This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2020-21 VCU Bulletin. This edition includes all programs and courses approved by the publication deadline; however we may receive notification of additional program approvals after the launch. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

Advanced study in health administration and information systems is available through a dual degree program co-sponsored by the Department of Health Administration in the College of Health Professions and the Department of Information Systems in the School of Business.

The dual degree M.H.A/M.S. program allows students interested in the fields of health management and information technology to earn two highly ranked and relevant master’s degrees in just three years, which is the time it usually takes to complete just one of the degrees. The dual degree program is ideal for students who are pursuing careers in health IT management, health IT business consulting or working in the health IT vendor industry.  

Applicants for this program are required to meet the admission requirements of each program. For information regarding the dual degree program, contact the director of the program.

Degree requirements

The curriculum allows students to earn both the M.H.A. and the M.S. in Information Systems with a total of 78 credit hours rather than the 89 credit hours that would be required to obtain the degrees separately. The dual degree option offers this credit-hour efficiency by taking advantage of curricular similarities in the two programs and allowing some courses to count toward both sets of requirements. A total of 12 credit hours will count toward both degrees and the M.H.A. foundation courses will be substituted for the business school foundation course requirements for dual degree students. Students in the dual degree program will follow the same schedule as regular M.H.A. students, including the two lockstep years. Both degrees are conferred concurrently when all requirements for both degrees have been completed.  

Students will take 51 credit hours of health administration courses required for the M.H.A. and nine additional courses (27 credit hours) in the M.S. in Information Systems program, including INFO 610INFO 620 and INFO 630. Students whose undergraduate degrees are not in information systems may also be required to take additional undergraduate prerequisite courses before taking the graduate information systems courses, as determined by the program adviser. The HADM 612 course taken for the M.H.A. will substitute for INFO 640, normally required for the M.S. in Information Systems degree, and one of the additional information systems courses will also count toward the elective courses in the M.H.A. program. A three-credit-hour, 10-week internship is required and must have substantial global, entrepreneurial and/or experiential components related to both degrees. The six information systems courses to be taken in addition to INFO 610INFO 620 and INFO 630, must be approved by the program adviser and would normally be selected to satisfy one of the M.S. in Information Systems concentrations.

Curriculum requirements

CourseTitleHours
Courses
HADM 602Health System Organization, Financing and Performance3
HADM 606Health Care Managerial Accounting3
HADM 607Financial Management in Health Organizations3
HADM 608Seminar in Health Care Finance3
HADM 609Managerial Epidemiology2
HADM 610Health Analytics and Decision Support3
HADM 611Health Care Law and Bioethics3
HADM 612Information Systems for Health Care Management3
HADM 614Health Care Marketing3
HADM 615Health Care Politics and Policy3
HADM/ECON 624Health Economics3
HADM 646Health Care Organization and Leadership3
HADM 647Management of Health Care Organizations3
HADM 648Strategic Management in Health Care Organizations3
HADM 649Human Resources Management in Health Care3
HADM 681Clinical Concepts and Relationships2
HADM 682Executive Skills I1
HADM 683Executive Skills II1
HADM 693Internship in Health Administration3
INFO 610Analysis and Design of Database Systems3
INFO 620Data Communications3
INFO 630Systems Development3
INFO electives (chosen with permission of adviser)6
INFO focus area courses (see options below)12
Total Hours78

The minimum total of graduate credit hours required for this dual degree is 78.

Information systems focus areas

Students must declare a focus in two of the following areas and take the classes offered for each of those two areas for a total of 12 credit hours.

CourseTitleHours
Business engineering
INFO 611Data Re-engineering3
INFO 632Business Process Engineering3
Information assurance
INFO 622Internet Security Management3
INFO 644Principles of Computer and Information Systems Security3
Information technology management
INFO 641Strategic Information Systems Planning3
INFO 643Information Technology Project Management3
Knowledge engineering
INFO 614Data Mining3
INFO 616Data Warehousing3

Sample M.H.A./M.S. in Information Systems plan of study

Year one
Fall semesterHours
HADM 602Health System Organization, Financing and Performance3
HADM 606Health Care Managerial Accounting3
HADM 609Managerial Epidemiology2
HADM 646Health Care Organization and Leadership3
HADM 681Clinical Concepts and Relationships2
HADM 682Executive Skills I1
Prerequisite HADM or INFO courses if needed 
 Term Hours: 14
Spring semester
HADM 607Financial Management in Health Organizations3
HADM 610Health Analytics and Decision Support3
HADM 624
Health Economics
or Health Economics
3
HADM 647Management of Health Care Organizations3
Prerequisite HADM or INFO courses if needed 
 Term Hours: 12
Summer semester
Prerequisite INFO courses if needed 
 Term Hours: 0
Year two
Fall semester
HADM 608Seminar in Health Care Finance3
HADM 612Information Systems for Health Care Management3
HADM 615Health Care Politics and Policy3
HADM 683Executive Skills II1
INFO course (elective or focus area course from above)3
Prerequisite INFO courses, if needed 
 Term Hours: 13
Spring semester
HADM 611Health Care Law and Bioethics3
HADM 614Health Care Marketing3
HADM 648Strategic Management in Health Care Organizations3
HADM 649Human Resources Management in Health Care3
 Term Hours: 12
Summer semester
HADM 693Internship in Health Administration3
 Term Hours: 3
Year three
Fall semester
INFO 610Analysis and Design of Database Systems3
INFO 620Data Communications3
INFO 630Systems Development3
INFO focus area course (from above)3
 Term Hours: 12
Spring semester
INFO elective3
INFO focus area courses (from above)9
 Term Hours: 12
 Total Hours: 78

Contact
Rachel Haga, College of Health Professions (M.H.A.)
healthadmin@vcu.edu
(804) 828-9466

Austen Gouldman, School of Business (M.S. in Information Systems)
gouldmana@vcu.edu
(804) 828-4622

Program website: ha.chp.vcu.edu/mha-program/dual-degree-programs