Most Affordable Online Master’s in Health Services Degrees
| Staff Writers
Are you ready to find your fit?
Inspire individual and community betterment with an online affordable Master’s in Health Services degree.
Are you passionate about providing accessible and compassionate healthcare? Do you want to create better health systems and plans that will have tangible effects in people’s lives? Can you envision yourself leading teams of equally passionate healthcare providers?
Then an online graduate degree in health services may be the next best step for you!
Top 10 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Health Services Degrees
Explore our featured online programs and find the right match for you today.
What kind of online Master’s in Health Services degree should you get?
Though all 25 of these programs will provide a foundation in health services fundamentals, each program varies in its emphasis and focus.
For example, while some programs will ensure you graduate with a thorough understanding of administrative practices, others focus on hands-on, direct client care. To find the best fit for you, think long-term about your career aspirations. What do you require from your graduate degree to help you meet your vocational goals?
How much money do people make with an online master’s in health services degree?
An advanced degree in health services can be applied to a dramatic range of career fields, industries, and settings (more on that below!). For that reason, it can tricky to determine average salaries. However, rest assured that a graduate degree in health services will pay off, quite literally.
For example, medical and health services managers make around $98,000 a year. But this degree can move you far beyond the manager’s desk. In fact, you could find yourself the CEO of a hospital. In which case, you’ll make on average $163,000 a year. Though, as PayScale shows, the potential earnings exceed a staggering $600,000 annually!
What can you do with an online Master’s in Health Services degree?
These 25 programs open up many doors to the healthcare world. Whether you want to run a small clinic or a sprawling university hospital, an online Master’s in Health Services degree will help you get there.
In fact, graduates from the 25 programs below reflect the diversity of job opportunities available to you after you receive that diploma. They have all gone on to secure rewarding careers as:
Nursing Home Managers
Rehabilitation Clinic Administrators
Hospital CEOs and CFOs
Alternative Healthcare Office Administrators
What are the requirements for an online master’s in health services degree?
These master’s degrees require between one and two years to complete, though most will have you taking classes for closer to two years.
You can expect your first year of classes to cover the bases. This means coursework on human resources, administrative practices, the US healthcare system, and the laws, ethics, and regulations related to health services.
Then, in your second year, you will have the opportunity to explore the further reaches of health service. You may decide to formally specialize in an area of interest, or you may take on a number of electives that reflect your career aspirations.
Some of these programs require internships, capstone projects, or theses in order to graduate. Here at College Choice we’ve been sure to detail which schools require what so that no surprises lay in store for you.
What are the most affordable online master’s in health services degrees?
To find the most affordable master’s in health services programs we first looked at every school across the country that offers a health services program online. This ranking is based on average net tuition reported to the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System.
After exhaustive research and number crunching we arrived at the 25 programs that will give you the most bang for your buck. And these 25 programs are not just the most affordable but are some of the best ranked too!
The Shreveport member within the wider Louisiana State University System is home to approximately 6,000 students. Though modest in size, LSU Shreveport began as just a two-year college. And today it is comprised of two dozen professional and academic programs.
When you earn your Master’s in Health Administration from LSU Shreveport you never need to leave your home office. This degree is 100 percent online and organized into 10 distance classes. You’ll graduate fully prepared for middle and upper management positions within the healthcare industry. Classes you’ll take at LSU Shreveport include:
Healthcare Organizational Behavior
Healthcare Human Resource Management
Healthcare Law and Ethics
LSU Shreveport has designed a health services program that can be earned whether or not you have an academic or professional background in healthcare. There are four optional core classes you can take in order to brush up before diving into your degree. This makes for both an affordable and accommodating entry point into healthcare.
UNC Chapel Hill is a research-based university known for its relationship with Duke and North Carolina State University. It is a flagship school with shining accolades for its liberal arts-based programs. Nearly 30,000 students attend UNC Chapel Hill.
Why not earn an affordable online degree from a nationally ranked university? UNC Chapel Hill’s online Master of Health Care Administration program provides a comprehensive overview of health services. It covers everything from management methods to finance, public health, and more. Core courses cover:
Health Care Reimbursement
Leadership and Management of Health Care Organizations
Health Care in the United States
UNC Chapel Hill is explicitly committed to giving students a global perspective on health care. Students can therefore earn a Global Health Certificate in tandem with their degree. Or they can pursue global health-related internships and independent studies.
Cal State East Bay is a public school located in Hayward, CA. It offers nearly 200 academic programs to its 15,000 combined undergraduate and graduate students. Cal State East Bay’s strongest and most popular degree programs are in business, economics, education, and health.
The MS in Healthcare Administration degree from Cal State East Bay was created with working professionals in mind. This flexible program helps students develop the knowledge, skills, and mindsets necessary for effective health care management. You will not only learn how to plan and direct medical services but how to supervise and inspire teams. Classes you’ll take include:
US Health Care System
Introduction to Health Informatics
Information Technology in Health Care
Project and Change Management in Health Informatics
This program was designed by Cal State East Bay to reflect the standards and values of the Health Care Leadership Alliance. This includes a commitment to communication, leadership, professionalism, industry knowledge, and business insight. Graduates have gone on to work in hospitals, clinics, and public health agencies.
The University of Illinois System is a renowned group of highly ranked universities, the Chicago campus is no different. Perched just outside of the Chicago Loop, UIC is the city’s largest university. More than 30,000 students attend the university and are enrolled in one of its 15 colleges and schools.
When you earn a Master of Healthcare in Administration degree from UIC’s School of Public Health you will exhaustively explore everything from population health and informatics to marketing and finance. You can study either full or part-time. Both tracks ensure you graduate ready to manage health services within hospitals and care centers. Courses cover:
Human resources in health care
Health of communities
Economics and accounting
UIC’s School of Public Health is home to several dozen renowned research facilities and projects. For example, the Center for Healthy Work, the MidAmerica Public Health Training Center, and the Institute for Health Research and Policy are all housed on UIC’s campus. Online students can connect from afar!
The University of Maryland University College is based in Prince George’s County in Maryland, though there are also UMUC campuses throughout the region and online. With nearly 70,000 students and a sprawling distance education program, UMUC is a leader in innovative education.
The Master’s in Healthcare Administration degree from UMUC fully covers the current trends in the healthcare marketplace while also predicting future trends. While attending UMUC you will develop a case study plan and budget for bettering healthcare services. And you will become a pro in US healthcare costs and systems. Classes at UMUC include:
Financial Decision Making for Managers
Information Technology for Health Care Administration
Intercultural Communication and Leadership
The Business of Healthcare
Just because you’re studying online doesn’t mean you can’t get connected! UMUC’s Upsilon Phi Delta is an honor society open to online graduate students. It is the national academic honor society of the Association of University Programs in Health Administration, and a fine note to add to your resume and transcripts.
Located primarily in Laramie, the University of Wyoming is a large, research institution. UW is known for its programs and research in the areas of agriculture, health sciences, and applied sciences. Around 12,000 students attend UW.
The MS in Health Services Administration degree from the University of Wyoming is primarily online with some residency required. However, this two-year degree can be completed with part-time study. This degree for those who are most interested in pharmaceutical careers as the five speciality concentrations show:
Biopharmaceutical Regulatory Compliance
Health Economics and Outcomes
Health Institution Leadership
Health Quality and Improvement
Advanced Pharmacy Practice Administration
The School of Pharmacy at UW, through which this program is offered, is ranked fifty-third in the nation among all schools of its kind, according to U.S. News & World Report. In fact, many of UW’s health and medical schools are top-ranked and well-recognized.
Oklahoma State University is a land and sun-grant research university. It is located in Stillwater and is a flagship campus. More than 23,000 students attend OSU and are enrolled in one of the University’s half dozen colleges.
No prior healthcare experience is required when you enroll at OSU. This Master’s in Healthcare Administration degree allows you to specialize in either administration proper or entrepreneurship. And in addition to taking classes on leadership styles, research methods, and legal issues in healthcare, you will also explore a range of topics. Electives cover:
Entrepreneurship and the Health Sciences
Introduction to Global Health
Financial Structures in Health Care Organizations
Ethics in Health Care
OSU is known for its medical centers, research facilities, and teaching hospitals. Likewise, its academic and professional health programs are highly regarded. Additionally, distance students benefit from this reputation as well, since OSU’s online programs are also well ranked.
Located in Orlando, the University of Central Florida is a public state school. It boasts the largest enrollment of any college in the U.S. with its nearly 70,000 students. UCF offers more than 200 academic programs through its many colleges and schools.
UCF’s Executive Master of Health Administration degree introduces students to the structures of health care organizations. Additionally, students gain insights into the varying, complex factors that impact the industry and its customers. Graduates from UCF’s program have gone on to become:
Chief Nursing Officers
Business Development Directors
Patient Survey Directors
U.S. News & World Report has designated UCF one of America’s “Most Innovative Universities.” Its Health Science Campus is part of UCF’s greater reputation for progressive research. It houses the Burnham Institute for Medical Research, a children’s hospital, a cancer research institute, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and more.
Mercy College is a private university located in and around New York City. It has campuses in Manhattan, Bronx, Yorktown Heights, plus a highly regarded virtual campus. Mercy College is affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church.
Mercy’s Master’s in Health Services Management program is a multidisciplinary introduction to leadership formation and US healthcare. In addition to the core classes, a selection of which are listed below, you will also be required to complete either a capstone project or an internship.
Managerial Communication and Leadership
Ethical Issues in Healthcare Management
Legal Environment of Health Care Management
Law, Government, and Political Process
For those who seek a program steeped in the mentorship model, Mercy’s program may be the best fit for you. Faculty, who are working professionals in the healthcare industry.
Located in Columbia, MO, the University of Missouri (also known as Mizzou) has more than 30,000 students and more than 300 academic programs. Mizzou is a flagship university and one of the nation’s most active research institutions. It is one of only a few public schools to be a member of the elite Association of American Universities.
Mizzou’s School of Medicine offers a Master of Health Administration degree that is mostly online with some required campus visits. With a curriculum that covers the fundamentals of health informatics, HR, and healthcare law, graduates from Mizzou have become CEOs and directors, CFOs and managers. Classes include:
Introduction to the US Health Care System
Administration of Health Care Organizations
Methods of Health Services Research
Mizzou is a known military friendly university. This is evidenced by the Mizzou Online Military Tuition Award, among other factors. The award is only for veteran, active duty, national guard, or reserve members. It makes online education even more affordable and approachable.
Though headquartered in Minneapolis, Capella University is primarily an online university. It is known for its career-focused, professional development programs. Indeed, Capella offers more than 1,600 courses, nearly 150 degrees, and dozens of certification programs.
Capella’s School of Nursing and Health Sciences offers an online Master of Health Administration program. At Capella you will learn how to design and implement new systems while improving current systems. And you will develop the knowledge and skills to support patient processes and outcomes. Courses include:
Strategic Health Care Planning
Health Care Law and Policy
Health Care Consumerism and Marketing
Health Care Finance and Reimbursement
Capella gives students the opportunity for a broad degree experience in general health administration as well as the opportunity to become an expert in a niche area. For example, students can specialize in leadership, informatics, or operations, thereby setting themselves apart in the job market.
Mississippi College is a small Christian school located in Clinton, just outside of Jackson. It is one of the nation’s oldest Baptist schools and is currently affiliated with the Mississippi Baptist Convention. Around 5,000 students attend Mississippi College.
Looking for a program that stresses both the local and global factors in healthcare? Then Mississippi College has the degree for you. This Master’s in Health Services Administration program trains students in leadership and community development at all levels. Classes include:
Healthcare Financial Management
Legal Aspects of Healthcare Administration
Health Services Administration
Being that Mississippi College is on our most affordable list of programs, this may come as no shock. But the recognition is still deserved. The College is ranked twelfth nationally for its affordability by U.S. News & World Report. It is also ranked for its care of student veterans, its academic excellence, and its online options.
The University of Saint Francis is a Catholic school located in Fort Wayne, IN. It is a liberal arts university that adheres closely to Roman Catholic and Franciscan worldviews. USF serves around 2,200 students from around the Midwest and online.
When you earn a Master’s in Healthcare Administration from USF you will become fully trained for managerial positions upon graduation. You will learn how to create and be a part of efficient, effective workspaces. And you’ll gain a foundation in healthcare fundamentals. Graduates have gone on to secure rewarding careers as:
Health Information Managers
Nursing Home Administrators
USF’s recognitions are many and manifold. It is ranked fifth nationally for its earning potential among graduates. It also boasts a 93 percent employment rate among its graduates. And it is ranked among the top 100 best schools in its region by U.S. News & World Report.
Indiana University of Pennsylvania is a public, research-based university. It is home to more than 12,000 combined undergraduate and graduate students. Located an hour northeast of Pittsburgh, IUP also has campuses throughout the state and online.
The MS in Health Services Administration program at IUP ensures you graduate with marketable skills in administration, human resources, and health care services. You will therefore graduate prepared for jobs in a range of settings, from clinics to insurance companies. This degree can be completed in one year and includes classes such as:
Human Resource Management
The Practice of Nursing Research
The IUP program is unlike any other. It is not merely an administration or a health policy program, but a unique blend of both. You’ll work closely with faculty in IUP’s Department of Nursing and Allied Health Professionals as well as the Department of Employment and Labor Relations.
Hodges University is a private school located in Naples, FL. A small school, Hodges offers approximately 35 programs across all degree levels to its 1,600 students. Indeed, Hodges is comprised of five schools in technology, business, health, and professional studies,
Hodges’ online Master’s in Health Services Administration program not only introduces you to the complex systems surrounding health services. But you will also develop leadership skills in communication, problem-solving, analysis, and interpersonal relationships. Some of the classes you’ll take as a Hodges student include:
Strategic Planning in Healthcare
Hodges is committed to accessible education. It offers small class sizes, affordable tuition, a mentor/mentee program, transition support for military veterans, and so much more. Its programs are markedly career-oriented, and employment rates with graduates are around an impressive 93 percent.
The University of South Carolina is located in Columbia. It is designated an active research university by the Carnegie Foundation and is known for its strengths in business, health, medicine, law, and social work. More than 50,000 students attend USC.
USC’s Arnold School of Public Health offers a Master of Public Health in Health Services Policy and Management. This is a perfect program for those who want to enact healthier communities on a national or global scale. You will graduate prepared to manage complex public health programs and create population-based health improvements. Classes include:
Personal and Community Health
Planning Health Promotion Programs
Applied Health Communications
Kiplinger’s Personal Finance ranks USC among the top 50 most affordable public universities in the nation. But it is not only known for its affordability. The University of South Carolina is well ranked across dozens of academic programs, most notably its online health programs.
Part of the University System of Ohio the University of Cincinnati is a public research institution. It is one of the nation’s largest universities and an active hub for research in the areas of health, engineering, law, nursing, and more. Around 45,000 students attend UC.
UC’s online Master of Health Administration degree is an interdisciplinary program emphasizing leadership development. With a curriculum focused on competency-based skill learning and real-world applications, UC fully trains its graduates in the areas of health finance, quality improvement, and health policy and law. Classes include:
Health Systems Management I and II
Health Care Marketplace I and II
Health Policy I and II
Health Quality I and II
UC is a recognized leader in healthcare education and research. It earns the highest marks in its research activity and contributions from the Carnegie Foundation. And the University consistently makes the annual “Best Colleges” list put forth by U.S. News & World Report.
The Sage Colleges are a group of three affiliated schools in New York state, including a women’s college in Troy. Small liberal arts schools, the Sage Colleges offer around 50 degree programs, including nine that can be earned fully online. Around 2,500 students attend the Sage Colleges.
Through The Sage Colleges you can earn an online Master’s in Health Services Administration degree. This multidisciplinary program takes seriously the importance of cross-training health managers. You’ll simultaneously develop skills in analysis and communication as you will in program planning and human relations. Graduates have gone on to work in:
Health maintenance organizations
Governmental health planning agencies
Unique to this program only is the opportunity to specialize in dietetic studies by enrolling in the Dietetic Internship program. No other school offers this distinct opportunity. If you’re interested in diets and their effects on health and nutrition, you’ll definitely want to consider the Sage Colleges.
Grand Canyon University is a Christian school located in Phoenix, and not in the National Park proper. GCU specializes in professional degrees, offering programs in math, health care, business, and education. Though 20,000 students study on campus, another 60,000 study online.
GCU’s Master of Health Administration degree covers the ins and outs of health service. You will encounter practical financial analyses of operations, strategies for program design and implementation, and much more. Indeed, some of the classes you can anticipate taking as a GCU student include:
Analysis of Contemporary Health Care Delivery Models
Legal and Ethical Principles in Health Care
Organizational Structure, Dynamics, and Effectiveness
Human Resource Management and Marketing Communication
For those seeking a Christian approach to health and leadership, GCU may provide the best option. As a Christian university, curriculums emphasize a faith-based context for academic and professional development.
Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is located in Winona, MN with additional campuses throughout the region and online. SMU is part of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. And it is a private school with around 6,000 combined undergraduate and graduate students.
SMU offers an MA in Health and Human Services Administration degree that can be earned fully online. For those who want to apply their degree to behavioral and mental health agencies, this may be the most ideal program. In addition to exploring traditional health administration, students will also be trained in nonprofit and governmental agency management. Classes cover:
Health Informatics and Application
Financial Practices in Health and Human Services Sector
Aging, Illness, and the Continuum of Care
Advanced Health Policy and Ethics
Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is ranked among the top 50 best universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. In addition to its academic accolades, SMU is known for its affordability, its service to student veterans, and its online degree programs.
Ohio University is a large, research-based university in Athens. It is Ohio’s oldest school as well as one of its most prestigious. More than 36,000 students attend OU.
When you earn a Master of Health Administration degree online from Ohio University you will experience a notably “future-focused” curriculum. This means that Ohio has committed to preparing its graduates for the future trends and issues related to health services. Some of the classes you’ll take at OU include:
Leadership of Health Organizations
Epidemiology in Health Administration
Evaluation and Quality Improvement in Health Care
Human Resource Management in Health Care
Ohio University boasts one of the largest health-focused colleges in the country. The College of Health Sciences and Professions is nationally ranked and organized into nearly a half dozen separate schools and departments. It is also home to several individually well ranked programs in social work, nursing, physical therapy, and more.
Penn State is a huge research university with multiple campuses and one of the best virtual colleges in the world. The World Campus is two decades old and offers more than 60 degree programs. It is one of the oldest, most established distance education programs in the nation.
For those interested in the legal and legislative aspects of healthcare, Penn State’s World Campus has the program for you: a Master of Health Administration in Health Policy degree. Learn how to create better and more efficient current healthcare systems while also learning how to develop better plans through the newest technologies and management strategies. Graduates have gone on to work in:
Federal regulatory and public health agencies
Clinics and outpatient care centers
Medical group practices
Penn State is a world-class school. Its rankings, awards, and recognitions are innumerable and extend across many academic programs and research contributions. When you enroll in the World Campus you’ll become part of this reputation and heritage. For example, Penn State is ranked 50 among all national universities by U.S. News & World Report.
Utica College is located in Utica, New York and is a private university. It offers around 60 combined undergraduate and graduate programs, though it is best known for its health science education. Around 4,500 students attend Utica College.
The Online Master of Health Administration degree from Utica College was specifically designed to put its students into upper-level positions after graduation. This is through a highly practical curriculum that includes actual case studies, relevant projects that mimic real-world projects, interactive learning forums, and more. Core courses at Utica include:
Health Care Accounting Processes
Health Care Systems
Leadership in Marketing and Strategic Planning
Quality and Performance Improvement
Utica College provides students with three areas of specialization that will make them experts in a niche field. Students can concentrate in acute care, long-term care, or service organizations. This makes Utica’s program not only super practical and highly customizable, but relevant. You will stand out among others in the competitive workforce.
Saint Joseph’s College of Maine is located in Standish, just west of Portland, ME. It is a private, Catholic, liberal arts school that provides traditional undergraduate degrees in a range of fields. It also offers master’s degrees online to nearly 2,400 students across the country.
Saint Joseph offers an online Master of Health Administration program that prepares students for leadership positions within clinics and hospitals. In addition to taking core courses on the US healthcare system, research methods, strategic planning and management, and financial management, you can explore unique parts of health services too. Saint Joseph offers electives covering:
Long-Term Care Operations and Administration
Health Policy and Politics
Saint Joseph offers a number of ways to study health services and administration. For the faith inclined, you can enroll in the Catholic Health Leadership Concentration, which was designed for administrators who want to work specifically in Catholic health care organizations. It’s also possible to earn a certificate rather than the full degree, expediting your career goals even further.
Regis University is a Roman Catholic school located in Denver, CO. It was founded by the Society of Jesus in the nineteenth century and maintains those roots today with its membership within the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities. Around 8,300 students attend Regis.
Regis University offers an MS in Health Services Administration program that can be earned in just 18 months. This program was specifically designed to train students to become healthcare executives, health services managers, and medical administrators. Some of the classes you’ll take as a Regis student include:
Foundations of Health Care Economics, Accounting, and Financial Management
Quality Improvement in Health Care Settings
Health Care Information Systems
Contemporary Issues in Health Services Delivery Systems
Regis believes that even if you don’t have any academic or professional background in health services that you should still be able to advance your career. They provide a bridge course for those with little to no healthcare experience. This class will get you up to snuff on the history, policy, and current issues in health services.
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