The Department of Health Informatics and Administration in the College of Health Sciences offers the Master of Science in Health Care Informatics degree. Health care informatics focuses on the use of information technologies, data analytics and automation to improve health care. Professional expertise in health care informatics is needed by hospitals and other health care providers, medical centers and facilities, medical software companies, pharmaceutical companies, public health organizations, health insurance companies and medical research institutions. The master's program is designed to meet the demand for highly trained health care informatics professionals. The curriculum covers several areas including: systems analysis and design, database design and management, clinical decision support and computer programming. Students also get exposed to cutting-edge research in areas such as big data, predictive analytics, natural language processing, medical knowledge representation and information retrieval, which are rapidly becoming indispensable for improving health care.

The program is designed for both full-time and part-time students. Courses are offered both face-to-face and online. Mid-career professionals can use the fully online option for completing the degree.

Admission Requirements 

Application Deadlines

Application deadlines vary by program, please review the application deadline chart for specific programs. Other important dates and deadlines can be found by using the One Stop calendars.


An applicant must meet Graduate School requirements and submit GRE scores taken within the past five years (GRE requirement will be waived for applicants who already hold another master’s degree or PhD, or the equivalent). No specific undergraduate major is necessary for admission. A typical applicant will have a background in a health-related field or in an information/computer-related field, but applicants from other academic or professional backgrounds are welcome to apply and will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Credits and Courses

The Master of Science in Health Care Informatics degree will be awarded upon completion of appropriate 36 credits (non-thesis option) or 39 credits (thesis option) of prescribed graduate study; 27 credits of core courses and 6 credits of electives are required, plus either 3 credit HCA 891 or 6 credits HCA 890.

HCA 700Introduction to Health Care Informatics3
HCA 741Essential Programming for Health Informatics3
HCA 723Health Care Systems Applications - Administrative and Clinical3
HCA 541Healthcare Information Systems Analysis and Design3
HCA 722Legal, Ethical and Social Issues in Health Care Informatics3
HCA 740Introduction to Biomedical Database Applications3
HCA 742Computational Intelligence in Health Informatics3
HCA 745Health Big Data Processing Platforms3
PH 801Seminar in Public Health Research3
Select two of the following: 16
Biomedical and Healthcare Terminology and Ontology
Health Information Technology Procurement
Predictive Analytics in Healthcare
Text Retrieval and Its Applications in Biomedicine
Biomedical Natural Language Processing
Biomedical Information Extraction
Guided Teaching Experience in Health Sciences
Seminar in Health Outcomes Assessment
Project or Thesis
HCA 890Health Care Informatics Research and Thesis (taken for 6 credits)3-6
or HCA 891 Health Care Informatics Professional Project
Total Credits36-39

Electives other than those listed below are to be approved by the student’s major professor.

Thesis/Project Options

Option A: Project Option

The Project option requires students to apply health informatics research and theory to a professional situation. The project must be undertaken in compliance with program requirements under the supervision of a HIA major professor. Students who choose this option count 3 credits of HCA 891 toward the required 36-graduate-credit minimum.

Option B: Thesis Option

The thesis option requires students to plan, design, execute and report results of original applied or basic research. Students who choose the thesis option are responsible for identifying a HIA major professor and a thesis committee. The thesis committee should consist of the major professor and at least two other graduate faculty. The student must pass a comprehensive oral examination in defense of the completed thesis. Students who choose this option count 6 credits of HCA 890 toward the required 39-graduate-credit minimum.

Additional Requirements

Major Professor as Advisor

A student must have a major professor to advise and supervise the student’s studies as specified in Graduate School regulations. Initially the director of the HCI Program advises and supervises newly admitted students. Students are then assigned faculty advisors according to faculty advising loads.

Program Completion Time Limit

The student must complete all degree requirements within five years of initial enrollment.