Online Healthcare Masters Degrees and Medical Programs offer busy working professionals the opportunity to advance their education while maintaining current responsibilities. Healthcare is perhaps the largest industry and requires a vast assortment of trained, licensed, and or specialized talent to work in all of its many fields. Online Healthcare Masters Degrees may be available in healthcare administration, public health, patient-centered disciplines such as nursing, technology and informatics or rehabilitation and therapeutic oriented practices. The nature of distance-learning is that you have more flexibility to schedule your own study than if you attended class onsite, making it an appealing option for those who have ongoing duties but are still hoping to build on their undergraduate degree.
Online Healthcare Masters Programs: Essentials
When we think about graduate healthcare and medicine degrees, we might expect these only focus on preparing students to work as medical doctors. This is definitely not the case. There are many potential career paths in healthcare that require individuals with master’s degrees. Furthermore, the advances of educational technology have made online study more mainstream. Is an Online Healthcare Masters Program for you? Here are a few things to consider:
INTERACTION LEVEL: Evaluate each Online Healthcare Masters program uniquely to determine whether you are going to be satisfied with web-based learning or whether you really need or prefer the interactive component of the college campus (e.g. some medical specialties, communication science, human services). Distance-learning does not mean you are out of contact with your faculty and fellow classmates but it does mean the interactions are digital (web cams, web chats, email, online group discussion boards)
FORMAT: Find out whether the program is 100% online or partially online, in which case there may be some on site requirements. If you are looking into a clinical and scientific program (e.g. biomedical science, nursing, pharmacology) where there are bound to be laboratory rotations or research, you may need to accommodate these requirements somehow, if you pursue an online format.
COURSE MATERIAL: Each Healthcare Masters program is going to have its own curriculum, textbooks and resources. Determine whether your course material is delivered vial live-streaming lectures (synchronous) or pre-recorded or video taped sessions (Asynchronous). If you know what you are getting into, it might help you create a workable schedule.
PERSONALITY: Do you have the self-discipline and motivation for distance-learning where you are often the one who makes your study timetable? If you tend to get distracted or don’t have a clear sense of where you can set up a virtual classroom for yourself, an online masters degree may not be for you. However, many online students prefer their own learning space, save time on the commute, and feel like they can study anywhere they have a computer and Internet.
ACCREDITATION: Since so many of the medical degrees and healthcare masters degrees are geared towards professions that have rigorous licensing requirements, you want to make sure that your online program and grad school meet the accreditation standards of their field (whether business oriented or patient-centered).