Curriculum

The Simmons Master of Health Administration to Health Care MBA is a flexible program designed to enhance and build upon the work completed in the Simmons MHA program with the financial, technical, and strategic skills of an MBA.

Simmons MHA alumnae/i may transfer up to 30 approved MHA credits into the Health Care MBA program and must complete 24 additional credits in the Health Care MBA curriculum to complete the Health Care MBA degree. Courses may only be transferred into the program if the student earned a B or better in the course and his or her MHA degree was awarded within the last ten years. 

Required Core General MBA Classes

MBAH 403 Foundations of Business
This course introduces new HCMBA students to the concepts and principles underlying the many disciplines that they will study. Scheduled during the first week of the Fall or Spring term, Foundations of Business establishes the demands and performance expectations of the HCMBA program. Throughout the week, students gain knowledge of important mechanics and, using case studies, learn how to integrate cross-disciplinary concepts. Foundations of Business also encourages students to appreciate each other as co-members of a challenging and invigorating program. The course is team-taught. 0 credits

MBAH455 Leading Individuals and Groups
Leading Individuals and Groups focuses on the function, role, and responsibility of the manager in an organizational context. We place emphasis on understanding the organizational culture and on developing skills needed for the manager in middle- and senior-level management positions and on the transition necessary in moving from supervisory positions to middle management and from middle management to senior management. In addition, we focus on the management of relationships with subordinates, peers, and supervisors, on managing change and conflict, and on leading a group and valuing and managing a diverse workforce. The course also explores the more intangible management issues that may confront women and men in higher-level management positions and examines the increasingly strategic need to identify and negotiate both formal and informal sources of support for implementing decisions within the organization. 3 credits

MBAH 427 Strategic Thinking and Analytical Decision Making
Strategic Thinking and Analytical Decision Making equips students with the tools, techniques, and frameworks to think creatively, critically, analytically, and strategically to make managerial decisions that lead their firms toward value creation under conditions of competition and complexity. To be a strategic manager is to move with a goal or goals in mind, to integrate information across functional areas and organizations, to use and collect data, and to be cognizant and engaged with the past and the future, the big picture and the operational.

Creative, critical, analytical, and strategic decision makers know how to recognize and categorize decision problems, how to represent the essential structure of the decision situation, how to discover multiple solutions creatively, and how to analyze solutions using tools based on decision theory. Decision makers need to be able to think effectively about the inputs into a decision analysis, about whether to trust the analysis, and about how to use the outputs to guide a firm's strategic actions. Managing uncertainty, turbulence, complexity, intense competition, and opportunities for innovation are all hallmarks of analytical decision making. 3 credits

MBAH421 Managerial Accounting
Managerial Accounting is concerned with management control systems and the information they generate, as well as their role in management analysis and decision making. The course introduces costing techniques, responsibility accounting, the budget process, and information analysis. Attention is given to the interrelationship between internal measurement system and overall management planning, decision making, and control. 3 credits

MBAH470 Negotiation and Problem Solving
Negotiation and problem solving are essential skills for today's leaders, allowing them to work constructively with internal or external stakeholders, in teams, in complex organizations, and in partnerships or alliances. Negotiation can be the key to turning conflict into productive collaboration and effective decision-making, while preserving and enriching relationships.

Accordingly, this course has two objectives. The first objective is to understand basic negotiation theory. The early part of the course will focus on the two dominant models of negotiation and on analytical frameworks for preparing for, conducting, and evaluating negotiations. The second objective is to learn and practice the critical skills associated with effective negotiation and collaborative problem solving in a range of situations.

The impact upon negotiation of gender, power, and culture will be addressed, as will the mode of communication — e.g., face-to-face or virtual. The course will employ a range of experiential learning exercises and simulations to achieve its objectives. The overriding goal is for students to translate theories and skills into a form that is applicable to their personal and professional lives. 3 credits


Required Core MBA Classes With Health Care Focus

MBAH448 Health Care Information Technology
Health Care Information Technology introduces students to the concepts and management activities related to information systems in health care organizations. The understanding of technology cannot only reside within an Information Systems division. It is critical that managers of every function understand key components of IT in order to be successful in today's health care delivery system. Included in the course are sessions examining kinds of information systems, the way decisions are made about new system technologies and vendors, and how new systems are implemented. This course will be a blend of general IT concepts and practical problems facing health care organizations related to the acquisition, use, and management of information technology to assure the safe delivery of quality care in an affordable manner. 3 credits

MBAH424 Health Care Marketing
Health Care Marketing provides knowledge and skills pertaining to the functions of strategic planning and marketing in the health care setting. It focuses on the analysis of marketing opportunities and problems in both for-profit and not-for-profit health care organizations, and on the strategic and tactical decisions faced by managers. The course has three main components: (1) how environmental forces can influence the success or failure of a marketing plan and how to use market research to understand these environmental forces, (2) how marketing strategies are employed by a variety of organizations, and (3) how to successfully implement marketing strategies through product planning, pricing, promotion, and distribution decisions. 3 credits

MBAH436 Health Care Financial Strategy
Health Care Financial Strategy is devoted to financial strategy and related tools for formulating and implementing strategy. Students will bring together learning from health care marketing, health care strategic management, and health care finance. The course covers mergers/divestitures and health care governance. Participants develop financial models of a start-up health care business and develop a business plan, a key business tool for implementing new programs or strategic change in existing organizations. 3 credits


Required Health Care Subject Courses

MBAH480 The Health System
The Health System provides a strategic overview of the health system to help students better understand the context in which health care organizations operate. We will examine both the historical roots of the U.S. health care system and possible trends likely to affect those who use it, work in it, and pay for it. We will give special attention to the recent debate and legislation concerning health reform in the U.S.

Students will gain a basic understanding of the political process and of how government and private stakeholders operate within this complex system. We will understand unique aspects of the health care workforce and implications for health care managers. We will explore major issues of quality, access, payment, financing, disparities by race and gender, international comparisons on quality and cost, and others. We will compare the costs and outcomes for U.S. health care to other benchmark countries. 3 credits