Demand is high for health informaticists–those professionals who are well versed in applying computing and information technology solutions to the management of health care information and patient data. This health informatics masters will give you the knowledge and experience you need to succeed in this evolving field.
With an increase in the application and use of computing in the health care industry, there is an unprecedented need for professionals who can harness the creative power of information technology to make an impact on the acquisition, storage, management, and retrieval of patient data, as well as access medical data needed to improve patient care, research, and education. A health informatics masters provides professionals with an understanding of formal medical terminology, clinical processes, and guidelines; and an understanding of how information and communication systems can be used to successfully deliver patient information in various health care settings.
RIT’s Master’s in Health Informatics: Offered Exclusively Online
The MS in health informatics applies the creative power of information technology to the information and data needs of health care.
The program is designed for working professionals in diverse health care clinical and technology settings. The curriculum consists of core courses that focus on software development, system integration, data analysis, data intelligence, clinical application building, systems analysis, and project management. The MS in health informatics draws upon the interdisciplinary strengths of the colleges within RIT, along with its health care partner, Rochester Regional Health System (RRH).
The online health informatics MS program includes a three day in-person immersion sesson held onsite at Rochester Regional Health (RRH), a Rochester area health care provider. This valuable, applied learning experience allows you to shadow RRH clinicians to understand disease processes, clinical workflows, and the use of clinical information technology in a real-world health care setting. This onsite component typically occurs in mid-June. If you have questions or concerns about this unique opportunity, please contact the program coordinator.
Employers are seeking professionals who can investigate the needs of real people, manage and structure data to fairly represent the world, connect people and data across devices and networks, visualize patterns to support decisions, and ensure that technologies are evaluated with real users.
Health Informatics is the interdisciplinary study of the design, development, adoption, and application of IT-based innovations in health care services delivery, management, and planning. This degree program is designed to equip health care professionals with vital skills to fill emerging health information technology roles. This degree program prepares you for success in today's complex health care field through the interplay of people, information, and technology. In this program, you will learn how information is used to advance knowledge and improve health care, preparing you for future computing careers that require more than just programming. Our unique blend of RIT informatics faculty and Rochester Regional Health clinical experts provides students with the data analytics, programming, and clinical experience to combine theory and practice.
Comprehensive foundation in health informatics
Practical use of data in the health care setting
Clinical faculty from Rochester Regional Health
Study with board-eligible practicing physicians
Designed for working professionals, this 100% online degree may be completed in two years. We offer two 7-week courses per semester and two summer courses. An optional 7-week onsite immersive session at Rochester Regional Health provides the opportunity for experiential learning.
A Health Informatics Curriculum Packed with High-Demand Skills
Data Science: Demand for data science skills will grow 112% and machine learning by 102%.
Data Analytics: Data analysis skills will grow 82% and big data skills by 22%.
Process Design: Quality assurance and control skills are growing by 40%.
Health Informatics, MS degree, typical course sequence
Sem. Cr. Hrs.
Foundations of Human-Computer Interaction
Human-computer interaction (HCI) is a field of study concerned with the design, evaluation and implementation of interactive computing systems for human use and with the study of major phenomena surrounding them. This course surveys the scope of issues and foundations of the HCI field: cognitive psychology, human factors, interaction styles, user analysis, task analysis, interaction design methods and techniques, and evaluation. This course will focus on the users and their tasks. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
Introduction to Health Informatics
This course provides a rigorous introduction to the principles of medical informatics. The focus of this course is on the study of the nature of medical information and its use in clinical practice and clinical quality improvement. Key topics include: the electronic medical record (EMR) and its impact on health care delivery, the Internet and mobile computing as sources of medical information, Health care information systems, the software development lifecycle, the importance of the informatics specialists in medicine and the various roles they can play, and government economic incentives and policy issues in healthcare such as privacy, confidentiality, including health care regulatory and accreditation issues and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Students will participate in online discussion of medical informatics. They will also investigate several topics of interest in the field and provide presentations. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Practice of Health Care (summer)
This seven-week course is an introduction to clinical practice for graduate students in Medical Informatics. It consists of the study of medical specialties including shadowing of clinicians in these areas. Students in this course will be part of a team of health care professionals in the selected specialties. They will make rounds with providers, attend key IT and HI meetings, assist with information gathering and dissemination, and observe specialty specific disease process, diagnosis, and treatment. They will observe and note clinical workflow and technology usage. They will interact with team members and assist with the acquisition of reference knowledge as appropriate. (Prerequisites: MEDI-701 or equivalent course and graduate student standing.) Clinical 1, Lecture 6 (Spring, Summer).
Clinical Information Systems
A study of the component approach to clinical information systems. Students will learn about the evolution of Health Information Systems, and the variety of systems offered by vendors at the present time. The importance of the Electronic Health Record (EHR), the Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) and Clinical Decision Support will be stressed as they become the focal points in clinical information systems. The following components will be studied in detail: patient, activity, health record, knowledge, and security components. The role of imaging management and integration will also be reviewed. (Prerequisites: MEDI-701 or equivalent course and graduate student standing.) Lecture 3 (Spring).
Introduction to Applied Informatics
Informatics is about systems that store, process, analyze, and communicate information. Information begins as data – and of particular interest today is the large data sets that are evolving in many fields. Data sets are acted upon by tools can be applied to a variety of problems across many fields. This course provides an overview of issues within informatics, and common solutions. Through hands-on examples, the course demonstrates a general problem-solving approach from problem identification, algorithm selection, data cleaning, and analysis. Lecture 1 (Spring, Summer).
Information technology projects require the application of sound project management principles in order to be developed on time, on budget, and on specification. This course takes students through the nine knowledge areas of modern project management and the utilization of project management principles in both traditional and agile environments. Lecture 3 (Fall).
Capstone in Health Informatics
This team-based course provides students with the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills learned in coursework to design, develop, and implement a solution to a real problem in the medical informatics domain. Project teams also will be responsible for submitting a final project report, and for making a final presentation to project stakeholders. (Completion of first year courses) (Prerequisite: MEDI-701 and MEDI-705 and MEDI-735 and MEDI-704 and HCIN-610 and Graduate standing.) Lecture 3 (Summer).
Total Semester Credit Hours
Note for online students
The frequency of required and elective course offerings in the online program will vary, semester by semester, and will not always match the information presented here. Online students are advised to seek guidance from the listed program contact when developing their individual program course schedule.
Admissions and Financial Aid
This program is available
Part-time study is 1‑8 semester credit hours.
RIT will not issue a student visa for programs offered exclusively online.
To be considered for admission to the Health Informatics MS program, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:
International applicants whose native language is not English must submit one of the following official English language test scores. Some international applicants may be considered for an English test requirement waiver.
International students below the minimum requirement may be considered for conditional admission. Each program requires balanced sub-scores when determining an applicant’s need for additional English language courses.
It is recommended that applicants have a minimum of three years of experience in a health care, health-related, or information technology organization. Applicants who do not meet this requirement may be asked to complete certain undergraduate courses as a bridge for the content knowledge required for the graduate program.
This program is offered exclusively online. Courses are fully asynchronous designed to accommodate working professionals that wish to complete program coursework at a time that suits their personal schedule. Coursework deliverables and assignments are typically due by a specific date/time during each week of the course.
Online Degree Information
Courses in the online Health Informatics MS are all asynchronous and are designed to accommodate working professionals that wish to complete program coursework at a time that suits their personal schedule. The program is cohort-based with students starting their studies in the fall, and moving through the course sequence together by taking two 7-week courses and two summer courses. This 100% online degree can be completed in two years. This degree also includes a three-day in-person immersion on-site at a Rochester healthcare facility. For specific details about the delivery format and learning experience, contact the Program Contact listed on this page. RIT does not offer student visas for online study.
Online Tuition Eligibility
The online Health Informatics MS is a designated online degree program that is billed at a 43% discount from our on-campus rate. View the current online tuition rate.
Online Study Restrictions for Some International Students
Certain countries are subject to comprehensive embargoes under US Export Controls, which prohibit virtually ALL exports, imports, and other transactions without a license or other US Government authorization. Learners from the Crimea region of the Ukraine, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, and Syria may not register for RIT online courses. Nor may individuals on the United States Treasury Department’s list of Specially Designated Nationals or the United States Commerce Department’s table of Deny Orders. By registering for RIT online courses, you represent and warrant that you are not located in, under the control of, or a national or resident of any such country or on any such list.
To help bridge new technology with current health care practices, organizations are recognizing the need to hire more health informatics professionals than ever. In an effort to help more qualified people step into this field, RIT has revised its health informatics master’s degree program and partnered with Rochester Regional Health.
RIT students hoping to enter the healthcare IT workforce now have a jumpstart, as the university joins with the New York state chapter of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).
Matt Huenerfauth, a professor and expert in computing accessibility research, has been named director of RIT’s iSchool (School of Information). Huenerfauth takes the helm Aug. 1 from Stephen Zilora, who is stepping down after eight years of leadership.