College of Public Health Catalog 2015/2016

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(also see the USF Graduate School Catalog at

The Master of Health Administration (M.H.A.) prepares students for private and public sector leadership positions. In addition to the five core areas of public health, the curriculum helps students develop skills and knowledge in basic business disciplines with application to health services; a clinical and community perspective and professional skills. Students develop an understanding of organizational models and management principles applied to health settings; health care financial management and economics; quality and performance improvement; health policy and policy analysis; strategic planning and marketing; and health law and ethics.

M.H.A. Program Mission

The Master of Health Administration (MHA) Program at the University of South Florida develops students’ knowledge and skills in contemporary management methods and policy decision making, integrating a population health management approach.  Students are prepared for management and leadership positions in health services and related organizations throughout the nation.  The MHA Program serves early to mid-career professionals, including those seeking transition into and advancement within the health care industry, as well as well qualified recent graduates of regionally accredited undergraduate programs, or their international equivalent. 

MHA Vision and Values

The M.H.A. requires a minimum of 58 semester credit hours plus field experience.

You may View M.H.A. Program Statistics here.

Check Sheets

The courses in your program of study can be found on these check sheets.  Note: You may choose a check sheet that corresponds to the academic year of your admission or any year thereafter.  Please see the guidelines below.

 MHA Course Planning Chart for Fall Start

 MHA Course Planning Chart for Spring Start


 USF Guidelines on Choosing a Check Sheet

The USF Tampa Graduate Catalog, including college and program requirements, and program and course descriptions, is available on the web at Each Catalog is published and in effect for the academic term(s) noted on the title page.

Student’s Program Degree Requirements

In order to graduate, students must meet all requirements specified in the USF Catalog of their choice, except as noted below. As the University is dynamic, changes and updates to the catalog are anticipated. In contract to program requirements, which are tied to a specific catalog, all students must comply with University policies and procedures that come into effect each catalog year.

  • Students cannot choose a USF Catalog published prior to admission (or readmission) or during an academic year in which they did not complete at least two terms. If a student is dropped from the system and must be reinstated, the student’s choice of Catalog is limited to the USF Catalog in effect at the time of readmission or any one Catalog published during their continuous re-enrollment.
  • If state law or certification requirements change, the student must comply with the most current standard or criteria.
  • If the College or Department makes fundamental changes to the program that necessitates changes in the degree requirements of enrolled students, the needs of those students will be explicitly addressed in the proposal for change and scrutinized by the Office of Graduate Studies.
  • USF policies and procedures not related to degree requirements such as academic grievance procedures, student conduct code and other procedural processes and definitions may be updated each year and the student will be held to the most current catalog and procedures available.
  • USF does not commit itself to offer all the courses, programs, and majors listed in this Catalog. If the student cannot meet all of the graduation requirements specified in the Catalog of choice as a result of decisions and changes made by the University, appropriate substitutions will be determined by the program to ensure that the student is not penalized.


Track the Fulfillment of Your Competencies:Your COPH Competencies Database Record
 MHA Competencies

The core competencies for the Master of Health Administration program are stated below. The competency model includes four domains:

  1. Management Science and Technology
  2. Strategy and Leadership
  3. Public Policies and Community Orientation
  4. Economics and Financial Management
  5. Professionalism and Communication Skills

See the M.H.A. Competencies Document for detailed listing of the M.H.A. competencies.

Degree Details

 Required Application Documentation

Applicants to the M.H.A. degree are required to complete both a SOPHAS application. Required Documentation (all items are required regardless of GPA or GRE scores):

  • Complete SOPHAS application (requires the following)
    • Transcripts
    • GRE taken within five years preceding application or equivalent scores (see section 6.2 Admissions Tests Information for more information)
    • Minimum of two letters of recommendation..
    • Statement of purpose and objectives
    • Resume or curriculum vitae
    • Applicants whose native language is not English or who have not earned a degree in the United States must also submit TOEFL scores earned within two (2) years of the desired term of entry. A minimum total score of 79 on the internet-based test, 213 on the computer-based test, or 550 on the paper-based test are required. Applications submitted with TOEFL scores that do not meet the minimum requirements will be denied with no exceptions. (see section 6.2 Admissions Tests Information for more information)
  • USF Graduate School application fee (applicants will receive a request for the $30 fee once the SOPHAS application enters our USF system).
 Degree Admission Criteria

The admission committee reviews and considers all required application documentation (listed above). To be admitted to an M.H.A. degree, applicants must meet the following criteria.

USF Graduate School Admission Criteria

  1. An applicant must have one of the following (a, b, or c):
    1. A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and satisfying at least one of the following criteria:
      1. “B” average or better in all work attempted while registered as an undergraduate student working for a degree, or
      2. “B” average or better  in all work attempted while registered as an upper division undergraduate student working for a baccalaureate degree.
    2. A bachelor’s degree with a “B” average or better from a regionally accredited institution and a previous graduate degree with a “B” average or better from a regionally accredited institution.
    3. The equivalent bachelors and/or graduate degrees from a foreign institution.
  2. Submission of standardized test scores if required by the graduate program.  For Graduate Programs that require the GRE, the Personal Potential Index (PPI) may be required.  Refer to individual program admission requirements for information
  3. Applicants from countries where English is not the official language must also demonstrate proficiency in English* in one of the following ways:
    1. By providing scores of 79 or higher on the internet based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT)
    2. By providing a score of 6.5 or higher on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
    3. By providing a score of 53 or higher on the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE-A)
    4. By earning a score of 153 (or equivalent) on the GRE Verbal exam.
    5. By earning a baccalaureate or higher degree at a regionally accredited institution in the U.S.
    6. By earning a baccalaureate or equivalent degree at a foreign institution where English is the language of instruction (must be documented on the transcript  or on an official Certificate of Medium of Instruction from the Institution).
  4. Details of USF Graduate School admission information may be found at

Additional College of Public Health Master of Health Administration Criteria

  • M.H.A. applicants must meet the minimum GRE scores for their program (defined in the GRE Scores Table in section 6.2 Admissions Tests Information of this catalog) AND the minimum GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale in upper division courses (GRE scores must be submitted regardless of GPA and GRE scores).
  • In lieu of the GRE, only applicants to the Department of Health Policy and Management may submit a GMAT score for the M.H.A, M.P.H..
  • Undergraduate majors are diverse and include: Life sciences, social sciences, business, or health professions.
  • Prerequisite undergraduate courses: Microeconomics or equivalent (prerequisite must be completed prior to enrolling in PHC 6430 Health Economics I) and Accounting (prerequisite must be completed prior to enrolling in PHC 6160 Health Care Financial Management). 
  • Basic computer competency is expected.
  • Students in all online public health courses are expected to meet certain technology requirements in order to successfully participate in their courses. It is the student's responsibility to ensure all requirements are met prior to the start of the semester. For more information, visit:
  • Applicants admitted to the M.H.A. or an M.P.H. with a concentration in the Department of Health Policy and Management who have a score on the GRE Verbal of Analytical Writing test which is below the 40th percentile may be required to take REA 2105—Critical Reading and Writing—or an equivalent English composition course, during the first semester of enrollment, and pass with a grade of “B” or better in the class. 
  • Meeting of these criteria shall not be the only basis for admission.

To start the application process, see section 6.1 Application Procedures.

 Program Curriculum

Program Coursework (Updated with approved changes effective Fall 2014)

College Core Courses



PHC 6000




PHC 6050




PHC 6102

Principles of Health Policy and Management



PHC 6357

Environmental & Occupational Health



PHC 6410

Social & Behavioral Sciences Applied to Health



Total Core Credit Hours



Management and Policy



PHC 6147

Managing Quality in Health Care



PHC 6148

Strategic Planning and Health Care Marketing



PHC 6151

Health Policy and Politics



PHC 6180

Health Services Management



PHC 6181

Organizational Behavior in Health Services



PHC 6420

Health Care Law, Regulation and Ethics



PHC 6435

Comparative Health Insurance Systems


PHC6430 or CI

Section Credit Hours Subtotal



Finance, Economics and Decision Making Skills



PHC 6160

Health Care Financial Management


 PHC6102, UG-Accounting

QMB 6305

Managerial Decision Analysis



PHC 6161

Health Finance Applications



PHC 6191

Quantitative Analysis in Health Services


PHC6050, QMB6305

PHC 6196

Information Systems in Hlth Care Management


PHC6102, PHC6050

PHC 6430

Health Economics


UG Microeconomics

Section Credit Hours Subtotal



Culminating Experiences



PHC 6945

Supervised Field Experience


See note #1 below

PHC 6977

Special Project



PHC 6166

Advanced Seminar in Health Care Management


PHC6148, 6160, 6180, 6191 or ACG6025; min of 36cr completed

Section Credit Hours Subtotal




  1. During 2nd semester meet with advisor and begin planning field experience. See affairs/fe/index.htm. Students with substantial work experience can negotiate a reduced number of hours with their advisor (e.g.,1 credit hour) if the student has meaningful experience (involving decision‐making) in a health care or related Organization

  2.  Any grade below a C (C- to F) is required to be retaken. The grade will be included in the student’s GPA
  3. The College reserves all rights to repeal and/or modify
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