new viewpoint to work from. Those who work in healthcare administration after moving from a more hands-on health service position know more about patient, doctor, and nurse interactions. They understand better how the other side of the equation works and can make more meaningful changes and make the necessary changes less stressful. And it’s a Master of Healthcare Administration that can most easily make that shift happen.

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