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Our requirements

The Cambridge Executive MBA is a rigorous academic programme. We therefore need to ensure that everyone who attends the programme is of a sufficient standard to manage the intensive and demanding workload. Please read the requirements carefully as they contain important information.

If you are unsure of your suitability for the programme please feel free to submit your CV for review.


Professional experience 7 years' full-time before commencing the programme in September
Academic achievement 1st or 2.1
GPA of at least 3.3
Top 25% of class
GMAT If you feel that the skills covered by the GMAT can be demonstrated elsewhere in your application then you may request a waiver (granted at the discretion of the EMBA Director) - see below
Two references A professional reference
A peer reference
English proficiency English as your native language
IELTS - 7.5 no band below 7.0
TOEFL – 110, with no element below 25
CAE minimum score of Grade A
CPE minimum score of Grade A, B or C

Detailed requirements

Professional experience

Executive MBA applicants must have a minimum of seven years' full-time, post-undergraduate work experience, although most applicants will have more. The admissions committee is especially interested in the professional skills you've developed during your career, and how the Executive MBA will complement and accelerate your career development.

You are expected to continue working full-time whilst undertaking the Executive MBA, providing opportunities both for real-time transfer of learning and for the sharing of professional experiences with fellow students.

Academic achievement

The Cambridge Executive MBA is an intellectually demanding 20-month programme. You must have a good undergraduate degree from a recognised university. The precise qualification may vary, but as a general guide we require the equivalent of a first-class or good upper-second-class honours in the British system, a GPA of 3.3 in the American system, or 65%+ for universities who provide percentage grades.

Scanned copies of your degree transcripts and certificates (both undergraduate and postgraduate where applicable) must be attached to your application via email when you apply for the programme. If your transcripts are not in English you must have these translated and verified by an official source (e.g an official translator or the British Council).


The GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) demonstrates your preparedness for re-entering an academic environment. By taking the test you are helping the Admissions Committee make an informed decision about your current academic ability to undertake the programme. If you feel that the skills covered by the GMAT can be demonstrated elsewhere in your application (through previous qualifications or work experience) then you may request a waiver; this may be granted at the discretion of the Executive MBA Director.

The GMAT is just one of a range of criteria on which admissions decisions are based, and just as a high GMAT score is no guarantee of being offered a place, a more modest score will not preclude an offer being made.

Two references

You need to ask two referees to complete online reference forms. You should ask for references from your line manager or direct supervisor, and a colleague with whom you work closely. We learn a great deal about your background and potential through letters of reference, so please select your referees carefully and tell them how important it is that they provide as comprehensive a reference as possible. They should know your strengths and weaknesses well, and be in a position to comment on you objectively.

English proficiency

Fluency in English is a pre-requisite for the Cambridge Executive MBA, it is important that you can read, write and speak and understand English fluently.

If English is not your first language you must provide us with evidence of your fluency in English.

We require you to provide test results that meet the requirements of one of the tests listed below. Your results must be from a test taken in the two years prior to starting the programme.

  • TOEFL - 110, with no element below 25
  • IELTS - average of 7.5, with no element below 7.0 
  • CAE minimum score of Grade A
  • CPE minimum score of Grade A, B or C

If you scored 7.0 on IELTS or between 100 and 109 on TOEFL, and you feel that you are a strong candidate, you are also welcome to apply. However, we reserve the right to ask you to retake the test to improve your test scores if it is felt that your English is not of a sufficient standard.

We ask you to self-report your scores on the application form. If you are invited for an interview, we will ask you to bring the original English language test certificates with you.


The English proficiency requirement will be waived, at the discretion of the School, if you have completed degree level study in one of the following majority English-speaking countries or if you work in one of these countries or use English Language is your principal working language. 

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • The Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Canada
  • Dominica
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • New Zealand
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • United Kingdom
  • United States of America


Due to necessary IT maintenance you will not be able to access your application form online from 17:00 GMT+1 on Friday 2 June 2017 until 17:00 GMT+1 on Saturday 3 June 2017.

We apologise for the inconvenience that this will cause.

To be considered for our September 2017 cohort please apply via our online application portal.