Frequently Asked Questions
How would you quickly describe the Master of Science in Healthcare Decision Analysis (HCDA) program?
In a sentence, “the HCDA program is like an MBA, but uniquely focused on the biopharmaceutical, medical technology, health system and health insurance industries.”
Will I be required to take prerequisites or follow a rigid schedule?
NO. There are no prerequisites for admission, and you do not have to follow any pre-set course sequence. All classes are designed to allow each student to progress at their own pace and to build their base of knowledge from the material presented within each course.
Is the program designed to accommodate working professionals?
YES. Our schedule and courses are designed to take advantage of weekends and independent study using adult education principles. Students will have the choice of traditional or flexible classroom participation to allow for distance learning and time independent lectures. The HCDA program’s flexible options are designed to accommodate individual schedules and reduce travel requirements. For those active working professionals who cannot regularly travel to a traditional classroom there is also a Distance Learning Option.
What if I have to miss a class or weekend?
All classroom lectures are recorded with Panopto and posted following the scheduled class. Students are able to access all materials presented, recorded lectures, and exercise resources via Blackboard.
Do I need a math or science degree to succeed in the program?
NO. While students should possess basic science and math competency — along with some business experience — the program is designed to accommodate and train students representing a wide range of academic experiences from across the globe, as well as business professionals seeking to improve their technical skills and analytical abilities. Once admitted to the program, all students should feel comfortable in completing the required coursework.
Is there a minimum GRE and GPA?
While there is no minimum, a GRE score of 300 (verbal and quantitative) and at least a 3.0 GPA are generally needed to be competitive.
Is financial aid available?
YES. USC administers one of the largest financial aid programs in the United States, with many options available for graduate & professional students, international students, and those with special circumstances. Please contact the USC Office of Financial Aid for more information.