The MHDS curriculum is designed to provide students with knowledge in healthcare delivery science and fundamental skills to contribute to the development of high-quality, patient-centered, safe and accessible healthcare. Students will be trained with the competencies required to participate in healthcare quality improvement and will be exposed to a variety of disciplines and tools.

Course Sequence

Semester 1

Semester 2 

Semester 3 

Semester 4 

Semester 5 

Total: 30 credit hours

Course Descriptions

Strategic Communication (3 credits)

Communication skills have never been more important than in the 21st century where professionals must balance verbal and written interactions. Strategic communication must align the message, the medium and the audience to help organizations achieve their goals. This course will explore those concepts and help students improve their communication skills, including topics such as professional writing, developing effective PowerPoint presentations, importance of active listening and evolving use of social media.

Management of Organizational Change (3 credits)

This course is a study of organizational management theory and organizational models in a variety of settings as related to culture, mission, performance and change management with an emphasis on the application of management theory and research. This course provides an opportunity to explore conceptual frameworks addressing organizational development, leadership, decision making and the stages of change management. 

Healthcare Delivery Systems (3 credits)

This course focuses on the identification and analysis of factors and interrelationships which influence the operation of health services organizations with specific attention to local health departments, hospitals, multi-institutional systems, integrated health systems and strategic alliances. These organizations will be viewed and discussed comparatively with other types of health service agencies.

Effective Information Technology for Healthcare Organizations (3 credits)

This course provides the key concepts related to information technology within healthcare organizations. Students will learn how information technology is used as a tool to improve performance within healthcare organizations for positive health outcomes. Topic areas include the electronic health record, HIPAA and security requirements, ethics and legal rules for retrieving and managing clinical data, computerized provider order entry and the use of administrative and registry data for standard reports, scorecards and dashboards.

Population Health and Preventive Care (3 credits)

This course discusses the determinants of health, health behavior change, measuring health status and influences on health status including health disparities and socioeconomic status. This includes discussion on how healthcare organizations utilize this information to improve health status among populations. Additionally, students will be able to identify and understand population-based approaches aimed at health improvement.

Leadership and Professionalism (3 credits)

This course exposes learners to effective leadership approaches and skill sets. Topics will include fundamentals of leadership, leadership and professionalism self-assessment, leadership philosophy, professionalism, essential leadership and professionalism skills, modeling best leadership practices and behaviors, ethics in leadership, institutional and program accreditation, handling conflict and emerging issues. Learners will apply this learning to their professional life through a series of practical exercises.

Essentials of Financial Management (3 credits)

This course covers financial management in healthcare organizations including, but not limited to, financial decision-making using accounting information, operation of business units, principles of economics and capital budgeting processes along with budgetary and financial controls. Financial performance will be analyzed along with revenue determination and profitability. General accounting foundations and terminology will be covered. Students will analyze “real-life” cases to apply cost allocation, marginal cost pricing, breakeven, budget variance, capital investment and financial analysis skills. Students will also identify and explore a healthcare finance-related topic and prepare a research paper.

Introduction to Healthcare Analytics (3 credits)

The course introduces basic concepts in healthcare analytics. Students will develop data analysis skills with an emphasis on statistical reasoning. The course is designed to teach students how to use data to make informed decisions. This process includes reviewing the data, exploring all the underlying assumptions, summarizing and analyzing the data and finally translating the results. Discussions and assignments will focus on honing data interpretation and the ability to strategically apply analysis results to improve health outcomes.

Leveraging Data for Evidence-Based Decision Making (3 credits)

The utilization of data in decision-making is essential in healthcare delivery. Data can be used to evaluate the quality of care delivery, program effectiveness, health economics and more. This course provides an introduction to the use of data and how to transform analysis results into evidence driven decisions. Students will also learn how to apply and integrate these concepts into health-related scenarios and gain fundamental skills in data-driven decision-making for healthcare leaders.

Leading Innovation (3 credits)

Increasingly complex environments require a commitment to develop innovative solutions to address changing systems and evolving needs. This course will examine concepts and case studies of innovation in a variety of organizations, along with the tools and strategies necessary to promote effective change through discovery and networking. Students will apply information learned throughout the program to develop an innovative proposal for their place of employment or for an organization they aspire to work for.

All courses for the Master of Healthcare Delivery Science program will be taught online.