Penfield
 
 

FAQ

What are the potential jobs available for an informatics graduate?

• Application developer

• Business analyst

• Clinic health informatics specialist

• Database administrator

• Data Mining Specialist

• EMR (electric medical record) analyst

• Healthcare data analyst

• Human-computer Interaction designer

• Information system officer

• Network administrator

• Quality assurance specialist

• Multimedia designer

• Software engineer

• System analyst

• User interface designer

The U.S. Bureau of Labor forecasts that two of the top ten job growth areas will be in healthcare, and that three of the top ten jobs will be in information technology. The U.S. Department of Labor also includes medical records and health information technicians in its Industry Snapshot for the Health Care High Growth Industry Profile, identifying it as an occupation that is expected to grow faster than average. 

I hear about Computer Science, Information Systems, and now Informatics. What’s the main difference(s) between all three fields of study?

Information around us grows exponentially, but in a manner which is loaded with interrelated and interdisciplinary features. At Mercer University, we believe in offering our students with the latest tools for success in the job market.

Computer Science is the study of the theoretical foundations of computation.

Information Systems is a scientific field of study that addresses the range of strategic, managerial and operational activities involved in the gathering, processing, storing, distributing and use of information, and its associated technologies.

Informatics is information systems contextualized and takes into account specific disciplines such as health and human-computer interaction. Broadly defined, Informatics is the study of how information is effectively processed within the context of various academic disciplines and practical vocations. 

What is the format of course offerings and what are the degree requirements?

The program format is primarily face-to-face with 30% of the core and track courses available online or through a hybrid format. Students interested in becoming hospital employees, medical office employees, public and private health agency workers, web application developers, information technology project managers and designers, data analysts, and database developers, will benefit greatly from our Informatics program and its distinct features. A degree with multiple tracks provides students with an added flexibility.  In addition to general education and elective course work, the Bachelor of Science in Informatics requires 33 semester hours in Informatics core courses, plus 15 semester hours from one of three tracks. A total of 120 semester hours are required for degree completion.

What are the skills that I will gain through the Informatics major at Mercer University?

 • Programming / Scripting 

• Database 

• Networking 

• Software engineering 

• Wed application development 

• Technology and organization 

• Information management 

What are the three tracks in the Informatics degree program?

The three tracks are Health Information Technology (HIT), Web Development and Human Computer Interaction (HCI), and General Informatics. A Student needs only one track to complete the major. However, more than one track may be taken, but this option will significantly reduce the number of elective courses.

Students in the Health Information Technology will be able to:

• Make decisions relevant to the health professions

• Employ techniques useful in the management of medical data

• Communicate effectively so as to implement technical knowledge

 

Students in the Web Development and Human-Computer Interaction track will be able to:

• Employ user-centered system interface design principles

• Develop platform independent informatics applications

• Analyze human-computer interactions to create optimally usable software designs

 

Students in the General Informatics track will be able to:

• Employ informatics operations using computer technology

• Apply basic informatics principles in a variety of disciplines

• Demonstrate interdisciplinary perspective embracing different aspects of the university curriculum 

Will any of my classes be offered online?

The program format is primarily face-to-face with approximately 30% of the core and track courses available online or through a hybrid format. With nearly 30% of the courses being taught online or in a hybrid format, the program will benefit from a wide range of expertise of faculty members in the department for the effective delivery of online courses. One of our goals is to serve nontraditional students who would not normally attend full-time, face-to-face classes. 

What is a capstone course/project?

Students will demonstrate certain learning outcomes within each track by successfully completing a capstone project as part of a student team. The project will occur during the last term of study. Faculty members and a panel of external reviewers from business and industry will evaluate the student teams’ presentations according to a set of predefined criteria.

Where are the classes offered?

All courses are available on campus at Mercer locations in Atlanta, Douglas County (Lithia Springs), Henry County (McDonough), and Macon.

When do the classes meet?

Mercer University’s Regional Academic Centers are designed to meet the needs of working adults. Classes meet on weekday evenings or on Saturdays, once a week for eight weeks. There are two eight-week sessions during each of the Fall and Spring Semesters, as well as one eight-week and one four-week session during the Summer Semester.  Most enrolled students take two classes per session for full time enrollment for the semester, meeting two different days of the week.  

Are any classes offered online?

Many classes are offered completely online, and some classes are offered in a hybrid format - a combination of online and face-to-face meetings.

Can I work and go to school?

Most of our students work, take care of families, and attend classes.

How many credit hours can I transfer into Mercer?

The University Registrar determines which courses taken at other institutions are directly comparable to Mercer’s courses and will be credited toward completion of degree requirements at Mercer University.  Course work with a grade of C- or better earned at regionally accredited institutions will be evaluated on a course-by-course basis and considered for transfer as an equivalent Mercer course or as elective credit.  Remedial or sub collegiate credits will not be transferred.  The maximum credit allowed from all two-year colleges attended is 64 semester hours (96 quarter hours) including all courses taken as a transient student, and no more than 96 semester hours of credit can be transferred from all regionally accredited colleges/universities.  A minimum of 32 credits must be earned in residence at Mercer University for graduation regardless of the number of credits accepted in transfer.

How long will it take me to complete the program?

It depends on how many transfer credits you bring with you and how they fit within the general education and major requirements. All the major classes will be offered within a two-year cycle.

Why do I have to provide immunization records?

Mercer’s immunization policy is a University policy and not an admissions policy, which is designed for the safety of our students.  If immunization records are not released to Mercer before the first semester, you will need to provide them before the end of your first session or it will affect your future enrollment.

How much is tuition?

May I apply for financial assistance?

Financial assistance is offered on a case-by-case basis.  Students may be eligible for federal and/or private loan programs. The Mercer University Office of Student Financial Planning is equipped to provide up-to-date information on financial assistance available to students via federal loan programs.  The first step to apply for federal loans is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FASFA) form, available online. You may complete this form as soon as you apply to the program, but eligibility will be determined only after you have been accepted by Mercer University. Please note that federal loans are available to U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents only.