Language requirements

Language requirements

RSM CEMS Language Requirements 2016-2017

Three languages

You must have proven minimum proficiency in at least three languages upon admission to the programme (entry) and upon graduation for the CEMS-MiM diploma (exit). These three languages are:

  • English
  • CEMS language
  • Third language

The level of mastery of each of these languages differs, and may also differ between entry and exit, as the exit requirements in some cases are higher.

Click here for specific entry language requirements.

Click here for specific exit language requirements.

CEMS language

CEMS languages are the dominant national languages spoken in the countries of the CEMS partner universities, including a few other important languages from countries with large business communities. The CEMS languages are:

Arabic Japanese
Bengali Korean
Cantonese Mandarin
Czech Norwegian
Danish Polish
Dutch/Afrikaans Portuguese
Farsi/Tajik Romanian
Finnish Russian
French Serbo-Croat (Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, Montenegrin)
German Spanish
Greek Swedish
Hebrew Tagalog
Hindi/Urdu Tamil
Hungarian Thai
Indonesian/Malay Turkish
Irish Vietnamese 

Third language

The third language may be another CEMS language or any other language. Languages that are very similar to your chosen CEMS language, however, may not be submitted as third language. Thus, combinations such as the following are not possible:

  • Danish/Swedish/Norwegian
  • Czech/Slovak
  • Catalan/Spanish
  • Ukrainian/Belarusian/Russian
  • Afrikaans/Dutch
  • Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian/Montenegrin/Slovenian

When in doubt, please contact RSM’s Admissions Office.

How to demonstrate language proficiency

For all three languages you will need to demonstrate your language proficiency upon entry as well as upon exit by providing formal evidence. Formal evidence may for instance consist of a diploma from secondary and/or university education in that particular language or formal qualifications from an accredited language institution.

Please note that RSM accepts some forms of proof for entry that are NOT accepted as evidence for the CEMS exit requirements. Intake and placement tests from the Language & Training Centre (LTC) at Erasmus University, as well as LTC course certificates, are accepted by RSM for entry, but not by CEMS for exit. 

For a full list of approved institutions and formal exams to prove your language proficiency, please click here.

Validity of language certificates

The following periods of validity apply for accredited language certificates and exams toward CEMS exit/graduation requirements. The reference date for these periods of validity is the first day of the beginning of the programme:

C2 - (inapplicable: language evidence at C-level remains valid in perpetuity)
C1 - (inapplicable: language evidence at C-level remains valid in perpetuity)
B2 - 5 years
B1 - 2 years
A2 - 2 years
A1 - 2 years

Example: in order for a student to be able to use an accredited B2 language certificate towards CEMS graduation, that certificate may not be older than 5 years calculating from the first day of the start of the IM/CEMS programme.

Choice of language and exchange

Students applying for ESADE or HEC Paris as their exchange school must submit Spanish or French, respectively, as their CEMS language and, during their exchange, must take at least one course in that language.

We further suggest that students applying for the University of St.Gallen, University of Cologne or WU in Vienna as an exchange destination submit German as their CEMS language. Similarly, students applying for Louvain School of Management as their exchange school are advised to submit French as their CEMS language.