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 programs don’t require a test score. So, why does HEC Paris?

Firstly, the HEC Paris EMBA Program is rigorous. Its foundations lie in accounting, statistics, and economics—in other words, the fundamentals of business. As such, we require a test score to ensure that everyone in the class starts the program on a level playing field. You will find that much of the richness of the program is found via class debate, discussion, and exchange; we want to make sure that you are ready to contribute from day one. Consider test prep a dress rehearsal for being a student again.

The test requirement itself is for one of the following: the GMAT, the GRE, the Executive Assessment, or an in-house HEC Paris management test. From an admissions perspective, they are all weighted equally—there is no preference between any of the four.

HEC Paris EMBA admissions

The HEC Paris in-house test

The HEC Paris in-house management test is, in its essence, a case study. It is a business problem that you will read, assess, and solve, devising a strategy and solution for the problem based on the information provided.  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.

Interviewers will assess your ability to synthesize the 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.

Regardless of your results, remember that your test score is just a 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.

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

I’m worried about my score. What should I be aiming for?  

We’re just setting a quantifiable baseline in the class. We are simply looking for evidence that you can keep up with the work and make an active contribution.

How should I prepare? 

Candidates generally spend a few weekends preparing for the test. Our advice is to acquire the prep materials, study, and then test. You can always take the test again, but at least you’ll know where you stand. Just be sure to give yourself enough time to retake the test if need be.

When it comes to test preparation, everyone has different needs and methods. Some find a GMAT or GRE class beneficial and say it helps them stay on a studying schedule. Other applicants manage their time and prepare well without any kind of formal session. Knowing or finding out what methods of study work best for you is also, incidentally, great preparation for the program itself.

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

Talk to us! Our average score is representative of a range. Remember, even if your score doesn’t fall within the range of your intake, you can retake the test; we’ll use your best score for the application. The most important thing is to stay in touch with our recruitment team so we can help you make a plan.

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

Take your time to understand and think through the case, and don’t rush.

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 read, understand and present the case at a strategic level and under a tight timeline.

Be ready to be challenged on your solutions by your interviewers. Their questions don’t mean you are not on the ‘right track’; it’s just to understand your thinking, and how you would perform in a group.  Being open to questions and being able to ‘defend’ your answers is looked upon favorably.

Communication is key.  If you aren’t succinct and clear in your presentation, interviewers will have a hard time following.

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

Remember, the test score is just one piece of your application file. We look at the whole picture: the depth of your work and professional experience, the quality of your essays, your recommendations, and your interview performance.

Overall, we are looking to determine your fit with HEC Paris on a variety of levels.


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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