USC Price School of Public Policy

MHA Program Competencies


Graduates of the USC Price MHA program will demonstrate the following competencies:

Domain 1: Knowledge of the Healthcare Environment

All MHA students must demonstrate knowledge about established and evolving issues in healthcare and be prepared to apply this knowledge to diverse health care organizations.

  • 1.1 Demonstrate knowledge of established and evolving issues in healthcare and the ability to apply this  to diverse healthcare organizations.
  • 1.2 Use, understand, and apply the basic principles of economics and evidence-based techniques to healthcare.

Domain 2: Critical Thinking and Analysis

All MHA students must be proficient in critical thinking, having mastered the ability to conceptualize, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate information gathered from diverse sources.

  • 2.1 Demonstrate the ability to understand a situation, issue or problem by breaking it into smaller pieces and tracing its implications in a step-by-step manner.
  • 2.2 Apply complex concepts, develop creative and innovative solutions, and adapt previous solutions in new ways.
  • 2.3 Demonstrate the ability to consider the business, demographic, ethnocultural, political, and regulatory implications of decisions, and to develop strategies that improve the long-term success and viability of the organization.

Domain 3: Business and Management Knowledge

All MHA students must master core business and organizational management skills in a healthcare context.

  • 3.1 Understand and explain financial and accounting information, and understand and apply financial methods to set goals and measure organizational performance.
  • 3.2 Understand and use administrative and clinical decision support tools in process and performance improvement.
  • 3.3 Understand and use the formal and informal decision-making structures in healthcare organizations and the healthcare industry and demonstrate ability to analyze and improve an organization’s processes.

Domain 4: Policy and Community Advocacy

All MHA students must demonstrate knowledge of the policy process at various levels of government, the processes required to change organizational policy, and methods of engaging the community in multiple types of policy change.

  • 4.1 Understand the legislative environment and the organizational implications related to health policy at the local, state, and federal levels.
  • 4.2 Align one’s own and the organization’s priorities with the needs and values of the community.

Domain 5: Communication

All MHA students must demonstrate interpersonal and communication skills that result in effective information exchange with key stakeholders. This includes the ability to listen, communicate clearly and effectively with faculty, peers, team members, and preceptors using appropriate nonverbal, verbal, and writing skills.

  • 5.1 Demonstrate ability to facilitate a group and to prepare and present cogent business presentations.
  • 5.2 Demonstrate ability to persuade others to support a point of view, position, or recommendation, while assessing and responding to the feelings and concerns of others.

Domain 6: Leadership

All MHA students must demonstrate leadership that shows they possess the attributes, qualities, and skills to motivate others.

  • 6.1 Demonstrate leadership characteristics, including speaking and acting as an ethical professional and accepting accountability for the impact of decisions on others.
  • 6.2 Demonstrate ability to work as a team member and to support and value diverse opinions and perspectives.
  • 6.3 Understand how to establish a compelling organizational vision and goals for an organization.