AMGSM-IAE Admission FAQ

Why choose the MSc?

What is the difference between the MSc and the Master’s degree?

  • The MSc is a university degree with five-year tuition after A-levels/high school. It is referenced internationally and this recognition is of major importance to determine future salary.
  • The MSc is a degree delivered by several of the most prestigious French "grandes écoles" (HEC, ESSEC, EM Lyon ... ). 
  • The Master's degree is a national degree with five-year tuition after A-levels/high school and accredited by the French Ministry of Higher Education. It is part of the BMD (Bachelor-Master-Doctorate) progression in Europe.
  • The Master's training offer comprises a lower tuition-hour volume (312 hours) while the MSc proposes a 550-hours tuition volume with an international outlook and innovative pedagogical practices.

What gains can I expect from the MSc in my progression?

  • The MSc's label enjoys high recognition among national and international recruiters. The degree offers a programme which promotes flexibility in the choice of pedagogical content, in experience in professional contexts and in international prospects. The tuition-hour volume is demanding and includes over 550 hours (see "Study Organisation" section²²). The MSc will train you in optimal conditions to adapt to the requirements of the workplace and will enhance your attractiveness potential among recruiters.
  • Moreover, the MSc allows students to choose electives and international seminars, to access our e-learning platform and to take part in projects, challenges and enterprise forums. You may also take part in various Study Tours (to Boston, Raleigh, Toronto, Hanoï…) organised for MSc students. For all these reasons, the MSc offers obvious added value for your professional project and future professional integration.

Can I both apply for the MSc and for the Master's degree?

Applying for the MSc automatically triggers applying for the Master's (there is no need for an additional application). Opting for an MSc at AMGSMIAE offers the opportunity of graduating with a double degree: MSc + Master.

Admission process

What graduation level is required to apply?

  • I hold a Bachelor's degree (3 years after A-levels/high school) or equivalent degree (180 ECTS) => I can apply for the MSc in Management Science (on the AMGSM-IAE's TopApply online application platform, the title is "MSc in Management Sciences in 2 years)
  • I hold a degree with four-year tuition after A-levels/high school or an equivalent degree (240 ECTS) => I can apply directly for entry into the 2nd year of the MSc (on TopApply online application platform, " MSc in Management Sciences - Specialisation - Direct Entry Second Year - duration: 1 year).
  • I hold a degree with four-year tuition after A-levels/high school (240 ECTS) or five-year tuition (300 ECTS) or an equivalent degree => I can apply for the MSc in General Management (on TopApply, MSc "General Management - Direct Entry Second Year - For dual competence profiles - duration: 1 year").
  • Applications as part of a continuous education progression. Candidates must hold a degree with three/four-year tuition after A-levels/high school (180/240 ECTS) or a certificate validating professional experience ("validation des acquis professionnels"/ V.A.P) with 3 to 5 years of professional experience.

I am completing my third year of a Bachelor's degree in law, letters or human sciences, or in a scientific or technological discipline. Can I apply for the MSc at the AMGSM-IAE?

Yes, you can. The MSc has been designed to welcome students from all backgrounds. Both geographical and disciplinary diversities are warmly encouraged at AMGSM-IAE. The MSc's 1st year deals with general subjects and facilitates the acquisition of basic notions for students who have not yet followed economic, financial or management courses. Recruiting companies are looking for highly diversified profiles. Literary or scientific backgrounds are valuable professional assets.

What the School expects from candidates:

  • High academic level in your original Bachelor's degree
  • A good grasp of English and aptitudes for management (as evidenced in your test scores)
  • High personal motivation (extensive reading and personal research, jobs, social activities, etc.)
  • A coherent and structured professional project
  • An international outlook (stays, jobs, internships) and experience in the corporate workplace (internships, summer jobs, sandwich courses/alternative education) will be highly appreciated (see details in the section below devoted to "recruitment and application file").

How do I apply for the MSc?

Online application is the only standard procedure since application files are digitalised. Please go to the School's website at http://www.iae-aix.com in the admission section and access to the TopApply application platform. After creating your login and password, you may access the platform as many times as you need to modify application data (by downloading grades, test scores, letter of motivation, CV, etc.). The deadline for application is in mid-May.

Tips on what a "good" application file looks like

What the School expects from candidates:

  • High academic level in your original Bachelor's degree
  • A good grasp of English and aptitudes for management (as evidenced in your test scores)
  • High personal motivation (extensive reading and personal research, jobs, social activities, etc.)
  • A coherent and structured professional project
  • An international outlook (stays, jobs, internships) and experience in the corporate workplace (internships, summer jobs, sandwich courses/alternative education) will be highly appreciated.

Based on application files, candidates are short-listed. Then, if your aplication is considered, you will be invited for an interview with a jury.

What is the cost of applying?

Processing an application entails no cost. Application is free.

What is the application deadline?

Mid-May 2017

Is it mandatory to validate international experience to be recruited by AMGSM- IAE?

This validation is not a mandatory requirement for admission. Nevetheless, if you cannot present significant international experience (over 3 consecutive months as an exchange student in an international university, as a break year student or as an intern abroad, or some type of work experience as an "au pair") you will have to complete an international term abroad with one of our partner universities (applicable only to MSc 1st year). Pre-acquired international experience is mandatory for the specialised MSc 2. Internationalisation is at the core of the AMGSM-IAE's strategy. That is why all of our students benefit from international exposure one way or another through positions of significant duration abroad before or in the course of the programme.

I have gained experience abroad on several occasions since my young age, but never over 3 consecutive months. Is that experience considered significant enough as international exposure by the IAE?

No, it is not. AMGSM-IAE does not hold intermittent and short stays abroad as valuable forms of international exposure: life with expatriate parents before the age of 18 or language stays of less than 3 months before A-levels/high school are not considered as international experiences.

I will apply to AMGSM-IAE but also to other schools. Is that a bad point?

Quite the opposite! You will be wise to apply to several schools at the same time, provided your applications are consistent with your professional project. For instance, if you apply for several marketing programmes, you will be asked to mention which ones in your application file, and to detail which criteria have guided your choice. This may be interpreted in a positive way when analysing your application because it may illustrate your ability to build a real strategy for further training.

May I apply for several programmes proposed by AMGSM-IAE?

Yes, you may, but you have a maximum of 3 choices. One of the criteria for admission is the coherence between your professional project and your training objectives. For instance, applying for an audit programme and a financial management programme seems logical in the perspective of a professional project aimed at financial missions.

In case I apply for several programmes proposed by AMGSM-IAE, should I submit several application files on the TopApply online application platform?

No, it is not necessary. A single file is needed together with the supporting documents mentioned below.

Which supporting documents should I attach to my online application for the MSc?

Applications are online only and all documents are digitalised. The main supporting documents are the following:

  • A letter of motivation which defines your professional project
  • 2 CVs, one standardised CV and one personalised CV
  • Available grade reports for the 3 previous years
  • Two cover letters (one academic, one professional)
  • Scores for the Management Aptitude test (Tage Mage or IAE message)
  • Scores for the English test (TOEFL, TOEIC, IETLS or GMAT)
  • Identity photograph
  • Identity card/document

As fot the standardised CV, it will be forwarded to companies when looking for alternative education positions in firms. We routinely forward CVs to our partner enterprises but all international students are not eligible for alternative education programmes. Please note that special care is required for spelling, syntax and content. CVs should not exceed one page.

Based on this file, candidates are short-listed. Then if your application is considered, you will be invited for an interview with a jury.

I have had a look at the TopApply online application platform and I feel I need some help to make my choice. How can I avoid making mistakes?

Choosing the right programme will depend on your academic level. TopApply programme titles are the following:

Your academic level at application time

Programme choice

TopApply titles

Programme

duration

Observations

3-year (on-going) higher education degree or equivalent

Specialised MSc

 

2 years

Choose a specialty for the 2nd Year: scroll down and prioritise 3 choices out of 9 specialties

4-year (on-going) higher education degree or equivalent

Specialised MSc  – Direct Entry Second Year

1 year

4-year (on-going) higher education degree or equivalent

 

General Management MSc – Direct Entry Second Year

1 year

 

Open to all types of profiles except economics, financial management and management : engineer, pharmacist, lawyer, social scientist, foreign languages with international business option

 

5-year (on-going) higher education degree or equivalent

 

General Management MSc – Direct Entry Second Year

 

 

Open to all types of profiles: engineer, scientist, pharmacist, foreign languages with international business option + C1 level in English

 

Open to all types of profiles except economics, financial management and management: engineer, pharmacist, lawyer, social scientist, foreign languages with international business option

 

If I opt for the English track and my level falls short of requirements in the admission test in English, is my application rejected outright?

No, it is not. Your application remains valid for the programme and will be examined for the French track.

​I would like to validate my application but my referent person has not answered yet.

Your referent person will be able to answer the form (sent via the application platform) after the application deadline and file validation.

What shall I do in case I do not have my latest grade reports before application deadline?

If you do not have your previous term's latest grade reports, you can apply and validate your application. However, you will have to download them as soon as you receive them and bring them with you for your interview.

When will selection interviews take place?

Selection interviews will take place end of May / befinning of June.

Can I use telephone or videoconferencing facilities for the interview?

You have to be physically present for the interview, except in the following cases:

  • You are on an internship or on a study programme abroad (applicable only outside Europe): please contact the school as soon as possible to communicate your dates of absence and provide a document as proof of evidence. If possible, a Skype or videoconference interview will be proposed.
  • You are an international student and your place of residence is outside France: you may also benefit from a videoconference or Skype interview provided the pedagogical director of the programme agrees.

In case I am admitted in MSc 1st year, do I have to renew my application for the 2nd year of specialisation?

Yes, you have to. Yet, the application file will be "lighter". You will have to provide some support documents such as: a photograph, a standardised CV and the grade report of the previous year.

I am applying for the 1st year of Specialised MSc with programme choice for the 2nd year. Can I change programmes in the course of the year?

Reorientations within the different programmes of MSc 2nd year are possible, but they are conditioned by how your professional project evolves, available places, and acquired competences. The advice of the programme pedagogical director is absolutely necessary. This type of reorientation is possible but under strict conditions. The deadline for programme change is the 1st December.

Tests results required in your application file

Are English and Management tests compulsory?

Yes, they are. The AMGSM-IAE's policy is to require these two tests in the application process. To secure international accreditations (EQUIS and AMBA), the School has to provide evidence of highly selective application procedures. These tests contribute to training high-level participants. However, test results only provide a part of what is taken into account when selecting candidates. Assessment is comprehensive and considers other criteria such as your academic level in previous studies, international outlook, experience in the workplace , motivation, professional project, etc.

For the Management test, does IAE Score Message or Tage Mage give you a head start?

Either test is indifferently accepted. The fact that the Score IAE Message (SIM) test has been developed by the IAE network in France (University Business schools) does not confer any particular advantage in the selection process.

Which tests of English can I use to apply?

  • TOEFL, TOEIC and IELTS English tests are accepted.

I passed the TOEFL English test last year. Am I to take it again?

You may take it again to improve your scores, but we accept scores obtained less than 24 months ago.

Who is responsible for forwarding my scores? It is the organisation or me?

Either process is acceptable.

1/ You may ask the organisation to forward your scores to AMGSM-IAE, in which case please indicate that option when you take the test by entering the code of our school. The identification code of the AMGSM-IAE varies depending on which test you take and can be accessed on the TopApply online application platform.

  • TOEFL (iBT), TOEIC and GRE: 9113
  • Tage-Mage: 201
  • GMAT: N09-SQ-65

2/ You may alternatively forward your scores to AMGSM-IAE by downloading the scanned copy of your official results into the TopApply online application platform.

What scores are required for the English and Management aptitude tests to secure potential admission?

These test results are some among the numerous criteria coming into the selection process. There are no barrier-to-entry results but good scores significantly improve recruitment chances.

A better grasp of English, and so a higher level, is expected if you apply for the English track.

MSc programmes: expected scores

 

MSC 1

MSc 2 Specialisations
 

MSc 2 General Management

General Management English track

TOEFL iBT

80

95

TOIEC

780

900

TAGE-MAGE

280-300

300

IAE score-message

200-210  (for MSc 2 Marketing and Brand Management, minimum score is 240)

What happens in case I do not have my test results at application deadline?

If you do not have your results, you cannot finalise your application. If you expect results for tests taken before mid-May, please:

  • indicate test date on the TopApply online application platform
  • make sure you forward results and score sheet to AMGSM-IAE before the final deadline.

MSc studies organisation

What is the pedagogical content of the MSc?

The programme is based on the rationale of a 2-year study progression with direct access in 2nd  year as an option.

The programme's architecture comprises  3 blocks:

 

Subject themes

 

Hour volume

Block 1

Fundamentals

312 hours

Block 2

Personalised "à la carte" programme adapted to personnal professional project

(electives + international seminars + Study Tour)

144 hours

 

Block 3

Targeted projects and pedagogical activities

72 hours

  • Projects (consulting project, business project, speedworkshop)

24 hours

  • Challenges/business games

24 hours

  • Job fairs and other professionally-oriented events

24 hours

 

When I apply for the MSc on the TopApply online application platform , how many choices can I take?

  • 3 choices are available in all cases. Priority is given to choice No. 1.
  • If you apply for the 1st year of the 2-year Specialised MSc, prioritising your choices is important and must be consistent with your motivation and professional project.
  • If you apply for direct access to the 2nd year of the Specialised MSc: since it is a graduating and professional specialty, you have to provide evidence of professional experience in an internship adapted to the speciality of your choice. For instance, if you apply for the MSc Marketing and Brand Management, you have to provide evidence of 12-month professional experience in internship or alternative education with missions such as product assistant-manager or data analyst in a polling institute.

How does the programme develop at AMGSM-IAE?

Programme development will differ whether a break year proves necessary or not to access specialisation year in 2nd year. Moreover, new legislation limits the duration of internships to 6 months. This has led AMGSm-IAE to restructure the 1st year for students who are advised to take a break year.

The break year

What is a break year and what is the use of it?

At the IAE, breaks are built in the pedagogical structure of the 2-year MSc. They are schemes which allow for alternative periods of study and long-term internships in firms. Break years play a vital role in helping you to confirm your programme choice, to reinforce certain competences which are necessary for furthering your training, or to acquire professional experience in France or abroad.

Opting for an internship in break year often proves to be a valuable asset for your future professional integration in the marketplace.

Are break years common?

According to a recent survey, more than half the students aged 18-24 take break years. Most business schools and some engineering schools offer break years before their final years of study. Some business schools have even made break years mandatory in their programmes. At AMGSM-AE, nearly 60% of 1st-year students take break years before moving up to 2nd year.

Who decides on taking break years?

AMGSM-IAE proposes break years which take place at the end of 1st year. You may also request taking a break year but you need the School's permission.

When does break year come into effect and when is it time to decide on the break?

Break years take place between the 1st and 2nd years. Yet, students are advised long before, during the admission interview at AMGSM-IAE. Depending on your background (academic record and professional experience) and your programme choice for the 2nd year, AMGSm-IAE will provide a progression roadmap. Several options are open, but a single programme adapted to your situation will be proposed.

  • professional programme (internship or alternative education) with or without break
  • international programme (university exchange) with or without break.

For more detailed information, please refer to question "How does the programme develop at AMGSM-IAE?" in the "Organisation of MSc studies" section above.

If a programme with break year suits my needs, what am I to do?

First, you have to confirm your choice on admission or within 1 month after admission at the latest. A roadmap presenting objectives targeted for 1st year will help you to prepare for break year: internship in France or abroad, university exchange...

Shall I still be a AMGSM- IAE-registered student during break year?

Yes, you will. You will enjoy full student status throughout the year. As a result, with break year programmes, students get all their internship conventions signed by the School. Moreover, during your break year, one support personnel dedicated to break-year students will ensure follow-up help for administrative procedures.

May I go on a break year after 2nd year?

No, you may not. Break years concern 1st year students only and must be taken when 1st year is completed.

If I am a student registered in another school, may I access 2nd year directly at AMGSM-IAE and take a break year before 2nd year?

No, you may not. In the context of AMGSM-IAE, our break years only apply for students who register for a 2-year programme at the School.

Can I still benefit from my CROUS scholarship during break year?

Yes, you can, since you enjoy full student status. You can apply for a CROUS scholarship if you still meet the necessary requirements for eligibility.

How much shall I have to pay for tuition fees during break year?

Tuition fees approximately amount to €480.

Apprenticeship at AMGSM-IAE

Which types of apprenticeship contracts are accepted at the AMGSM-IAE?

Two types of contracts are accepted by the School: internship contracts or professionalisation contracts. Firms choose the type of contract they wish to apply within the Apprenticeship scheme, depending notably on criteria linked to the age of learners. In the 2015/16 academic year, 215 Apprenticeship contracts were signed. Thus, roughly one third of students pursue their programmes through internships or professionalisation contracts.

Within Aix-Marseille University, the AMGSM-IAE trains the largest number of apprentices at 4-year or 5-year academic levels.

Developing apprenticeship is one of the School's major "ACE" strategic axes. "ACE" stands for Attract, Connect, Excel. One of the IAE's priorities is to attract and train tomorrow's talents with leading and committed enterprises, and facilitate optimal professional integration for graduates.

Which progammes are open to alternative education?

Most of our initial training  programmes are open to apprenticeship. However, the 2-year programme features one particular case. If you do not have significant international experience on admission, you will not be eligible for A

apprenticeship. International experience over 3 consecutive months is a necessity for studies and you will be required to go abroad in your 1st year.

I am an international student. Can I use alternative education for my training?

International students are eligible for apprenticeship provided they are not newly-arrived students: they must have lived in France for more than one year.

If I already have an apprenticeship contract, do I get automatic admission at AMGSM- IAE?

No, you do not. Regular admission conditions and procedures still apply. Holding an Apprenticeship contract is one among many criteria that are used to assess applications.

Can I get help from the AMGSM- IAE to find an apprenticeship contract?

Yes, you can. Several assistance services operate (for MSc students):

  • students are invited to attend the annual apprenticeship Fair in July (+50 firms take part)
  • introduction in a CV book (composed of students' standardised CVs) forwarded to partner firms
  • Access to the School's apprenticeship service
  • Access to the School's career service which offers support to prepare CVs and training for job interviews
  • Access to the Job fair in November (+50 firms take part)
  • Access to the school's job platform.

In all cases, apprenticeship mission projects will have to be validated by the director.

What is the deadline to find a contract?

Within 3 months following the beginning of the programme where you are registered.

If I am an apprentice, on what time basis shall I have to work in the company? 

The AMGSm-IAE's policy is to favour long-term presence in the workplace rather than short and fragmented periods. Rhythm varies somehow depending on contracts, but, as a rule, your corporate missions will cover the following periods of the year:

  • between mid-December and late February (from 1 to 2 months);
  • from May until September (from 4 to 6 months).

Long-term periods determine quality missions which are required for 4-year or 5-year higher education degrees. They also facilitate alternative missions all over France, which short-term school/firm training cannot guarantee.

I shall be 26 in the course of my 1st year. Shall I be eligible for an apprenticeship contract?

For apprenticeship contracts: 

Yes, provided your birthday falls on the day the contract is signed at the latest. Indeed, legislation stipulates that students must be younger than 26 when the contract is signed. Exceptions to the age limit may be granted in the following cases:

  • when the contract or the proposed apprenticeship period follows a contract or an apprenticeship period that has been completed and when it leads to a higher degree than that obtained in the previous contract or apprenticeship period. The apprenticeship contract must be signed within no more than one year prior to the termination of the previous contract;
  • when the apprenticeship contract concerns a person who is registered as a handicapped worker;
  • when the apprenticeship contract concerns a person who has a project to create or take over a firm, the completion of which is conditioned by obtaining the degree that validates the on-going training programme.

For professionalisation contracts:

Signing such contracts is open to all students who are more than 26 years of age if they are job-seekers.

I am an international student. Can I apply for an apprenticeship contract?

For apprenticeship contracts: 

To be eligible, foreign students must have a resident's permit and a work permit when the contract is signed, except for students who have already taken one year at Master's level and who wish to move on to 2nd year in apprenticeship.

For professionalisation contracts:

To be eligible, foreign students must have a resident's permit and a work permit when the contract is signed.

Is there a trial period in apprenticeship contracts?

Yes, there is. The trial period covers the first 45 consecutive days in the workplace.

Degree and tuition fees

How much shall I have to pay in tuition fees if I apply for the MSc?

Tuition fees are presented below:

  • MSc 2-year programme: €8,400
  • Direct entry into MSc's 2nd year: €4,800

MSc registration includes the possibility of applying for the Master's degree. In that case, tuition fees for the national degree are to be added, together with student social security, for a total amount of about €480.

How much shall I pay if I wish to apply for programmes other than the 2-year MSc?

Please note that special provisions may apply if you benefit from a national higher education scholarship (CROUS) or if you are a ward of the state ("pupille de la nation"). These conditions are detailed in the registration brochure you will receive after admission.

How much shall I have to pay in fees if I leave AMGSM-IAE after 1st year considering I had registered in 2-year MSc?

You will have paid your 1st year, that is to say €4,200. There is no refund on fees.

If I leave the AMGSM-IAE after completing my MSc's 1st year, what sort of degree am I entitled to obtain?

None, because the MSc degree is validated for a training period that covers two years of higher education. Degree validation by module equivalence for students accessing 2nd year directly is possible, but the opposite is not applicable. A certificate of pursued modules, grades and credits may be delivered to students who decide to leave.

Does the AMGSM-IAE offer student scholarships?

There are no institutional scholarships. However, a commission on financial assistance examines applications filed for criteria based on social considerations and academic excellence. It may propose instalment schedules to spread payment over time, or fee reductions.

There are national or international scholarship programmes (CROUS, Eiffel, Embassy scholarship, etc.) or regional mobility schemes. Aix-Marseille IAE students may apply provided they meet these programmes' respective conditions.