An Inside Look at a UW HIMT Course: Quality Assessment and Improvement

UW Extended Campus Blog Team August 11, 2020

The health information field is growing. With a degree from the 100% online UW Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management and Technology (HIMT), you’ll learn skills needed to thrive in both health information management and technology-based roles. The HIMT 430: Quality Assessment and Improvement course immerses students in a simulated healthcare-like setting, providing practice in making impactful decisions that improve patient care and other healthcare services.

What will I learn in the UW HIMT course?

In HIMT 430: Quality Assessment and Improvement, you’ll learn about the quality assessment and improvement cycle (Plan, Do, Check, Act), along with the role the health information technologist or manager plays in the process. In addition, you’ll examine the tools used in quality and risk management processes. 

By the end of the UW HIMT course, you will be able to:

  • Organize and coordinate facility-wide quality management and performance improvement programs
  • Analyze clinical data to identify trends
  • Analyze and present data for healthcare decision making (such as demonstrating the quality, safety, and effectiveness of healthcare)
  • Complete all the steps in a health care quality study

The course provided opportunities to investigate, compare data, and create presentations. All of these skills are required in real-world situations. – UW HIMT student

What will the lectures be like?

The course consists of 15 lessons. While not all lessons have a lecture to view, each lesson provides you with a variety of learning resources to help you achieve learning goals. Lessons feature such resources as videos, narrated presentations, animations, academic articles, or textbook readings. 

Like all courses in this program, HIMT 430: Quality Assessment and Improvement offers complete flexibility—you can access course materials at your convenience and there are no scheduled meeting times. You can start and stop a reading, narrated slideshow, or video on your own schedule, and you can listen to, watch, or reference content as many times as you need to reinforce the material. However, there are due dates for activities and assignments to help keep you on track.

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What types of assignments will I complete?

Typical assignments include engaging in discussion boards, writing papers, conducting peer reviews, and analyzing and presenting data. You will also design an easy-to-interpret data dashboard and create a video presentation using Bongo, a video assessment tool that is used in many UW Extended Campus courses. Bongo is integrated with the Canvas learning management system, and it is free for students to use.

What else will I do in the UW HIMT course?

The course is centered around an evolving quality improvement (QI) case study in which you analyze data and propose interventions to improve quality of care. As the semester progresses, you are given more information and tools to use, allowing you to build the case over time. At the end of the course, you will put everything together to create a final presentation that is given to a hospital board of directors. This is your opportunity to impress them with your hard work.

Who is the instructor?

The instructor for this course is Dr. Brenda Tyczkowski from UW-Green Bay. In addition to serving as an academic director of the UW Health Information Management and Technology (HIMT) program since 2010, Dr. Tyczkowski is also an assistant professor for the Professional Program in Nursing at UW-Green Bay. Prior to these roles, she served as assistant to the regional field operations director for the State of Wisconsin’s Bureau of Nursing Home Resident Care, director of training and implementation at American Data, and director of nursing at Good Shepherd Home.

She earned her doctorate of nursing practice (DNP) from the University of Kansas, a Master of Science in Nursing Administration from the UW-Oshkosh, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from UW-Green Bay.

RELATED: From Nursing to HIMT: UW Academic and Program Director Discusses Career Journey and Shares Advice

Dr. Tyczkowski’s teaching emphasis includes leadership and management, nursing care of older adults, theoretical foundations of nursing, women’s health, and U.S. healthcare systems.

Outside the university, Dr. Tyczkowski is active in patient advocacy, organizational change, and quality of care issues in nursing homes. In her spare time, she enjoys quilting, knitting, biking, and spending time with her husband.

Do students in the UW HIMT course interact?

There are a lot of opportunities for student-to-student interaction, not only in discussion forums, but also when providing peer review of each other’s work. 

How much do I do in one week?

You can expect to spend about 9 to 12 hours per week on course activities.

More Information

In addition to the UW Health Information Management and Technology academic directors and other resources offered by your chosen home campus, the UW Extended Campus Student Services team is comprised of Success Coaches. Offering support for academic, coursework, graduation, and personal needs, your Success Coach is there to guide you through the program.

Have questions about HIMT 430: Quality Assessment and Improvement or the online bachelor’s UW Health Information Management and Technology program? Learn about our expert faculty, how to apply, and more. Enrollment advisers are happy to answer any questions. Call 608-800-6762 or email

Programs: Health Information Management and Technology