Master of Health Administration
Michael Merrigan, Graduate Director
Glass Hall, room 403; Phone 417-836-3092
The Master of Health Administration (MHA) degree is a College of Business degree that
includes several interdisciplinary courses contributed by other colleges on campus.
The program is designed for students holding at least an undergraduate degree who
wish to further their careers in the management of health organizations including
integrated systems, hospitals, group practices, long-term care facilities, clinics,
managed care organizations, and other types of health organizations. The program can
be completed in as little as two years. Students with little or no undergraduate work
in business are welcome, and will normally require additional time for completion.
The MHA program is accredited by AACSB International - The Association to Advance
Collegiate Schools of Business.
Beginning in August 2023, the MHA program is moving to an online only format. The
revised program curriculum will feature 12 core courses offered in 8-week sessions.
Each fall and spring semester will include two 8-week blocks, with each block offering
2 courses. This schedule will allow full-time students to take 4 courses per semester
and complete the entire program in 3 semesters. Part-time students will still be able
to develop a flexible schedule based on their needs and complete the program on their
timetable. Tuition for the online MHA program is the same for in-state and out-of-state
students. The program will be designed to meet Quality Matters criteria and will continue
to meet the standards of our AACSB accredited College of Business. We are excited
to bring this opportunity to our students and look forward to serving all of our students
in this new format.
- The student must have received at least a bachelor’s or master’s degree from a regionally
accredited college or university.
- The student must have a GPA of at least 2.75 for the last 60 hours of academic work
and submit a score on the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT), the Graduate
Record Examination (GRE), or equivalent standardized exam.
- Students who do not meet the admission requirements, but who show indication of high
promise will be considered for probationary admission.
- All other University and Graduate College requirements for admission to a degree program
will also apply. Qualified applicants may enter the program at the beginning of any
Applicants from foreign countries whose native language is not English are required
to submit scores on the TOEFL. Normally, TOEFL scores of 79 on the internet-based
The program requires a minimum 36 hours of graduate credit plus any necessary prerequisite courses.
Core requirements - 27 hours
||Healthcare Accounting Concepts
||Healthcare Financial Management
||Health Services Organization
||Managing Healthcare Organizations*
||Health Law and Ethics*
||Human Resources in Healthcare Organizations*
||Strategic Management of Healthcare Organizations*
||Measurement and Management of Quality in Healthcare*
||Organizational Behavior and Leadership
*Course prerequisites may be required.
Electives - 9 hours
||Management Information Systems*
||Health Care Economics*
||Programming Approaches in Wellness/Health Promotion
||Health Promotion Planning
||Health Infomatics and Data Analysis
||Organizational Behavior and Leadership
||Seminar in Management
||Introduction to Public Health
International Health and Infectious Disease
||Seminar in Health Policy
*Course prerequisites may be required.
Significant supervised quantitative and qualitative research projects in MGT 701,
MGT 703, MGT 711, PLS 754, PBH 720 and culminating in the capstone MGT 705 course.
Satisfies the research requirement of the Graduate College.
Executive MHA option (EMHA)
The Executive MHA Option is only available on a contractual arrangement with a specific
healthcare organization. The healthcare organization selects a cohort of students
who are employed or affiliated with the healthcare organization to participate in
the program. The MHA Program will be presented in a format referred to as the Executive
MHA Option or the EMHA. From a curricular viewpoint, the EMHA is structured similarly
and requires 36 graduate course credits.
GMAT/GRE scores are not required for admission to the EMHA, however, the applicant
will need to provide documentation verifying at least 3 years of professional experience.
For EMHA students, prerequisite requirements for the core program courses will be
satisfied through appropriate prior course work, relevant professional experience
or by an individualized study program developed and supervised by the EMHA Program
The credit hour costs for classes taken by students enrolled in the EMHA program are
assessed at a higher rate than the traditional MHA offerings due to additional expenditures
associated with the program.
In addition to the contractual requirements above, each student will also need to
meet the following admission requirements:
- Completion of a regionally accredited undergraduate degree.
- Completion of 3 or more years of professional experience.
Accelerated MHA option
Undergraduate majors in the College of Business may apply for admission to the Master
of Health Administration (MHA) program during the second semester of their junior
year. If accepted, up to 6 hours of 700- or 700-level College of Business classes
taken in the senior year may be counted toward both the undergraduate and graduate
Before enrolling in a course that will apply to both the undergraduate program and
the master's program an undergraduate student must:
- Be accepted into the accelerated program.
- Receive prior approval from the graduate program director, department head, and Dean
of the Graduate College. This is done by using a Mixed Credit Form.
Acceptance into the program and all approvals must be completed prior to the end of
the Change of Schedule Period for the course(s). See the Graduate College for further
- Completion of 80 or more hours at time of application.
- An overall GPA of 3.00 or better.
- A score of 450 or better on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).
A student who fails to attain a 3.00 GPA after completing the approved program may
enroll for additional course work not to exceed 6 hours to raise the GPA. The course
work will be approved by the Graduate Program Director and the Dean of the College
The maximum class load for a full-time student is normally 12 hours per semester.
An overload is permitted only after students have demonstrated their ability to achieve
an outstanding graduate record at this university. Students employed on a full-time
job generally should not enroll for more than 6 semester hours. All other University
and Graduate College requirements governing grading and attendance will apply.
To enroll in graduate courses in the College of Business, a student must be admitted
to a graduate program in the College of Business or have special permission. Students
not meeting one of these conditions can be dropped from the course(s) at any time
during the session involved.
MPH-MHA Dual Degree
Students can obtain dual degrees in health administration and public health at Missouri
State University. Students who successfully complete the program will receive both
a Master of Health Administration (MHA) degree and a Master of Public Health (MPH)
degree. A total of 12 hours of coursework can be applied to both programs, reducing
the time required to obtain both degrees separately.
Public health and health administration are increasingly important areas in health
care and medicine. Information, resources, technology, research and new challenges
are expanding tremendously in the fields of public health and health administration
and it is important to have a trained workforce that can bridge these two areas of
health care and medicine. The successful completion of dual degrees in public health
and health care administration provide students with a unique set of knowledge, skills
and abilities that enable graduates to communicate relevant health information; account
for health care priorities, policy and delivery; manage crises; and address major
health concerns at the level of a population. All these activities are information
intensive to support professional decision-making, practice and action.
The dual MHA/MPH degree program provides graduates with interdisciplinary knowledge,
skills, and abilities to address challenges on a local and global scale. This dual
degree program offers a course of study that emphasizes effective management and responsible
oversight within the health care delivery system and focus on identifying, resolving,
and preventing health problems that affect communities and populations. Beyond these
foundations, both programs challenge students to lead their organizations toward satisfying
the future demands and needs of their communities.
There is overlap between the MHA and MPH programs, which enables students to complete
both degrees in a streamlined process. The MHA has a core requirement of 35 credit
hours while the MPH has a 42 hour requirements. Currently there are three courses
(9 credit hours) jointly shared by the two programs.
In addition, there is a joint collaborative relationship between the two programs
in terms of the Capstone Project in Public Health (PBH 799 - 3 credit hours) with the Program Director for the MHA program serving on the student's
Capstone Committee. In keeping with the traditional approach to dual degrees, there
is a reduction in overall hour requirements for both degrees. While separately the
two degrees require a total of 78 credit hours, under the joint degree program students
could earn the two degrees in 66 credit hours.
Applicants to the joint MHA/MPA must be admitted into each program separately and
must adhere to the admission requirements and prerequisite courses stipulated by each
program. The student's decision to complete the joint MHA/MPH degree must be declared
to the MHA and MPH Program Directors before the end of the second semester of the
first year in either program.