We live in an increasingly complex world which takes a toll on us in a variety of ways. Specialists in Health and Human Services provide support and assistance for individuals and families struggling to maintain a normal lifestyle. Health and Human Services range from assistance from social workers, geriatric patients, probation officers, guidance counselors, etc. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates this particular field will grow at a rapid 17% rate over the next ten years. Salaries are estimated to range from $57,570 in community and rehabilitation services to $74,070 working in state and local governments.
College studies in statistics, psychology, non profit funding, program management, sociology and evaluation are helpful.
Graduate School Cost
While graduate school isn't cheap, an advanced degree does, typically, equate to a higher salary than for those with an associate or bachelor degree. You should weigh the added value with respect to career salary expectations.
If you're currently working, it may be of benefit for you to talk with your supervisor or Human Resources Department to see if your employer offers educational assistance. Many employers will help with your tuition costs if your course of study is of benefit to your current work environment.
Federal Financial Aid
While the federal government doesn't provide grant assistance to graduate students, you may qualify for a student loan. To qualify, you must file an application available at Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The earlier you make application, the better.
Veterans, Active Military, Spouses and Dependents
Many schools offer tuition assistance to active military, veterans, spouses or dependents. Check school websites to see if they have special rates for military personnel.
Are Online Degrees Authentic?
More and more schools are seeing the benefit of offering online degrees and taking advantage of advanced technology to provide degrees. These degrees are considered the same as if you attended classroom instruction. It's important before you commit to an online program that you verify it has the accreditation required. Accreditation verifies that the program meets minimum standards as determined by an independent organization accrediting colleges and universities. The Higher Learning Commission is considered the gold standard and accredits six regional agencies to provide accreditation. If your career requires licensure, be certain to check with your state to be sure your selected degree will meet all requirements.
To help you begin your college search, Best Medical Degrees reviewed ten online programs in Health and Human Services. These have been ranked by information provided by colleges and universities on school tuition, accreditation, length of program and rankings by U.S. News and World Report.
1. Fort Hays State University
Consistently one of the most affordable online universities, Fort Hays State University has an online Master of Science in Health and Human Performance degree. This program is available to students with a bachelor's degree in health and human services and students who have an undergraduate degree in another field (these students are required to take 18 credit hours in leveling courses to be completed prior to graduation). Course studies will include research, statistics, biomechanics, concepts and objectives. Elective courses include study in nutrition and aging, assessment and planning in health and human science programs, nutrition for health and fitness, etc.
Fort Hays State University has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for a variety of its online programs, including their bachelors degrees, online graduate nursing and graduate education programs. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Fort Hays State University has been in existence since 1902 and has over 6,000 enrolled, online students.
Length of Program: 32 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $8,726.72
2. University of Nebraska Online Worldwide
This is a Master of Science Human and Family Services Administration degree offered 100% online and offers a broad-skilled program to understand administration and management of human services. Recognized as #111 in National Universities by U.S. News and World Report, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Founded in 1869, the University of Nebraska is a public school with an enrollment in excess of 25,000 students.
The online MS contains a curriculum which explores courses in public administration and democracy, public budgeting, public human resource management, administrative ethics and leadership, management and administration of nonprofit organizations. This program also requires a capstone project for successful completion.
Length of Program: 36 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $11,718 (Residents); $21,924 (Non Residents)
3. University of Oklahoma
Ranked #51 in Top Public Schools, #73 Best Colleges for Vets and #111 National Universities by U.S. News and World Report, the University of Oklahoma has a Master of Arts in Human and Health Services Administration degree. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, the University of Oklahoma was founded in 1890 in Norman, Oklahoma, seventeen years before the state obtained statehood.
This Master of Arts degree studies cultural, social and diversity issues, ethics, cultures of organizations, strategic planning and evaluation as well as psychological aspects of disabilities. Core courses review research methods, introduction to graduate study and strategic planning and evaluation, among others. Elective courses offered are cultures of organizations, geriatric issues in health and human services, psychological aspects of disabilities in health and human services, etc.
Program Length: 33 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $12,594.45 (Residents); $31,985.25 (Non Residents)
4. Wilmington University
This is a Master of Science in Human Services Administration degree provided by Wilmington University in New Castle, Delaware. Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, Wilmington University has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for its online undergraduate programs. Founded in 1968 with an enrollment of 198 students, the student population has grown to over 18,000 annually.
Core courses are required in a survey course in human services, administration of human services organizations, legal and ethical issues and contemporary issues in human services. Other coursework includes studies in administrating disability services, communication skills, financial management in human services, principles of creating human services and technology and management of human services.
Length of Program: 33 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: 15,015
5. Lubbock Christian University
Opened in 1957 by the Churches of Christ, Lubbock Christian University is located in Lubbock, Texas. Ranked #76 in Regional Universities West by U.S. News and World Report, LCU has an online degree in Master of Science in Human Services with two concentrations in either non-profit leadership or family life educator. Lubbock Christian University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
The administration specialization, designed to enhance leadership and strategic planning skills, examines leadership theory, best practices in human resources, communication skills and fundraising strategies. The family life educator examines skills to identify family problems and address them before they occur; or, develop strategies to heal families in crisis. Graduates will be able to address marriage and family issues, domestic violence, child protection, children with behavioral disorders.
Length of Program: 37 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $15,762
6. Southeastern University
Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, was founded in 1935 and is a private school affiliated with the Assembly of God. The Chronicle of Higher Education has named Southeastern University as one of the fastest growing liberal arts colleges in the nation. SEU is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and offers an online Master of Arts in Human Services degree.
Designed to train students to find practical human services solutions and theories to address community issues. The program has specialization studies in administration, gerontology, children and family services, emergency management and ministry. The core curriculum includes topics in contemporary and historical issues in human services, program planning and evaluation, human services and community and two practicum and field experiences.
Program Length: 36 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $17,820
7. Bellevue University
Located in Bellevue, Nebraska, this school was established in 1966 and has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for its online undergraduate and graduate programs; and, has been ranked a Best for Vets schools by the Military Times. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Bellevue University offers an online Master of Science in Human Services (MSHS). While the program is non-licensure program, this degree prepares students to manage projects for non-profit organizations, comprehend regulatory requirements in non-profits and understand funding strategies.
The curriculum for this MSHS requires six credit hours in behavioral studies in addition to courses in ethics for human services, community engagement, career development, nonprofit administration and leadership theories and research.
Length of Program: 36 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $19,620
8. Post University
Founded in 1890 as the Matoon Shorthand School, Post University in Waterbury, Connecticut, Post University has morphed into a proprietary school with an enrollment over of over 7,000 students. Accredited by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (CIHE) of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Post University provides an online degree in Master of Science in Human Resources . This program offers concentrations in: Alcohol and Drug Counseling, Clinical Counseling within Organizational Settings, Forensic Mental Health Counseling, and Non-Profit Management.
Core requirements for this degree include human services ethics and diversity, human resource management, human services policy and a capstone project. Individual concentration coursework will vary depending on the concentration; but, may include biology of addiction, theories of alcohol and drug counseling, theories of counseling, family systems theory, introduction to forensic mental health counseling, etc.
Length of Program: 37 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $21,120
9. Saint Mary's University-Minnesota
Founded in 1912 as a Catholic college for men, Saint Mary's University Minnesota is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Recognized as one of America's best colleges and best college for veterans by U.S. News and World Report, Saint Mary's has also received acknowledgement as one of America's best colleges by Forbes and best Midwestern college by the Princeton Review.
This Master in Health and Human Services program offers two concentrations in healthcare specialization or human services administration. Core coursework includes studies in academic research and writing, healthcare financial management, human resource management, health informatics and a capstone project. Students may also earn credit for volunteer hours at an approved community agency or work at your current health and human services organization.
Program Length: 36 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $21,420
10. Walden University
This is a Master of Science in Human and Social Services degree from Walden University, a Higher Learning Commission accredited university. Founded in 1970 by two educators wanting to have a way for students to earn a PhD, Walden University has grown to offer bachelor, master and doctoral degrees.
The MS in Human and Social Services offers 12 specializations from which to chose, including: community and social services, criminal justice, family studies and intervention, gerontology, global social services, conflict management and negotiation and disaster crisis and intervention. Tuition cost for Walden can be reduced by the transfer of credits from another accredited university. Be sure to check to see if you qualify for that cost reduction.
Length of Program: 48 Credit Hours
Estimated Tuition Cost: $21,840 ($11,170 with 24 transfer credits)