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INSEAD Course/Program Name
Application closes on
National :21 Sep 
International :21 Sep 

MBA Decision Sciences

 Course Level
Full Time

10 Months
 Start month

 Tuition fee

77000 EUR
77000 EUR

Application fee

International 250 EUR
National 250 EUR
Decision Sciences
Scores accepted
IELTS (min)7.5
TOEFL-IBT (min)105
TOEFL-PBT (min)620
GRE (avg)325
GMAT (avg)702

World B-School Ranking

About this course

The area of Decision Sciences includes risk management, decision making under uncertainty, statistics and forecasting, operations research, negotiation and auction analysis, and behavioural decision theory.


Check further details on University website

Eligibility Criteria

Academic foundation: Bachelor’s degree or equivalent from a recognised college or university (although in exceptional circumstances, we may waive this requirement for outstanding candidates with substantial professional experience). Many of our applicants have advanced degrees but this is not compulsory. To assess your academic background, we consider the competitiveness of the institution you attended and your academic performance.

GMAT: all applicants are required to take a GMAT test as it provides us with a standardised way of evaluating candidates. While we do not have a minimum score required for admission, we advise candidates to aim for a score at or above the 70th-75th percentile for both the quantitative and verbal sections of the GMAT. Please keep in mind, however, that standardised tests are just one of several admission criteria. A high score does not guarantee admission, and a below average score does not eliminate a candidate.

In countries where the GMAT test is not offered, we will accept a GRE test instead. Similarly, a GRE test is acceptable for prospective students looking to follow the Dual Degree path. A score above 85% for the quantitative and verbal sections of the GRE is highly recommended.

Check further details on University website

Course Modules

Core Courses

Uncertainty, Data and Judgment

  • The goal of this course is to provide a solid foundation in probability and statistics for subsequent courses at INSEAD and for a management career beyond. After all, most management decisions are made under conditions of uncertainty. So you will need a framework for thinking about problems involving uncertainty and, building on this framework, some tools for interpreting data. These are precisely the tools and frameworks that this course provides. While some technical analysis is essential, the content is presented from the perspective of a future manager, rather than from the viewpoint of a technician. As well as learning from lectures, exercises and case studies, you will use computer software to make calculations and analyse data.


Elective Courses

Big Data and Analytics for Business

  • This class focuses on Big Data and Data Analytics for business. The goal of this class is to equip participants with the skills for analysing data and understanding the outcome of such analytics for the purpose of making sound managerial and investment decisions. You will also learn practical tools to implement the analytics discussed.
    We will develop skills and frameworks for big data analytics applicable to a wide range of business cases, from Marketing, to Finance, to Operations. We will cover techniques such as factor analysis and positioning methods, discriminant analysis and targeting methods, and cluster analysis and segmentation methods. These techniques are useful for example in market segmentation and targeting or mapping market structure and product design related to your Foundations of Marketing core class, as well as for Operations or Finance.
    Although it will not be a technical class (everyone can attend), the material covered in the core course Uncertainty, Data & Judgment is a prerequisite: this class will be to some extend a hands on continuation of UDJ. The course will have a heavy "hands-on" flavour, where we will analyse datasets using state of the art (cloud based) data analytics software tools - which you will be able to use in your future jobs. As we will be doing hands on exercises during the class, participants are expected to come to class with a laptop.

Management Decision Making

  • This course focuses on the behavioral aspect of judgment and decision making. How do people make decisions? What are the common pitfalls of managerial decisions? A large amount of research in recent years shows that people rely on a small number of heuristics in making decisions. These heuristics are extremely useful: they’re fast and easy, we tend to use them in an automatic way and they probably get us close to the right answer much of the time. However, they can also lead to serious mistakes. There are numerous examples of important decisions that have gone badly because of over-reliance on heuristics. While intuition often serves us well, there are many decision traps that we tend to fall into on a repeated basis. These traps relate to how we think about risk and probability, how we learn from experience, and how we make choices individually or in groups. The objective of the course is to improve your decision making skills by illustrating these traps and suggesting how to avoid them: Knowing what can go wrong and knowing the right questions to ask will help a decision maker or a manager think smarter, and maybe only a little harder.
    Even completely rational participants will find Management Decision Making useful: the course will describe how other people make decisions. Managers, consumers, investors, and negotiators all fall into the traps. Therefore, understanding the psychology of decision making can give you a competitive advantage.

Models for Strategic Planning

  • This course will show you how to approach decision making in a wide array of business settings with the help of spreadsheet models. It relies on building decision models in Excel with the help of specialized “add-ins”. The course helps students develop (1) conceptual skills, i.e., how to frame a complex managerial decision problem in the form of a model; and (2) technical skills, i.e., how to build, use, and derive insights from decision models. Because modeling expertise can only be acquired through practice, the course is based on a “Learning by Doing” philosophy, and it follows a hands-on, workshop format.
    The material is approached from a managerial rather than technical perspective, that is, with a focus on how to apply decision technology, and how to interpret the results for guiding management, as well as individual, action. This course is recommended for individuals planning to pursue careers in consulting, corporate finance, data science, information systems, marketing strategy, entrepreneurship, or general business analysis, as well to those who are overall interested in decision making.

Learning Objectives and Outcomes

  • become aware of the scope of management problems that can be addressed with models;
  • be able to identify the essential conceptual structure of a decision/planning problem;
  • recognize the types of models and tools most adapted to a given situation;
  • acquire the computer skills necessary to set up and run decision models;
  • know how to assess the significance of model outputs for managerial insights and action;
  • acquire structured style of thinking to approach and discuss managerial problems.


This course explores the ways that people negotiate to create and claim value, and to overcome common as well as complex negotiation obstacles such as the tension between the substance of the negotiation and the relationship between or among the parties. This course aims to enable you to become a more effective negotiator, and to improve your ability to manage differences of opinion. Specifically, this includes providing or helping you enhance:

  • The ability to create value and execute deals that others might overlook;
  • The strategic skill to garner your fair share of what is negotiated;
  • The ability to avoid common mistakes made by negotiators;
  • The understanding of your own ethics and style, and that of others;
  • The ability to work with people whose backgrounds, expectations, and values differ from your own;
  • The ability to analyze negotiations at a more sophisticated level;
  • The opportunity to practice your negotiation skills with the direct feedback from your peers and professor; and
  • The capacity to reflect and learn from your experience and that of others.
  • Participants engage in a series of hands-on negotiation simulations set in domestic and international contexts, building from simple two-party encounters to complex multiparty scenarios. The simulations emphasize psychological aspects of bargaining, value creation and distribution, coalition dynamics, and intra-team negotiation, with a special focus on organized preparation and process analysis. We will develop a set of conceptual frameworks that should help you diagnose problems and promote agreement, both outside and inside your organization, and thus become a more effective and reflective negotiator.

Pricing Analytics

  • Pricing has been proven to be the single most important lever of profits. This course provides participants with tactical pricing principles and tools to extract maximum profits from a firm’s assets. It addresses the challenges of selling the right product to the right customer at the right price and the right time.
    Within the broader area of pricing theory, this course focuses on tactical (as opposed to strategic) management of pricing and/or capacity allocation decisions, tackled using (a) quantitative models of demand and consumer behaviour, and (b) the tools of constrained optimization -- the two main building blocks of revenue optimization systems. Specifically, the course will show (1) how to identify opportunities for pricing analytics, (2) quantitative tools (spreadsheet models) for implementing pricing analytics principles, (3) methods to evaluate the impact of pricing analytics on a particular business, and (4) current practices in various industries.
    As many firms today still have a largely ad-hoc approach to pricing, this course will give students an edge in a growing market. Pricing analytics is increasingly relevant in many industries, including transportation, tourism, rental/leasing services, hospitality, retail, manufacturing, entertainment/ticketing, internet publishing, media/advertising, cloud services and telecom. The course is particularly relevant for those contemplating a career in, or consulting to, one of the above industries.

Understanding and Managing Risk

  • Business, investments, and personal decisions are all about taking calculated risks. There is rarely an important decision where uncertainty and risk are not a key determining factor. This course is about helping participants better understand, assess, and manage risk under very diverse types of context.
    This course considers Risk Management more Art than Science. We start with a discussion of the different types of business risks senior managers face in today’s interconnected global environment and explore the effectiveness of different risk management tools. The course provides students with a framework to assess and manage risk in a variety of professional settings and generate a critical discussion of the present best practices.
    By injecting a good dose of skepticism towards so-called perfect solutions and close-end systems, it will become clear that a major shift in the mindset of individuals and corporations is required to recalibrating the risk management functions in corporations and make Risk Management part of the established management processes.
    The students will be asked to go beyond the statistical side of risk measures, understand the necessity to seamlessly integrate the judgment of risk and risk management into the business flow and will in the process explore the reasons behind some of the more spectacular failures of risk management in recent history.

Check further details on University website

How to Apply

Documents Required

English language certification (Only required if English is not your native language)

We accept TOEFL, TOEIC, IELTS, Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic, and the Certificate of Proficiency in English test. For INSEAD purposes, scores are valid for two years. With the TOEFL, please arrange to have ETS send your test scores directly to INSEAD, code 0970. For PTE Academic, the relevant code for INSEAD is:22W-R2-00. As with the GMAT, a copy of your score report is sufficient for us to begin evaluating your file. Your original test score report will only be required later on during the evaluation process.

You can also demonstrate fluency in English by a degree from a university where all courses were taught exclusively in this language. If your university degree was exclusively taught in English but in a non-English speaking country, proof that the language of instruction was English must be sent with your application.

Entry language certification (If English is your native language)

For more details, please see the Languages section. If you are unable to supply certification at the time of your application, the deadline is 1st June for the September intake, and 1st November for the January intake.

Letters of Recommendation

Two professional recommendation letters are required, providing information about your leadership and management potential. As such, at least one recommendation should come from your workplace; your current supervisor or manager is usually a good choice. The other recommendation should be from someone who has had a chance to evaluate you in a professional setting, for example, a client, a former supervisor or a colleague from your community service or extracurricular activities. Academic recommendations are acceptable but they are less likely to address our main interest, which is to assess your ability to work with and manage others as well as your potential for senior management. If you feel it would add value to your application, you may also upload an optional third letter of recommendation as part of the supporting documents.

It is important to note that your recommenders can submit their online letters to us at their earliest convenience after receiving their links, and no later than 48 hours after the application deadline, to which you are applying.

Supporting documents
Your curriculum vitae can either be on a free format or follow the format of the INSEAD official CV e-book.
Please also attach scanned copies of your transcripts and diploma and any other documents you wish to share with the Admissions Team.

Official Transcripts
Your transcripts should indicate both diploma and grades achieved from each college or university that you have attended. We accept transcripts in English or French. All others must be accompanied by a certified English translation. Each transcript must bear the official seal and signature of the institution.

The transcripts need to reach the Admissions Office by the deadline. For us to start processing your application, the transcripts may be either uploaded with the application form (scanned copies) or sent to INSEAD via post by the applicant or by the academic institution directly.
The size of each of your attachments should not exceed 1 MB. If you have more documents to send, please divide your pages and upload two lighter documents instead of a single big one.

Should you be admitted to the MBA Programme, you will be asked to send your original transcripts and degree to the Admissions Office by post. Photocopies are only accepted if officially certified by a public or professional body (solicitor, embassy, town hall, etc.).

Check further details on University website

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