Online Master of Science in Computer Information Systems Concentration in Health Informatics
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The MS in Computer Information Systems (MSCIS) concentration in Health Informatics exposes individuals to health electronic applications and the collection, processing, and storage of data. Graduates of this program will have a solid knowledge of data communication and computer networks as well as biomedical databases. Each of these areas includes data security and privacy components, which are essential for dealing with medical data. In addition, the foundations of health information technology and electronic health records give graduates a solid exposure to the latest medical technologies, as well as to the electronic record systems used in hospitals and other medical organizations. Students also have the opportunity to take a course that will expose them to the modern IT project management tools and techniques.
The MSCIS is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). Completion of a CAHIIM-accredited program is required in order to be eligible to sit for professional certification exams offered through the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), such as the Certified Professional in Health Informatics (CPHI™) exam. Along with demonstrating a high standard of proficiency and professionalism sought by employers, AHIMA certification ensures access to valuable networking resources, opens the door to higher earning potential, and paves the way for long-term leadership opportunities in the field.
Students who complete the MSCIS degree concentration in Health Informatics will be able to demonstrate:
- Advanced knowledge in the analysis and documentation of requirements for architecture, design, and implementation of computer applications systems.
- Proficiency in software and computing skills as they pertain to the design and implementation of database systems, data communications, systems analysis, and design.
- An understanding of the American healthcare system, medical terminology, basic human anatomy and physiology, disease processes, diagnostic modalities, and treatments associated with common disease processes.
- Advanced knowledge of the functionality, technical infrastructure, and best-practice deployment of healthcare IT, including medical algorithms, electronic health records, privacy and security, and regulations.
- An understanding of fundamental characteristics of data, information, and knowledge in the healthcare domain and proficiency in managing, processing, and analyzing healthcare data.
- Competence sufficient to lead health IT initiatives, to conduct biomedical research, and to design, implement, and manage advanced solutions.
- A thorough understanding of the importance of ethical behavior in the profession.
- Effective communication skills.
Awards & Accreditations
The Health Informatics accreditor of Boston University’s Metropolitan College is the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). The College’s accreditation for the master’s degree in Computer Information Systems, Health Informatics concentration, has been reaffirmed through 2027. All inquiries about the program’s accreditation status should be directed by mail to CAHIIM, 200 East Randolph Street, Suite 5100, Chicago, IL, 60601; by phone at (312) 235-3255; or by email at email@example.com.
BU MET’s Health Informatics Program by the Numbers
- 92.6% of students enrolled in Health Informatics courses spring 2019 to fall 2020 reported a satisfaction level of 3 or above on a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being most satisfied).
- 90% of students graduating summer 2019 through spring 2020 were employed within 6 months.
- 83% of students starting summer 2019 through spring 2020 registered for a subsequent semester and 75% registered for the next academic year.
- 71% of students entering the program in 2015–2016 and 2016–2017 have graduated as of 2019–2020.
Why Choose BU’s Health Informatics?
- In 2023, the MSCIS ranked #10 among the Best Online Master's in Computer Information Technology Programs (U.S. News & World Report).
- The Health Informatics degree concentration was ranked #8 in “The 50 Best Online Master’s in Healthcare Informatics Degree Programs” by TheBestSchools.org.
- As a CAHIIM-accredited program, the MSCIS qualifies graduates to sit for certification exams offered through the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), such as the Certified Professional in Health Informatics (CPHI™) exam.
- The MSCIS program is certified by the Committee on National Security Systems (CNNS) through the National Security Agency’s INFOSEC Education and Training Program.
- Boston University is recognized by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education and Research.
- Students have access to MET’s Health Informatics Research Lab (HILab), established to contribute to the improvement of health care through collaborative research and development in health informatics, bioinformatics, and clinical research.
Computer and Information Systems Managers
10% increase in jobs through 2029
$146,360 median annual pay in 2019
Computer and Information Research Scientists
15% increase in jobs through 2029
$122,840 median annual pay in 2019
Information Security Analysts
31% increase in jobs through 2029
$99,730 median annual pay in 2019
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2020
Best Technology Jobs, 2023 U.S. News & World Report
- #1 Software Developer
- #2 Information Security Analyst
- #3 IT Manager
- #4 Web Developer
- #5 Computer Systems Analyst
- #6 Data Scientist
- #7 Database Administrator
- #8 Computer Network Architect
- #9 Computer Systems Administrator
- #10 Computer Support Specialist
- #11 Computer Programmer
The demand for health informatics workers is projected to grow at twice the rate of employment overall, but there is strong evidence that the nation already faces a shortage of qualified workers in this field.
Burning Glass Technologies Missed Opportunities? The Labor Market in Health Informatics, 2014
Boston University Metropolitan College (MET) offers competitive tuition rates that meet the needs of part-time students seeking an affordable education. These rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education. To learn more about current tuition rates, visit the MET website.
Comprehensive financial assistance services are available at MET, including scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans. There is no cost to apply for financial assistance, and you may qualify for a student loan regardless of your income. Learn more.
The online Master of Science in Computer Information Systems consists of ten courses (40 credits).
Students pursuing the concentration in Health Informatics must complete the following courses:
(Five courses/20 credits)
METCS625 Business Data Communication and Networks
This course presents the foundations of data communications and takes a bottom-up approach to computer networks. The course concludes with an overview of basic network security and management concepts. Prereq: MET CS 200, or instructor's consent. This course may not be taken in conjunction with MET CS 425 (undergraduate) or MET CS 535. Only one of these courses can be counted towards degree requirements. [4 credits]
METCS669 Database Design and Implementation for Business
Students learn the latest relational and object-relational tools and techniques for persistent data and object modeling and management. Students gain extensive hands- on experience using Oracle or Microsoft SQL Server as they learn the Structured Query Language (SQL) and design and implement databases. Students design and implement a database system as a term project. Restrictions: This course may not be taken in conjunction with MET CS 469 (undergraduate) or MET CS 579. Only one of these courses can be counted towards degree requirements. [4 credits]
METCS682 Information Systems Analysis and Design
Object-oriented methods of information systems analysis and design for organizations with data- processing needs. System feasibility; requirements analysis; database utilization; Unified Modeling Language; software system architecture, design, and implementation, management; project control; and systems-level testing. Prerequisite: Basic programming knowledge or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
METCS782 IT Strategy and Management
This course describes and compares contemporary and emerging information technology and its management. Students learn how to identify information technologies of strategic value to their organizations and how to manage their implementation. The course highlights the application of I.T. to business needs. CS 782 is at the advanced Masters (700) level, and it assumes that students understand IT systems at the level of CS 682 Systems Analysis and Design. Students who haven't completed CS 682 should contact their instructor to determine if they are adequately prepared. Prereq: MET CS 682, or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
And one of the following*:
METCS520 Information Structures with Java
This course covers the concepts of object-oriented approach to software design and development using the Java programming language. It includes a detailed discussion of programming concepts starting with the fundamentals of data types, control structures methods, classes, applets, arrays and strings, and proceeding to advanced topics such as inheritance and polymorphism, interfaces, creating user interfaces, exceptions, and streams. Upon completion of this course the students will be able to apply software engineering criteria to design and implement Java applications that are secure, robust, and scalable. Prereq: MET CS 200 or MET CS 300 or Instructor's Consent. Not recommended for students without a programming background. For undergraduate students: This course may not be taken in conjunction with METCS232. Only one of these courses can be counted towards degree requirements. [4 credits]
METCS521 Information Structures with Python
This course covers the concepts of the object-oriented approach to software design and development using Python. It includes a detailed discussion of programming concepts starting with the fundamentals of data types, control structures methods, classes, arrays and strings, and proceeding to advanced topics such as inheritance and polymorphism, creating user interfaces, exceptions and streams. Upon completion of this course students will be able to apply software engineering principles to design and implement Python applications that can be used in with analytics and big data. Effective Fall 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Quantitative Reasoning II, Creativity/Innovation, Critical Thinking.
Prerequisite: Programming experience in any language. Or Instructor's consent. [4 credits]
*If a student chooses to take both MET CS 520 and MET CS 521, the first course completed will fulfill the core requirement and the second course completed will count as an elective.
Students who have completed courses on core curriculum subjects as part of their undergraduate degree program or have relevant work-related experience may request permission from the Department of Computer Science to replace the corresponding core courses with graduate-level computer information systems electives. Please refer to the MET CS Academic Policies Manual for further details.
(Five courses/20 credits)
METCS570 Biomedical Sciences and Health IT
This course is designed for IT professionals, and those training to be IT professionals, who are preparing for careers in healthcare-related IT (Health Informatics). This course provides a high-level introduction into basic concepts of biomedicine and familiarizes students with the structure and organization of American healthcare system and the roles played by IT in that system. The course introduces medical terminology, human anatomy and physiology, disease processes, diagnostic modalities, and treatments associated with common disease processes. IT case studies demonstrate the key roles of health informatics and how IT tools and resources help medical professionals integrate multiple sources of information to make diagnostic and therapeutic decisions. [4 credits]
METCS580 Health Informatics
This course presents the technological fundamentals and integrated clinical applications of modern Biomedical IT. The first part of the course covers the technological fundamentals and the scientific concepts behind modern medical technologies, such as digital radiography, CT, nuclear medicine, ultrasound imaging, etc. It also presents various medical data and patient records, and focuses on various techniques for processing medical images. This part also covers medical computer networks and systems and data security and protection. The second part of the course focuses on actual medical applications that are used in health care and biomedical research. [4 credits]
METCS581 Health Information Systems
Health Information Systems are comprehensive application systems that automate the activities of healthcare delivery including clinical care using electronic health records (EHRs), coordination of care across providers, telehealth, management of the business of healthcare such as revenue cycle management, and population health management. The course covers the functionality of these systems, the underlying information technology they require and their successful operations. It addresses challenges in this rapidly changing field such as complex data, security, interoperability, mobile technology and distributed users. The course emphasizes applied use of health information systems through case studies, current articles, and exercises. [4 credits]
This course introduces fundamental concepts, principles of cybersecurity and their use in the development of security mechanisms and policies. Topics include basic risk assessment and management; basic legal and ethics issues, various cyber attacks, defense methods and tools; security principles, models and components; different crypto protocols, techniques and tools, including symmetric and asymmetric encryption algorithms, hashing, public key infrastructure, and how they can be used; security threats and defense to hardware, operating systems, networks and applications in modern computing environments. Hands-on labs using current tools are provided and required. Prerequisite: METCS535 or METCS625 or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
METCS781 Advanced Health Informatics
This course presents the details of information processing in hospitals, hospital information systems (HIS), and more broadly health information systems. It presents the architecture, design, and user requirements of information systems in health care environment. It focuses on Information Technology aspects of Health Informatics specifically addressing the design, development, operation, and management of HIS. The first part of this course covers the introductory concepts including information processing needs, and information management in health care environment. The second part covers detailed description of HIS including hospital process modeling, architecture, quality assessment, and applicable tools. The final part of the course covers management of HIS and related issues and extension of this topic to other health care organizations. The course will have a term project providing students a hands-on experience in design and research of HIS. Prereq: MET CS 580; or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
Admission & Prerequisite Information
MET prioritizes the review and admission of applications submitted earlier in the rolling admission process. You are encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible and no later than the priority application deadlines for each term.
Applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree, in any field of study, from a regionally accredited college/university (or the international equivalent) prior to enrollment at Metropolitan College. The following materials are required for a complete application:
- Completed Application for Graduate Admission and application fee
- All college transcripts
- Personal statement
- Two letters of recommendation
- Official English proficiency exam results (International students)
Applicants are not required to have a degree in computer science for entry to a program within the Department of Computer Science. Upon review of your application, the department will determine if the completion of prerequisite coursework will be required, based on your academic and professional background. The following prerequisite courses may be required:
METCS200 Introduction to Computer Information Systems
This course is a technically-oriented introductory survey of information technology. Students learn about basic computer information, different types of business systems and basic systems analysis, design and development. Students also study basic mathematics, software development and create simple Java programs. [4 credits]
A maximum of two graduate-level courses (8 credits) taken at Metropolitan College before acceptance into the program may be applied towards the degree.
Assistant Professor, Computer Science; Coordinator, Health Informatics
PhD, MEng, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore; BS, Luoyang Institute of Technology
Associate Professor and Director of Digital Learning, Computer Science
PhD, Columbia University; MS, University of Miami; MS, University of Illinois; BS, University of Natal (South Africa)
Associate Dean, Academic Affairs; Associate Professor, Computer Science; Director, Health Informatics and Health Sciences
PhD, Boston University; MS, Medical College of Virginia; MS, BS, University of Belgrade
Lecturer, Computer Science
MSEE, BSEE, University of Illinois
Lecturer, Computer Science
MS, Southern Connecticut State University; BS, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Assistant Professor, Computer Science; Director, Analytics
PhD, Brandeis University; MS, Indian Institute of Technology; BS, Regional Engineering College (Warangal, India)
Vijay Kanabar, PMP
Associate Professor, Computer Science and Administrative Sciences; Director, Project ManagementPhD, University of Manitoba (Canada); MS, Florida Institute of Technology; MBA, Webber College; BS, University of Madras (India)
Jae Young Lee
Assistant Professor, Computer Science; Coordinator, Databases
PhD, MS, University of Texas at Arlington; BS, Seoul National University (Korea)
Associate Professor, Computer Science
PhD, MS, University of Rochester; BA, University of California San Diego
Associate Professor Emeritus, Computer Science
PhD, Leningrad Aluminum Institute (Russia); MS, Leningrad Institute of Technology; MBA, Boston University
Assistant Professor and Chair, Computer Science
PhD, Kazan University (Russia); MS, Moscow University
Assistant Professor, Computer Science; Coordinator, Information Security
PhD, Boston University; MS, BS University of Science and Technology Beijing
Dean, Metropolitan College; Professor of the Practice, Computer Science and Education; Director, Information Security
PhD, Dresden University of Technology (Germany); MS, Dresden University of Technology; BS, Dresden University of Technology
To learn more or to contact an enrollment advisor before you get started, request information using the button below and tell us a little about yourself. Someone will be in touch to answer any questions you may have about the program and detail the next steps in earning your degree. You can also start your application or register for a course at Metropolitan College.