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Full Time (Fall Start)

Part time study is also possible and plans of study can be developed with faculty advisors.

Year 1:


Negotiations in Healthcare

This course examines the process that leads to change in health care settings and situations. Students will develop skills that lead to effective negotiations in interpersonal and organizational settings. Included in the discussion are: concepts of organizational structure and power, negotiating in difficult situations, and the role of the health care professional in negotiation and change. The course also examines techniques leading to successful implementation of negotiated change in the practice setting.This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and Beyond.

Principles and Practice of Healthcare Quality Improvement

Healthcare delivery is complex and constantly changing. A primary mission of leading healthcare organizations is to advance the quality of patient care by striving to deliver care that is safe, effective, efficient, timely, cost-effective, and patient-centered (Institute of Medicine). The goal of this interprofessional course is to provide students with a broad overview of the principles and tools of quality improvement and patient safety in healthcare as well address the knowledge, skills and attitudes as defined by the Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN) guidelines. It will provide a foundation for students or practicing clinicians who are interested in quality improvement and patient safety research, administration, or clinical applications.Content will address the history of the quality improvement process in healthcare, quality databases and improvement process tools and programs. Through the use of case studies and exercises students will be become familiar with the use of several quality improvement programs and tools. For example, the Plan-Do-Study- Act (PDSA) cycle, Six Sigma and the Toyota Production System known as Lean Production processes will be addressed. Students can use this course to identify the tools and design the methods that they plan to employ in a quality improvement or patient safety project in their area of interest.

Also offered as HQS 612.

Leadership Development in Healthcare

This course will provide the conceptual and theoretical framework for examining the concept of leadership within the contexts of health systems, health professionals and health policy. It will focus on characteristics of personal and professional leadership, change theory, and the application of critical thinking to the analysis of work environments, systems and the politics of health.


Introduction to Research Methods and Design

The relationships among nursing theory, research and practice will be examined. An emphasis will be placed on research competencies for advanced practice nurses (APNs), including understanding nursing research methods and strategies in order to evaluate research results for applicability to practice and to design projects for evaluating outcomes of practice. An understanding of statistical techniques will be integrated into the course and build on the required undergraduate statistics course. Published nursing research studies will be evaluated for scientific merit and clinical feasibility, with a focus on evidence-based practice. Please note, the online version of this course has a synchronous component (live online class sessions). See department for meeting days/times. Prerequisite: Undergraduate Statistics Class, Must hold an RN license.

Systems Thinking in Patient Safety

This blended online/in-classroom graduate level course integrates principles of systems thinking with foundational concepts in patient safety. Utilizing complexity theories, students assess healthcare practices and identify factors that contribute to medical errors and impact patient safety. Using a clinical microsystem framework, learners assess a potential patient safety issue and create preventive systems. Lessons learned from the science of safety are utilized in developing strategies to enhance safe system redesign. Core competencies for all healthcare professionals are emphasized, content is applicable for all healthcare providers including, but not limited to, nurses, pharmacists, physicians, social workers and healthcare administrators, and may be taken as an elective by non-majors.

Also offered as: HQS 650.

The Business of Healthcare: Principles of Finance, Accounting and Economics

In this course, students will focus on the business of health care and the financial competencies needed to manage complex health care organizations. This course integrates the basic principles of accounting, finance, and health care economics with business planning. It is designed to facilitate the student’s knowledge and application of financial principles in the health care setting. Course content includes an overview of the health care landscape, basics of health insurers, introduction to budgeting, cost-benefit analysis, an overview of the financial planning cycle, operating budget development and labor variance analysis. The course culminates with an opportunity for students to apply their skill sets in performing an environmental scan and developing a business case.


Human Resources Management in Healthcare

Today’s healthcare industry continues to be highly turbulent in nature presenting many challenges for leaders in the workplace. Competency in workforce planning and recruitment, selection and retention of top talent for organizational innovation and growth are essential for nursing leaders. Utilizing the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) Competencies (2006) as a curricular guide, this course emphasizes human resources management skills essential for any nurse leader to address employee relations challenges and provide for an enriching work environment.

Healthcare Informatics

Healthcare systems and consumers today are becoming increasingly reliant on information technology. The objective of this course is to provide a foundation for knowledge about health information technology and to expose students, clinicians, and administrators to the breadth of tools and systems currently used in practice. We will explore topics such as mobile health applications/telehealth and their implications for clinical practice and impact on patient outcomes; electronic health records, data analytics, and visualization tools and how these can effectively be used to support decision making and patient care.

Advanced Roles in Administrative Nursing Practice

Offered at the end of the Nursing and Health Care Administration or Health Care Leadership programs, this course prepares the graduate for entry into a myriad of administrative or leadership roles. Students will explore role responsibilities for various levels of management positions; health care consultants; health policy advocates; global health leaders; staff development directors; and administrators in non-traditional settings i.e., journal editors, professional associations etc.

Year 2:


Business Elective #1

Students complete 3 CUs of business or leadership electives which may be taken in other schools or programs across the university with the guidance of program faculty advisors.

Business Elective #2

Students complete 3 CUs of business or leadership electives which may be taken in other schools or programs across the university with the guidance of program faculty advisors.

Current Issues In Health and Social Policy

Analysis of key contemporary issues in health and social policy that will provide students with a deeper understanding of the design and structure of the U.S. health care system, the policy initiatives that have shaped it, and the roles of the government, the private sector, and consumers and advocacy groups in setting the policy agenda. Seminars will examine the origins of each issue, the policies enacted and their effects, both intended and unintended, and will propose and debate the merits of alternative policy solutions. The role of health services and policy research in informing the policy debate and directions will be highlighted. Please note, the online version of this course has a synchronous component (live online class sessions). The day/time will be listed in the course register. This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and Beyond.

Fall, Spring, and Summer Terms

Mutually Exclusive: NURS 3340

1 Course Unit


Business Elective #3

Students complete 3 CUs of business or leadership electives which may be taken in other schools or programs across the university with the guidance of program faculty advisors.


This course focuses on Healthcare strategic planning and the role of the Nursing Executive/Leader in that process. The course will involve the development of a business plan for a selected internal organizational project. The content will include use of executive Dashboards, sources of internal and external data.


This administrative practicum will be individually tailored to meet each student’s career goals. Students will be placed with an expert role model who in most instances will be a practicing nurse executive. The setting may vary according to the student’s interests and objectives. Examples include acute care, home care, long term care, occupational health, community based clinics, consulting groups and political/legislative experiences.

Recommended Electives:

Many other electives are available and can be planned in collaboration with your program advisor.

Mastering Organizational Politics and Power

The purpose of this course is to explore, enhance, and expand the participants’ competence in organizational politics.  Students will observe political dynamics as they occur in their own organizations and will interview senior managers in other organizations to learn how political realities vary from one organization to another.  Theoretical ideas about a dimension of organizational politics of particular interest to each individual participant will be analyzed in a term paper.  In addition, each participant will keep a personal diary of political dynamics in his or her own workplace.  The course will also explore ways to master the political skills of networking, negotiating, influencing, leading, and following as well as developing a political strategy.   

Organizational Project Management

The course provides an overview of the concepts, procedures and fundamental processes of project management for working professionals. Participants are introduced to the principles, tools and techniques of project management within an integrative framework. The course emphasizes that, for most organizations, projects are the primary means for implementing strategic initiatives.Course Objectives: 1) Understand and critically evaluate expectations, procedures and processes of program management as currently practiced in large for-profit enterprises; 2) Understand the content and processes and standards of prac tice as defined by the Program Management Institute (PMI); 3) Understand how to build and manage effective project teams; 4) Become familiar with the critical components of effective project plans. In addition to the scheduled meeting dates, additional class activities will be planned between faculty and students.

Process Improvement Tools and Strategies

Process improvement as taught in this course often provides high-leverage, high visibility opportunities for showcasing coaching and leadership skills as a member, coach or leader of cross-functional process improvement teams. Cross-functional process improvement teams (running lean and six sigma projects) have evolved into a major pathway for developing leadership and coaching talent in such organizations as Baptist Healthcare, Federal Express, Ritz Carlton, Toyota Motor Co, General Electric and Motorola.Process improvement project leaders and team members use specific tools and capabilities to analyze as-is processes and to define and deploy new or improved processes that deliver better outcomes and customer satisfaction with less non-value added effort. Leading or serving on cross-functional process improvement teams creates opportunities to work and network with people from other parts of your organization and creates opportunities for visibility to executives and managers sponsoring strategic improvements. Participating in or leading process improvement is also a great leadership, coaching and professional development activity.

Entrepreneurship and Leadership: Creating Winners

Peter Drucker once famously said that “entrepreneurs innovate.” The course looks at how innovation drives the entrepreneurial process in both large organizations and in startup ventures. It stresses the importance of bringing entrepreneurial vision and energy to all organizations: profit and non-profit, as well as government and institutional. The course examines the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs. Participants will learn how to develop their own entrepreneurial instincts and how to encourage an entrepreneurial culture in their organizations. The course examines the challenges of startup ventures and provides practical information to participants who are considering an entrepreneurial venture. It explores strategies for identifying opportunities, creating successful business models, valuing a business, raising capital, and managing the business. The course builds understanding of how a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation are critical to any organization that wants to survive and prosper in the future. The course discusses how sustainability is becoming a global force for change, creating exceptional entrepreneurial opportunities. The course looks closely at the leadership roles of both the CEO in a large organization and the entrepreneur in a venture. The course examines how leaders in all kinds of organizations set priorities, identify game-changing opportunities, shape the organizational culture, and motivate their teams to achieve outstanding performance or, sometimes, fail. The course stresses the leadership responsibilities of the board of directors in providing governance and oversight in both for-profit and non-profit organizations.

Stories in Organizations: Tools for Executive Development

As we all know, living in-and out of- organizations is getting exponentially harder. Things seem to be multiplying, splintering, and coalescing kaleidosopically, and each of us is increasingly taxed to make sense of it all let alone create meaning for ourselves and those we manage and care about. Remarkably, a powerful tool for helping us is one we have already mastered: stories. As humans we think, feel, speak, listen, explain, and believe in narrative form. Yet this capability is dramataically under-exploited at work. This course examines a variety of ways to bring the power of stories to organizational life. We will look at how stories enhance communication, support change, and intensify learning and development in individuals and organizations, thus informing your leadership style and effectivness. We will have many opportunities in class to apply “story-based technologies” to issues you face in personal or professional life. Readings come from the literatures of human deelopment, narrative psychology, organizational change, executive learning, and, of course, from literature itself.

HCMG 8410
Health Services System

This course provides an overview of the evolution, structure and current issues in the health care system. It examines the unique features of health care as a product, and the changing relationships between patients, physicians, hospitals, insurers, employers, communities, and government. The course examines three broad segments of the health care industry: payors, providers and suppliers. Within the payor segment, the course examines the sources and destinations of spending, managed care (HMOs, PPOs),employer based health insurance, technology assessment, payor strategy, and efforts to pay for the elderly, the poor & the medically indigent. Within the provider segment, the course examines the impact of cost containment and competition on hospitals and integrated delivery systems, long term care and disease management, and the important role of epidemiology in assessing population health needs and risks. Within the supplier segment, the course will examine developments in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, medical devices, genomics and IT industries. NOTE: This is a required course for Wharton Graduate Health Care Management majors; it counts as an elective course for all other Wharton Graduate students. It is also open to Law School and Nursing School students with a joint Wharton Program.

HCMG 8580
Health Care Marketing

This course is aimed at students interested in better understanding an increasingly complex market environmnent for Healthcare product development and commercialization. Across the entirety of the class we will explore the facts and clarify the implications of five ongoing thematic changes - the 5 D’s - that are fundamentally transforming commercial decision making in health care markets from insurance and care delivery to pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and devices: (1) Dispersion (of choice): Healthcare product/service choice has dispersed from a physician-centric world to include patients, payors, governments, advocacy groups, purchasing organizations, pharmacies, and hospitals. (2) Data (explosion of): How organizations understand and leverage the immense availability of data and shepherd its conversion into insights will be key driver of future competitive differentiation. (3) Disruption (technological avalanche): The multiplicity of channels within which is gathered, shared and exploited has caused much confusion in an industry that often feels hampered by regulatory oversight. How can a commercialization/marketing executive maintain control over information and brand identity in such an age? (4) Division (of responsibilities): Companies are most often organized in multiple customer-facing and/or functional silos (e.g., Customer Marketing, Professional Promotion, Managed Markets, Early Development, Data Managements).In a world where these organizational functions have converged how is commercialization and marketing best managed? (5) Dollars (economic implications): Each stakeholder within this newly dispersed set has different concerns and interacts in different ways, at different points of the value chain, with different incentives! Understanding the collective impact of the interplays across these differences is a competence that any Healthcare marketer needs to develop in order to craft and deliver market-perceived value.

HCMG 8590
Comparative Health Care Systems

This course examines the structure of health care systems in different countries, focusing on the design and financing of public and private insurance; organization of care delivery systems;  reimbursement of physicians, hospitals, pharmaceuticals and devices; and adoption of new technologies and expenditure controls. We study the relative roles of private sector and public sector insurers and providers, and the effect of system design on cost, quality, efficiency and equity of medical services. Some issues we address are normative: Which systems and which public/private sector mixes are better at achieving efficiency and equity? Other issues are positive: How do these different systems deal with the tough choices, such as decisions about new technologies? We focus first on mature systems, including Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan, which represent four prototypical system designs, and Italy and Singapore, which illustrate other interesting approaches. We also look at middle and low income countries with emerging systems –including Chile, Brazil, India and China – and at major cross-cutting issues such as life-expectancy and infant mortality rates, pay for performance and service quality. We will draw lessons for the US from foreign experience and vice versa.

HCMG 8660
The Digital Transformation of Health Care

Healthcare is in the early stages of extraordinary change in the business model of care delivery and financing. This transformation will lead to a system based on the proactive management of health, integration of care across the continuum, blurred boundaries between care providers and purchasers and the placement of the consumer at the center. As has been the case in other industries, this new business model will be based on a foundation of diverse, potent, and well implemented information technology. This course will help prepare students to lead a digital health future. Specifically, the course will cover three major areas. (1)The context of health care information technology: the size, composition and evolution of the digital health market; federal government agencies, and related regulations, that shape the market; leadership roles and factors that enable healthcare organizations to effectively implement and leverage information technology. (2)Emerging technologies that will fuel the transformation of healthcare: artificial intelligence and advanced analytics; interoperability; telehealth; consumer-directed digital health; use of behavioral economics to influence patient and provider decisions. (3)Digital health use by specific sectors of the healthcare industry: healthcare providers; health plans; retail-based primary care; life sciences; wellness and chronic disease management. The course will include lectures from industry leaders who will share their ideas and experiences.


0.5 Course Units

Ethical Aspects of Health and Technology

Interdisciplinary approach to the study of the interface between ethics and law in the provision of health and illness care. This course draws upon the disciplines of philosophy, law, biomedical engineering and nursing in examining such concepts as the use/non-use of biomedical technology, who and how one decides what shall be done for a given “patient,” and the “rights” and responsibilities (accountability) of all persons involved in health/illness care decisions. The interplay of ethical theory, personal value systems, law and technology will be stressed throughout. Lectures, seminars and case studies will be used.

Comparing Health Care Systems in an Intercultural Context: Study Abroad

This course offers students an opportunity to: 1) expand their knowledge base in health care systems; 2) develop intercultural competency skills and 3) shape a conceptual framework for improving the quality of health care for the individual, the family, the community and society at large. Emphasizes the relational, contextual nature of health care and the inseparability of the notions of the health of individuals and the health of family, society, and culture. Includes field experience.

Negotiations in Healthcare

This course examines the process that leads to change in health care settings and situations. Students will develop skills that lead to effective negotiations in interpersonal and organizational settings. Included in the discussion are: concepts of organizational structure and power, negotiating in difficult situations, and the role of the health care professional in negotiation and change. The course also examines techniques leading to successful implementation of negotiated change in the practice setting.This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and Beyond.

Quality Improvement Capstone I

The purpose of the capstone quality improvement project is to provide students

with the opportunity to lead and experience each of the 5 phases of quality

improvement work: Define - Measure - Analyze - Improve - Control. Although

most students identify a project in the Fall semester and execute subsequent

phases of the work in the Spring semester, students may choose to formally

begin their project at another time. Students may change their capstone

project focus with approval of the capstone director no later than one

semester prior to graduation from the healthcare quality and safety

certificate or masters program.