Health Care Administration Certificate

About the Health Care Administration Certificate

The certificate in health administration is designed for health care workers who hold non-administrative degrees and for administrative degree holders who have no health care experience and may wish to seek employment in health care.

In the case of current health care workers who have health care related degrees, exposure to certificate courses should increase their skill set and position them for advancement into or within management.

For students with administrative related undergraduate degrees (e.g., Business or Public Administration) the certificate courses will expose the student to the uniqueness of the health care field.

 The certificate program is available part-time or full-time and can be completed online, face-to-face, or hybrid.
 Completion of the Health Care Administration Certificate program does not make a student eligible to sit for the Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) exam.

Program Goals

The certificate program will provide both sets of students with the knowledge and skills needed for employment and success in health care administration.  Specifically, candidates who successfully complete the certificate should be able to:

  • Understand the organizational structure of health care organizations
  • Know how reimbursement systems function
  • Explain the basics of third party payment
  • Appreciate how legal and regulatory constraints affect the operation, management, and financing of health care organizations
  • Understand the role played by information technology in managing health care

Course Sequence

The Health Care Administration Certificate is available to all students holding a baccalaureate degree. While the certificate program can be started at any time, beginning in the summer or fall is advised due to program sequencing. Students who have not previously passed a graduate health care systems course should first complete COHE 6000 unless beginning in the summer. The certificate requires successful completion of 15 s.h. from the following courses:

Foundations (3 semester credit hours from the following)

  • COHE 6000*: Health Care Systems and Problems (3 - Summer 1, Fall, Spring)
  • HIMA 6060: Health Informatics (3 - Fall and Spring)

* Students who have already taken the equivalent of COHE 6000, are advised to take HIMA 6060.

Core Courses (12 semester credit hours)

  • COHE 6300: Health Law (3 - Summer 1)
  • COHE 6310+: Health Care Accounting and Financial Administration (3 - Fall)
  • COHE 6600: Management of Health Care Operations (3 - Spring)
  • COHE 6620: Health Care Strategic Planning and Management (3 - Spring)

+ MBA students must take COHE 6610: Financial Management of Health Care Organizations (3, Fall)

Certificate students may transfer credits to other graduate programs, but acceptance into the certificate program does not guarantee acceptance into other programs.

Students need to apply for certificate graduation during their last semester of courses. Students will not be allowed to repeat a failed course.

Admission Information

To enroll in classes, you must apply for admission to the ECU Graduate School, have official transcripts sent, and pay an application fee. There are no standardized tests required; however, you must have a minimum 2.75 GPA in either undergraduate or graduate studies.

Contact Information

For more information, please contact Terri Stansbury (student services specialist) or Dr. Ray Hylock (program director) at


Q. How long will the program take to complete?
A. It depends on when you begin. The program can be completed in three semesters if you begin in the summer or fall. It takes four semesters if you start in the spring, and is therefore not recommended.

Q. Is there a recommended course sequencing?
A. Yes. The prescribed sequencing ensures all prerequisites are met and provides the fastest course of completion given the semester the student begins.

  • Summer start: Summer I: COHE 6300; Fall: COHE 6000/HIMA 6060 and COHE 6310; Spring: COHE 6600 and COHE 6620.
  • Fall start: Fall: COHE 6000/HIMA 6060 and COHE 6310; Spring: COHE 6600 and COHE 6620; Summer I: COHE 6300.
  • Spring start: Spring COHE 6000/HIMA 6060; Summer I: COHE 6300; Fall: COHE 6310; Spring: COHE 6600 and COHE 6620.

Q. Can I take a semester off?
A. Yes. You can defer one time for one semester without having to reapply to the program. However, you must inform the program director  and Graduate School before the semester officially begins.

Q. How do I reapply?
A. If you have already applied to the program (including paying the application fee), you will simply select the reapplication option in a new application. The reapplication process is much shorter than the previous (as most of the information is already filled in), can be processed much quicker (as supporting materials are already here), and does not require a reapplication fee.