Program director Lee Bewley
Program director Lee Bewley

A new online degree program at UofL allows working healthcare professionals to turn their employment experience into credit toward a bachelors degree.

The program, offered by the College of Education and Human Development, lets students with at least 2,000 hours’ experience in healthcare and 24 transferable college credit hours work toward a Bachelor of Science in organizational leadership and learning. It’s an example of “competency-based education,” a teaching model recognizing the value of lessons learned outside the classroom through employment, military service or other training. Depending on their proficiency, students can earn up to 48 credit hours for their on-the-job learning.

Classes are offered online as a set of 36 modules weighted at one credit hour each, with the option to test out of a module if the student has already mastered that topic. Students can complete the program in as little as three intensive semesters, or work through it at a slower pace more convenient to them. A Healthcare Leadership Success Coach is also available to provide students with focused academic counseling throughout their time in the program.

“The primary value for students interested in this program is that they will earn a bachelors degree from a nationally-recognized university in a time-efficient and cost-effective manner through a self-paced online curriculum developed to meet healthcare industry standards for leadership development,” said program director Lee Bewley.

The program, accredited at the same level as UofL’s traditional courses, can prepare students for careers in healthcare administration and management. Applications for enrollment are being accepted now, and the first class will begin in the Fall semester with new classes starting the first Tuesday of every month except December.

Bewley said the program is expecting to matriculate about 20 students in its first year, eventually expanding to reach hundreds of students across the country.

Healthcare Leadership is UofL’s first competency-based education offering through the new OnTrack Program and more degree programs are expected soon. More information is available online