Best Online Healthcare Administration Bachelor's Degrees

Oct 20, 2021

Online Healthcare Administration Degree Overview

Online healthcare administration degree programs are available at the undergraduate and graduate levels and are designed to equip students with leadership skills and knowledge specific to working in the healthcare industry. Although these programs are usually completed fully online, students still receive real-world training and are prepared for diverse leadership-based careers in healthcare. Many of these programs provide the opportunity for students to concentrate their studies in a particular area of interest and/or prepare for a specific career. Find out what online programs are available below.

Online Associate Degrees in Healthcare Administration

Online associate degree programs in healthcare administration are usually offered as Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees and may be completed in as little as 16 months. Students are generally required to take around 60 credits of coursework that typically includes general education courses that can easily transfer to 4-year institutions for students wishing to continue their studies. Other courses in healthcare administration provide students with real-world experiences and applications in areas like patient privacy and healthcare management. Some schools with online associate's programs in the field may provide direct pathways to a bachelor's degree in the field.

Online Bachelor's Degrees in Healthcare Administration

At the bachelor's level, online degree programs in healthcare administration are commonly offered as Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees. Some of these degree programs may provide students with additional concentration areas to further focus their studies in a particular area of the field and/or may conclude the program with some sort of capstone experience. Usually, students are required to complete around 120 credits of coursework, and depending on the program, students interested in going on to earn their master's degree in the field may be able to participate in an Accelerated Master's Pathway (AMP) option. Some of these programs may allow students to complete the program in a part-time format.

Online Master's Degrees in Healthcare Administration

Usually offered as a Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA) degree or Master of Science (MS) degree, online master's programs in the field may require around 36 credits of coursework. Depending on the program, students may be able to choose a concentration area to focus their studies, and some programs may conclude with a capstone course. Students may be able to complete these online master's programs in as little as 15 months. Some programs follow a cohort model to allow students to work closely with a group of peers throughout the program.

Online Doctoral Degrees in Healthcare Administration

Online doctoral degree programs in healthcare administration are usually offered as Doctor of Healthcare Administration (DHA) degrees and may be completed in as little as 3 years. Students who have completed their MHA already may be able to complete their degree more quickly than the average student. These programs usually include a dissertation or final capstone/practicum experience and may offer various areas of concentration to help students specialize in a particular area. The curriculum is usually customizable to allow students to explore areas of interest. Some programs may include some in-person residencies to give students hands-on learning experiences and interaction with their professors.

Online Certificates in Healthcare Administration

Students can pursue online undergraduate and/or graduate certificate programs in healthcare administration. These certificate programs may require at least 15 to 18 credits of core coursework that provides students with an overview of healthcare administration. Some certificate programs may available in different areas of healthcare administration, like a long-term care administration certificate or Catholic healthcare leadership certificate. These programs are typically designed for students who cannot commit to a full bachelor's or master's program in the field, but still want to pursue leadership positions in the field. However, some programs allow students to count credits from the certificate towards a degree if they choose to pursue one.

The Best Online Bachelor Degree Programs in Healthcare Administration

1. Baptist Memorial College of Health Sciences

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$12332 60% 56% 97% Yes Yes AP Credits

2. Francis Marion University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$11160 68% 44% 100% Yes Yes AP Credits

3. Mercy College of Ohio

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$15900 60% 53% 93% No Yes AP Credits

4. Shawnee State University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$7204 No Available Data (2019-2020) 35% 97% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

5. Midway University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$24850 60% 44% 100% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

6. Reinhardt University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$24300 92% 38% 100% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

7. Radford University-Carilion

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$11350 28% 53% 98% Yes Yes AP Credits

8. Peirce College

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$15060 No Available Data (2019-2020) 42% 100% No Yes AP Credits

9. Jackson State University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$8445 68% 38% 98% Yes Yes AP / ACE Credits

10. King University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$30616 62% 59% 92% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

11. Pfeiffer University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$31060 64% 44% 99% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

12. Washington Adventist University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$24800 59% 41% 100% No Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

13. James Madison University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$12206 77% 84% 62% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

14. University of North Florida

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$5964 72% 67% 84% Yes Yes AP Credits

15. Converse College

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$19890 89% 58% 99% Yes Yes AP Credits

16. Trevecca Nazarene University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$26098 62% 56% 100% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

17. University of Alabama at Birmingham

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$8568 74% 63% 95% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

18. University of Michigan-Flint

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$11860 66% 40% 96% No Yes AP Credits

19. Brigham Young University-Idaho

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$4208 96% 60% 61% Yes Yes AP Credits

20. Brenau University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$31084 58% 46% 97% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

21. Florida Atlantic University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$4879 63% 50% 82% Yes Yes AP Credits

22. Limestone College

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$26300 51% 33% 99% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

23. California State University-Northridge

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$6977 59% 55% 86% Yes Yes AP Credits

24. University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$8840 82% 67% 81% Yes Yes AP Credits

25. California State University-Long Beach

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$6834 39% 74% 81% Yes Yes AP / ACE Credits

26. Florida International University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$6565 58% 63% 90% Yes Yes AP Credits

27. Washburn University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$8704 No Available Data (2019-2020) 46% 92% Yes Yes AP Credits

28. Fayetteville State University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$5274 69% 34% 95% Yes Yes AP / ACE Credits

29. Lindenwood University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$18100 88% 50% 100% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

30. Sam Houston State University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$8536 83% 54% 86% Yes Yes AP Credits

31. Ohio University-Main Campus

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$12612 82% 65% 94% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

32. Oakwood University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$19990 65% 51% 100% No Yes AP Credits

33. Eastern Michigan University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$13758 74% 46% 96% Yes Yes AP Credits

34. Saint Leo University

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$23750 72% 49% 100% Yes Yes AP / ACE / NCCRS Credits

35. Rhode Island College

Tuition Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid % Placement Services Career Services Accepts
$9578 78% 49% 89% Yes Yes AP / NCCRS Credits

To get a more in-depth look at our school ranking methodology, please visit Study.com's ranking methodology page.

Tuition information is based on published tuition and required fees, per data by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).

Healthcare Administration Specializations/Concentrations

While there are some online degree programs that may offer healthcare administration as a concentration, such as a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), there are online undergraduate- and graduate-level programs in healthcare administration that offer various concentrations. Concentrations may be more common at the graduate level, but several online bachelor's degree programs in the field still offer a few different areas of focus. Typically, students are required to take some courses in these concentrations in addition to their core healthcare administration courses. These concentrations are designed to equip students with additional skills and expertise in a particular subfield of healthcare administration. Some available concentrations for online bachelor's programs in the field include:

  • Leadership
  • Medical office administration
  • Managed care
  • Patient safety and quality
  • Health information management

Curriculum/Coursework for a Healthcare Administration Degree

Students in online bachelor's degree programs in healthcare administration are typically required to complete around 120 credits of coursework that consists of general education courses, core healthcare administration courses, and electives or concentration courses. Some of these degree programs may conclude with a capstone experience and/or internship. Depending on the program, students may also have the opportunity to earn additional professional credentials through their degree, such as a Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certification (LSSYB) or a Certified Specialist Managed Care (CSMC) designation. The core coursework for these programs is designed to train students in leadership and management skills, as well as knowledge of the healthcare system and how to deliver quality services to patients. Some specific course topics for these online programs may include:

  • Healthcare finance
  • Healthcare delivery systems
  • Healthcare marketing
  • Ethics
  • Healthcare quality management
  • Leadership and communication
  • Planning in healthcare
  • Public health

How Long Does it Take to Get an Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Administration?

Traditionally, online bachelor's degree programs in healthcare administration are designed to take 4 years to complete, but some may be completed slightly faster, such as in about 3.5 years. However, there are several options available to students who would like to complete their degree even faster. For example, students who have already taken some college coursework and/or earned an associate's degree may transfer in credit towards their bachelor's degree and/or a degree completion program and finish their degree in as little as 5 semesters. There are also some online accelerated programs available that allow students who already have a few years of work experience to earn credit for their experience and complete the program in a self-paced format.

Accreditation for Online Bachelor's in Healthcare Administration Degrees

Students usually want to make sure they are receiving a quality education, and accreditation is one way to ensure this. Many institutions that provide online bachelor's degree programs in healthcare administration are regionally accredited by organizations, such as the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) or the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), that work to ensure the various levels of degree programs at the institution meet set academic standards. Financial aid is usually only available to students at accredited institutions, and transfer credit is usually more easily accepted from accredited schools.

Although some degree programs may have an extra level of accreditation specific to the subject area, online bachelor's degree programs in healthcare administration typically do not. However, many of these programs are designed with curriculum that closely aligns with standards set by various healthcare-related organizations. For example, programs may base their core curriculum principles and/or career skills off of guidelines provided by groups like the Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA) or the National Center for Healthcare Leadership (NCHL).

Healthcare Administration Licensure & Certification

There are many different kinds of licenses and certifications available to professionals in the field of healthcare administration. These credentials are usually based off of the specific type of healthcare administration work being performed. For example, professionals can pursue optional certifications in a wide range of management areas, including certifications from groups like the American Health Information Management Association or the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management. Some organizations may offer multiple kinds of certifications, like the American College of Health Care Administrators with its Certified Assisted Living Administrator and Certified Nursing Home Administrator designation. Nursing home administrators typically need to have a state license, but requirements vary by state. Usually, to earn licensure, these administrators need to pass a national exam after meeting education and training requirements.

Healthcare Administration Career Information

Students wondering about careers with a degree or certificate in healthcare administration or what you can do with a bachelor's degree in health administration will be happy to know that there is a wide range of career options. Although there are some high paying healthcare jobs for those with an associate degree, students wishing to become a healthcare administrator usually need at least a bachelor's degree. These professionals can work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, consulting firms, long-term care facilities, health insurance companies, and more. Some specific job titles for those with a healthcare administration degree may include:

  • Physician's office manager
  • Long-term care center administrator
  • Health director
  • Business analyst
  • Clinical manager
  • Health policy analyst
  • Community health manager
  • Health promotion specialist

How to Become a Medical and Health Services Manager

Medical and health services managers include positions like nursing home administrators, health information managers, clinical managers, and more. Students wanting to know how to become a healthcare manager usually need to first earn at least a bachelor's degree. Master's degrees may be preferred for some positions and/or other education requirements may vary by position and facility. Typically, these professionals have a degree in health administration, health management, business administration, or other related areas. These managers also usually need to have some related work experience, whether clinical or administrative. Licensing and certification requirements and/or preferences may vary by specific position.

Medical and health services managers oversee the health services in their specific department or organization. This requires them to ensure compliance with laws, manage facility records, set goals, monitor quality care, maintain a budget, and communicate with their staff. As of 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that medical and health services managers made a median annual salary of $100,980. From 2019 to 2029, the job outlook for these professionals is 32%, which is much faster than the average, per the BLS.

How to Become a Social and Community Service Manager

Although some social and community service manager positions may require a master's, most of these professionals only need a bachelor's degree. This degree may be in areas like business administration, public health, and other related fields. These managers also usually need to have some work experience.

Social and community service managers perform a variety of duties as they oversee programs and groups that aim to promote the community's well-being. Depending on the position, these managers may identify needed programs and resources for the community, measure the effectiveness of programs, oversee outreach activities, and secure funding for social services. Per the BLS, social and community service managers made a median annual salary of $67,150, as of 2019. The job outlook for these managers from 2019 to 2029 is 17%, which is also much faster than the average.

Financial Aid and Scholarship Information for Healthcare Administration Degrees

Like students of other degree programs, healthcare administration students who need to find additional aid to pay for school need to start by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form will help students see what, if any, federal loans or grants they may be eligible for, and then students can go on to search for additional funding as needed. Additional funding may come in the form of grants and/or scholarships that are offered by a wide range of organizations for various factors, such as merit, demographics, interests, and more.

There are some schools that offer scholarships specifically for undergraduate and/or graduate students majoring in healthcare administration. These scholarships may vary in the application requirements and amounts. A couple of examples of scholarships available to healthcare administration students include:

  • Dr. Robert Hays Memorial Scholarship- This scholarship is available to healthcare administration undergraduate or graduate students at Florida Atlantic University who work part- or full-time. They must work at least 10 hours a week and meet a specific GPA requirement.
  • John B. Noone Award- Named after an assistant professor in the School of Health Administration at Texas State University, this award goes to an undergraduate student in the field who has demonstrated leadership and academic achievement in the field. Faculty members choose the winner of this award.

How to Choose a Healthcare Administration School and Program

Choosing an online bachelor's degree in healthcare administration may primarily come down to a student's career goals and interests. Students may first need to determine if there is a specific type of career they would like in healthcare administration and then look for a degree program that offers courses and/or a concentration in that particular area. Some students may also want to search for a program that offers hands-on learning opportunities, such as a capstone experience and/or internship. While accreditation is not usually specific to healthcare administration, students still may prefer to find a program that aligns its curriculum with standards from AUPHA or other similar organizations to appeal to potential employers. Students who may wish to continue their studies at the graduate level may opt to attend a school that offers some kind of accelerated pathway to a master's program in the field.

In addition to these considerations, students may also need to think about practical limitations, such as tuition rates and program format. It is important to find a program that fits within a student's budget and/or offers scholarships and other forms of aid to help offset the cost. Some of these online bachelor's degree programs are available in part-time formats, and students with busy home and/or work schedules may need to find a more flexible program.

Professional Organizations in Healthcare Administration

Professionals in all areas of healthcare administration can choose to participate in any number of professional organizations available in the field. These organizations help provide professional development, networking, and educational opportunities for professionals. Most of these groups offer membership and may have additional benefits available to members. A few examples of professional organizations in healthcare administration include:

  • Association of University Programs in Health Administration- AUPHA not only helps provide academic guidelines and standards for programs in the field, but offers multiple events, a webinar series, access to publications in the field, and career resources from their website.
  • American College of Healthcare Executives- The ACHE has multiple chapters in addition to standard membership and provides professionals with an online learning center and career resource center through its website. Professionals can browse available jobs and take advantage of leadership development opportunities.
  • Professional Association of Health Care Office Management- The PAHCOM focuses on office management but has all kinds of members, including those in consulting and clinical positions. The group offers professional certification and continuing education opportunities to help organizations meet their administrative needs.
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