The master of health administration (MHA), health systems management program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME). The United States Department of Education and Council on Higher Education Accreditation have granted formal recognition to CAHME as the only organization to accredit master's level health care management programs in the United States and Canada. This master's program prepares future executives to assume leadership positions in health care organizations. We prepare health care professionals with strategic, business, analytic, and decision-making skills needed to successfully navigate the evolving health care industry.

This program prepares students to work as leaders and executive-level managers in evolving health systems, or as consultants and managers of health-related organizations. The curriculum was developed in response to the demand for advanced health management preparation for a variety of health care and allied health professionals to be employed in both the public and private sectors of health care.


Applications are accepted for Fall, Spring and Summer admissions.


Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from an institution of higher education accredited by a Mason-recognized U.S. institutional accrediting agency or international equivalent and have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA to be considered. Admission to the program is competitive, and a variety of criteria are evaluated in the admission decision. For application deadlines and detailed application requirements, refer to the College of Public Health Admissions website. Applicants are evaluated based on past academic performance (including prior academic degrees and courses taken), letters of recommendation, personal professional goal statement and professional experience. Work experience in the healthcare industry is preferred, but not required for admission. Applicants who are deemed to meet the above criteria are required to have a brief personal interview with faculty. Applicants who are unable to attend a personal interview will be interviewed through video conferencing technology.


For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

Transfer of Credit

Students may transfer a maximum of 12 credits from graduate courses taken at other institutions or taken at Mason in non-degree status. Transfer credit is subject to university and college policies and must be approved by the program director and the dean. Students who enroll initially through non-degree studies should seek course advising through the department and should submit their application to the MHA program in their first semester of study.

Program Format

The MHA in Health Systems Management is offered in both on-campus and online delivery formats. The curriculum is the same whether you are studying online or on campus, but students must apply to and matriculate through only one pathway.

Most courses in the on-campus program are taught in the evening at Mason’s Fairfax Campus. Additionally, some courses are offered on Saturdays, a few are offered at the Arlington Campus, and a small percentage can be taken online. Students can complete their degree at their own pace provided that they do so within six years of starting the program.

The online premium priced program is offered in a flexible, online format, which mirrors the CAHME-accredited on-campus program. Courses are taken one at a time in an accelerated 8 week format.

English Language Test Score Thresholds

International students whose scores on the English Language Tests are below the thresholds required by the program must take EAP 508 Graduate Communication in the Disciplines III (4 credits)  in their first semester of study and earn a grade of B (3.0) or higher. This will add 4 credits to the 45 credit hour program.

Test Overall Listening Reading Writing Speaking
TOEFL IBT 100 24 26 24 23
TOEFL PBT 610 59 60 62
TOEFL CBT 253 24 25 26 N/A
PTE 65+ Subsections: 68+
IELTS 7 7 6.5 7 6.5

Banner Code: PH-MHA-HSMG

Degree Requirements

Total credits: 45

Required Core Courses

GCH 500Foundations of Public Health3
HAP 602Statistics in Health Services Management3
HAP 621Leadership and Organizational Behavior3
HAP 635Role of Government in Health Care and Public Health3
HAP 698Quality Measurement and Evaluation3
HAP 715Health Economics3
HAP 740Management of Health Information Systems3
HAP 750Legal Issues in Health Administration3
HAP 789Pre-Capstone Professional Development Seminar0
HAP 790Capstone Practicum in Health Systems Management3
Total Credits27


Students must select one concentration from the following:

Concentration in Healthcare Quality (HLTQ)

The Healthcare Quality Concentration addresses the growth of the healthcare industry in the 21st century to understand and evaluate the quality of care being delivered. Value-based Care models are the future of healthcare delivery and students enrolled in this concentration will develop skills in quality methodologies, techniques, and patient safety law.

HAP 697The Healthcare Quality Environment3
HAP 699Liability in Health Care Quality and Patient Safety 3
HAP 704Contemporary Issues in Health Systems Management3
HAP 705Strategic Management and Marketing in Health Care3
HAP 764Health Policy and Government Payment Systems for Health Care Services3
or HAP 652 Essentials of Health Insurance and Managed Care
General Elective 13
Total Credits18

General electives should be chosen in consultation with their academic advisor.

Executive Concentration (EXEC)

The Executive Concentration is dedicated to preparing future executives for leadership positions in health care organizations and gain strategic business, analytic, and decision-making skills.  This contemporary program provides the industry and operational knowledge needed to navigate evolving Value Based Care models.

HAP 652Essentials of Health Insurance and Managed Care3
or HAP 764 Health Policy and Government Payment Systems for Health Care Services
HAP 702Managerial Accounting in Health Care3
HAP 703Financial Management in Health Systems3
HAP 704Contemporary Issues in Health Systems Management3
HAP 705Strategic Management and Marketing in Health Care3
HAP 707Human Resource Management in Healthcare3
Total Credits18

Health Administration, BS/Health Systems Management, Accelerated MHA


Highly-qualified undergraduates may be admitted to the bachelor's/accelerated master's program and obtain a BS in Health Administration (Health System’s Management Concentration and Assisted Living/Seniors Housing Concentration) and an MHA in Health Systems Management in an accelerated time-frame after satisfactory completion of a minimum of 155 credits.

See AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree for policies related to this program.

Students in an accelerated degree program must fulfill all university requirements for the master's degree. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

BAM Pathway Admission Requirements

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in Graduate Admissions Policies and Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree policies. For information specific to this accelerated master's program, see department website.

Students must submit two professional letters of recommendation and a personal statement, have a 3.25 GPA, and a 3.50 GPA in all major coursework.

Students who are accepted into the BAM Pathway will be allowed to register for graduate level courses after successful completion of a minimum of 15 HAP undergraduate credits and course-specific pre-requisites.

Accelerated Master’s Admission Requirements

Students already admitted in the BAM Pathway will be admitted to the MA/MS program, if they have met the following criteria, as verified on the Bachelor’s/Accelerated Master’s Transition form:

  • 3.25 overall GPA
  • 3.50 GPA in major coursework
  • Successfully meeting Mason’s requirements for undergraduate degree conferral (graduation) and completing the application for graduation.

Accelerated Pathway Requirements

To maintain the integrity and quality of both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs, undergraduate students interested in taking graduate courses may choose from the following:

Advanced Standing Courses: (substitutes for these major-specific BS degree required courses, or as a required College of Public Health elective)

HAP 702Managerial Accounting in Health Care 13
HAP 703Financial Management in Health Systems 23
HAP 707Human Resource Management in Healthcare 33
HAP 715Health Economics 43

Can count as College of Public Health elective in BS Health Administration degree.


Substitutes for HAP 395 Healthcare Finance.


Substitutes for HAP 392 Human Resources Management in Healthcare.


Substitutes for HAP 425 Health Economics and Policy.

Please consult the undergraduate program coordinator and graduate program director regarding further questions about course substitutions.

Reserve Credit Courses: (Graduate courses that undergraduate students can take, up to 6 credits, that will only count for the graduate degree requirements).

For more detailed information on coursework and timeline requirements, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees policies.