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Best Online 1-Year MHA Programs For 2021


Written By: Darby Faubion BSN, RN

Have you been considering taking your healthcare career to another level? If so, the thought of pursuing a Master of Health Administration degree is certainly something worth considering. Don’t worry; it doesn’t have to take forever to earn an MPH. In fact, there are several 1-year MHA programs online available to prospective students. This article will share some of the best online 1-year MHA programs for 2021, give you information on what it takes to earn the degree, and give you an idea of what to expect after completion.


What Exactly Is the Goal of a One-Year MHA Program?


The goal of online one-year MHA programs is to allow individuals interested in the healthcare industry's management side to advance their careers and pursue executive-level work preparation. This option means they can become prepared to work in areas that are not solely focused on the clinical side of healthcare while still having a significant impact on patient care.


7 Benefits Of Online 1-Year MHA Programs


Before applying for admissions to or beginning any graduate program, especially a 1-year online MHA program, it is essential to consider the benefits versus taking a traditional on-campus or extended class. Below are seven benefits of choosing an online 12-month MHA program.

1. Study in the Comfort of Home (or wherever else you like): No matter who you are, we all have different styles of learning and preferences of learning environments. If you are more of an independent thinker and worker, choosing one of the best online 1-year MHA programs may be something that fits perfectly with your studying and learning style.
2. Work at Your Own Pace: Although there are time limits (one year), even with a one-year online MHA program, you can learn what fits your style of learning best and study at your own pace. Schedule to study when you know you have enough time to focus and when you believe you may be most productive. You may choose to study early in the morning before your day gets busy and your family begins to become active or wait until later in the evenings when things are more settled and quieter.
3. Save Money! When you consider the cost of driving back and forth to school, expenses for textbooks and other supplies, not to mention the often-overlooked fees such as parking, lunch passes, and technology fees, you could save a bundle by attending an online 12-month MHA program.
4. Improve your technological skills: Students enrolled in online 1-year MHA programs are required to have at least a basic understanding of how to work with computers and different types of office systems. If you are a person who finds working with computer programs easy, you may find that online learning is perfect for you. However, even if you are not the most skilled person when it comes to computer technology, online learning will give you an opportunity to improve the skills you do have and to learn other valuable ones.
5. Keep Your Job: Whether you choose to continue working while enrolled in an online 1-year MHA program or not is your choice. Some people feel they are not financially capable of quitting their jobs to attend school. That is one thing that makes online learning appealing to so many prospective students. Even if you could leave your job while going to school, there are benefits to continuing to work while pursuing your degree. For instance, you can begin to apply the knowledge you are gaining from classes in your present workplace. You can expand your professional portfolio with continued work experience and continue earning money to support your home and family.
6. Location: The flexibility of living in one state and enrolling in an online class in another geographical area means that students have more options. Many of the best universities and colleges now offer online degree options, like the best 1-year MHA programs online discussed in this article.
7. Earn More Money in Less Time: That’s right! Earning a Master’s in Healthcare Administration is a great way to achieve the credentials you need to set yourself up for significant career advancement. One of the benefits of taking 1-year MHA programs online is that you can accomplish that goal in a short amount of time.


How Much Do Online 1-Year MHA Programs Cost?


online 1-year MHA programs vary in cost, depending on different factors. Some programs cost as little as $7,000, while others may require fees up to $36,000. Keep in mind, factors such as whether you have completed all the prerequisites required by your chosen school can impact your total cost for the 1-year MHA programs online.

Typically, students can complete the 1-year MHA program at the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne, Indiana, by paying as little as $18,900. At Capella University, students who choose the flex path of learning may complete the program for under $10,000. The flex path tuition range is $9,600-$14,400.

At the University of North Carolina Wilmington, students who live in the state of North Carolina pay tuition and fees of $10,878. On the other hand, students who are non-residents must pay out-of-state tuition and fees totaling $39,354. At Louisiana State University (Shreveport, La), students can complete the online MHA degree in as little as twelve months at an average cost of approximately $12,473.90.


Coursework


Schools that offer 1-year Master of Healthcare Administration programs have some similarities in the coursework that is required. However, each school reserves the right to require specific courses for students. A few examples follow here.

West Coast University: Students in this 1-year online master of healthcare administration program complete thirty-six total credits through the course of three trimesters. Each trimester has two terms during which students take two courses. Some of the classes in West Coast University’s online MHA program include:

o Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care Management
o Information Systems for Health Care Programs
o Financial Management for Health Care Managers
o Marketing Management for Health Care Professionals
o Managerial Epidemiology
o Hospital Administration and Management
o Leadership Models for Health Care Managers
o Entrepreneurial Opportunities in the Health Care Industry


Louisiana State University-Shreveport (LSUS): At LSUS, students in the online 1-year MHA program are required to take ten graduate courses, which include topics such as

o Healthcare Organizational Behavior
o Healthcare Law and Ethics
o Healthcare Informatics
o Healthcare Strategic Management
o Healthcare Marketing.


Also, though they are optional, if you have not already completed undergraduate courses in Finance, Statistics, or Economics, students are encouraged to enroll in one or more of the MHA foundation courses offered.

MHA Foundation Courses include the following.

o Economics
o Accounting
o Finance
o ISDS


Although the online MHA program offered at Franklin University can be completed in 12 months, some students may take up to 14 months to complete the program. It consists of thirty-six semester hours, thirty-two of which are course sequence hours, and four are electives. Boston College, on the other hand, is a 46-credit hour MHA program. The program at Boston College is designed to allow students to work at their own pace to complete the degree. It can be completed in one year, but the school does offer flexibility for students to take two years or longer, if necessary.


Admission Requirements


Most colleges require applicants to one-year MHA programs to meet the following minimum requirements:

• Complete a Bachelor’s degree program
• Have a minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
• Provide letters of recommendation
• Submit resume’ or curriculum vitae highlighting educational and professional background
• Provide a letter of intent

Prospective students who wish to attend Boston College must have a minimum 3.0 undergraduate GPA. However, those who want to begin the MHA program immediately after completing an undergraduate degree, they must meet a minimum GPA of 3.5. A personal statement of at least 1,000 words must be submitted explaining who you are, what your career goals are, and why you feel you may be a good fit for the college. Radford University also requires students to have completed a college-level statistics course with a minimum C average either before admission or during the first semester of the program. West Coast University accepts post-baccalaureate graduates who have a cumulative 2.7 GPA or higher. The university does consider some applicants for admission on a probationary status if they have an undergraduate GPA of 2.3-2.69. However, the student must meet all program prerequisite requirements and maintain a 3.0 or higher GPA on all coursework for the first two semesters.


How to Pay For Online 1-Year MHA Programs?


One of the biggest obstacles for people to overcome when deciding to go back to school is the cost of their education. If earning your MHA in one year is something you really want, there are ways to fund your education and achieve that dream. Scholarships, federal financial aid, and careful budgeting are among some of your options.

First and second-year graduate students who plan to pursue a healthcare administration degree, such as 1-year MHA, can apply for the Elliott C. Roberts Scholarship. This scholarship is reserved for individuals who have financial needs, excel academically, and who are U.S. citizens. Students can also apply for federal student aid by filling out a free application for federal student aid (FAFSA). Federal student aid may be in the form of grants, scholarships, work-study jobs, or student loans, depending on an applicant’s financial status at the time of applying for assistance.

One of the benefits of enrolling in an online 1-year MHA program, like other online programs, is that you can often decide when and where you want to study. This gives students who need to continue to work the benefit of being able to keep their jobs while still attending school, thus helping them pay for their education.


6 Factors to Consider While Choosing the Right 1-Year Online MHA Program


If you are considering enrolling in any of the available one-year online MHA programs, taking the time to ask questions and get as much information as possible will help you choose the best 1-year online master of healthcare administration program for you. Some of the following factors should be carefully considered when selecting the right MHA program.

1. What is your peer network like? It's understandable that you may not be thinking of your peer network when you are focused on getting an advanced degree like an MHA. However, the network of people you socialize with may influence how easy it is for you to access career opportunities after completion of your program. Taking online classes doesn't mean that you can't get to know your classmates and the faculty. Use the options for group sessions to get to know others and build a network of like-minded people. You can use it to your advantage later.
2. How much faculty support will be available to you? The support of faculty and staff can have a significant impact on an online student's learning experience. Students in online 1-year MHA programs lack the benefit of face-to-face encounters with faculty. Therefore, it is vital to choose a school that makes student support a priority. When you correspond with schools as you are trying to decide, ask admissions advisors if the school offers support that is specifically for online students, such as online forums or mentoring programs.
3. Compare admission requirements and rules for credit transfer from several schools. By doing this, you may save yourself time in the long run by not having to meet additional requirements, especially if all your previous college credits will transfer.
4. Closely compare the price of tuition and fees. Some schools charge out-of-state tuition. Also, there may be times that extra fees for course materials, fees for online course delivery, and to have examinations proctored. Although these fees may add up, it can still be more cost-effective to attend school online as you can save money on commuting to and from school as well as other expenses such as eating out, vehicle maintenance, or childcare.
5. What credentials are the faculty required to have? If you plan to attend one of the best 1-year MHA programs online, it is important to make the most of your time by learning from knowledgeable and experienced instructors. Take the time to find out if the faculty at the school you are interested in are credentialed. Also, remember, there is more to teaching others than having book knowledge. It is essential to look for a school that has faculty who have clinical experience to match their book knowledge.
6. Check out school reviews. Most 1-year MHA schools have places on their websites where you can read reviews from present and former students. Please read them. Pay attention to both the positive and negative things that individuals report. However, remember not every negative review is something that could affect you personally. Consider why a person may have written something and weigh the positive and negative reviews for yourself.



FOLLOWING ARE THE 10 BEST ONLINE 1-YEAR MHA PROGRAMS FOR 2021


1. Boston College - Chestnut Hill, MA (1-Year)


2. Louisiana State University Shreveport - Shreveport, LA (1-Year)


3. Capella University - Minneapolis, MN (1-Year)


4. The University of Saint Francis - Fort Wayne, IN (1-Year)


5. West Coast University - Los Angeles, CA (1-Year)


6. University of North Carolina Wilmington - Wilmington, NC (1-Year)


7. Southern New Hampshire University - Manchester, NH (15 Months)


8. Franklin University - Columbus, OH (14 Months)


9. Radford University - Radford, VA (18 Months)


10.The University of St. Augustine - St. Augustine, FL (20 Months)


View Ranking Methodology



Career Opportunities Post Completion Of This Program


After completing your MHA program in one-year, there are several possibilities for career opportunities you can pursue. There is a broad range of health-related settings and organizations that require qualified people to fill management positions.

Some of the specific jobs you may find with a master's in healthcare administration degree may include:

1. Hospital Administrator: This job includes planning and directing the delivery of healthcare services within a hospital, planning budgets, and developing protocols for your facility.
2. Clinical Director: While all people with a position in healthcare administration are involved with business-related issues of the healthcare setting, MHA holders who work as clinical directors are generally responsible for overseeing the clinical aspects of healthcare. This may include scheduling employees for work, interviewing and hiring new employees.
3. Admissions Director: Admissions coordinators/directors have a variety of responsibilities, and pursuing an MHA is one way to learn how to juggle those responsibilities. As an admissions coordinator, you may screen potential patients to see if they meet the criteria for admission to your specific healthcare facility. You may also work with insurance companies to make sure they approve the services that prospective patients require and verify licensing and accreditations that could impact the way your facility is paid as well as how policies and procedures are followed.


Average Salary


While several factors may play a role in how much a person with a 1-year MHA degree can earn, the average salary of individuals who hold a master's in healthcare administration degree is close to $77,000 annually. This yearly salary is comparable to $36.92 per hour or about $6,400 monthly. The years of experience you have working in the medical field as well as the type of healthcare setting you work in and your geographical location could mean the potential for negotiating a higher salary.

Per Hour $36.92
Per Month $6,400
Per Year $76,801
(Source: payscale.com)


Employment Outlook


Factors such as the number of baby boomers who are aging and who have chronic health care needs, the fact that people are more health-conscious and try to live more active lifestyles, which leads to longer life contribute to the positive employment outlook for people who have an MHA. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be about a seventeen percent growth rate in employment opportunities for individuals who possess an MHA in the United States through the year 2024.


Bottomline


Once you have decided to pursue a career as a healthcare administrator, it's time to research and determine which of the best 1-year MHA programs online is the best fit for you. Consider things like whether you want or need to continue working, the availability of faculty to online students, options for financial aid, and the cost of tuition and fees. The healthcare industry is one of the largest and most rapidly growing in the world. With an MHA degree, the possibilities for your career truly are endless!


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ANSWERED BY OUR EXPERT


How long do online MHA Programs usually take to complete?

While there are several one-year online MHA programs, many regular online MHA programs take a full-time student two to three years to complete. Students who enroll on a part-time basis typically graduate in a four-to-five-year timeframe.

Do One-Year MHA programs cover the same topics as regular MHA programs?

Both 1-year MHA programs and the regular MHA programs cover the same topics. While each school may have different requirements for courses, the main topics remain relatively similar. The two programs give students options of learning in ways that best fit their lifestyle and personal commitments without losing out on the opportunity to earn the degree.

Are there any 1-year MHA programs that are 100% online?

There are several 1-year MHA programs that are 100% online, just like the ones mentioned in this article. Having the option of taking classes that are exclusively online gives students the opportunity to continue managing other responsibilities like work and family.

How exactly do online 1-year MHA programs work?

MHA in 1-year online programs use internet tools to coordinate interaction between instructors and students and to deliver the content needed to meet academic requirements. These programs often use tools such as videoconferencing, discussion boards, and class chatrooms. Additionally, most programs offer students the option of accessing class material and turning in assignments at times that are convenient with their personal schedules.

Do MHA in one-year online programs offer the chance to choose a specialty?

Yes, it is possible to pursue an area of specialization with a 1-year MHA degree. All MHA students are required to take courses on topics such as healthcare marketing, health law and economics, and quality improvement. Options for MHA specialization include healthcare operations, healthcare informatics, quality care, financial management, and health policy.

Do all MHA programs that can be completed in 12-months require applicants to take the GRE?

For many years, the GRE was a standard requirement for graduate school applicants. The test was developed to help measure analytical writing, critical thinking skills, and verbal and quantitative reasoning. However, every online 1-year master of healthcare administration program does not require applicants to submit GRE scores. Some schools do not require the test, and others offer waivers for applicants who meet the criteria set by the school.

What is an Executive MHA degree, and are they offered online?

An executive MHA degree is a program that is designed for healthcare professionals who have a great deal of experience in the healthcare industry and who wish to advance their careers further. Applicants typically need at least seven years of experience in healthcare industry areas such as pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, or consulting firms. A few schools that offer executive MHA degree programs include George Washington University, the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and the University of Central Florida.


Darby Faubion BSN, RN
Darby Faubion is a nurse and Allied Health educator with over twenty years' experience. She has assisted in developing curriculum for nursing programs and has instructed students at both community college and university levels.