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Master of Science

Master of Health Leadership


An Online, Executive Health Leadership Program Focused on Value-Based Care


What is value-based care? It's a transformational approach to health and healthcare administration that emphasizes outcomes rather than procedures. It incentivizes a personalized approach to delivering the right support at the right time to maximize the health of individuals, communities, and populations.

This shift away from fee-for-service toward understanding and maximizing health needs early and throughout the healthcare journey puts prevention and well-being front-and-center. As more and more of the industry moves toward value-based care, including major insurance providers and government agencies, there is huge demand for health administration leaders with a deep passion for—and a keen understanding of—value-based care. A master's-educated healthcare practitioner can build a strong, fulfilling career on helping drive this crucial movement in American healthcare.

Compare degrees: The Master of Health Leadership is not WGU's only degree designed to create leaders in the field of healthcare. You may also be interested in our MBA Healthcare Management program or one of our M.S. Nursing – Leadership & Management programs (with options for nurses with or without a current BSN). Compare our health leadership degrees here.


81% of master's graduates finish within 

24 months

WGU lets you move more quickly through material you already know and advance as soon as you're ready. The result: You may finish faster. 

Tuition per six-month term is


Tuition charged per term—rather than per credit—helps you reduce the ultimate cost of your degree. Finish faster, pay less!

Transfer credit is accepted*


of your coursework (up to 8 competency units) taken at the graduate (master's) level at a nationally or regionally accredited institution can be transferred to this WGU program.

*Courses must have been completed within the past five years with an earned grade of "B" or higher.

Ready to Start Your WGU Journey?

Next Start Date: March 1

Start Dates the 1st of Every Month


Health Leadership Courses

WGU's Master of Health Leadership is a flexible, online degree program designed for experienced healthcare leaders seeking a master's degree to grow within key leadership roles in health-associated industries and fields. This master's degree program can also help you expand your knowledge and expertise in areas such as healthcare regulations and laws, patient care, and other changing healthcare initiatives.

This online Master of Health Leadership degree program has been developed in close collaboration with experts and leaders working in major healthcare leadership positions as well as with the Accountable Care Learning Collaborative, Leavitt Partners, and other subject matter experts.

WGU's online Master of Health Leadership program focuses on quality improvement of person-focused, culturally relevant care with an emphasis on professionalism, technology, and ethical practice to foster innovation and sustainability.

This program consists of the following courses, which you will typically complete one at a time as you make your way through your program, working with your Program Mentor each term to build your personalized Degree Plan. You’ll work through each course as quickly as you can study and learn the material. As soon as you’re ready, you can pass the assessment, complete the course, and move on. This means you can finish as many courses as you're able in a term at no additional cost.

Leadership and Innovation
Healthcare Systems
Healthcare Quality
Financial Management
Healthcare Analysis
Risk Management
Health Information Technology
Leadership and Management Specialty
Community Health

12 Courses

Program consists of 12 courses

At WGU, we design our curriculum to be timely, relevant, and practical—all to ensure your degree is proof you really know your stuff.


Field Experiences

Special requirements for this program

WGU’s online Master of Health Leadership includes a capstone project that challenges you to collaborate with leaders in the healthcare industry to identify opportunities for improvement in healthcare, propose a solution, and perform a business analysis to evaluate its feasibility. 

“For several years I have wanted to return back to college to get my graduate degree. WGU seemed to be the school that would offer me what I needed. It was a flexible schedule. Every time I called and talked to someone on the phone, everyone just seemed to be receptive and so helpful.”

—Hope Cummings
Master of Health Leadership

Why WGU?


WGU tuition is charged per six-month term, not per credit. That means if you want to move faster through this healthcare administration program, you'll pay less.

On Your Schedule

You can continue working at your full-time job or maintaining your responsibilities while pursuing your online master's in health leadership. You don't have to log-in to classes and there aren't due dates. You are in charge of your degree. It’s surprisingly affordable.

Alumni Network

When you enroll in the healthcare leadership program at WGU, you join an impressive network of healthcare professionals. Over 18,000 students earned healthcare degrees from WGU in 2020 alone, and are hard at work, changing the lives of patients and impacting communities.

Accredited, Respected,

One important measure of a degree’s value is the reputation of the university where it was earned. When employers, industry leaders, and academic experts hold your alma mater in high esteem, you reap the benefits of that respect. WGU is a pioneer in reinventing higher education for the 21st century, and our quality has been recognized. 



Transfer Credits Accepted


Now's the time to advance your healthcare career with a master's degree:

  • Transfer up to 8 competency units (24%) of your courses taken at the graduate (master's) level at an accredited institution to this WGU degree program. Courses must have been completed within the past five years with an earned grade of "B" or higher.

Program Expectations

The Master of Health Leadership is an all-online degree program that you will complete by studying and working independently with support and instruction from WGU faculty. You will be expected to complete at least 8 competency units (WGU's equivalent of the credit hour) each 6-month term. (Each course is typically 3 or 4 units).


An Affordable Healthcare Admin Degree

By charging per term rather than per credit—and empowering students to accelerate through material they know well or learn quickly—WGU helps students control the ultimate cost of their degrees. The faster you complete your program, the less you pay for your degree.

Tuition Calculator
Pay less by completing your program faster

A Healthcare Leadership Master's Degree Is Within Reach

There is help available to make paying for school possible for you:

The average student loan debt of WGU graduates in 2019 (among those who borrowed) was less than half* the national average.

Most WGU students qualify for financial aid, and WGU is approved for federal financial aid and U.S. veterans benefits. 

Many scholarship opportunities are available. Find out what you might be eligible for.


Take Control of Where, When, and How Fast You Complete Your Health Leadership Degree

Professional responsibilities. Family obligations. Personal commitments. At WGU, we understand schedules are tight and oftentimes unpredictable for today’s busy professionals. That’s why we offer a flexible, personalized approach to how online education should be in today’s world. No disruptions at work. No rigid class schedules. No barriers to earning your degree on your own terms. Just a solid, career-focused Master of Health Leadership program that meshes seamlessly with your current lifestyle.

Other universities' online programs may give you the convenience of distance learning; WGU's competency-based online programs take that flexibility further—many steps further!

"Our partnership with WGU enables our employees to advance their education affordably without interrupting their careers.”

—John Steele, Senior Vice President of Human Resources
HCA Healthcare


Value-Based Care: Foster Change and Improve Efficiency in a Complex Health System

It's time to apply your leadership skills to improving health outcomes for individuals, communities, and populations! Healthcare facility leaders and policymakers with a current understanding of the characteristics of care coordination, collaborative leadership techniques, challenges in community health, and strategic approaches in innovation are needed to improve organizational efficiencies and operations. This online Master of Health Leadership degree program is your opportunity to build the next phase of your healthcare career and positively influence others in your industry.

What jobs could a Master of Health Leadership graduate be eligible for? Here are just a few: chief executive officer, chief operations officer, chief administrator, provider network executive, home health agency president, health system vice president, ambulatory services executive, department or division director, behavioral health director, clinical director, or managed care analyst.

Return on Your Investment


Strong demand for medical and health service managers through 2029 means an impressive 32% projected growth rate for these roles.

—U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What is a Healthcare Manager’s Salary?

Across the United States and around the world, value-based care has skyrocketed in popularity as a solution to the historical fragmentation in the health system. Delivery of services in silos and a fee-for-service reimbursement model are being replaced by an approach that aims to emphasize and incentivize outcomes instead. This can improve overall health, not just healthcare—and it can also boost your career’s trajectory. In May 2017, medical and health services managers in the United States earned a median yearly salary of $98,350, according to the BLS. However, top-level healthcare executives can earn much more than that—especially in large organizations. For example, the median annual base salary for the CEO of a healthcare system with more than $1 billion in annual revenue is $950,000, and the median base salary for the top managed care executive at a hospital is $223,000.

WGU Grads Hold Positions With Top Employers

Hospitals and clinics around the country know the benefit of a master's degree from WGU, so your healthcare degree is valuable.


Admissions Requirements Unique to This Master of Health Leadership Degree

To be considered for this master's degree program, you must be able to demonstrate healthcare experience through one of the following methods:

  • Possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university and experience in healthcare or healthcare-related industry.
  • Possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university and obtain MHL program chair approval.

Get Your Enrollment Checklist

Download your step-by-step guide to enrollment.

Get Your Questions Answered

Talk to an WGU Enrollment Counselor.

More About the Master of Health Leadership Program

An online Master of Healthcare Administration is a degree that prepares you for executive roles inside the healthcare industry, giving you skills in management, budgets, and other crucial areas for success. A Master of Health Leadership degree provides similar training and is a great option if you want to work as a healthcare executive.

The best degree to choose will depend largely on your career goals. However, a Master of Health Leadership and Master of Healthcare Administration degree program will cover almost all of the same competencies and both will prepare you for a future as a health leader. Often a Master of Health Leadership degree will have a larger focus on management, and may be a better fit if you want to pursue certain leadership positions in the healthcare industry. 

A master's degree in health leadership may qualify you for the following jobs:

  • Healthcare executive
  • Medical and health services manager
  • Healthcare administrator
  • Hospital administrator
  • Nursing home administrator
  • Clinical manager
  • Health information manager


There are many master’s degree programs in healthcare, and one is not necessarily better than another. The degree you pursue depends on your career goals and the skills you already have in healthcare or management. If you’re looking to pursue a career as a health executive or leader, a master’s degree in health leadership could be the perfect fit. 

MHL stands for Master of Health Leadership. A master’s degree in health leadership will focus on collaborative leadership, health systems, financial management, and other crucial leadership areas that will help you thrive as a healthcare executive. If you’re looking for a management or executive-level position in healthcare, an MHL is an ideal career choice.

WGU is approved to offer federal student aid. You will need to apply using the FAFSA, which is used to determine your eligibility for aid. WGU’s FAFSA school code is 033394.

Scholarships are available for new WGU students and returning graduates. This video shows more about scholarship opportunities and how they can help you pay for school. Get information on:

  • How to apply
  • Eligibility requirements
  • Examples of scholarships
  • What happens after you apply
  • FAQs
  • Other financial aid options

WGU's tuition is a flat rate that is charged every six months. You can take as many courses as you are able in that six-month term—with no extra cost. You simply pay for the term and do as much work as you can or want to during that time. This means that finishing faster helps you save money—a major benefit you won't find at most other schools. 

Ready to Start Your WGU Journey?