Research Project (SPHA 590)

The final MHA project is a student’s capstone and is a required course for the Master of Health Administration.

Students present a written report of substantial examination of a relevant pre-approved topic in health care. Topics can be drawn from any aspect of the student’s graduate program or professional experience and plans, and will tend to be oriented to problems and issues of professional practice in health care administration.

Students will complete their project under a one-to-one supervision with a UBC appointed faculty member.

Current MHA students can refer to your canvas site for project guidelines and supervisor information.


Sylvia Xia, MHA Alumni

Small Gestures Matter

Patient shadowing as a simple but effective tool to improve the patient experience

Acknowledging patient wait times, using visual aids to explain a test result, and other small gestures can have a big impact for patients visiting an emergency department.

Using ‘patient shadowing’, Sylvia’s project explored the patient experience at an emergency department, and how healthcare providers can be engaged while empowering patients.


Past students’ research projects

Associate Director of Clinical Chemistry and Immunology Laboratory, Stanford University
590 project:
Clinical Biochemistry (2013). Blood collection tube-related alterations in analyte concentrations in quality control material and serum specimens.

Supervisor: Dr Alan T. Remaley

Registered Dietician, BC Childrens’ Hospital
590 project:
Exemplary Evaluations in a Multicultural World (2015). Mobile Learning in Evaluation for Senior Decision-makers: Evaluation of an Innovative Capacity-Building Initiative.

Supervisor: Dr. Chris Lovato

Policy Analyst, Research and Innovation, Health at Government of Alberta
590 project:
Journal of Public Health (2015) Healthcare avoidance by people who inject drugs in Bangkok, Thailand

Supervisor: Dr. Thomas Kerr

Executive Director (co)
Umbrella Multicultural Health Cooperative
590 project:
Project Title: Development of a program evaluation framework using indigenous methodologies for Tu 'Wusht. 2004
The aim of this research is to explore how improving the appropriateness and effectiveness of research and evaluation with Indigenous Peoples can play a role in the Indigenous path to wellness. This paper addresses this issue by sharing an understanding of the history of Indigenous Peoples in Canada and British Columbia in terms of colonisation, research and evaluation. This includes a literature review of these subjects, and a discussion on their effects on the current health status of Indigenous Peoples. This paper next considers an Indigenous worldview, and how it applies to the research and evaluation setting. Indigenous research and evaluation require a unique approach and specific considerations in research and evaluation design, distinct from a Western approach. Possible useful evaluation frameworks in an Indigenous context include developmental evaluation, empowerment evaluation and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium Indigenous evaluation framework. However, these approaches must privilege an Indigenous worldview and Indigenous methods of data collection. This paper offers an evaluation case study with an Indigenous community program as an example of implementing this work. It also offers lessons and insights on ways to carry out this work in an even better way, in a way that will support Indigenous self-determination.

Supervisor: Dr. Chris Lovato

Provincial Pharmacy Lead, Special Projects and Initiatives at British Columbia Provincial Renal Agency
590 project:
Canadian Journal of Hospital Pharmacy (2014). Decentralized Automated Dispensing Devices: Systematic Review of Clinical and Economic Impacts in Hospitals.

Supervisor: Dr. Nick Bansback

Read more about Clifford Lo's project