Mar 03, 2024  
Graduate Catalog 2023 - 2024 
Graduate Catalog 2023 - 2024

Health Sciences, MSHS

Jodi DeMarco, Chair, Department of Health Sciences and Human Performance


The Master of Science in Health Sciences (MSHS) is a post-baccalaureate online degree designed to provide individuals with a broad overview of the health care system. The core courses in this program provide foundational knowledge in the U.S. health care system, leadership, cultural competency and research. The remaining elective credits allow students to customize their learning experience and focus on a professional area of interest such as research, ethics, business and informatics. As such, the goal of the Master of Science in Health Sciences Program (MSHS) is to meet the educational needs of three groups of students:

  1. Licensed Health Care Providers seeking increased responsibility and leadership positions within their discipline for: academic and clinical teaching, clinical research, career development, clinical supervision and administration, and/or program planning, development and evaluation.
  2. General Track Students with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences or a degree in a related area who are not licensed health care providers but seeking careers in health and human services settings providing auxiliary administrative and management services (e.g. research departments, medical labs, medical records, or continuing education).
  3. Pre-Professional Students (med, dent, pharm, etc) seeking a gap year to complete pre-requisite coursework and further MCAT preparation. 

The Program objectives for graduates are to:

  1. Demonstrate self-directed learning skills in order to continue independent and life-long learning;
  2. Demonstrate the ability to assumed diverse roles in today’s rapidly changing healthcare, social, and community service environments;
  3. Identify and analyze cultural influences on practice and emerging healthcare practice issues;
  4. Utilize outcome measures and evidence-based research to evaluate the effectiveness of health, social, or community systems.

Online Program of Study

For students not seeking lab based pre-requisite courses, the entire MSHS Curriculum is offered online to accommodate the needs of working professionals. The Program requires the completion of 36 credits: four core courses, three courses in an area of emphasis, four electives, and a capstone research project or thesis. For more information about this program, visit the Master of Science in Health Sciences website.

Individualized Advising

The Program Director provides advising to assist students in identifying career objectives in order to develop an individualized degree completion plan. Advising is offered via face-to-face meetings or by phone to accommodate the needs of working professionals. Advising appointments can be arranged by emailing the Director, Jodi DeMarco (

MSHS Faculty

MSHS courses are taught by faculty with a diverse range of health-related training and expertise including: occupational and physical therapy, medical anthropology, medicine, nursing, psychology, epidemiology, gerontology, public health, business, environmental health, anatomy, neuroscience, women’s health, technology in healthcare, legal issues in healthcare, and mental health.

Current faculty information can be located on the Cleveland State University Faculty Profile page.

Admission Information

An applicant must hold a baccalaureate or advanced degree from an accredited institution and be a licensed healthcare professional or have a degree related to health sciences with plans to work in a healthcare setting.

Applicants to the Master of Science in Health Sciences (MSHS) must meet the minimum requirements established by the College of Graduate Studies and the MSHS Program:

  1. A minimum undergraduate grade-point average of 2.75. Applicants must also submit official transcripts for all colleges and universities attended.
  2. Scores for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or other equivalent standardized test for graduate admissions (DAT, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT and PCAT) taken within the past five years must be provided. The standardized test requirement may be waived for students who have: previous relevant graduate degrees; relevant post graduate certificates/licensure, or professional experience.
  3. Three letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with your work and can assess your academic preparation, abilities and accomplishments. These may be from previous instructors, supervisors or professional colleagues who are familiar with your recent activities.
  4. Non-native English speakers who do not have an earned bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited U.S. institution must demonstrate proof of English-language proficiency as indicated in the International Student Admission  section of this catalog.

Application Procedures

Applications may be submitted any time throughout the year. Once a student is admitted into the MSHS Program, he/she may register for courses for the next academic semester.

Applications for admission to the MSHS Program can be completed online from the College of Graduate Studies website ( Follow the College of Graduate Studies applicable policies and procedures. Transcripts must be sent directly from colleges and universities previously attended.

Core Courses (12 credits)

Area of Emphasis (9 credits)

Electives (12 credits)

Students select four additional courses from HSC and/or from other departments across Cleveland State. Students are encouraged to discuss their selection with the MSHS Director or a Program advisor in order to develop a concentration of courses that meets their professional and educational goals. Up to nine credits of graduate courses from an accredited institution may be transferred as electives, with approval from the MSHS Director and the College of Graduate Studies. Students may also complete a related graduate certificate to satisfy the elective requirement.

Graduate Certificate Programs

Graduate Certificate Programs are offered through the MSHS Program and by other departments at Cleveland State University. Detailed information about these programs can be found elsewhere in this Catalog; please refer to the index. In addition, certificate programs may be added at any time. Check the MSHS Web site for updates (

Capstone: (3-6 credits)

Every student must complete a significant, original research project by completing one of the following courses:


The Master’s Project is the more common method of completion of the MSHS degree.  It requires a committee of two faculty– a primary advisor and one reader. 

  is offered as a 3 credit courses each Spring semester.  However, students who need more time to complete their project can register for additional semesters of HSC 692 .

The Thesis is usually completed by students who have plans to pursue doctoral studies.  It requires a committee of three faculty– an advisor and two readers.  It customarily takes two to three semesters beyond all course work to complete the Thesis.  It is strongly preferred that students participate in some aspect of their advisor’s research to complete the Thesis.


  must be taken prior to HSC 692 . This course directly prepares students for the Capstone Experience.  For that reason, it is recommended that HSC 504  be taken later in the curriculum, just prior to beginnning the Thesis or Master’s Project.

Urban Health Track

Qualified students admitted to the CSU Partnerships for Urban Health program may have the the option to complete the partnership academic requirements at the graduate level by completing the Master of Sciences in Health Sciences–Urban Health Track. This track fully integrates a graduate Urban Health Certificate into the Master of Health Sciences curriculum. To qualify, a student must have been admitted to the CSU Partnerships for Urban Health as a postbaccalaureate student and must have already completed most of their undergraduate medical school prerequisites with a competitive GPA (typically > 3.5). Interested students should seek advice from the partnership advisor and will need to formally seek admission to the MSHS program.

Area of Emphasis

Students complete 8 to 11 credit hours of course work that provides a foundation for medical education.


Students take 8 to 11 credits of elective coursework to further build their foundation for medical education, as approved by an advisor.


Students complete a capstone project embedded within the final Urban Health course.