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Best Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Programs, Jobs, and Salaries

Esther Kisuke - May 06, 2022


The best online health informatics associate degrees enable graduates to find work in a wide range of careers. Health informatics is the production, organization, evaluation, and review of electronic health records using health information systems. An online health information technology degree is available through many universities and colleges.

Health information technology is all the information science and computer science technology that healthcare professionals use in their patient care. An online associate degree in health informatics offers students a high-quality education on a flexible schedule.

Health informatics associate degree jobs are perfect for graduates because they can begin working right away after graduation. This article will explore what online health informatics associate degrees are, where you can study, the job outlook, and salary expectations to help you navigate online health informatics associate degrees.

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Where Can I Get a Health Informatics Associate Degree Online?

You can get a health informatics associate degree online from a number of top schools, including the University of Alaska Southeast, Northwestern College, Dakota State University, Weber State University, and Davenport University, among others.

What Schools Offer the Best Health Informatics Associate Degrees?

  • Dakota State University
  • Davenport University
  • Northwestern State University
  • University of Alaska Southeast
  • Weber State University

What Are the Admission Requirements for an Online Health Informatics Associate Degree?

Some admission requirements for an online health informatics associate degree include a high school diploma or a similar level of education before you begin, a minimum GPA of 2.0, and the completion of a placement test. These requirements are generally less demanding than bachelor’s degrees for students wishing to pursue a health informatics program. However, each university or college will have its own application requirements.

Generally, you will need to fill out an application form and pay the application fee. Next, you may be required to submit your official high school transcripts or your GED score. SAT or ACT scores may also be required. Some colleges may require a letter of recommendation or an application essay, while others may require drug screening and a criminal background check.

Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Admission Requirements

  • Fill out an application form and complete the online application process
  • Submit GED scores or transcripts
  • Submit SAT or ACT scores, or complete a college placement test
  • Submit a letter of recommendation or application essay
  • Pay the application fee

How to Get a Health Informatics Associate Degree Online

You can get a health informatics associate degree by fulfilling all the course requirements, including completing all 60 credits as prescribed by the learning institution and maintaining a minimum GPA set by the school. An Associate Degree in Health Informatics typically covers online course content worth a minimum of about 60 credits. Some programs, such as the one at Northwestern College, have up to 94 online course credits. This is inclusive of both lectures and practical skills development through supervised professional practice.

Additionally, in terms of actual coursework covered, each student in an online health informatics program must maintain a particular GPA, which means passing with a minimum grade requirement. This minimum is prescribed by the college or university. An online health information technology associate degree program is another program that will allow students to get a job in health informatics and offers students the flexibility they need to balance their education with any other obligations they may have, such as employment.

Health Informatics Degree Requirements

  • Complete about two years of schooling
  • Complete a minimum of 60 credits
  • Complete all coursework with the minimum GPA set by the school
  • Complete all professional practice hours
  • Take the national exam to earn your credentials

Best Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Programs and Schools: Overview

School Program Accreditation
Clarkson College Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Dakota State University Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Davenport University Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Idaho State University Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Lakeshore Technical College Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Minnesota State Community and Technical College Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology/Coding Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Northwestern College Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Northwood Technical College Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
University of Alaska Southeast Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
Weber State University Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)

Best Schools for Health Informatics: Top Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Programs

Below is an expanded list of our best schools for online health informatics associate degree programs. We’ve researched each of these top schools’ requirements and the cost of tuition to help condense your search. There are many resources online to help you know how to learn health informatics and decide if it is the right career path for you. If it is, then you will want to know the best schools for health informatics associate degrees.

One of the key ways to determine the quality of education you will be receiving is to make sure that the school offering the online health informatics associate degree program is accredited. All of the schools on our list meet this requirement.

Health informatics is a specialized field in the medical industry with its own accreditation. The Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) is the accreditation given to universities with health informatics programs. To check the accreditation status of your preferred university, check out the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs (DAPIP).

Below are the top schools offering online health informatics associate degree programs.

1

Clarkson College

Omaha, NE

Clarkson College was founded in 1888 as a training school for nurses under the Bishop Clarkson Memorial Hospital. It has been a respected nursing school since its inception. Apart from nursing, the college offers degrees in sectors of the health industry including community health, administration, and health information management. The Fall 2021 semester saw an enrollment of 1,190 students.

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology

The Associate of Science in Health Information Technology degree requires 64 credits to complete. These credits are divided into courses under general education, support, and specific health information major required courses. Students can choose from the revenue management track or the data management track. This degree prepares you for a career as a medical records and health technician, or a medical and health services manager.

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The core courses in the program include healthcare delivery systems, managing healthcare departments, introduction to informatics, legal and ethical aspects of health information, and others. Additionally, the revenue management track focuses on coding, while the data management track focuses on data analysis and visualization.

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $620/credit
  • Required Credits: 64 credits
  • Program Length: 5 semesters at 9-17 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Clarkson College Graduation Rate: 52%

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.5
  • Standardized Tests: TOEFL, IELTS, ACT English Score
  • Application Fee: $25
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Programs essay, official transcripts

Applying to Clarkson College

  1. Create an account on the school website
  2. Complete the online application
  3. Submit admissions materials
  4. Complete the certification of financial responsibility
  5. Pay fees and tuition

2

Dakota State University

Madison, SD

Dakota State University (DSU) was founded in 1881 as a school focused on teacher education. Over time, the focus shifted toward technology and the university now offers programs with a greater focus on both science and technology. This includes 23 bachelor’s degrees, four PhDs , and seven master’s degree programs.

In the fall of 2021, DSU enrolled 3,219 students from diverse backgrounds. The student body was made up of enrollees from 61 of the 66 counties in South Dakota, 48 states, and 52 countries worldwide.

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology

The Associate of Science in Health Information Technology offered at DSU covers 18 credits worth of general education core courses and 47 credits worth of health information technology courses. Additionally, DSU offers the course content systematically, with each course building upon the previous one.

The degree prepares students for entry-level roles in the medical records departments of healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics, and other medical agencies. Further, graduates have the opportunity to pursue a four-year degree in health information administration.

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $354.75/credit
  • Required Credits: 65 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 13-18 credits per semester, plus 2 summer semesters at 2 or 3 credits
  • Learning Format: Online or hybrid
  • Dakota State University Graduation Rate: 49%

Associate of Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.6
  • Standardized Tests: ACT or SAT
  • Application Fee: $20
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: None

Applying to Dakota State University

  1. Create an online account
  2. Complete the online application
  3. Pay the application fee
  4. Submit transcripts and applicable test scores

3

Davenport University

Grand Rapids, MI

Davenport University was founded in 1866 as a business college and grew into three separate regional colleges. Between 2000 and 2009, these three were merged into the current Davenport University.

Davenport University offers more than 90 undergraduate and graduate programs in arts and science, business, health professions, technology, and urban education. The enrollment for the 2021 academic year was 6,127, with 4,999 new students enrolling in undergraduate programs.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology

The Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology takes two years to complete. The program requires 69 credits of courses covering areas such as foundations of excellence, foundations of health professions, and the main degree course content.

The course content is delivered in real-time and students can receive course credits for certifications such as Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) and Certified Coding Associate (CCA), as well as Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) and Certified Coding Specialist - Physician-based (CCS-P).

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $885/credit
  • Required Credits: 69 credits
  • Program Length: 5 semesters at 12-16 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Davenport University Graduation Rate: 52%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.0
  • Standardized Tests:  SAT or ACT (waived for academic year 2022-2023)
  • Application Fee: None
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Copy of passport, if applicable

Applying to Davenport University

  1. Complete the application
  2. Send in transcripts
  3. Submit relevant test results
  4. Submit financial support documents
  5. Submit a copy of passport photo page, if applicable

4

Idaho State University

Pocatello, ID

Idaho State University (ISU) was founded as a technical institute in 1901 under the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho. Its main focus was on technical and vocational training. For the academic year 2020-2021, the university enrolled 11,766 students, 9,575 of whom were undergraduate students.

Since its inception, the university has grown into a Carnegie-classified doctoral research institution offering programs in the arts, business, health, education, science, engineering, and technology.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology

The Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology degree offered at ISU is a two-year program. Students need to complete a total of 69 credits in order to graduate. Upon completion, students are eligible to sit for the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) exam in order to become certified.

The core courses offered are in health information, health statistics and quality improvement, coding, reimbursement, informatics technology, medical terminology, and medical law and ethics.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $335.03/credit
  • Required Credits: 69 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 16-18 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Idaho State University Graduation Rate: 34%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.5
  • Standardized Tests: ACT or SAT (waived through summer semester 2025)
  • Application Fee: $50
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: None

Applying to Idaho State University

  1. Create an account
  2. Complete the application
  3. Submit high school transcripts or GED results
  4. Submit the application fee

5

Lakeshore Technical College

Cleveland, WI

5

Lakeshore Technical College

Cleveland, WI
| Tuition: $4,484 | Grad Rate: 51%

Lakeshore Technical College (LTU), formerly known as Lakeshore Technical Institute, was founded in 1967. It is part of Wisconsin’s system of technical colleges and offers both in-person and online programs.

LTU offers more than 70 programs as one-year technical or two-year associate degrees. In the academic year 2020-2021, LTU had an enrollment of 2,420 students, with 111 of them enrolling as transfer students.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management

LTU’s health information management associate degree is administered over a period of two years. Students cover coursework totaling 61 credits under general and technical studies. Core courses cover anatomy and physiology, human disease, healthcare systems, medical records, medical terminology, law and ethics, and coding.

Graduates work in settings such as hospitals, outpatient clinics, and insurance agencies. According to the school’s records, 83 percent of May 2020 graduates were able to secure employment in the health information management field within six months of graduating.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $143.45/credit
  • Required Credits: 61 credits
  • Program Length: 4 quarters at 14-16 credits per quarter
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Lakeshore Technical College Graduation Rate: 51%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Admission Requirements

  • GPA: No minimum requirement
  • Standardized Tests: None required
  • Application Fee: $20 (background information disclosure fee)
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Health/TB Tetanus form completion

Applying to Lakeshore Technical College

  1. Create an application account
  2. Submit your application
  3. Complete the Background Information Disclosure form and pay the processing fee
  4. Complete the online student success questionnaire
  5. Complete the technical standards form
  6. Submit your transcripts

6

Minnesota State Community and Technical College

Fergus Falls, MN

Minnesota State Community and Technical College is part of the Minnesota system of state colleges and universities. The system has 54 campuses, which host 30 colleges and seven universities, making it the third-largest system of state colleges and universities, and the largest in Minnesota.

In the 2021 academic year, Minnesota State Community and Technical College saw an enrollment of 5,757 students, 402 of whom were transfer students. There are over 70 programs available in liberal arts, business, and nursing, and they are administered in-person, online, or in a hybrid format.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management/Coding

The Associate of Applied Science in Health Information/Coding is a degree that enables students to apply their knowledge toward diverse roles in health informatics. To complete the degree you will need to have completed a total of 64 credits over the course of two years, 61 of which involve required courses and three credits in restricted electives.

Course content covers human anatomy and physiology, health information management, information systems in health, medical coding, healthcare data management and analysis, and medical terminology. Additionally, students will have an opportunity to take a course preparing them for the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) exam.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management/Coding Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $175.55/credit
  • Required Credits: 64 credits
  • Program Length: 4 terms at 15-18 credits per term
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • MSCTC Graduation Rate: 42%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management/Coding Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 3.0 (or top 50% of graduating high school class)
  • Standardized Tests: ACT or SAT
  • Application Fee: $20
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: None

Applying to Minnesota State Community and Technical College

  1. Create an online account
  2. Complete the online application
  3. Submit high school transcripts or GED
  4. Submit ACT or SAT scores

7

Northwestern College

Bridgeview, IL

Northwestern College was founded in 1902 with the goal of preparing students through career-driven education. In the beginning, this focus was mainly on business-related studies. The current focus of the college’s programs is largely on healthcare and related studies.

The college offers certificate, associate degree, and bachelor’s degree programs in healthcare. Courses can be done in-person as well as online. The Fall 2020 enrollment saw an addition of 462 students with 56 percent of them attending part-time.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology

To complete Northwestern College’s Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology, you will need to complete course content amounting to 94 credit hours. This will be done over the course of eight terms in partnership with healthcare facilities in the Chicago area.

The courses cover health data content and structure, coding and classification, medical law and ethics, information systems in healthcare, medical terminology, and human anatomy and physiology. Additionally, students who are already enrolled in this particular program can earn a certificate in coding, which will strengthen their resumes.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $455/credit
  • Required Credits: 94 credits
  • Program Length: 8 quarters at 6-14 credits per quarter
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Northwestern College Graduation Rate: 67%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: No minimum requirement if SAT/ACT scores or placement assessment examination results are used instead
  • Standardized Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Application Fee: $25
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Placement exam, personal interview, college essay

Applying to Northwestern College

  1. Participate in a career information session with the admissions coordinator
  2. Fill out an application
  3. Pay the application fee
  4. Apply for financial aid
  5. Submit proof of graduation or GED
  6. Submit signed Enrollment Agreement
  7. Submit transcripts of any college or other higher learning coursework

8

Northwood Technical College

Shell Lake, WI

Northwood Technical College began as an industrial, commercial, continuing evening school in 1912. It has remained a technical college since its inception and has had several name changes. In the Fall 2020 semester, 2,818 undergraduate students enrolled in the college, 67 percent of whom were part-time.

The college focuses on providing education that is in sync with market and industry demand. It offers more than 100 programs and certificates related to these demands, opening career opportunities to students in a variety of industries.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology

The health information technology associate degree features coursework totaling 62 credits, taken over the course of two years. Core courses cover medical terminology, health quality management, foundations of health information management, healthcare statistics and analytics, coding, and healthcare law and ethics.

The degree program prepares students to work in roles such as health information management supervisor and insurance and business specialist. Further, there are opportunities for transferring degree credits toward a bachelor’s degree program, which opens opportunities for higher income.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $157.65/credit
  • Required Credits: 62 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 15-16 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Northwood Technical College Graduation Rate: 63%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.1
  • Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER
  • Application Fee: $25
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Review and sign the Background Check Disclosure and Functional Abilities Disclosure forms, complete admissions meeting with admissions counselor

Applying to Northwood Technical College

  1. Determine the program you want to pursue
  2. Apply online and pay the application fee
  3. Apply for financial aid
  4. Submit test scores and transcripts, including any college credits
  5. Speak to an admissions counselor

9

University of Alaska Southeast

Juneau, AK

The University of Alaska Southeast began with Ketchikan Community College in 1954. That same year, the Juneau-Douglas Community College was founded, and in 1972 the Southeastern Senior College was established. In 1987, the university was structured to include all three campuses.

The university’s on-campus and elearning platforms offer studies in the liberal arts, arts, and social sciences. Additionally, the Ketchikan campus is known for being the only maritime training center in the region. In the Fall of 2020, 2,070 students were enrolled in the university, and 70 percent were part-time students.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management

The health information management associate degree requires 62 credit hours. Core courses address topics such as health information management, applied healthcare statistics, coding, medical terminology, legal aspects of health information, and revenue and financial management for healthcare. Students graduate as health information professionals prepared for entry-level employment, with an option to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Information Management.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $234/credit
  • Required Credits: 62 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 15-16 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • University of Alaska Southeast Graduation Rate: 18%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management Admission Requirements

  • GPA: Minimum of 2.0
  • Standardized Tests: SAT, ACT, and Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate
  • Application Fee: $40
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: None

Applying to University of Alaska Southeast

  1. Choose a program
  2. Apply online and pay the application fee
  3. Submit transcripts
  4. Submit standardized test results

10

Weber State University

Ogden, UT

Weber State University was founded in 1889 with affiliations with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. At the time it was known as Weber Stake Academy. In 1933 it became a state junior college and was renamed Weber State University in 1991.

The university offers degrees and certificates and a wide variety of college programs including business and economics, arts and humanities, and social and behavioral science, among others. Enrollment in Fall 2020 was 29,596, with 28,685 being undergraduate students.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology

This health information technology associate of applied science degree requires 58 credits. Course content focuses on developing key practical and technical skills in subject areas such as health informatics, coding, database management and security, and human anatomy and physiology.

Upon successful degree completion, students can secure employment in hospitals and healthcare facilities. Additionally, all graduates of this program must pass the RHIT certification, and 88 percent of graduates are able to find employment within a year following graduation.

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Overview

  • Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM)
  • Tuition: $278/credit
  • Required Credits: 56-58 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 14-15 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: 100% online
  • Weber State University Graduation Rate: 36%

Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Technology Admission Requirements

  • GPA: No minimum requirement
  • Standardized Tests: ACT orSAT
  • Application Fee: $30
  • Minimum Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: Transcripts from college coursework if any

Applying to Weber State University

  1. Create a user account
  2. Fill out an online application and pay the application fee
  3. Submit high school transcripts
  4. Submit test scores

What Is an Online Health Informatics Associate Degree?

An online health informatics associate degree is a study program that focuses on the electronic production and management of health records. Online courses are similar to in-person courses in terms of the course content. The difference is that all learning, communication, assignment submission, course discussions, and examinations take place on an online platform.

Online education courses include aspects of healthcare such as health information technology and business, health sciences, management, and practical lab experience. Additionally, the online classes give students technical skills in coding, data analysis and reporting, legal compliance, billing, and electronic health records.

An associate degree in this field will take about two years to complete. Students also have the opportunity to take the national registry exams to earn the Registered Health Information Technologist (RHIT) credential upon successful completion. Overall, an online health informatics program provides students with more flexibility compared to in-person programs.

Online vs In-Person Associate Degrees

When you’re trying to choose between an online health informatics associate degree and an in-person Associate Degree in Health Informatics, keep in mind that there are benefits to both formats.  Online associate degrees are no different from in-person associate degrees. Primarily, the course content covered is the same whether or not you take online classes. The main difference between the two is the delivery method. In-person classes have a set schedule and students must show up to pass. Online lessons provide learners with a more flexible schedule to accommodate other obligations students may have, such as employment.

Top 5 Benefits of an Online Associate Degree in Health Informatics

  • Affordability. An online associate degree in health informatics is more affordable because it excludes costs and fees such as room, board, and meals on campus.
  • Simpler registration. Registering for online learning is less rigorous and stringent than registering for on-campus learning.
  • Quality education. Accredited learning institutions offer competitive school- and discipline-specific credentials that students can benefit from as they pursue their career goals.
  • Synchronous classes. Many programs offer a live classroom experience, which you can attend regardless of where you are located.
  • Flexibility. Through asynchronous, pre-recorded lessons offered by some institutions, you can benefit from working on coursework whenever is convenient for you.

Top 5 Benefits of an In-Person Associate Degree in Health Informatics

  • Engagement. In-person classes tend to have a higher level of engagement than online classes.
  • Structure. The classroom setting tends to be more structured, enabling a more focused learning environment.
  • No interruptions from technology. In-person classes do not face the challenges that online classes sometimes face, such as intermittent or weak Internet connection, inaudibility, inability to find a quiet space to work, and other technical issues.
  • Direct interaction with peers and teachers. In-person classes allow students to have additional discussions with peers and teachers even after class sessions are done.
  • Access to additional campus facilities. In-person programs readily give students access to additional on-campus facilities, such as libraries and labs.

What Types of Online Associate Degree Can You Get in Health Informatics?

The two types of online Associate Degree in Health Informatics you can get are the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) and Associate of Science (AS). An AAS degree can be pursued at a community college, a vocational school, or a technical college. An AS degree can be pursued at a four-year higher learning institution.

The AS degree prepares students to continue pursuing their studies via a bachelor’s degree program and makes credit-transfer easier. Not all AAS course credits are transferable into bachelor’s programs. Students pursuing the AAS are more likely to have to redo some course content should they later choose to pursue a bachelor’s program.

Is It Better to Get an Associate of Science or an Associate of Applied Science in Health Informatics?

If you want to begin working immediately after graduation, then it is better for you to get the Associate of Applied Science in Health Informatics. This will work to your advantage as there is a high demand for health information technicians. However, if you would like to pursue further education, such as a bachelor’s or a master’s degree, then an Associate of Science degree would be the better option.

The main difference between an Associate of Science (AS) and an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree is that you can join the workforce and begin pursuing a career in health informatics immediately after graduating with an AAS degree. Overall, whether it is better to get an AS or an AAS degree is based on your personal goals in pursuing a career in healthcare.

When it comes to employment at a healthcare facility, although an AAS degree will provide options for immediate employment, a Bachelor’s or Master’s in Health Informatics and Health Information Management offer options for higher incomes.

How Much Does a Health Informatics Associate Degree Cost?

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the average cost of a health informatics associate degree is $11,391 for full-time on-campus learning. This number reflects the average cost of associate degrees in the US. However, an online degree costs much less, without the room and boarding fees. With this consideration, this cost ranges between $3,800 and $18,600 depending on whether the program is offered by a public or private institution. Online courses tend to be less expensive than in-person courses.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Health Informatics Associate Degree Online?

It takes about two years to get a health informatics associate degree online. Most colleges and universities will require students to complete around 60 course credits. At a full course load of 15 credits per semester, this will take four semesters to complete. You can accelerate this by taking a summer semester and completing your degree in a year and a half.

However, if for one reason or another you can only attend part-time, then you can expect this duration to be longer than two years. Most part-time students are able to complete their degree requirements within three years.

Are Online Health Informatics Degrees Respected?

Yes, online health informatics degrees are respected. The National Center for Education Statistics shows that 7,313,623 students participated in remote post-secondary education in 2019. Out of these, 3,450,125 participated exclusively in remote classes.

Recognition and respect has to do with the accreditation status of the learning institution as a whole, as well as the industry-specific accreditation of the health informatics program. If the institution is accredited, then the degree is respected.

Additionally, if the health informatics degree program offered is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) it further validates your studies.

Is Health Informatics Hard to Learn Online?

No, health informatics is not hard to learn online. It is similar to an in-person degree, and you will require the same amount of dedication, organization, and hard work in order to complete your program successfully. The only difference between an online degree and an in-person degree program is that online learning is largely dependent on technology.

Students wishing to learn online will have to meet certain criteria in order to access learning materials and attend live classes. These are mostly technology-related, such as a quality computer with proper functionality and performance and high-speed Internet connectivity, as well as access to a quiet location.

Why You Should Get a Health Informatics Associate Degree Online

You should get a health informatics associate degree online because there are many career paths available for health information technicians. An online Associate Degree in Health Informatics is flexible and affordable, taking a shorter amount of time to complete compared to four-year degree programs. With an Associate Degree in Health Informatics, you can also begin working in your career of choice upon graduation.

What Courses Do You Take in an Online Associate Degree Program in Health Informatics?

The courses that you’ll take in an online associate degree program in health informatics will teach subject matter such as health services information systems, regulatory and legal issues, health insurance and reimbursement, and the documentation and recording of medical information electronically.

Each university or college will have a variety of courses required to complete an online associate degree program in health informatics. These courses often go by different names depending on the institution but cover the same content.

Medical Terminology

This course introduces students to medical terminology and builds the skills needed to analyze, synthesize, write, and communicate medical information using proper medical terms.

Human Anatomy and Physiology

In this course, students will learn the structure and function of all the aspects of the human body. This will cover the physiological, neural, hormonal, and endocrine systems, and how they are interrelated.

Health Information Technology

This course enables students to have a detailed understanding of health information systems, from patient information to administrative, lab, and pharmacy systems. The focus is on the policies and procedures governing the confidentiality, privacy, and security of medical information.

Human Disease

This course focuses on diseases and disorders that affect different body systems, including their causes, signs, symptoms, and diagnostic testing and result interpretation. Medical treatments and surgical procedures may also be covered in this course.

Professional Practice

This course provides students with professional experience while covering the ethical and legal aspects of managing patient records. It also covers the overall management of financial resources.

Continuing Education Paths for Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Graduates

There are many continuing education paths for online health informatics associate degree graduates, including the pursuit of a Bachelor’s or even a Master’s Degree in Health Informatics. Attaining your online health informatics associate degree is not the end of the road. Additionally, you can pursue certification at various levels depending on your career goals.

Three associations that offer professional certification are the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), and the Professional Association of Healthcare Coding Specialists (PAHCS).

Should you decide to continue your studies online, there are a variety of options from which to choose. You can also enroll as a full-time student at some community colleges or other campuses. Either way, there are many institutions that will accept your associate degree credits to offset the bachelor’s degree requirements.

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What to Look For in the Best Health Informatics Associate Degree Programs

What you’ll need to look for in the best health informatics associate degree programs are things like accreditation, cost, and course content. You will first need to have some idea of which direction you would like your career to take. Additional aspects to consider are the program delivery method and whether or not you can get certified or licensed when you complete your course.

Accreditation

Ensure that you make your selection of an online school from a pool of accredited institutions. Additionally, ensure that their accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) is up to date.

Tuition Cost and Financial Aid

Financial information is usually readily available on the school’s website. Look for any costs, fees, or expenses you will incur in addition to the tuition. Additionally, explore any financial aid options available to students learning online. Take advantage of all the ones you qualify for to help keep your costs low.

Course Content

Course content varies a bit from one institution to the next, so review the course content offered to ensure that you get the most out of your education. Depending on the career path you want to take, some courses may be more critical than others.

Program Delivery

Look into how the course content is delivered, whether it’s in real-time or in an asynchronous or a hybrid format. This matters because it will determine how you manage your time and resources in order to make sure that you complete all the coursework required.

Certification

Health informatics is a highly specialized field of study. As a result, it requires additional industry-based certification besides your associate degree. The best online health informatics programs will offer some sort of licensing or certification that enables you to navigate your career with confidence.

What Is the Most Affordable Online Health Informatics Associate Degree?

The most affordable online health informatics associate degree is Lakeshore Technical College’s Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management. The college charges tuition at a rate of $143.45 per credit, making the total cost of tuition $8,750.45 for both years.

It is important to take note that each institution has additional costs for books, supplies, tools, or even uniforms. Take your time to review all the costs involved, and reach out to the school’s administration or finance office to get details on costs.

Can I Get a Health Informatics Associate Degree Online for Free?

No, you cannot get a health informatics associate degree online for free. You can, however, apply for a variety of financial aid options such as scholarships and grants to help you meet your school costs. You can also begin your education using massive open online courses (MOOCs). The Health Informatics Specialization course series on Coursera offered by John Hopkins is a good place to start to become familiar with the health informatics industry.

Salary and Job Outlook for Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Graduates

A person looking at dental x-rays on a computer screen
You can get an online health informatics associate degree from a community college.

There are a variety of health informatics career paths you can get on with a health informatics associate degree. In this section, we’ll look into the different employment avenues and income levels, as well as the general job outlook for associate degree holders in health informatics.

How Hard Is It to Get a Job With a Health Informatics Associate Degree?

It is not hard to get a job with a health informatics associate degree. Your online associate degree is just as valid and competitive as a traditional degree. You have several employment options right off the bat, both at the entry-level and higher if you are certified.

You can become a certified Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) by passing the national exams administered by the American Information Management Association. This will open even more opportunities for growth and advancement in your career.

What’s the Average Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Salary?

PayScale states that the average health informatics associate degree salary is about $64,000. Whether you get an online degree or an in-person one, this amount is the same for both. The exact amount, of course, will vary with each position. For example, PayScale also states that the average salary for an entry-level hospital coder is $40,000, while a medical technologist’s average salary is $59,534.

Your career goals will generally determine the trajectory of how much you can earn in this field. With a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Informatics, you will have opportunities to take on higher-paying roles such as a clinical informatics specialist or a clinical informatics manager, earning an average salary of $78,133 and $97,521, respectively.

What Jobs Can You Get With an Online Health Informatics Associate Degree?

You can get a job in hospital coding, medical billing, medical assistance, medical records, or health technology with an online health informatics associate degree. There are many employment opportunities that exist for someone with an online health informatics associate degree because technology is growing and changing the way healthcare stores information.

You can also advance your career with additional education and become a healthcare consultant . This gives you the opportunity to work with various groups of clients in the healthcare industry in different capacities.

Health Informatics Associate Degree Jobs

  • Medical billing specialist
  • Medical assistant
  • Medical records and health information technician
  • Medical and health services manager
  • Hospital coder

Potential Careers With an Online Health Informatics Degree

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How Much Money Can You Make With an Online Health Informatics Associate Degree?

You can make anywhere between $37,190 and $55,560 per year in your first job after graduating with an online health informatics associate degree. This would likely be from an entry-level position. An associate degree gives you a foot in the door of the health informatics profession. With increased education and certification, you can potentially earn well over these figures.

Additionally, these figures are a general overview and will vary based on your area of specialization and the industry in which you are working. For example, a medical assistant working in an outpatient care center could earn more than a medical assistant working in the office of a physician.

Highest-Paying Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Jobs and Salaries: Overview

Health Informatics Associate Degree Jobs Average Salary
Health Information Technologist $55,560
Hospital Coder $46,660
Medical and Health Record Technician $45,720
Medical Billing Specialist $38,330
Medical Assistant $37,190

Best Jobs for Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Grads

The best jobs for online health informatics associate degree grads are in areas such as health information technology, medical billing, and medical assistance. With your degree, you can quickly land your first role and begin putting your new skills into practice.

When it comes to the job outlook for health informatics associate degree graduates, the Bureau of Labor Statistics database categorizes them under technical roles. Below are the job summaries and outlooks for some of these roles.

1

Health Information Technologist

Average Salary: $55,560

A health information technologist is responsible for the development, design, and modification of computerized healthcare systems. They also collect and analyze the follow-up and treatment of patients. Additionally, they may be responsible for in-house staff training and education to enable the implementation of the healthcare information system.

2

Hospital Coder

Average Salary: $46,660

A hospital coder is a medical records specialist, also referred to as a medical coder. A medical coder keeps accurate medical records and classifies medical and healthcare concepts in the healthcare system. A medical coder’s work adheres to the legal, ethical, medical, administrative, and regulatory requirements of the health system. The information processed is used by medical practitioners in their treatments and as well as for billing claims processing.

3

Medical Health Record Technician

Average Salary: $45,720

Usually using electronic records, medical records technicians keep patient files updated, accurate, and confidential to ensure the best patient care possible. Patient records include x-rays, lab procedures, and office visit summaries.

4

Medical Billing Specialist

Average Salary: $38,330

A medical billing specialist compiles all relevant data necessary for billing purposes. This includes preparing invoices both for medical services rendered, as well as for the shipment or delivery of goods within a healthcare system.

5

Medical Assistant

Average Salary: $37,190

Medical assistants work under the direction of a physician to execute administrative responsibilities, including some clinical duties. Administratively, the assistant will manage scheduling, billing, maintaining health records, and coding for insurance purposes. Clinically, an assistant would take and record vital signs, record patient medical histories, and prepare patients for examination, sometimes drawing blood or even administering medication.

Best Jobs According to Your Major

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Is an Online Health Informatics Associate Degree Worth It?

Yes, an online health informatics degree is worth it if you are passionate about a career path that offers diversity in roles and responsibilities. Getting a health informatics degree online is also very cost-effective and flexible. The time taken to get an associate degree is not very lengthy, meaning that you can join the workforce sooner and begin building experience and expertise.

Further, the demand for skilled labor in health informatics is also growing, meaning that the chances of finding good employment are high. You also have a lot of growth opportunities in your career as well as in your income, should you get a bachelor’s or master’s degree in this field.

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Online Health Informatics Associate Degree FAQ

What is the difference between health informatics and health information technology?

Health informatics is the use of data from computerized systems and programs to understand aspects of patient healthcare and achieve the best possible patient outcomes, while health information technology is the maintenance of these computerized systems and programs to ensure that they serve all who rely on health informatics to do their job.


What role does health informatics play in healthcare?

Health informatics degree holders help medical practitioners analyze and interpret medical data, which enables decision-makers like doctors to plan for, improve, and deliver healthcare services more effectively. Without health informatics, the medical industry would not be where it is today, providing advanced care with more accurate diagnoses and effective treatment plans.


Are there core skills required for a successful health informatics career?

The core skills required for a successful health informatics career are leadership, management, and decision-making skills. If you want to have a successful career in health informatics, you will need to focus on roles that equip you with these skills. These roles include strategic management and planning of health systems, healthcare leadership, systems design and analysis, and clinical analytics and decision support, as well as advanced healthcare information management.

Can I work in health informatics with a data science or IT background?

Yes, you can work in health informatics with a data science or IT background. At the heart of health informatics are information science and computer science. Health informatics does not work without these two components. An Associate Degree in Health Informatics will enable you to translate your IT knowledge into the medical industry.

About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.

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Esther Kisuke

About the author: Esther is a career content writer with over 10 years of experience writing and supporting others in the field. She has pursued a Bachelor’s Degree from Northwestern College and also has a mediation certification from the Mediation Training Institute of Kenya.

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