Graduate Program

Program Description

The Master of Science in Health Care Administration is designed to provide students with the professional knowledge and the management skills necessary to be effective and socially responsible leaders in regional, national, and global health services systems. The program seeks to develop in its students an essential understanding of the healthcare delivery systems and services, the factors that influence the healthcare environment, the appropriate healthcare management and research skills, and the professional competencies that are pertinent in today's healthcare environment.

Course Schedules

Courses are offered on the main campus during the fall and spring semesters both in the evening in traditional 15-week semesters and on Saturday mornings in an accelerated format. Summer courses are offered in an accelerated format, either in the evening or on Saturday mornings. Students have the option of completing the entire M.S. in Health Care Administration graduate courses on-line through Moodle. Information about graduate course offerings is available from the Graduate Division Office at (570) 208-5991 and on the King's College Graduate Division website at www.kings.edu/admissions/graduate.

M.S. in Health Care Administration Program Curriculum (37 credits)

1. Required Course Work (28 credits)

  • HCA 500 - Introduction to Health Services Systems (3 credits)
    This course is designed as a comprehensive introduction to the organization of the U.S. health care "system." Students will examine the major institutions, professions, and political forces that influence the provision of health care services in the United States. We will explore the development of each major component of the medical care system from an historical perspective by examining the changes in their organization and role over time. Students will also consider the major problems presently confronting each aspect of health care and will discuss alternative means of resolving these issues for the future. A secondary, but important objective of this course is to provide students with a broad understanding of the concepts and language requisite for many of the subsequent courses in the HCA program, including health policy, healthcare financial management, and healthcare economics. (3 credits)
  • HCA 501 - Health Policy (3 credits)
    This course introduces the student to current major issues in health policy. This course discusses the politics of health policy in terms of legislation at both the state and federal level. Key forces such as power development, special interest groups, economics and cost benefit analysis are discussed. Major policy issues that are reviewed include managed care, public health, Medicare and Medicaid, technology assessment, and population-based medicine. (3 credits)
  • HCA 504 - Healthcare Economics (3 credits)
    This course is designed as an in-depth study of the major topics in health care economics. We will study the production, cost, and financing of health care services, delivery mechanisms and their effects, health labor markets and professional training, and use of economic evaluation tools (cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analyses) in making decisions about allocation of scarce resources. The overall goal of HCA 504 is to teach the students to understand how the framework of economics can be applied to health care markets. (3 credits)
  • HCA 507 - Healthcare Financial Management (3 credits)
    This course is designed as a comprehensive introduction to the financial management function in the context of health care organizations. In addition to basic finance and accounting concepts, topics covered include the concepts of health insurance and third party reimbursement, cost concepts and decision analysis, budgeting requirements, long-term financing, capital budgeting and risk, and financial and operating analyses. The course will integrate corporate finance and accounting theories, institutional knowledge of health care finance, and applications to specific real-world problems. The primary goal of this course is to increase analytical and decision-making skills using finance theories, principles, concepts, and techniques most important to managers in the health care industry. (3 credits)
  • HCA 511 - Quantitative Business Methods for Healthcare (3 credits)
    This course will provide a comprehensive overview of selected research and quantitative methods used in conducting health services research. The course will address all phases of the research process, from generating research questions and hypotheses, to study design, sampling, measurement, data collection, and data analyses. Proper use of statistical methods and computer applications for secondary data analysis will also be covered. (3 credits)
  • HCA 521 - Community Health Administration in Global Context (3 credits)
    Designed to give students the theory and practice experience in the local, regional, national, and global community to work on health issues and concerns. Critically explores global public health issues as they pertain to different populations throughout the world and discusses health needs of special populations. Class discussions and written reports will examine the meaning of service and leadership in the health field. (3 credits)
  • HCA 531 - Understanding Organizational Ethics (3 credits)
    This course is designed to expose graduate students to the kinds of moral problems they will encounter as professionals in their functional areas. The focus of the course is policy formulation and implementation, with emphasis placed on the ethical dimensions and ramifications of that process. A series of current corporate case problems is reviewed and discussed in order to raise some of the major ethical issues involved in managing the organization's relationships with its many publics. (3 credits)
  • HCA 571 - Health Care Marketing and Branding (3 credits)
    This course provides a survey of marketing concepts as applied to health services organizations. An examination of marketing strategies useful in the delivery of health care services is provided to students. Special attention will be focused on market research, pricing, targeting a market, new product development, innovation, and the development of a marketing plan. (3 credits)
  • HCA 597 - Strategic Management in Healthcare (3 credits)
    This course will examine strategic planning processes and issues with an emphasis on environmental scanning, competitive analysis, strategic decision making, plan making and implementation in health care settings. Additional topics include ethical concerns in plan development and implementation with especial emphasis on social justice and managing the dual tracks of strategic and operational planning. (3 credits)
  • HCA 598 - Capstone Project (1 credit)
    Designed to assist students in the transition from theory to practice. Emphasis on sharpening analytical and intuitive leadership practices through the use of interactive case studies, team building exercises and field projects. (1 credit)

2. Elective Courses (9 credits)

Students have the option of declaring either one of the following two tracks (concentrations) and complete 3 courses (9 credits) specified for that track or they can take any other 3 courses (9 credits) from the elective courses list below.

Tracks (Concentrations)

Executive Leadership (9 credits)

  • HCA 502 - Human Resources Management (3 credits)
    This course surveys the activities and decision-making functions of the human resources manager, including personnel planning, recruitment, interviewing, training and development, compensation practices, benefits administration, maintaining personnel records, employee communication, labor relations and succession planning, with an emphasis on the legal dimensions of these various activities. Attention is also drawn to the professional and legal responsibilities of the individual manager or team leader in matters such as employee rights, privacy, sexual harassment, discrimination in the workplace, employee evaluations, workers' compensation and recruitment of personnel. This comprehensive review occurs from the unique perspective of the health services organization. (3 credits)
  • HCA 541 - Managerial Accounting for Healthcare Administration (3 credits)
    This course is intended to provide an overview of the subject of accounting. Students will learn financial and managerial accounting concepts with an emphasis on contemporary management control theory as applied in the health services industry. The course begins with the characteristics of the management control function. It then examines the nature and purpose of financial statements and introduces fund accounting. The course concludes with coverage of full cost accounting, the measurement and use of differential costs, and pricing decisions. It is strongly recommended that students take HCA 507 – Healthcare Financial Management prior to this course. (3 credits)
  • HCA 576 - Operations Management in Health Care (3 credits)
    This course is an introduction to the application of operations research/management science and industrial engineering techniques to health care organizations, hence the title Operations Management in Health Care. The course focuses on the use of quantitative methods to address complex operational issues and realistic problems, with the ultimate goal of ensuring improved organizational effectiveness and efficiency. Health care applications of operations analysis considered in the course include forecasting, demand & decision analysis, reengineering, productivity, supply chain management, quality control, and project management. The course presents these topics from a managerial perspective with emphasis on effective use of quantitative analysis in management decisions. The main goal of this course is to improve problem-solving and decision-making skills using essential concepts, tools, and strategies in operations research most important to managers in the health care industry. The quantitative approach to decision making is balanced with discussions of qualitative issues in decision making such as the role of values, beliefs, power, and other aspects of decision-making. (3 credits)

Public Health (9 credits)

  • HCA 505 - Epidemiology for Healthcare Managers (3 credits)
    This course is an in-depth study of the distribution and determinants of health, disease, and disability in human populations. Specific topics include: descriptive and analytical epidemiology, community assessment, and study design. Case studies that involve all of the tools of epidemiology are utilized. The student becomes aware of the uses of epidemiology in population-based medicine and managerial decision-making. (3 credits)
  • HCA 573 - Healthcare Information Systems (3 credits)
    This course explores the theory, technical requirements and applications of information systems in the health care field. It is essential that health care professionals understand the scope and role of information in today’s health care system and the opportunity that better management of information offers to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of health care services. Students will develop and demonstrate a fundamental working understanding of key attributes of healthcare information systems in contemporary and evolving health services environments, emphasizing clinical applications, health information management and decision support, and policy implications of health information technology. (3 credits)
  • HCA 575 - Health Promotion (3 credits)
    This course explores the various methods of delivering messages related to good health habits. The development, implementation, and evaluation of health messages will be discussed. Health education and promotional strategies will be outlined, in addition to the evaluation of various case studies of successful health communication programs. (3 credits)

Other Elective Courses

  • HCA 570 - Comparative Health Care Systems (3 credits)
    This course examines both global health issues and health systems from a comparative perspective with a focus on assessing performance of diverse health systems. Fist, a conceptual framework for benchmarking among health systems will be introduced. Students will then study the configuration of health systems, alternative delivery, financing, coverage, and allocation of resources for selected developed and developing countries. Recent health reform initiatives of each country will also be discussed to appraise the effects of reforms on system-wide outcomes and to identify possible lessons for the United States. (3 credits)
  • HCA 572 - Health Law (3 credits)
    This course will explore the legal aspects of the health care environment. Particular emphasis will be placed on the court system's effect on the health care executive. Topics to be discussed include the following: medical negligence, employment/agency relationships, prolongation of life, patients' rights, and corporate liability. (3 credits)
  • HCA 580 - Topics in Healthcare Administration (3 credits)
    This course is an in-depth review of the most current issues and problems facing the health care industry and those who deal with it. (3 credits)
  • HCA 591 - Directed Study in Healthcare Administration (3 credits)
  • HCA 595 - Leadership and Executive Skills for Health Care Managers (3 credits)
    This course focuses on a value-added and process-centered method of goal attainment. Topics include leadership theories, culture, human resources management, contingency and transformational theories, communication skills, mentorship, and team building and change theories. (3 credits)
  • HCA 596 - Leadership for Quality Management in Healthcare (3 credits)
    This course integrates all of the major components covered in the core courses. Students will take the various competencies they have acquired and learn how to apply them to real-life cases involving applications of leadership and quality total management in health care delivery systems. Topics include: leadership theories, culture building, relationship management, contingency and transformational theories, communication skills, change management, conflict management, mentorship, and team building. (3 credits)
  • HCA 599 - Health Care Administration Internship (3 or 6 credits)
    An internship provides students with administrative experience in a health service agency. Internships with a health-care facility may be substituted for one elective course. The internship is coordinated through the Career Planning and Placement Office. Permission of the director of the Health Care Administrative Program is required. (3 credits)

Admission Requirements

To be admitted to both the certificate and the master's program, students must have completed a Bachelor of Science or Arts with an overall undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or better on a grading scale of 4.00. Applicants must submit an application form, official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended, one-page personal statement of purpose, and two letters of recommendation. An interview with the Director of Graduate Health Care Administration program is also required.

Admission Procedures - International Students

International students who wish to apply to the M.S. in Health Care Administration must meet all of the admission requirements listed above and complete the International Graduate Application Form at International Graduate Application.

Proficiency in both written and spoken English is required for admission. Applicants whose native language is not English must submit proof of English proficiency before being considered for admission.

Approved English Language Proficiency Exams:

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is administered by Educational Testing Services (ETS) and Official Score reports must be submitted directly to King's College from the testing agency and must be less than 3 years old.

To satisfy the English Language Proficiency King's College requires a minimum Computer Based Test (CBT) of 213, Internet Based Test (iBT) of 79 or Paper Based Test (PBT) of 550.

IELTS (International English Language Testing System): King's College requires a minimum score of 6.0 for the M.S. in Health Care Administration Program to satisfy the English Language Proficiency requirement. All test scores must be submitted directly to King's College from the testing agency and must be less than 3 years old.

English Language Proficiency Waiver Options:

Waiver Option A.: You have attended a U.S. high school that is regionally accredited in the U.S. for 3 or more years with a minimum cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.5 (on a 4 point scale).

Waiver Option B.: You have attended a U.S. regionally accredited college/university and have completed English 101 and 102 with a minimum 3.0 for each course and have 30 semester transferrable credits.

Waiver Option C.: You have attended a U.S. regionally accredited college/university and have completed an Associate of Arts, Associate of Science, a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree with a minimum GPA of 2.5.

Waiver Option D.: You are a native of one of the following countries: Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, British Guyana, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Jamaica, Liberia, New Zealand, Trinidad, Tobago or Zambia.

Foreign Credential Evaluation:

All applicants must provide complete, official academic records from secondary and post-secondary schools. Secondary and post-secondary school transcripts, if not originally in English, must be translated, evaluated by and submitted to King's by an accredited credentialing service agency (e.g.,World Education Services, WES). Credentialing agencies used by the applicant must be a member of NACES ( National Association of Credential Evaluation Services).

Declaration of Finances:

All international applicants are required to complete the Declaration and Certification of Finances Form.

Transfer Credits

Physicians and other health care professionals entering the M.S. in Health Care Administration program with prior graduate level degrees may transfer up to 9 credits hours toward their master's degree at King's College.