HEC Paris EMBA Admissions: Everything You Need to Know About the Management Test Requirement

The management test requirement is an integral component of prospective admission to the HEC Paris EMBA program. If it’s been some time since you’ve taken an exam, you’re probably nervous. Don’t worry. Our admissions team works closely with Executive MBA candidates through every step of the application process.

If you’ve done your research, you’ll have noticed that some EMBA programs don’t require a test score. So, why does HEC Paris?

Firstly, the HEC Paris EMBA Program is rigorous. Our core courses include quantitative subjects such as accounting, statistics, and economics—in other words, some of the most important fundamentals of business. As such, we require a management test score in order to assess your readiness to embark on the academic rigor of the EMBA curriculum. At HEC Paris, much of the richness of the program is found via class debate, discussion, hands-on learning, and peer-to-peer exchange, so we want to be sure that each and every candidate is ready to contribute from day one. Consider the test a way to prove that you’re ready to be a student again.

We accept any of the following management tests: the GMAT, the GRE, the Executive Assessment, or the HEC Paris in-house management test. From an admissions perspective, they are all weighted equally—we have no preference between any of the four.

Regardless of your results, remember that your test score is only one single element taken into consideration throughout the holistic review process at HEC Paris. Thoughtfully developing the other aspects of your application also have a significant impact on the overall strength of your profile, and demonstrating motivation for our program is also key.

HEC Paris EMBA admissions

The HEC Paris in-house test

The HEC Paris in-house management test is a case study that you will solve during one of your two EMBA alumni interviews. The case itself is a written business problem that will be sent to you on the day of your interview: you will read, assess, and solve the case, devising a strategy and solution for the problem based on the information provided, and you’ll then discuss your recommendations with your alumni interviewer.  The range of subjects that may show up in the case run the gamut of business topics, from Marketing to HR to Talent Management to Expansion, and more.

Your interviewer will assess your ability to synthesize information and present answers based on points you identify in the text.

They may also ask expounding questions to clarify how and why you’ve come up with your answers. Your interviewer will likely challenge you on your recommendations, so you should be ready to defend your thought process or reconsider your point of view.

Here are a few more quick points based on some frequently-asked questions:

How should I prepare for the HEC in-house Management Test? 

Since the In-House Management test is a case study that you well receive on the day of your interview, there is no direct preparation required. We recommend that you familiarize yourself with current business events and business language by reading business journals such as the Economist, the Financial times, and other relevant business publications.

On the day of your interview, you will receive the case and then have 20 minutes to prepare your recommendations and analysis. Remember that there are no right or wrong answers. We are looking at your logical thinking skills, your ability to make sound recommendations, and the way you frame and present your arguments, whatever they may be.

How should I prepare for the GMAT, GRE, or Executive Asessment?

These tests typically require preparation, from a few weeks to a few months, and there are many resources available to help you prepare. Our advice is to acquire prep materials, study, and then register to take a test. You can always take the test again, and we will only ever consider your highest score. Just be sure to plan in advance, and give yourself enough time to retake the test if need be.

When it comes to test preparation, everyone has different needs and methods. Some candidates take formal GMAT or GRE classes, and they find this helps keep them on-track as they study and prepare. Other applicants manage their time and prepare well without any kind of formal classes.

Keep in mind that these tests are all distinct and each will measure your performance differently. You may find that you prefer one over the other, by doing in-depth research and taking practice tests.

Knowing or finding out what methods of study work best for you is also, incidentally, great preparation for the program itself.

We do not require a minimum score for any of these. Regardless of which one you choose, will examine your score among all other elements in your application file. If you don’t do as well as you’d hoped, you may want to consider taking the test more than once to reach your full potential. If you have any doubts about which test to take, you can get in touch with our team by introducing yourself to us here.

I’m unhappy with my score. What should I do?

Talk to us! We are here to advise you and support you through the admissions process. If you would like feedback on your scores before you apply, you can share your scores with us here prior to submitting your formal application. This is the best way to connect with our team and let us know that you’re considering applying to our program.

What are some tips for the HEC Paris in-house management test? 

Take your time to understand and think through the case, and although there is a short time limit, don’t rush to conclusions.

Don’t worry if you’re not sure about the ‘right answer’— there are no wrong or right answers. We are evaluating your capacity to quickly read, understand and present the case at a strategic level.

Be ready for your interviewer to question your recommendations. If they challenge your arguments, this doesn’t mean that you’re not on the right track; they will simply try to understand your thinking, your business acumen, and your ability to perform in a diverse group. Being open to questions while being able to ‘defend’ your answers is important.

Communication is key. Be succinct and clear in your presentation, or interviewers may have a hard time following.

How does the management test factor into my application as a whole? 

Remember, any of our management test options are just one part of your application file. We will assess every single element of your candidature: the depth of your work and professional experience, the quality of your essays, your recommendations, your supporting documentation, your international exposure and leadership potential, your interview performance, and more. Your application should give us a big-picture understanding of your overall EMBA project and should give strong reasoning as to how our program will complement your professional goals.

In sum: we are looking to determine your overall fit with HEC Paris. The management test is only one part of this assessment.

More CEOs of Fortune Global 500 companies have graduated from HEC Paris than any other university in Europe. Nearly 4,000 graduates are currently CEOs, CFOs, or have founded their own companies. According to the Financial Times, the HEC Paris offers the best EMBA program in the world; click here to learn more.

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If you’re ready to take the next step in your EMBA journey, follow this link to introduce yourself