Quality healthcare administrators can make an incredible difference in the success of a facility. Those interested in pursuing a career in the health sector will need an education that provides them with the diverse skills and educational foundation they will need to succeed. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Healthcare Administration can be an excellent solution for many prospective administrators. We will walk you through what you need to know about the degree choice and how it differs from other, similar options.
What Is an MBA in Healthcare Administration?
An MBA in Healthcare Administration provides students with rigorous coursework to prepare them to become healthcare administration leaders. These students tackle subjects related to the general management of a business, such as finance, analytics, and marketing, and how these different topics relate to the world of healthcare. They learn skills related to project management and economics to improve the healthcare facility from a business perspective, helping the facility better serve its patients.
Differences Between a General MBA and an MBA in Healthcare Administration
When people start investigating their options for education and career advancement within the business world, they encounter various MBA choices. Two that you will have to decide between are a General MBA and an MBA with a specialization like healthcare administration. While both degree choices will cover some similar topics related to the business side of the program, there are also some key differences you will want to note.
The coursework for a General MBA is broadly applicable to many different business situations. After completing the core requirements, those pursuing a General MBA will often take classes on topics such as leadership or human resources.
On the other hand, those pursuing a specialization related to healthcare administration will take classes that pertain directly to business from a healthcare perspective. Course topics might include areas such as evidence-based management, improvements in healthcare, and leadership in complex healthcare systems.
Alongside the differences in coursework between the General MBA and the MBA in Healthcare Administration, the types of career opportunities that each can lead to will also vary. Those who earn an MBA in Healthcare Administration generally go on to work in the healthcare industry. For example, you might enter a field such as nursing administration or work to become the CEO or COO of a hospital. Those with a General MBA might pursue leadership roles within the broader business environment, but they will not have the more technical skills necessary for working in healthcare.
Work environments will also differ for those who pursue a General MBA versus specialized coursework in healthcare administration. Those who want to specialize in healthcare businesses will typically go on to work in roles that deal specifically with the medical world, from insurance companies to hospitals and clinics.
Differences Between an MBA in Healthcare Administration and a Master’s in Healthcare Administration
Two similar degrees that those interested in entering healthcare administration often encounter are the MBA in Healthcare Administration and the master’s in healthcare administration. At first, it can appear as if those two types of degrees have a lot of overlap. Both degree types do combine coursework related to soft skills and hard skills related to administration. They will also both cover the skills needed to manage specifically healthcare-related businesses. It is important to look at the differences between these two areas for those who want to pursue careers in healthcare management, so you can decide which degree will work best for you.
When you look at the coursework for these two types of degrees, you will find that the MBA in Healthcare Administration will include classes related to administration and business management while also managing to include the coursework specific to the healthcare aspects of the business. The master’s in healthcare administration often does not include the same level of rigorous business courses needed to thrive as a business leader.
Highly Specialized vs. Multidisciplinary Perspective
You should also note that students who go through the MBA in Healthcare Administration will have the chance to learn from professors across multiple departments. This allows them to learn a variety of different perspectives, giving them a more well-rounded and multidisciplinary perspective.
The programs you choose may also offer different levels of flexibility. For example, an MBA in Healthcare Administration, such as the program offered by UTC, often comes with flexible online options.
Different Types of Healthcare MBA Programs
As you explore your different educational options for entering careers related to healthcare administration, you will also find that you have some choices regarding the type of program you enroll in. There are several different programs offered so that students can select the one that meets their specific needs the best. Here are the main types of decisions you will face.
Flexible MBA vs. Online MBA
Many people pursuing a healthcare MBA are already working, meaning they need to determine how they will work on their degree around their professional responsibilities. Two common options are a Flexible MBA and an Online MBA. Here are the key differences between them.
What Flexible vs. Online Degrees Mean
A flexible degree, also commonly referred to as a hybrid program, allows you to take classes both in person and online, and the courses are often designed to offer more flexible scheduling. For example, it is common for courses to meet in the evening to accommodate working professionals. An online degree, however, has all the classes offered online and often asynchronously. This means that you can take the classes when it fits your schedule. If you are a morning person, you can do your coursework or listen to lectures before leaving for work. Night owls can elect to do the opposite.
Interaction with Peers and Professors
Since you take some classes in person through a flexible program, many of your interactions with peers and professors will be in person. You will meet when you come to campus for classes, and you might occasionally meet up online.
The reverse is true for online classes. Since you meet for cases entirely online, your interactions with peers and professors will also be entirely online.
Many students will find that going to campus sometimes as a flexible degree student provides some additional opportunities. For example, they can work as graduate assistants and can access in-person facilities, such as the athletic center.
Full-Time MBA Vs. Part-Time MBA Program
As you evaluate flexible versus online MBA options, it is also worth noting the difference between the full-time and part-time MBA options. A student taking a part-time MBA course load typically takes one or two courses per semester. This eases their course load, so they may find it more manageable with their other responsibilities. However, it will take more time to finish the degree. Full-time students typically take about three courses per semester and typically finish their degree in 24 months.
Other Considerations When Choosing Your MBA program
Preparing for your MBA program is an exciting time that can help propel your professional career forward. However, it is important to make sure you have accounted for everything to set yourself up for success. In addition to debating online versus flexible course options and part-time versus full-time, you also want to look at the following:
Consider what your career goals say about your timeline. How fast do you want to have your degree completed? Consider this along with your current schedule. How much time do you have to study for your degree each week? You need to balance these two factors successfully.
The cost will also be a factor for most students. Look at the prices per semester for all your different course options.
You must also consider the admission requirements for your desired program. Make sure you meet the requirements or see how you can fulfill them before applying.
Have More Questions? UTC Is Here to Help!
Are you ready to get started on your degree? UTC is here to provide you with the rigorous and fulfilling education you need to improve your career. Learn more about available programs and how you can take the first step toward business school and your future.