Why study Health Information Technology?
Positions in health information technology require expertise in the complexities of both health care administration and information technology, and currently these professionals are in short supply and high demand. In the Master of Health Information Technology (MHIT) program, you'll gain cutting-edge skills that will qualify you for positions in this critical, fast-growing field. Our graduate program will teach the skills you need to help health care organizations streamline processes and improve the security of their data. Growth in these positions is expected to outpace the broad economy over the next several years.
Our graduates identify and analyze user needs and take them into account in the planning, selection, creation, evaluation and administration of health information technology.
This professional degree program prepares students with expertise in management of both health care systems and information technology. It blends a technical IT foundation with course work covering current clinical trends, government regulations and healthcare-specific management practices. The program is designed to create a workforce of highly skilled IT experts and managers in health care, and to provide leadership as our society moves toward more technologically advanced and efficient health care systems.
In this program, you will gain:
- specialized training in managing large-scale health information systems and data for clinical decision making
- expertise in key areas such as how health care is financed, administered and monitored
- hands-on experience using advanced technologies and innovative tools to improve health care
- real-life perspectives on the complexities of transforming the U.S. health care system and the role of IT
- analysis and project management skills that prepare you to use IT to help transform health care systems
The MHIT program is a unique partnership between the Department of Integrated Information Technology in the College of Engineering and Computing and the Department of Health Services Policy and Management in the Arnold School of Public Health.
We also partner with the College of Pharmacy to offer the PharmD/MHIT dual degree program, preparing you to be a leader in medical informatics at all levels of health care.
Program of Study
The average time to earn the MHIT degree is 18 months for full-time students and 24 months for part-time students. The core curriculum consists of six core courses (18 credit hours) in information technology and in health services policy and management. Students also complete four elective courses (12 credit hours). The final requirement is a health information technology practicum course (6 credit hours).
Core subjects include:
- Management of Health Information Systems
- Systems Analysis and Design for Health Applications
- Project Management for Health Information
- Health Database Systems
- Approaches and Concepts for Health Administration
- Health Services Administration II
Practicum in Health Information Technology
The practicum is a supervised internship in health IT. Students already working full-time may be able to complete, at their workplace, a supervised health IT project. The practicum provides experiential learning opportunities beyond the classroom. The practicum consists of a minimum of 250 hours of approved health IT experience, and culminates with a required project paper which enables a comprehensive assessment of program learning outcomes. In a recent evaluation by their employers, our interns received an average rating of 95 out of 100.
All applications must be submitted to the Graduate School of the University of South Carolina. Admissions are competitive. An admissions scorecard will be used to evaluate applicants, weighing the applicant's undergraduate grade point average (GPA), Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores or General Management Admissions Test (GMAT) scores, reference letters, previous professional experience, and a career goal statement. A successful applicant typically has:
- A Bachelor's degree with an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4-point scale. An official transcript of undergraduate work is required. Pending completion of the degree, an official transcript of all coursework taken to date may be reviewed.
- A minimum score of 300 on the new GRE exam: 150 verbal/150 quantitative (450 verbal/550 quantitative on the old exam), or a GMAT score of 500 or higher. Official GRE or GMAT scores must be submitted through the Graduate School.
GRE or GMAT waivers may be available for applicants with one or more of:
- Completion of a prior advanced degree (masters or higher) from a nationally accredited institution
- A combination of an undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.25/4.00 or higher for the final 60 credit hours of the degree and three years or more of significant industry experience
- Currently admitted in another UofSC graduate program and have completed at least 9 credits of graduate study with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.
A personal interview with the program director may also be required. Applicants interested in pursuing a waiver should contact the program director for guidance. Waivers are never guaranteed and must be approved by the MHIT admissions committee, whose decisions are final.